The 1st Colorado Volunteer Infantry at the Battle of Glorieta Pass, New Mexico

Col. John P. Slough 1st Colorado Infantry

The Territory of Colorado was formed in February 1861, just as the nation was headed to Civil War. Although the citizens of Colorado generally favored the Union, there were also those who favored the Confederacy at the outbreak of hostilities. It was clear that volunteer troops would have to be recruited to help preserve Colorado for the Union, especially with regular U.S. Army soldiers that had been assigned to the region being sent east to fight there.

In the summer of 1861, the process of recruiting ramped up , first with a pair of independent companies, and then with the formation of an entire regiment, drawn from recruits throughout the territory. By the fall, 10 companies of volunteers had been organized, creating the 1st Colorado Volunteer Infantry. Denver lawyer John P. Slough was commissioned Colonel of the regiment, with Samuel Tappan as Lieutenant Colonel. Tappan, of Central City, was a newspaperman and abolitionist originally from New York. Methodist minister John M. Chivington was appointed Major. He had declined an offer to be regimental chaplain in favor of a commission as a fighting officer. Like Slough, Chivington was originally from Ohio.

While the 1st Colorado Infantry was being organized in Colorado Territory, in Texas, Brigadier General Henry H. Sibley, who had served in New Mexico as a U.S. Army officer before joining the Confederacy, was organizing a 2500 man Confederate army whose purpose was to invade and capture New Mexico Territory for the Confederacy. From there, Sibley intended to march into Colorado Territory and capture the gold mines in the territory, and then possibly march to California.

Sibley’s army of Texans began entering southern New Mexico from El Paso, Texas in December. Part of Sibley’s strategy was the capture of Fort Craig, located on the western side of

Gen. Henry Sibley CSA

the Rio Grande River south of Socorro, and Fort Union, on the Santa Fe Trail northeast of Albuquerque and Santa Fe. The garrisons were a threat to the Confederates militarily, but also had large amounts of supplies of all types that were badly needed by an army operating far from its supply bases. Sibley approached Fort Craig in mid February, hoping to draw the Union forces under Colonel E.R.S. Canby out in the open, since the fort was too difficult to take by assault.

Col Edward R.S. Canby USA

Canby refused to be drawn out, so Sibley moved north around Fort Craig on the eastern side of the Rio Grande and prepared to cross the river at Valverde and cut Fort Craig off from Canby’s headquarters at Santa Fe. Canby figured out what the Confederates were doing, and moved much of his force to Valverde to contest the crossing. The resulting Battle of Valverde on February 21st was a Confederate victory, but the Federal forces retreated back to Fort Craig. Sibley decided it was still too difficult to take the fort, and headed north, capturing Albuquerque and Santa Fe in the first half of March.

While Sibley was marching north, the 1st Colorado marched south through Raton Pass into New Mexico, reaching Fort Union on March 11th. Colonel Slough assumed command at Fort Union over Colonel Gabriel Paul, a career Regular Army officer, on the basis of seniority (Slough had been a colonel for four months longer than Paul). From Fort Craig, Canby issued somewhat ambiguous orders regarding engaging the enemy while protecting Fort Union. Canby planned to eventually march north and combine his command with the Fort Union troops.

John S. Chivington 1st Colorado Infantry

Leaving a small garrison behind with Colonel Paul, on March 22nd Slough marched from Fort Union southwest on the Santa Fe Trail towards Santa Fe. Besides the 1st Colorado, the column included two companies of regular U.S. Army troops, an independent company of Colorado volunteers, a detachment of New Mexico volunteers, two companies of cavalry and two artillery batteries. Late on March 25th, Major Chivington and 400 Federals reached Kozlowski’s Ranch, a Santa Fe trail rest stop and ranch on the eastern edge of Glorieta Pass in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Kozlowski’s would be one of three such ranches that would play a role in the upcoming fighting.

While Chivington went into camp at Kozlowski’s Ranch, some 440 or so Confederates under Major Charles L. Pyron were camped at Johnson’s Ranch on the other side of Glorieta Pass. On March 26th, Chivington attacked the Confederate advanced picket post at Apache Canyon, a narrow part of Glorieta Pass. Pyron then moved the rest of his force to the canyon. Chivington was able to drive the Confederates back to Johnson’s Ranch in this Battle of Apache Canyon. Chivington did not know if Confederate reinforcements were nearby, and withdrew to Kozlowski’s Ranch to wait for the rest of Slough’s command to arrive.

