I appreciate your input concerning this topic. I am more knowledgeable about Civil War weapons, but have worked around horses some.
Knowing the raids by Lane & Jennison into western MO. for almost 10 years before the war started & stealing livestock from western MO., it is almost hard to believe that any horse of value, remained. And, the raids continued throughout the war. Then, after order #11 was issued, everything on 4 legs was either, stolen or shot.
The one thing that I really am puzzled by, is how the Guerrillas controlled a remount in combat? A terrified horse in a combat situation required the full attention of the rider when he was suppose to be killing the enemy. It takes some time to get an animal accustomed to gunfire. I worked with canines in law enforcement & it was a Chinese fire drill & took some time before they would work under such conditions.
Concerning the Union Cavalry, you are right about most of the horses not being of quality standard. For the most part, the Union Cavalry in the early years of the war, was nothing more than couriers but things did change in the middle of the war when the Government decided to have some quality control in selecting animals. That, & the South not being able to replenish their fine mounts, the tide did turn in the Union's favor when both sides were involved in combat.
There were very few veterinarians in the army during the Civil War years to look to the health of the animal.
It wasn't until the post war years, did the Army get serious about quality mounts for the Cavalry. They employed veterinarians to administer to the animals health.
The Morgan or crossbred with the Morgan, was the acceptable mount. It was a sturdy horse, bred to carry the weight of the trooper & his equipment. Unfortunately, it was not bred for speed & the Indian's mustang would outrun the Army's mounts.
Anyway, I was looking for some research into how the Guerrillas replenished mounts that were acceptable for their needs, especially in the later years.
I always thought the musings of some veterans, written many years after the conflict, were exaggerated just a bit & almost sounds like the description of a knight in shinning armor.