March 30, 2020
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Episode #4: The Battle of Glorieta Pass


This week in American military history, Union forces stopped
the Confederate invasion
of New Mexico when they defeated the Southerners
at the battle of Glorieta Pass on March 28, 1862. The Confederates were attempting
to gain control of territory
and the Western silver mines which would help finance their war efforts. In mid February, the Confederates
moved into New Mexico which at the time included
the territory of Arizona. At first Union forces were
unable to resist the occupation and the Southern Army
was able to occupy
Santa Fe and Albuquerque. The Confederates continued
to advance along the Pecos river until they ran into a Union force
of 1,300 troops near the Glorieta Pass. A determined Confederate attack
pushed the Union forces
deep into the pass but nightfall forced them
to halt their attack. The next morning, Union forces
were able to counterattack and when the Confederate
supply train was destroyed the Southern Army was forced to withdraw. By june 1862, Union forces
controlled all of New Mexico again. The Confederacy never again
threatened the American West.

Jean Kelley

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