Battle of Apache Canyon

Slough arrived at Kozlowski’s the next day, March 27th, bringing total Union troop strength to around 1300. Confederate reinforcements under Lieutenant Colonel William R. Scurry arrived at Johnson’s the same day, bringing total Confederate strength to about the same level of troops as the Federals had. Scurry assumed overall command of the Rebel forces. No fighting occurred on the 27th.

Lt. Col William Read Scurry CSA

The next day, March 28th, Scurry decided to attack. Leaving his 80 supply wagons behind with a small number of men and one cannon to guard them, he moved out with the rest of his force eastward through Apache Canyon. Meanwhile, Slough, who had also decided to attack, had marched his command west from Kozlowski’s to another ranch and rest stop called Pigeon’s Ranch, just east of Apache canyon. While Scurry had brought most of his force present in his column, Slough had detached Chivington’s with about 480 men as a flanking column, which would swing around the back of whatever Confederate force was approaching. Besides his Coloradans, Chivington had two companies of U.S. Regulars and a detachment of New Mexico volunteers led by Lt. Col. Manuel Antonio Chaves of the 2nd New Mexico Volunteers. Chaves, who was familiar with the area, also acted as guide for the flanking column. Without Chivington’s command present, Slough would have a numerical disadvantage of about 400 fewer troops in the upcoming battle, though of course he had no way of knowing that.

Around 11:00 a.m., the two forces essentially surprised each other, a little west of Pigeon’s Ranch, and formed in lines of battle. Slough attacked first, but was repulsed. The Federal commander then retired to Pigeon’s Ranch and formed a fortified line, occupying a hill (now known as Artillery Hill) on the left, and forming behind an adobe corral wall that ran from the base of Artillery Hill to the Santa Fe Trail and then on the other side of the trail to a ridge now called Sharpshooter Ridge. The Confederates attacked; fighting at Pigeon’s Ranch was over difficult terrain, with hills and wooded areas making it impossible for cavalry to operate.

Battle of Glorieta Pass by Roy Anderson

The highly fortified Union center held against Confederate attacks; the Rebels had greater success on the Union right, slowly pushing back the outnumbered 1st Coloradans on Sharpshooter Ridge. By the middle of the afternoon, the 2nd and 4th Texas Mounted Rifles (fighting dismounted) under Major Pyron and Major Henry Raguet succeeded in turning the Federal right flank and moved into position to fire down on the Union center from the ridge above, though Raguet was killed while leading his troops. With his position becoming untenable, Slough ordered a withdrawal to form another line east of Pigeon’s Ranch to allow his supply wagons to withdraw from the field. Some more lighter fighting and skirmishing continued until the wagons were out of harm’s way. The Federals then withdrew to Kozlowski’s Ranch; the exhausted Confederates held the field but did not pursue; nonetheless, they had won the Battle of Glorieta Pass, or so it seemed.

Slough had heard nothing from Chivington’s flanking detachment and it’s whereabouts was unknown. But while Slough was heavily engaged at Pigeon’s Ranch, Chivington was in the process of striking the decisive blow in the battle.

Manuel Antonio Chaves 2nd New Mexico Volunteers

Lieutenant Colonel Chaves led Chivington on a route south of Pigeon’s Ranch and the Santa Fe trail to Glorieta Mesa, which rose several hundred feet above Johnson’s Ranch–and the lightly guarded Confederate supply train. At first, Chivington hesitated, uncertain as to if a larger Confederate force was nearby, but after confirming that no other Rebel force was in the area, the major ordered his Coloradans to attack, taking the Confederates completely by surprise and burning the supply wagons. The Coloradans then returned to Kozlowski’s Ranch, traveling much of the way in the dark, before reaching the safety of the Union camp.

With the destruction of the Confederate supply wagons, the defeat at Glorieta Pass had been turned into a Union victory. With their supplies destroyed, and no reinforcements on the way, the Rebel army was stopped in its New Mexico campaign and began a withdrawal to Texas.

Colonel Slough filed these two after action reports on the Battle of Glorieta Pass:

KOZLOWSKI’S RANCH: March 29, 1862.

