The 5th Regiment of Massachusetts Colored Cavalry, mounted, armed, equipped, and ready for service, is organized, and embraces one thousand one hundred black men. The first battalion of this regiment reached New York Friday from Boston, and after remaining here a few hours, took its departure for Washington. More than two-thirds of these men were originally slaves, who escaped from slavery either before or since outbreak of the Rebellion. They are skillful horsemen. Some of them acquired their skill in the management of horses while serving their master in the rebel service. Major H. N. Weld, an officer of five years’ experience in the Regular Army, and who participated in the Mexican war, has command of the 1st Battalion, comprising four of the twelve companies. The Commanders of the companies are as follows: Company A, Capt A.R. Howe; Company B,Cyrus Emery; Company C, Horace Weld; Company D, C.C. Parson. Most of the line officers are white men, and have seen service. Col. H.S. Russell is commander of the regiment.
(Liberator, May 13, 1864, pg 3)