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In the succeeding five days he had joined these troops and was conducting their march to Fort Thorn, forty miles farther up the Rio Grande, where he remained with them until the fore part of February. Thus nearly two months had been lost in waiting for belated reenforce- ments from San Antonio to reach him.
During that time lie was engaged in completing arrangements to have the orders of Presi- dent Davis executed in securing a regiment of natives by enlistment and conscription. He sent a detachment of his small army to Tucson, two hundred and fifty miles to the west, to hold the west- ern part of New Mexico for the Confederacy and to sustain the authority of Colonel John R. Baylor, its military governor, and which arrived there on February 28th. He dispatched one of his officers, Colonel James Reily, as an envoy to the chief executive of the state of Chihuahua in Mexico, to whom was delivered a com- munication from him, and from whom he received a satisfactory response.
On the yth of February General Sibley set out from Fort Thorn with about 3, men, fifteen pieces of artillery, and a long and heavy supply train, upon his march up the valley of the Rio Grande, on the west side of the river, and on the 12th of that month he was in camp at a point seven miles below Fort Craig. Four days after- ward he offered battle on an open plain within two miles of the post, to its garrison under Colonel Canby, who declined the chal- lenge, as he hoped to select a position more advantageous to him- self, and because his troops, especially his New Mexico volunteers, were, he feared, much less effective on an open battlefield.
Owing to ridges in the overflows, some of them sixty feet in height, between the camp and the river, it was impossible for the troops at the fort, with their cavalry and artillery, to reach the Confederates in their camp, which was about two miles directly to the east, and so only feeble efforts could be made to interrupt, much less to prevent, their march to the upper ford.
1st Colorado Volunteer Infantry hosted Civil War-era re-enactments for visitors
This crossing was near an old hamlet called Valverde, and is now bordered on the west by the town of San Marcial. Valverde is somewhat famous in the early, as well as in the later, history of the valley. Expeditions along the Rio Grande often halted here to rest and to plan their future operations. They found here large groves of pine and cottonwood, particularly on the east side of the stream, and an easy access to water for themselves and their ani- mals.
Here the Army of the West, under General Kearny, after taking possession of New Mexico, met late in the celebrated scout. Kit Carson, who had brought from southern California an express stating that Colonel Fremont and Commodore Stockton had received the surrender of that country, and that the American flag was floating in every part of it.
At Valverde, on February 21, , occurred the first severe en- gagement between the Union and the Confederate forces in the Southwest, and, considering the comparatively small number of troops engaged, it was a desperate encounter. The battlefield terminated on the south in the Mesa de la Contadera, which, composed of sandrock covered by lava, rises over three hundred feet abruptly from the river and the plain, and extends easterly three miles. Rows of small hills and sand ridges run, not far back from the river, north- ward over a mile to another, but lower, mesa.
A grove or bosque of large cottonwood trees, with openings between them, filled a con- siderable part of this area. Early in the morning the Texans left their camp opposite Fort Craig, and went in detachments during the forenoon onto the battle- field from the rear, and descended the slope to the river bottoms.
Their immediate object was to find water for their horses and mules, which had been without any for twenty-four hours. They purposed, also, to ford the stream here and continue their march up the valley on its west side. Opposition to their movement was expected from troops at the fort, and so from their camp they made a demonstra- tion to attack it before noon, to prevent, if possible, any consider- able body of its garrison leaving for the ford.
In this attempt they were disappointed. But they succeeded in alarming a regiment of militia, raised in New Mexico, which fled from the place, and could not then or afterward be brought into the engagement. The Federal forces were, until the middle of the afternoon, under the full charge of Lieutenant-Colonel Benjamin S.
Fie was a gallant, trusted and able leader, who had refused, at the opening of the war, to join his associates in the United States a r m y who were then stationed in New Mexico, and with them to enter the service of the Con- federate government. Very largely through his influence most of the junior officers and nearly all of the private soldiers remained true to their government.
Colonel Canbv arrived on the ground from the foit late in the day, and assumed the entire direction of his men. It was the opin- ion of many of these that the final result of the battle would have been different if Colonel Rob- erts had retained the charge to the end. On both sides artillery in the least number, in- fantry in the largest and cavalry in an intermediate were engaged.
