Essex Troop – 1910 Federal Service on the Horizon
February 23, 1910 - The Essex Troop escorted President Taft during his visit to Newark, NJ.
July 16, 1910 - Participated in the maneuvers at Gettysburg, PA until July 23, 1910.
December 1, 1910 - The formal dedication of the new armory on Roseville Avenue in Newark was held and cheered in with a grand ball attended by 2000 guests. Half of the riding ring was covered with a temporary wood floor. In attendance were members from the Philadelphia City Troop, Squadron A, the Seventh Regiment of New York and many soldiers and Troopers from around New Jersey. The new Essex Troop Armory was styled after a European castle, with represented battlement positions along the upper floors as a look-a-like parapet walk. The main entrance on Roseville Avenue commanded a position in the flanking tower, flanked by two large gates accessing the drill floor. The façade of the armory was red brick, with white granite corner stones.
Essex Troop Armory opened in 1910 on Roseville Avenue, Newark, NJ
May 13, 1911 - Provided honor guard for President Taft on one of his many visits to Newark. A formal reception was held at the Essex Club after the informal parade through the city. The Troop provided an escort the following year when the President visited on February 12, 1912.
May 30, 1911 - Provided honor guard and escort for former President Theodore Roosevelt while visiting Newark, NJ for the unveiling of the Lincoln Monument. The Lincoln Monument is presently installed in front of the Essex County Court House on Martin Luther King Blvd, between Market Street and Springfield Avenue.
August 10, 1912 - Participated in the Connecticut maneuvers. The Troop entrained at Newark for a one day ride to New Haven, Connecticut. The maneuvers lasted until August 18, 1912. The Essex Troop along with Troop B of NJNG and the 10th US Cavalry formed the Red Army under the command of Colonel Greirson, USA. The Blue Army was command by Colonel James Parker, the brother of the former commander of The Essex Troop Captain R. Wayne Parker. The Troop maneuvered throughout the Connecticut countryside, through the townships of Orange, Shelton, East Village, Berkshire and ending the campaign in Derby.
September 10, 1912 - Captain Bryant resigned as Captain of the Troop. Lieutenant Roome assumed temporary command of the Troop. The strength of the Troop at this time was 100 officers and men.
January 16, 1913 - Lieutenant Roome accepted the Captaincy of the Troop. Lieutenant Wilbour Kyle was chosen to fill the Executive Officers position and Sergeant Russell P. Freeman was elected to second lieutenant.
March 4, 1913 – ESCORT TO PRESIDENT WILSON - The Essex Troop entrained at Newark for Washington D.C. to provide a personal escort for President Woodrow Wilson. As in 1909 the Troop was quartered at Downey’s Stable. The escort duties called for the Troop to participate in the official parade with President Taft and Mr. Wilson from the White House to the Capital and returned to the White House. A painting depicting the Troop escorting the two Presidents in an open carriage is on display in the West Orange Armory. The ceremony was blessed with better weather then what was experienced in 1909. Several members of the Troop were invited by the newly sworn in President to the family supper and reception afterwards. The Troop wore a full dress uniform, with white trousers, leather riding boots, dark blue tunic and the familiar dark blue dress busby cap worn by the enlisted and the period officer’s cap of dark blue, with gold silk band around the bounder. Each Troop wore a saber, hung from black leather belt.
April 30, 1913 – FIRST MAJOR REORGANIZATION - The First Troop, the official name of the Troop, orders were received that the Troop would be divided and form two new organizations. The new designations would be Troop A and C of the NJ Cavalry. Many of the members were against this reorganization and dully expressed their dissatisfaction. The dissension fell on deaf ears, due to the fact that plans had moved forward to such an extent that reversal of the orders could not be enacted. The membership felt that one large organization was better than two smaller units. The orders remained and were effective on June 4, 1909. Prior to the reorganization, the First Troop was at full strength, numbering 100 officers and men, with one man on the waiting list. The division remained unpopular for with the Essex Trooper for some time. Hind site indicates the division was the best action, for the soon to come Mexican Border service and World War I service. The division allowed for training of additional officers and NCOs and larger manning documents that increased the troop strength to 200 officers and men, between the two Cavalry Troops.
