During a brief pause in the march, this trooper is forced to re-shoe his horse or face what every cavalryman loathed, a long march on foot. In a well-equipped unit very man was issued one or two horseshoes and a few nails. His leather saddlebags had a pocket sewn into them just for this purpose. Like his concerned companions, this trooper has unbitted his horse and loosened the saddle girth and surcingle during their rest stop. The McClellan saddle, a simple wooden 'tree' covered in rawhide that was the U.S. issue saddle and this one’s rigged for a long trip. The sleeping blanket strapped behind the cantle is wrapped in a waterproof 'gum' blanket, which also doubled as his rain poncho. A tarred haversack slung across the cantle kept his food and spare ammunition close at hand and the ever-present tin coffee boiler dangling from his haversack is ready at a moment. This trooper has used a spare surcingle as a breast strap to keep his saddle from sliding back. There’s an interesting blend of issue and civilian clothing and hats in this squad. Many men found the four button 'sack' coat typically issued to the infantry more comfortable than the elegant 12 button 'shell' jacket with it’s yellow piping indicating that the wearer is a cavalry trooper. Each man has a Sharps carbine slung over his shoulder, at least one holstered pistol and an 1861 light cavalry saber at his side. By late winter of 1862 city laborers and recent immigrants had become hardened western troopers who knew the importance of caring for their mounts. Better equipped than their Southern counterparts by this time and more regular issuance of clothing, food and supplies, these cavalrymen were more than holding their own against the best the Confederacy could throw against them. The tide had turned and from this point to the end of the war the Federal cavalry was on the ascendancy.