During the day the action was conducted principally by the first- named branch, using field pieces and mountain howitzers, under the orders of Major Trevanion T. Hall of the Federals. McRae's battery was a provisional one, manned, not by regular artillerymen, but by men of Company G of the Second and of Company I of the i bird Regular Cavalry, Captain McRae being an officer of the last-named regiment. Operations started with fierce cannonading from both banks of the river, near the high mesa, where was the lower and principal crossing.
Aided by infantry and dismounted cavalry of the regulars, who had forded the Rio Grande, they succeeded by noon in driving the Confederates from the eastern river bottom among the cottonwoods back into an old dry channel of the stream and behind a long ridge of sand. This contest was, at times, very desperate. Three efforts were made by the enemy to regain the positions they had lost in the southern section of the battlefield, and once the Federal forces attempted to capture one of their batteries, which had been partially disabled.
All these movements failed. Meanwhile the First regiment of New Mexico Volunteers, under the command of Colonel Kit Carson, was moved about a mile north on the western side of the river into a cottonwood grove, to prevent an attack of Texan cavalry from that direction. Nearly all of the Union troops were ordered early in the after- noon across the stream.
The re - mainder of the afternoon was occupied by both armies in desultory firing at each other, mainly by their artillery, and in disposing of their forces for the final and decisive struggle that occurred an hour before sundown. The Texans were quickly repulsed, many of them being tumbled out of their saddles in a few minutes.
These Colorado volunteers, under fire for the first time, fought like seasoned veterans. According to Colonel Canby's final report, the killed and the wounded of the company numbered thirty, a greater number of casualties than that of any other organization of an equal number of men engaged in the battle.
It would seem that the colonel was trying the mettle of the first Colorado soldiers he had seen. Colonel Canby, on assuming full charge of the Federal forces, decided at once to strengthen the right wing of his little army, and, if possible, to flank the enemy's left, dissolving it or doubling it back upon its right, fronting McRae's battery. Chiefly other volunteers were assigned to the defense of the field pieces in the northern wing.
Pino himself a brave and gallant officer , refused to obey the order to cross the river from the west side and aid in this defense. The Confederates, discovering the arrangements made for the Federal right wing, placed Major Henry W. While doing this they concentrated the larger portion of their army in the opposite direction, concealed behind the sand hills, for the purpose of assault- ing the weakened end of the Union line. He was said to have shot, with his own hand, several of his men who, from cowardice, attempted to desert the ranks by taking to their heels.
When the contest here was at its height, the Texans under cover at the other extremity of the field leaped, at a given signal, upon the sand ridges in their front. They were directed and cheered from the rear in this on- slaught by Lieutenant- Colonel William R. Scurry, w hose clarion voice was heard above the yells, shouts and hurrahs of the charging party and of the roar of the artillery. These men were led by Major S. Lock- ridge, whose death at the very muzzle of one of the cannon was greatly lament- ed by his comrades. Cap- tain McRae, the battery's commander, also was slain.
The brave, loyal and accomplished McRae had won the truest esteem and admiration of his fellow-soldiers. Had the battery been efficiently supported by the troops at hand it would not have been taken. Henry Connelly, governor of New Mexico, in reporting' this affair to the secretary of state, at Wash- ington, from Santa Fe, under date of March ist, said: "It is painful to relate that of the forces in position for the pro- tection of the battery not one company advanced to its relief or even fired upon the enemy as he approached.
The force consisted of two or more companies of regular troops and one regiment of New Mexico volunteers. The regulars were ordered- — nay, im- plored — to charge the enemy, by Colonel Canby, Ma jor Donaldson and Colonel Collins, superintendent of Indian affairs, who were all three present, in immediate contact with the troops and within io or 20 yards of the battery when it was taken. The regulars having refused to advance, the volunteers followed their example, and both retired from the held, recrossing the river and leaving the battery in possession of the enemy.
Major James L. Colonel Canby, whose horse was shot under him, perceived, after the loss of these guns, that further contest was futile, and at once ordered all of his troops who were still on the east side of the Rio Grande to recross the stream and return to the fort. In proportion to the number of the troops actually engaged in the fight, the losses in killed and wounded on the Union side were unusually heavy.