COLONEL: Learning from our spies that the enemy, about 1,000 strong, were in the Apache Canon and at Johnson’s Ranch beyond, I concluded to reconnoiter in force, with a view of ascertaining the position of the enemy and of harassing them as much as possible; hence left this place with my command, nearly 1,300 strong, at 8 o’clock yesterday morning. To facilitate the reconnaissance I sent Maj. J. M. Chivington, First Regiment Colorado Volunteers, by a road running to the left of the canon and nearly parallel thereto, with about 430 officers and picked men, with instructions to push forward to Johnson’s. With the remainder of the command I entered the cañon, and had attained but a short distance when our pickets announced that the enemy was near and had taken position in a thick grove of trees, with their line extending from mesa to mesa across the cañon, and their battery, consisting of four pieces, placed in position. I at once detailed a considerable force of flankers, placed the batteries in position, and placed the cavalry–nearly all dismounted–and the remainder of the infantry in position to support the batteries.

Before the arrangement of my forces was completed the enemy opened fire upon us. The action began about 10 o’clock and continued until after 4 p.m. The character of the country was such as to make the engagement of the bushwhacking kind. Hearing of the success of Major Chivington’s command, and the object of our movement being successful, we fell back in order to our camp. Our loss in killed is probably 20, including Lieutenant Baker, of Company I, Colorado Volunteers; in wounded probably 50, including Lieutenant Chambers, of Company C, Colorado Volunteers, and Lieutenant McGrath, U.S. Army, who was serving with Captain Ritter’s battery; in missing probably 30. The enemy’s loss is in killed from 40 to 60 and wounded probably over 100. In addition we took some 25 prisoners and rendered unfit for service three pieces of their artillery. We took and destroyed their train of about 60 wagons, with their contents, consisting of ammunition, subsistence, forage, clothing, officers’ baggage, &c. Among the killed of the enemy 2 majors, 2 captains and among the prisoners are 2 captains and 1 lieutenant. During the engagement the enemy made three attempts to take our batteries and were repelled in each with severe loss.

The strength of the enemy, as received from spies and prisoners, in the canon was altogether some 1,200 or 1,300, some 200 of whom were at or near Johnson’s Ranch, and were engaged by Major Chivington’s command.

The officers and men behaved nobly. My thanks are due to my staff officers for the courage and ability with which they assisted me in conducting the engagement.

As soon as all the details are ascertained I will send an official report of the engagement.

Very respectfully,

JNO. P. SLOUGH,
Colonel, Commanding -Northern Division, Army of-New Mexico.

Col. E. R. S. CANBY,
Commanding Department of New Mexico.

HEADQUARTERS NORTHERN DIVISION, U.S. FORCES,
San Jose, N. Mex., March 30, 1862.

SIR: As the department commander is at Fort Craig, beyond the lines of the enemy, I have the honor to submit direct a synopsis of the military operations of the division since its organization at Fort Union. When an opportunity occurs a complete report will be submitted through the proper channels.

After the arrival of the First Regiment Colorado Volunteers at Fort Union I found that Colonel Paul, Fourth Regiment New Mexico Volunteers, had completed the preliminary arrangements for throwing a column of troops into the field, and by seniority of volunteer commission I claimed the command. Accordingly the following division was organized and I assumed the command of the whole: First Colorado Volunteers, aggregate 916; Captain Lewis’ battalion Fifth Infantry and Captain Ford’s company volunteers (Fourth New Mexico), three companies, 191; Captain Howland’s cavalry detachment of First and Third Cavalry and Company E, Third Cavalry, 150; Captain Ritter’s battery, four guns, 53; Lieutenant Claflin’s battery, four small howitzers, 32. Total, 1,342.

Captain Samuel Cook 1st Colorado Infantry

The movement commenced from Fort Union on Saturday, the 22d March, and the command encamped at Bernal Springs, 45 miles from Union, on Tuesday, the 25th instant. On Wednesday, the 26th instant, a command of 200 cavalry and 180 infantry, under Major Chivington, was advanced toward Santa Fe, with a view of capturing or defeating a force of the enemy reported to be stationed there. The enemy in force was engaged near Johnson’s Ranch, Apache Canon, about 15 miles on this side of Santa Fe. The result was victorious to our forces. The enemy was defeated, with some 20 to 25 killed, more wounded, and about 70 prisoners, who fell into our hands. Our loss was small—3 men killed in battle, 2 since died, and some 8 others wounded. Among the wounded is Captain Cook, Colorado Volunteers, badly. I regret to report that Lieutenant Marshall, Colorado Volunteers, accidentally shot himself while breaking a loaded musket which he held in his hand by the muzzle. Having accomplished this, Major Chivington’s command took position on the Pecos, at Kozlowski’s Ranch, 27 miles from Santa Fe.

