Twelve companies made up the 1st Maine Regiment Cavalry, which was mustered in at Augusta on November 5, 1861 for three years of service.
The regiment fought in 29 battles, including 2nd Bull Run, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Gettysburg and Cold Harbor. During the duration of the regiment, 2,895 men served. Of those, 174 were killed or died of their wounds, 334 died of disease, and 145 were held in Confederate prisons.
The 1st Maine Cavalry suffered the heaviest losses of any Union cavalry regiment.
Those whose enlistments were up mustered out on Nov. 25, 1864. The regiment was mustered out on August 1, 1865.
Most of the portraits of soldiers came from the collection of one unidentified member of the regiment.