Reports of the Union losses are somewhat at variance. Basil Norris, assistant surgeon. United States army, in charge of the hospitals at Fort Craig, reporting from that post on March 3th to his superior. He reported forty of his men killed, including two officers, and thought would cover the number of his wounded. But it appears to have been his policy to minimize every misfortune that befell him. Colonel Thomas Green reported forty-one dead and wounded. On the morrow General Sibley, in the flush of his victory, sent, under a flag of truce, three of his officers to Colonel Canby, who were instructed to demand the immediate surrender of the fort, which demand was promptly rejected.
The first of these officers was the Lieutenant-Colonel Scurry, already mentioned ; the second. Lieutenant Tom P. Ochiltree, afterward governor of Texas and a member of the United States congress, the third be- ing Captain D. Shannon, who was taken prisoner in a subsecpient battle in the terri- tory. It was reported, but not confirmed, that this com- mission regarded the fort as too strongly defended to be taken by assault or siege at the time.
Also, that they were deceived as to the num- ber and calibre of the real cannon mounted on its bas- tions, for while some of these were metal, the others were said to be large-size wooden ones — mere Quaker guns. Colonel Canby, though depressed in spirit by his defeat, resolved still to make all efforts possible with his command to thwart the purpose of the Texans to acquire possession of the Southwest and thus to separate the Pacific Coast from the Union.
Subsequent events will show to what extent he succeeded in this determination through his own efforts. At Santa Fe, at that time, the belief that he could be successful with his small number of trustworthy troops was by no means sanguine. The territory's capital turned toward Colorado for help. From a wood engraving supplied bv the author. Halleck, at St. The militia have all run away and the New Mexican volunteers are deserting in large numbers.
No dependence what- ever can he placed on the natives ; they are worse than worthless ; they are reallv aids to the enemy, who catch them, take their arms and tell them to go home. It was seldom under the restraint of a superior officer, as it was nearly all the time on the road, its captain not liking the monotony of garrison life. Captain Graydon was a brave man, and no under- taking was too hazardous for him to attempt. Flis company were nearly all natives of New Mexico, and they would go anywhere their captain would lead them.
On the evening of February 20th, when the enemy were encamped opposite Fort Craig. Graydon was allowed to make a night attack upon them. Without explaining the details of his plan he had prepared a couple of wooden boxes, in each of which half a dozen pounder howitzer shells were placed, with the fuses cut. These boxes were securely lashed on the backs of two old mules, and the captain, with three or four of his men, crossed the river just below the fort and proceeded in the darkness toward the Confederate camp.
From the West Side of the Rio Grande. From one of the author's photographs. The picture on the opposite page is a continuation, to the right, of this view. The Confederate troops remained in camp, a mile and a quarter to the east of the Valverde battleground, the succeeding two days, burying their dead and arranging to carry their wounded to So- corro, a distance of twenty-five miles. By March 2d their advance guard was in the vicinity of Albuquerque, when the small force of Federal troops stationed there hurriedly left for Santa Fe.
On the third day afterward, it.
Prom the West Side of the Rio Grande. This is a continuation, to the right, of the view on the opposite page. They arrived safely at their destination on the 10th of that month, where they found adequate protection. Especially at Albu- querque, Santa Fe and Cubero, seventy miles to the west of the Rio Grande and eight beyond the Laguna Pueblo, all available com- missary, forage and clothing supplies were seized by the Confed- erates ; so a sufficient quantity of these necessaries for the army was The Armijo Residence in Old Albuquerque.
The decision was then formed to advance, as soon they could be ready, with their entire force, to Fort Union, ahead only four days' march, and, if possible, to capture it, with its great stores of military supplies, as the last remaining menace of importance to their full possession of the ter- ritory. Their confidence in their ability to demolish it with their artillery, by planting their larger guns on the hills to the west of it, suggests that perhaps General Sibley had not been informed of the recent construction there of an earthwork fortification that virtually had superseded the old post, with which the Confederate commander was familiar.
Major Charles L. Pyron, with mounted men, was sent for- ward from Albuquerque to Santa Fe, with the purpose of leading the march. He had been a trusted officer under Colonel Baylor dur- ing the campaign of the preceding summer and fall in the Mesilla valley and its adjacent region, and had participated there in the masterful skir- mishes with the Federal troops. Here he could be joined at the appropriate time by Pvron's battalion from Santa Fe.
