The Twenty-third Texas Cavalry Regiment was organized in the spring of 1862. By October the regiment had completed its formation and was mustered into service with ten companies of effectives. The unit was composed primarily of men from the Texas counties of Red River, Bowie, and Hopkins and the towns of Centerville, Denton, and Palestine. One of the companies (Company K) in the regiment had previously served with Nathan Bedford Forrest's Third Tennessee Cavalry Regiment. Most of this company had been captured at Fort Donelson, paroled, and returned to Texas only to re-join the war effort as part of the Twenty-third Texas Cavalry.
The Twenty-third regiment's first commander was Col. Nicholas C. Gould. Other field officers included: William R. Caton (major), John A. Corley (major, lieutenant colonel), and Isaac A. Grant (lieutenant colonel). The unit was assigned to Hamilton Bee's and Xavier Debray's Brigade of the Trans-Mississippi Department. On October 28, 1863, Lt. Col. Isaac A. Grant died. He was replaced by John A. Corley. In January 1864 the unit contained thirty-three officers and 451 men. It fought in various conflicts in Louisiana including operations from March to May 1864 against Union Gen. Nathaniel Banks's Red River campaign. The regiment took part in the engagements of Mansfield and Pleasant Hill on April 8–9, 1864. Many of the men in the regiment remembered vividly the moment when Brig. Gen. Thomas Green was killed at Blair's Landing.
In February 1865 the regiment was dismounted and attached to Robertson's Brigade, Maxey's Division, District of Texas, New Mexico and Arizona, Trans-Mississippi Department. On May 26, 1865, the Twenty-third Texas surrendered along with other forces under the command of Gen. Edmund Kirby Smith to Union forces.