About noon on the 27th I left Camp Paul, at Bernal Springs, and about 2 o’clock next morning I had posted my entire force at Kozlowski’s. On the 28th a movement was made upon the enemy in two columns, with a view of reconnoitering his position at Johnson’s Ranch. For this purpose an infantry force of regulars and volunteers, under Major Chivington, was directed to move off on the Gallisteo road, attain the principal heights upon the side of Apache Canon, and occupy them, while the main body, under my command, moved directly into the canon. It was known before this movement was made that the enemy had been strongly re-enforced, and his estimated strength was from 1,200 to 1,400.

At 9 o’clock we left our encampment, and at 10.30 a.m. we arrived at Pigeon’s Ranch, 5 miles distant, the command under Major Chivington having flanked off at a point about 2 miles beyond Kozlowski’s. We had just reached Pigeon’s when I directed Captain Chapin, Seventh Infantry, adjutant-general, to proceed forward with the cavalry and reconnoiter the position of the enemy. He had proceeded but about 300 yards when our pickets were driven in, and the enemy opened a fire of grape and shell from a battery carefully placed in position upon the hill-side above. The batteries were brought forward and the infantry thrown out upon the flanks. The cavalry, with an addition of infantry, supported the batteries, and the firing became general. The battle continued over five hours. The fighting was all done in thick covers of cedars, and having met the enemy where he was not expected the action was defensive from its beginning to its end. Major Chivington’s command continued on toward Johnson’s, where some 200 of the enemy were posted, and fell upon the enemy’s train of 60 wagons, capturing and destroying it and capturing and destroying one 6-pounder gun, and taking 2 officers and about 15 men prisoners. The loss of this train was a most serious disaster to the enemy, destroying his baggage and ammunition, and depriving him of provisions, of which he was short. Much praise is due to the officers and men of Major Chivington’s command.

About 5 o’clock p.m. a flag of truce came from the enemy, and measures were taken by both forces to gather up the dead and take care of the wounded. Our loss is not great. We have I officer (Lieutenant Baker, Colorado Volunteers) killed and 2 (Lieutenant McGrath, U.S. Army, and Lieutenant Chambers, Colorado Volunteers) wounded; 28 men killed and 40 wounded. We lost some 15 prisoners. The loss of the enemy is great. His killed amount to at least 100, his wounded at least 150. and I captain and several men prisoners. He is still burying his dead. It is claimed in the battles of the 26th and 28th together that we damaged the enemy at least 350 killed, wounded, and prisoners, and have destroyed their entire train and three pieces of artillery–one by Major Chivington and two by our batteries. We have killed 5 of their officers—2 majors,1 captain, and 2 lieutenants-and have captured 5 more–2 captains and 3 lieutenants. This has been done with the purpose of annoying and harassing the enemy and under orders from Colonel Canby, commanding department. But as the instructions from him are to protect Fort Union at all hazards and leave nothing to chance, and as the numbers and position of the enemy in a mountain canon are too strong to make a battle with my force, I shall now occupy a position to protect Fort Union and at the same time harass and damage the enemy.

Officers and men, regulars and volunteers, all acquitted themselves handsomely during both engagements. It is especially proper that praise should be accorded

Lt. Ira W. Claflin 6th U.S. Cavalry

Captain Ritter and Lieutenant Claflin, U.S. Army, for the efficient manner in which they handled their batteries during the battle of the 28th instant.

I desire to notice the members of my staff for the efficient manner in which they assisted me in the battle of Pigeon’s Ranch, and especially Captain Chapin, U. S. Army, assistant adjutant-general Lieutenants Bonesteel and Cobb, of the Colorado Volunteers, and Mr. J. Howe Watts, volunteer aide, upon all of whom fell the heavier portion of dangerous duty during the battle, and whose intelligent, courageous, and prompt action contributed much towards the result attained.

In conclusion, I would add that to Captain Chapin, whose connection with me was the most intimate, and upon whom fell the burden of duty, I owe and return especial thanks.

I have the honor to be, with much respect, your obedient servant,

JNO. P. SLOUGH,
Colonel -First Regiment Colorado Volunteers, Commanding.

The ADJUTANT-GENERAL U.S. ARMY,
Washington City, D.C.

Slough underestimated the 1st Colorado’s casualties in his report. A later account of the regiment’s casualties showed 43 killed , 72 wounded, and 11 captured. The regiment also lost five killed, 11 wounded, and 3 captured at Apache Canyon.