Colonel Scurry belonged to a distinguished family in Texas, which had emigrated from Tennessee and settled early in that state. He served as a district attorney in the period when it was a republic, and as a major in a Texas regiment under General Zachary Taylor in the Mexican War, gaining celebrity in the battle of Monterey. Federal Union, a sequel of an ordinance passed a week before at the capital by a convention to which he was a delegate. He was commissioned August 23d of the same year, by the Confederacy, as lieutenant-colonel of the Fourth regiment of Texas Mounted Infantry, and assigned to the command of General Sibley.
At Valverde he was recognized as the conspicuous Confederate hero in the battle. Upon his return home after the Rio Grande cam- paign he was promoted brigadier-general. They were half savage, and each was mounted on a mustang horse. Each man carried a ride, a tomahawk, a bowie knife, a pair of Colt's revolvers, and a lasso for catching and throwing the horses of a flying foe.
While the last preparations of the Confederates for a movement and an attack on Fort Union were being matured, the First regi- ment of Colorado Volunteers was on the march to counteract and defeat them. The men had remained in quarters, anxious and im- patient, since the organization of the regiment.
News of the en- trance of General Sihley's army into the Rio Grande valley reached Denver in the fore part of [anuary, and efforts were made at once to obtain orders from Major-General David Hunter at Fort Leaven- worth, Kansas, in command of the Department of Kansas, which included also the territory of Colorado, for the Colorado regiment immediately to go to the assistance of Colonel Canby. But more than a month elapsed before the command was given. February 10, Acting Governor of Colorado, Denver Citv.
Act promptlv and with all the discretion of your latest information as to what may be necessary and where the troops of Colorado can do most service. It has had. Tappan, of the First Colo- rado Regiment. When the companies from Camp Weld had arrived at Pueblo, and those from Fort Wise at old Fort Bent, both on the Arkansas river, they learned for the first time, through advices from Colonel Canby.
They were urged to hasten to his relief. Discarding everything except actual necessities, the two divisions immediately struck out south- ward, advancing as rapidly as they were able through the several inches of snow that covered the country, and making about forty miles a day. On the way the men were deeply impressed by the grandeur of the winter scenery around the majestic Spanish peaks to their right. As they reached the summit of the last height several eagles came sailing in a circle above them.
As the regiment was preparing to bivouac at the close of the day, March 8th, on the southern slope of the Raton mountains, and ex- pecting to have a greatly needed rest for the night after the toil- some climbing of the opposite slope, there dashed into the camp a courier from Colonel Gabriel R. Paul, of the Fourth regiment New Mexico Volunteers, and commander at Fort Union, with the startling information that General Sibley was already in possession of Albuquerque and Santa Fe, was fast enlisting volunteers there, and completing his arrangements to march upon and attack the fort, in which were only some regulars, and about the same number of volunteers, to defend it.
After a brief rest, the Colorado volunteers proceeded toward the threatened post, en- countering on the first day a bitterly cold and furious windstorm, a mountain hurricane, which showered and blinded them with driven snow, dust and sand. But in the evening of the second day, March ioth, thev were joyously welcomed by the officers and sol- diers at Fort Union, and also bv the governor of Xew Mexico, who, Fort Union.
Tdere, also, the men were completelv supplied and equipped with regulation cloth- ing, arms and ammunition from the government stores. Colonel Slough assumed command of all of the troops at the post, by reason of the seniority of his commission. Between him and Colonel Paul arose a difference of opinion in respect to the execution of the orders of Colonel Canbv. The latter held that only by staying at the fort until otherwise directed could the former assist in accom- plishing the ends desired to be attained.
Beside this, his Colorado soldiers were endowed with such rugged energy that thev could not longer endure the routine of petty duties and the severity of discipline incident to garrison life. He had, when he left Fort Union, beside his own First Colorado regiment. On the 25th of March, in the afternoon. In all, enlisted men. Late in the night these troops stopped and encamped at Kozlowski's ranch, a short distance south of the ruined Pecos mission.
Here they were told that some Confederate scouts, heavily armed and splendidly mounted, were in the neighborhood, and had visited the place early in the evening -. At once was introduced a new policy into the Federal conduct of the war in the territory — one that was bold, vigorous and aggressive in the treatment of the Texans. Among these were two officers, one.
