This regiment was made up of cavalry companies enlisted in Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota and Missouri, but as Iowa furnished the most men it was called the Fifth Iowa cavalry. The organization was completed in February, 1862. Its field officers were: Colonel, William W. Lowe, of the regular army: lieutenant-colonel, M. T. Patrick, of Omaha, Neb.; Carl S. De Bernstein, of Dubuque, William Kelsey, of Omaha, and Alfred B. Brackett, of St. Paul, were the majors. The regiment was ordered to Fort Henry in February. On the 3d of May a detachment of 150 men was sent to Lockridge's Mill where it was attacked by Colonel Clayborne with 3,000 men, and cut to pieces; the commander, Major Bernstein, was mortally wounded. On the 25th of August the regiment had a sharp fight at Fort Donelson, in which Lieutenant Summers was mortally wounded. For a long time the Fifth was scouting and performing various services in Tennessee. In January, 1864, most of the regiment having re-enlisted, they were granted a furlough and visited their homes. In July the regiment was in the great raid made by General Rousseau, in which they marched over four hundred miles in the enemy's country. The Fifth lost fourteen men in this expedition among whom was Captain Curl, killed. In another raid under General McCook, which resulted disastrously, the Fifth lost 120 men. The regiment was now reduced to about 100 effective men, but continued under Major Young, to do good service. In September two companies of the First cavalry were united with the Fifth, and about this time Lieutenant-Colonel Patrick resigned. On the 28th of October a brigade commanded by Colonel Capron, in which was the Iowa Fifth, was surrounded by a large rebel force. The colonel disappeared and Major Young, of the Iowa regiment, took command and by a most daring charge his brigade cut its way through and rode safely into camp. It was next in the battle of Nashville and later in General Wilson's great raid through Alabama and Georgia. Major Young had been promoted to colonel and commanded the Fifth in that brilliant campaign, which fought bravely in several conflicts with the enemy. In August, 1865, it was mustered out of the service covered with honors nobly won.
SOURCE: Benjamin F. Gue, Biographies And Portraits Of The Progressive Men Of Iowa, Volume 1, p. 122