Lieutenant Colonel Tappan, who was on the Federal left during much of the action, also filed an after action report:

SANTA Fe, N. MEX., May 21, 1862.

In compliance with orders just received from department headquarters I have the honor herewith to submit report of engagement at Glorieta, or Pigeon’s Ranch, on the 28th March last, between the forces of the enemy, under Colonel Scurry, and Colonel Slough’s column of Colorado Volunteers, Howland’s cavalry, Ritter’s and Claflin’s batteries, of four guns each.

Lt. Col. Samuel F. Tappan 1st Colorado Infantry

On the morning of the day last mentioned I was assigned to the immediate command of a battalion of infantry, consisting of Companies C, Captain Sopris; D, Captain Downing; G, Captain Wilder; I, Captain Maile, and K, Captain Robbins, First Colorado Volunteers. A battery of four guns–two 12-pounders and two 6-pounders—Captain Ritter, Regular Army, and four 12-pounder mountain howitzers, Lieutenant Claflin, U.S. Regular Army, were attached to my command. We marched out of camp near the Old Pecos Church, Howland’s cavalry in advance, and proceeded about 5 miles down the road toward Santa Fe to Glorieta, situated in a deep, narrow, and thickly-wooded cation. While my command was at a rest information of the immediate presence of the enemy was brought by some pickets falling back on Captain Howland’s advance. They reported the enemy in position in the timber about 800 yards in advance. My command was immediately formed, and in obedience to the orders of Colonel Slough I advanced half that distance at a double-quick, where the batteries were stationed on a slight elevation in and to the left of the road. Company D deployed to the left and Company I to the right, to occupy the hill-sides as skirmishers; Company C was assigned to the support of Ritter’s and Company K Claflin’s batteries. The enemy were concealed among the trees, and opened fire upon us with their batteries, which was promptly returned by ours, and our skirmishers from the hill-sides discharged volley after volley among the enemy with telling effect.

Company I, in deploying to the right, passed an opening commanded by the enemy’s batteries and suffered severely. They, however, reached the position assigned them and did excellent service. Occupied this position for nearly half an hour, when the order was given to fall back to a new position in front of and near the house of Mr. Pigeon. Claflin’s battery’ took position on an eminence to the left and Ritter’s occupied the road. At this juncture Company G, that morning detailed as rear guard, came up, and were assigned with Company C to support Ritter’s battery. Subsequently the first platoon of this company, commanded by Captain Wilder, was ordered by Colonel Slough to deploy to the right as skirmishers. The enemy advanced and occupied the position we had left, and the firing was renewed and kept up a considerable time. Then our batteries fell back to their third position.

While the batteries occupied their second position Captain Chapin and myself were requested to accompany Colonel Slough up the hill to the right to reconnoiter. It was

Captain Jacob Downing 1st Colorado Infantry

there suggested to the colonel the necessity of occupying the hill to the left with skirmishers, to prevent the enemy from outflanking us in that direction, to fall upon our rear, and destroy to any special duty, numbering about 70 men, and with them took position in front of and to the left of the batteries on the summit of the hill, extending my line of skirmishers for nearly three-quarters of a mile in a half circle and at nearly a right angle from the road occupied by our train of 100 wagons. This position commanded the valley in part, and the irregularities of the surface afforded excellent protection for the men from the fire of the enemy. Remained here for about four hours. Occasionally small parties of the enemy would attempt to ascend the hill toward my line, but were driven back as often as they made their appearance.

Before the batteries had fallen back to their third position I noticed 200 or 300 of the enemy nearly a mile off assembling. Apprehending that they were preparing to charge our batteries, I descended to the valley and communicated my apprehensions to Colonel Slough. Soon after, returning to the position assigned me on the hill, I received information from Colonel Slough that the enemy evidently intended to charge my skirmishers to get my position, from which they could assault our battery and train; was ordered to hold it at all hazards, for all depended upon it; also to be in readiness to advance and attack the enemy’s flank when he should charge him in front, which he designed doing as soon as Major Chivington should attack him in rear, which he expected every moment. About half an hour afterward a party approached my line, dressed in the uniform of the Colorado Volunteers, requesting us not to shoot, as they were our own men. They were allowed to come within a few paces of us, when, not giving satisfactory answers to interrogations in reference to their commanders and recognizing them as Texans, my men were ordered to fire. The enemy suddenly disappeared, leaving several dead and wounded. Apprehending at this time the arrival of Major Chivington with his command to attack the enemy’s rear and that some of his men might get in our front while deployed as skirmishers, I was therefore extremely cautious not to give the order to fire on parties approaching until they were near enough to be recognized.