Captain Hall, had been a well-known resident of Denver City. At this time Major z w '? Kozlowski's ranch, at which Chivington'" s detachment encamped, became closely associated with the operations of Colonel Slough's command while in this region. The adobe building in the accom- panying view is the largest of several in the group, and stands on the right bank of a stream that empties into the Pecos river.
Beyond it, in the somewhat deep channel, is a grove of cottonwood trees, and under them a copious spring of pure water flows from crevices in the sandstone rock. This furnished a reason for the location of the ranch at the place. Here for many years were provided excellent accommodations for the stages, freighters and other conveyances traveling on the Santa Fe trail, which crossed the stream at this point. In the picture, in front of the building, stands, in military attitude, Martin Kozlowski, the owner.
He was born April 24, , in the city of Warsaw, Poland; took part in the revolution of his countrymen in against Germany; was a refugee for two years in England, where he married; came to America and enlisted in in the First Dragoons of the regular army of the United States; served five years in New Mexico, fighting the Indians, and was mustered out in , when he settled down here on his acres of land.
The camp was named after Captain William H. Lewis, from Fort Dodge, Kansas, a brave and efficient officer of the Fifth Infantry of the regular army. At the left of the view is seen a section of the front portico to Kozlowski's main structure, and at the right the Santa Fe trail winds down the northern slope of the bluff toward the ford in the stream. In the distance are some of the nearer heights of the Pecos mesa, just in front of which now runs the Santa Fe Railway, that enters La Glorieta pass five miles back.
In passing the ruins of the Pecos pueblo and of the old Franciscan mission they closely observed the extensive remains of these structures, which to them were both novel and impressive. This, also, was a hostelry, the largest and most convenient on the trail from Las Vegas to Santa Fe. Though at the time of this writing it is greatly dilapidated, it is still the dwelling of a family. It was so called after the nickname applied before the Civil War to its proprietor, Alexander Valle, a Franco- American, from his peculiar style of dancing at parties. He was genial, vivacious and obliging, a popular host with travelers for years, and became such to the Union soldiers entertained by him.
His ranch was located in a defile of the canon, so narrow that it was fully occupied by the buildings, the road, and an arroyo, in which flows a small stream some months in a year. In the accompanying view is seen the prin- cipal structure, the rear of which formed a kind of Asiatic caravan- sary, where guests could lodge by themselves and eat their own meals. Beyond was a double corral for enclosing and protecting loaded wagons, and to it was attached sheds with stalls for draft horses and mules. Back of these, running up well into a ravine, Avas a strong adobe wall that surrounded a yard in which teams could also be kept and fed.
They were taken prisoners without any casualties to either side. The forward movement was continued by the whole column hurriedly, but cautiously, for three-fourths of a mile down to a point where the trail bends to the right and enters a long open space in the Apache canon proper, the western section of La Glorieta pass. Glorieta mountain is seen in the distance. A deep arroyo winds down through the depression immediately in front, and just beyond it the old Santa Fe trail passes.
The Union column rushed down into the field from that direction, and sought shelter at first from the cannon shots of the invaders behind and to the east of the ridge that nearly crosses, transversely, the upper part of the canon. How extreme must have been their surprise when they here discovered, without any forwarning, the presence of a determined foe, only a third of a mile away from them, eager for an encounter.
Shells and grape shot were quickly thrown at close quarters in the direction of the Union troops, who crowded in some confusion of formation to the left into shelter from the fire. By vigorous measures Major Chiv- ington at once restored order among his men. Those mounted were sent to the rear in charge of Captain George W. Cap- tains Wvnkoop and Anthony, with their companies, were deployed at double-quick as skirmishers on the mountainside among the thick evergreen trees to the left of the field.
These two were soon joined by Captain Charles J. Walker with a company of regular cavalry dismounted. Captain Downing with his company of the First Colorado, as skirmishers, hastened along the irregular moun- tainside to the right. Smaller parties of other volunteers and regu- lars were stationed in front, doubtless under the protection afforded by the low transverse ridge of ground lying in the back part of the field. Captain Howland failed to lead his command, as ordered, against the foe leaving the field in a broken condition.
The Federals col- lected their scattered forces, and followed with caution to a point where there is a sharp projection of rock into the canon, and here they halted under this cover to complete plans for another attack. On the way they had been saluted with an occasional cannon ball from the road, and with buck shot and rifle bullets from rocks on both sides of it, by the retreating Confederates.
