Farriers were assigned to each cavalry company. The military backdrop tells you he was a military farrier not a civilian. He wears a flannel shirt and a farrier's apron. Farriers are commonly called blacksmiths but the term farrier was used for a specialist in shoeing horses. Farriers were not treated as noncombatants and appear to have been armed and went into action with their unit. In fact one farrier, George E. Meach, Company I, 6th New York Cavalry was awarded the Medal of Honor for the capture of a Confederate flag at Winchester, Va.