May 31, 1913 – The Memorial Day Parade in Newark, NJ was the last public appearance as the First Troop of NJ Cavalry.
June 4, 1913 - Reorganized into two separate troops of cavalry. The First Platoon was reformed into Troop A, Commanded by Captain Bertram R. Roome. The Second Platoon reorganized as Troop C, Commander by First Lieutenant Wilbour Kyle. Troop B was organized in 1908 in Red Bank, NJ known at the time as the Monmouth Troop of Cavalry with lineage documents dating back to 1895. Officer and Senior Enlisted roster after reorganization, by accounts, appeared as in the following outlined:
1st Lieutenant Russell B. Freeman - newly promoted from 2d Lieutenant
2d Lieutenant Walter R. Boyd - newly promoted from Sergeant
1ST Lieutenant Hobart B. Brown - newly promoted from Sergeant
2d Lieutenant Lewis B. Ballantyne - newly promoted from Sergeant and a future Regimental Commander
Squadron Adjutant - First Sergeant Albert G. Borden - records don not indicated if he was promoted
Squadron Quartermaster - Sergeant V. Parker Wilkinson
June13, 1913 - Captain Roome resigned his command of Troop A, Lieutenant Freeman assumed temporary command and would soon after take over as Captain of Troop A.
June 14, 1913 - The newly formed Squadron left Newark, with its three new Troops of Cavalry, for a five day maneuver through the Morris County countryside. The march found the Squadron camping in Pompton (now Parsippany Township) to Lake Wawayanda (near NJ/NY border, near Vernon, NJ in Sussex), while encamped at the lake the troops fought mock battles and practiced cavalry close order drills. The Squadron returned to home station in Newark and Red Bank on June 20th, in a heavy thunder storm.
June 1913 - Soon after the return to Newark, the Troopers were issued new orders officially forming the new First Squadron of Cavalry in New Jersey. Captain William A. Bryant was promoted and elected to major and given command of the First Squadron. The Squadron was organized around four Troops. Troop A; Newark (federal organization in 1893), Troop B; Red Bank (federal organization in 1895), Troop C; Newark (federal organization in 1913) and Troop D; Plainfield (to be organized later in 1914). The Squadron Headquarters was stationed in the Essex Troop Armory, in Newark.
1913 - Officers Dress uniform utilized the Army Black Service cap, which had two gold brads and an embroider Army Eagle centered above the visor. The coat was dark blue, high collared with “ET” emblems in golf embroidery, officer epaulets on the shoulders, a black leather belt at the waist, with a royal blue and gold sash worn from the left shoulder, under the right arm. Trousers are white with highly polished formal riding boots and cavalry spurs. Officers saber worn at the left hip and with white gloves. The sleeves of the coat are embroidered with formal piping equal to the officer’s rank.
1913-1914 - Because of the reorganization, the Squadron needed to turn to recruiting new members. Troops A and C personnel rosters listed fifty to maybe sixty men. The authorized strength of the Troops was 100 officers and men for each troop. Rumors of War with Mexico boosted recruiting efforts filling out many of the vacant positions. It should be noted that membership was not automatic in the days prior to World War I. Each new recruit had to be sponsored by an active member and official membership was not granted until the next schedule meeting of the Troop. It appears from many of the records that there were two systems of command, the military side of the command structure and the general membership, or club side of the house. Each owning to the same ultimate counsel, the Captain of each Troop presided over both sides of the command structure; his decision was final on the military side and a signature authority of the club side.
1914 - 1915 - Another march was conducted during the summer of 1914 to Lake Wawayanda. Accompanying the Squadron were soldiers from Troop A of the NG of Maryland. Some of these soldiers would serve with the NJ Cavalrymen as part of the 104th military Police in the World War. The practice march was easier because of the boosted personnel numbers in each troop since the reorganization in 1913. Pompton (now part of Parsippany Township, NJ) was the site of the weekend bivouac, and the objective; Lake Wawayanda reached on Monday. For the next five days the Squadron practice maneuvers throughout Passaic County and an invasion of theoretical enemy territory of the sovereign State of New York. Camp was broken on Friday for the return march to Home Stations in Newark, Red Bank and Plainfield.