The Texans as repulsed withdrew from the upper battlefield on the Santa Fe trail, which is seen in the illustration of that field, as well as in the picture of the lower one ; crossed a bridge of logs, of which the one in the foreground of the latter view is a successor, and then removed it so as to cut off an immediate pursuit by the Union cavalry; posted their howitzers in the defile just beyond the bridge, where they could command the road, and completely cov- ered the mountain slopes on both sides with their supports of the artillery.
The same arroyo runs through both battlefields, generally from twenty to twenty-five feet deep, and with perpendicular banks. The bridge by which it was spanned was at least sixteen feet long, and furnished the only convenient crossing from one side to the other. So any front attack by either cavalry or infantry must be made along a very narrow margin, and the destruction of the bridge, it was expected, would stop any further advance of the Northern troops in that direction.
Beside, this structure was located beneath a high ridge, over the top of which, as from behind a bastion wall of a fort, shots in volleys could be discharged in the very faces of an attacking army and with comparative safety to the defenders. The distribution of the skirmishers in supporting the battery, especially those of an entire company on this high ridge, would frustrate, in all probability, an attempt successfully to flank the position.
In- deed, it was a formidable one, and could be taken by a small force onlv by the exhibition of surpassing bravery and skillful maneuver. Within an eighth of a mile of the place, and with the utmost promptness, Major Chivington proceeded to execute plan adopted for the assault upon this natural fortress. He dismounted the regu- lar cavalry under Captain Howland, and united the men with the infantry commanded by the intrepid Captain 'Downing, who was directed to climb the steep and rough mountainside on the right above the Texan skirmishers, and by the close and incessant firing of his men drive the Confederates out of the bottom of the canon.
Captains Wynkoop and Anthony, with their companies, were or- dered to outflank the skirmishers on the left in the same manner, to assist in effecting this result. Captain Cook's mounted company was placed in reserve out of the range of the howitzers, and told to charge, at a given signal, upon the Confederates when they showed any disposition to abandon the field.
The rest of the Fed- eral forces were required to make a movement directly in front.
Valle, of Pigeon's ranch, said of him. Evening coming on, further pursuit was abandoned. While the number of men on each side was comparatively small, and the engagement occupied but two or three hours, the fight was furious while it lasted. The Texans were badly used up, and, beside their heavy losses in killed and wounded, some seventy or eighty of them were prisoners. Seven of their command- ing officers were among the slain.
Only one Union officer. He was struck in the thigh by an ounce ball and three buck shot, and a minute or two later in the foot by a bullet. But to hearten his men he made light of his agonizing wounds. It should be noted by the reader that none of the Colorado volun- teers had ever before engaged in a battle. Among these a private captured a Texas captain hidden in the arroyo, and, having dis- armed him, led him to the rear. In a house, still standing in the lower battlefield, fifteen Confederates were made prisoners, when they might easily have defended themselves in it for a longer time.
After one of the Texans had surrendered he concealed himself be- Captain Samuel H. The defeated Confed- erates returned to the camp they had left in the morning, sent a flag of truce late in the evening, and requested the privilege of bury- ing their dead and caring for their wounded. At the lower end of the upper battlefield some skeletons of these devoted victims of war recently have been washed by the rains from a bank of the arroyo.
On this field grape shot are still plowed up in the spring of the year. Still, a small force of cavalry was held in the Apache canon as a rear guard until later in the night. The following are extracts from a letter written April 30, , at Socorro, New Mexico, by a paroled Texan prisoner, to his wife, and placed in the hands of a comrade to be given by him to her. It was found, with a large number of others, at Mesilla, after the last of these prisoners had left the territory by the succeedinglv July. We marched up the country with the fixed determination to wrench this country from the United States government, and we all thought it would soon be in our hands.
But what a mistake! Having marched up beyond Santa Fe we were again met by the enemy, from Fort Union, and, after three battles with them, all of us who were not killed or taken prisoners were obliged to destroy everything they had and flee to the moun- tains for their lives, and to get out of the country, the Lord only knows how. We are among those taken prisoners. In two days our regiment came up. We were to wait a short time, and then march on and take Fort Union, which, we thought, was ours already; and then New Mexico would belong to the new government of the South, and it would then lie so easy to cut off all communication from Cali- fornia.