At the time the enemy charged our battery a battalion of the enemy made its appearance among the trees before us, approaching the center of my line, Major Shropshire and Captain Shannon at head of column. When they had arrived to within a few paces of my skirmishers, Private Pierce, of Company F, Colorado Volunteers, approached them, killing and disarming the major and taking the captain prisoner. He returned to our main body and delivered over his prisoner to Captain Chapin, U. S. Army. The fire of my skirmishers was directed against the head of the still advancing column with such rapidity and effectiveness that the enemy were compelled to retire, with the loss of several killed and wounded. They once again appeared in the valley, but were repulsed and driven back. Our column had fallen back from the valley to my right a considerable distance. The enemy occupied the place we had left. Considering it extremely hazardous to remain longer, and thereby enable the enemy to get in my rear and cut me off from support of our battery and protection of our train, I ordered my men to fall back and close in in the rear of the retiring column, which they did in good order at a point nearly 2 miles back, and then returned to the camp we left in the morning.

Not having at my command at this time the several reports of commanders of companies engaged in the battle I am consequently unable to particularize individual acts of heroism, and the exact number of killed, wounded, and missing. Therefore my report must necessarily be incomplete. I would, however, remark that an estimate was made after the battle of the casualties of my command, and, if my memory serves me, 29 killed, 64 wounded, and 13 missing. Companies D and I, First Colorado Volunteers, were the greatest sufferers. Several of the wounded have since died from the effects of their wounds, making the number killed 38. The missing were taken prisoners by the enemy, one of whom escaped. The others were released on their paroles. Lieutenant Baker, of Company I, was severely wounded during the early part of the engagement, and afterward beaten to death by the enemy with the butt of a musket or club and his body stripped of its clothing. He was found the next morning, his head scarcely recognizable, so horribly mangled. He fought gallantly, and the vengeance of the foe pursued him after death. Lieutenant Chambers, of Company C, Colorado Volunteers, was also severely wounded, from which there is but little hope of his recovery. He proved himself a gallant officer.

Suffice it to say that officers and men acted with great gallantry, and where all did so well to particularize and refer to individuals becomes unnecessary.

I have the honor to remain, yours, with respect,

SAM. F. TAPPAN,
Lieutenant-Colonel, -First Regiment Colorado Infantry Vols.

Capt. G. CHAPIN
7th Inf., U. S. A., A. A. A. G., Dept. Hdqrs., Santa Fe. N. Mex.

Major John Chivington would become the most famous–or infamous–member of the 1st Colorado, which was later redesignated as the 1st Colorado Cavalry. In November 1864, Chivington, at that time a Colonel, and a man with political ambitions, took the 3rd Colorado Cavalry and one company of the 1st, and attacked a peaceful camp of Cheyenne and Arapaho at Sand Creek, in eastern Colorado, massacring around 200, about 2/3 of whom were women, children, and the elderly. Many were not only brutally killed, but horribly mutilated as well. Captain Silas Soule, commanding the company of the 1st Colorado and a veteran of Glorieta Pass, was shocked at what Chivington was doing and ordered his 1st Colorado men not to fire. Chivington’s action sparked outrage in Washington, as well as with some of those in the 1st Colorado, such as Sam Tappan and Soule. (Soule would be shot to death in Denver shortly thereafter). A military commission was set to convene in February 1865, but Chivington resigned his officer’s commission in January, and with his being out of the army, no formal charges were filed against him. But the incident ended Chivington’s political career before it began, and instead of being famous for his role in ending the Confederate threat to New Mexico, he is remembered as the instigator of one of the more brutal and shameful incidents in the history of the frontier.

Sources:

The Battle of Glorieta: Union Victory in the West) by Don E. Alberts

The Battle of Glorieta Pass: A Gettysburg in the West, March 26-28, 1862 by Thomas S. Edington and John Taylor

Blood & Treasure: Confederate Empire in the Southwest by Donald S. Frazier

Colorado Volunteers in the Civil War: The New Mexico Campaign in 1862 by William Clarke Whitford

Crimsoned Prairie: The Indian Wars on the Great Plains by S.L.A. Marshall

History of the First Regiment of Colorado Volunteers by Ovando J. Hollister

Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies in the War of the Rebellion Series I, Volume IX


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