April 16, 1915 - The 25th Anniversary celebration, a formal ball was held at the Newark Armory. The Newark Evening News reported on the colorful event, the most elaborate in Troop history. The ball was held in the Roseville Avenue Armory and attended by 3,000 members and guests. Some of the guests hailed from the First Cavalry Regiment - New York, Quaker City Troop of Philadelphia, Troop A of the Maryland Cavalry, Connecticut Cavalry and the Naval Reserve Officers of NJ. The list of attendees extended into the State and federal government officials and the Commanding Generals of the National Guard of New Jersey, Brigadier General C. Edward Murray and the Brigadier General Edwin W. Hine of the First Cavalry Brigade. The Newark Evening News reported the event and denoted..the handsomely decorated armory came more than 3,00 persons of prominence socially…
Late Summer 1915 - The First Squadron encamped at Mt. Gretna once again, this encampment was notable because Troop D of Plainfield was manned and ready, completing the Squadrons reorganization. Troop D was mustered into service on August 27, 1915 and its first Commander was Captain Albert G. Borden. Captain Borden once served as the First Sergeant of the Essex Troop. The Squadron joined up with Troop A of Maryland, the Philadelphia Cavalry Regiment and two troops of the Fifth US Cavalry. Because the surrounding areas of Mt. Gretna were still cultivated much of the mock battles and training were confined to the roads.
Mexican Border Service – For a complete outline on the Squadrons service on the Mexican Border see the outlined entitled Mexican Border.
First Squadron Commander Resigns – Major William A. Bryant was in command of the Essex Troop from 1902 to 1912 and then assumed command of the Squadron in 1913. The Major mobilized with the Squadron on May 22, 1916 for service on the Mexican Border. Due to ill health he was forced to resign and return home. First Lieutenant Hobart Brown; Commander of Troop C, was promoted to fill the vacancy as Squadron Commander. Lieutenant Brown would remain in command of the Squadron for the balance of service on the border and would again mobilize with the Squadron for the World War. Major Bryant would not return to active service with the Squadron upon its return to New Jersey from the border, or with the New Jersey National Guard. His personal health would gradually worsen until his death on August 18, 1918. Major Bryant was a 42 year veteran of the New York and New Jersey National Guard. He severed 17 years with the 7th Regiment in the New York National Guard. He served in several duty positions in the New Jersey Guard, in a variety of different organizations.
1916 – 1919 – The Squadron returned to New Jersey after 3 months of hard service on the Mexican Border. Time at home would return to normal for a brief period. A call for federal service came in July 1917; 4 months after the United States declared War on Germany. The Squadrons service is outlined in the outline entitled World War I Service.
Coat of Arms – Prior to the formation of the Squadron the early coat of arms for the Fist Troop was a brass plate, angle at the corners with the initials “ET” in a French style typescript. When to Troop adopted a more stylish coat of arms this brass plate was used a belt buckle. For a brief period the Troopers wore a coat of arms that had a horse head, over crossed sabers, and the same “ET” in a French style typescript. Sometime in the early to mid 1900’s a coat of arms was adopted and authorized. The new coat of arms was an oval shield of two gold rings, on a dark blue field, with the familiar Carteret lion head, over yellow and blue piping, with the “ET” in a French style typescript below. The shield was mounted on an eight pointed ray sun burst.
It is thought that the Second Troop; the Monmouth Troop, had a similar design, but emblazed with “MT” on its individual coat of arms. The yellow shield design was not authorized until the Squadron was reorganized in the 1920.
Motto – Fide et Fortitudine the well known motto of the Essex Troop was formally adopted in 1914. The English translation is not specific and can be translated into several different forms; the officially accepted translation is: By Fidelity and Fortitude. Another unofficial translation is: faith through courage.
Updated 22 November 2009