FI ere we all dismounted, and our horses were sent to a ranch, on account of being worn out by hard riding. One company went with the horses to guard them, and we went into camp at the mouth of the canon. On the 26th we got word that the enemy was coming down the canon in the shape of Mexicans and about regulars. Out we marched with the two cannons, expecting' an easv victory; but what a mistake!
In- stead of Mexicans and regulars, they were regular demons, upon whom iron and lead had no effect, in the shape of Pike's Peakers, from the Denver City gold mines, where we thought of going about a year ago. The order was given to retreat down the canon, which we did about a mile.
The cannons and a company of men stopped to check the enemy, while the rest of us went down the canon a mile farther, to where the road makes a short bencl to the left, with high and ragged mountains on both sides.
ISBN 13: 9780873800754
This was no sooner done than up came the cannons, with the enemy at their heels; hut when they saw us ready to receive them they stopped, hut only for a short time, for in a few minutes they could he seen on the mountains jumping from rock to rock like so many mountain sheep. They had no sooner got within shooting distance of us than up came a company of cavalry at full charge, with swords and revolvers drawn, looking like so many flying devils. O11 they came to what I supposed was destruction; but nothing like lead or iron seemed to stop them, for we were pour- ing it into them from every side like hail in a storm.
In a moment these devils had run the gauntlet for half a mile, and were fighting- hand to hand with our men in the road. The canton is made of blue plain weave wool fabric. Thirty-four white cotton fabric stars are hand sewn to the field. The heading is made of twill weave cotton fabric with five brass grommets. The fly hem is hand stitched.
The campaign along the Rio Grande in New Mexico Territory was the only operation during the Civil War in which the Secessionists tried to conquer, as opposed to liberate unquestionably Union territory. In addition to supplementing the Confederacy's dwindling coffers, they hoped to control routes to California; possibly extending their frontier to the Pacific.
The southern adherents were equally determined that the flag should stay. A young man in the crowd, Samuel M. Logan, later a Captain in the First Colorado Volunteers , climbed to the roof of the store to remove the flag. There are conflicting reports as to what happened next; some say a compromise was reached and the flag was permitted to remain for one day, while others state the flag was removed.
In , when Confederate General Sibley organized his army to invade New Mexico , he commissioned Captain George Madison to go into Colorado with a two-fold mission: disrupt federal mail and communication lines, and to help organize Confederate recruitment there. At this time, Confederate recruits in Colorado were first sent to a camp in the Pikes Peak area, and then sent to the main Confederate encampment at Mace's Hole.
Colorado in the Civil War - Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site (U.S. National Park Service)
In early , Captain Madison and his men captured mail en route to Ft. Madison was also actively planning a raid on Ft. Federal soldiers learned of the encampment at Mace's Hole and broke up the regiment while many of the Confederates were away. The Federals captured forty-four Confederates and took them to Denver. Their objective was to rob the gold mines in the area to help finance the Confederate Government. However, their goal was never accomplished and the members were eventually captured. While the captured southern sympathizers were being taken to Fort Lyon , the first stop on their way to Denver for a military trial, they attempted their escape.
A gunfight ensued and three of the prisoners were killed. However, two managed to steal horses in the confusion and escaped to the New Mexico Territory. Colorado was the only non-Southern state to have two ex-Confederate Soldiers elected as state governors:. Colorado is also the only non-Southern State to host a national convention of surviving Confederate Veterans.
The national organization of the United Confederate Veterans active from to held their 49th Reunion in Trinidad, Colorado from August 22—25, When President Abraham Lincoln called for volunteer soldiers to supplement the Regular Army , Colorado residents responded, with nearly 4, men eventually enlisting in the volunteer Union forces authorized by the United States War Department. Hundreds more served in militia companies, authorized by the territorial governor, most of which were formed to fight Indians rather than Confederates. Three regiments of infantry were organized, which were reorganized as two regiments of cavalry, while a third regiment of cavalry was raised in Other residents enlisted in New Mexico units.
Nicknamed "Gilpin's Pet Lambs" because of the governor's involvement in their organization, the regiment and its first commander, John P. Slough resigned in April and was replaced by Major John M.