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186

LOYALTY AND DISLOYALTY IN NEW MEXI00.

1861.

and suspended from duty for six months. Thus, at one sweep, nearly onehalf of the Government troops in New Mexico were lost to its service. The prisoners were paroled, and then permitted to go on to Albuquerque. Their sufferings from thirst on that march were terrible; some of them seeking to quench it by opening veins and drinking their own blood ! It was now thought that New Mexico would be an easy prey to the Texas

insurgents. Miguel A. Otero, its delegate in the National Cona Feb. 16,

gress, had endeavored, by a published address,“ to incite the in

habitants of New Mexico to rebellion, while Governor Abraham Rencher, of North Carolina, took measures to defend the Territory against the insurgents. His successor, Henry Connolly, was equally loyal. So also

were the people; and when, at this juncture of affairs, Colonel Canby arrived as Commander of the Department, he was met with almost universal sympathy.

He successfully appealed for a regiment of volunteers to the Governor of the neighboring Territory of Colorado, and these, with his few regular troops and New Mexico levies, made quite a respectable force in numbers, when Canby was informed that Colonel Henry H. Sibley, a major by brevet in the National army, and a Louisianian, who had abandoned his flag and put

himself at the head of a band of insurHENRY 1. SIBLEY.

gents known as Texas Rangers, some of them of the worst sort, was invading the Territory. His force was formidable in numbers (twenty-three hundred) and in experience, many of them having been in successive expeditions against the Indians.

Sibley issued a proclamation to the people of New Mexico, in which he denounced the National Government and demanded from the inhabitants aid for and allegiance to his marauders. Confident of success, he moved slowly,

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, , by way of Fort Thorn, and found Canby at Fort Craig, on the Rio Grande, prepared to meet him. A reconnoissance satisfied

him that, with his light field-pieces, an assault on the fort would be foolish. He could not retreat or remain with safety, and his military knowledge warned him that it would be very hazardous to leave a wellgarrisoned fort behind him. So he forded the Rio Grande at a point below Fort Craig, and out of reach of its guns, for the purpose of drawing Canby out. In this he was successful. Canby at once threw a force across the river,' to occupy a position on an eminence commanding the fort, which it was thought Sibley might attempt to gain.

In the afternoon of the following day, some cavalry, under Captain Duncan, and a battery were sent across, and drew a heavy cannonade from the Texans. The infantry were nearly all thrown into confusion, excepting

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1862.

1 Theso consisted of the Fifth, Seventh, and Tenth Regular Infantry, under Captains Selden and Wingate, and the volunteer regiments of Colonels Carson and Pine.

BATTLE OF VALVERDE,

187

1862.

Colonel Kit Carson's regiment. The panic was so great that Canby ordered a return of all the forces to the fort. That night the exhausted mules of the Texans became unmanageable, on account of thirst, and scampered in every direction. The National scouts captured a large number of these, and also wagons, by which Sibley was greatly crippled in the matter of transportation. At eight o'clock the next morning, a Canby sent Lieutenant

. Feb. 21, Colonel Roberts, with cavalry, artillery, and infantry,' across the Rio Grande; and at Valverde, about seven miles north of the fort, they confronted the vanguard of the Texans under Major Pyron, who were making their way toward the river. The batteries opened upon Pyron, and he recoiled. Desultory fighting, mostly with artillery, was kept up until some time past noon, when Canby came upon the field, and took command in person. In the mean time, Sibley, who was quite ill, had turned over his command to Colonel Thomas Green, of the Fifth Texas regiment. Canby, considering victory certain for his troops, was preparing to make a general advance, when a thousand or more Texans, foot and horse, under Colonel Steele, who had gathered in concealment in a thick wood and behind sandhills, armed with carbines, revolvers, and bowie-knives, suddenly rushed forward and charged furiously upon the batteries of McRea and Hall. The Texas cavalry, under Major Raguet, charged upon Hall's battery, and were easily repulsed; but those on foot, who made for McRea's battery, could not be checked. His grape and canister shot made fearful lanes in their ranks, but they did not recoil. They captured the battery, but not without encountering the most desperate defenders of the guns in McRea and his artillerists, a large number of whom, with their commander, were killed. McRea actually sat upon his gun, fighting

wo his foe with his pistol until he was shot. The

ONE OF BIBLEY'S TEXAS RANGERS. ? remainder of the Nationals, with the exception of Kit Carson's men and a few others, panic-stricken by the fierce charge of the Texans, fled like sheep before wolves, and refused to obey the commands of officers who tried to rally them. That flight was one of the most disgraceful scenes of the war, and Canby was compelled to see victory snatched from his hand when it seemed secure. The surviving Nationals took refuge in Fort Craig. Their loss was sixty-two killed and one hundred and forty-two wounded. The loss of the Texans was about the same.

Sibley well comprehended the situation. The fort could not be taken,

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1 These were composed of a portion of Roberts's and Colonel Valdez's cavalry; Carson's volunteers; the Fifth, Seventh, and Tenth Regulars, and two batteries, commanded respectively by Captain McRea and Lieutenant Hall.

* These Rangers who went into the rebellion were described as being, many of them, a desperate set of fellows, having no higher motive than plunder and adventure. They were ball savage, and each was mounted on a mustang horse Each man carried a rifle, a tomahawk, a bowie-knife, a pair of Colt's revolvers, and a lasso for catching and throwing the horses of a flying foe. The above picture is from a sketch by one of Colonel Canby's subalterns.

188

VICTORIES AND FLIGHT OF INSURGENTS.

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and the spirit shown by a large portion of Canby's troops satisfied him that, notwithstanding his loss of transportation by the capture of his mules and wagons, he need not fear a pursuit. So, passing on and leaving his wounded at Socorro, thirty miles above Fort Craig, Sibley pressed forward to Albuquerque, fifty miles farther, which was at once surrendered. His destination was Santa Fé, and he was marching with perfect confidence of success there, when his vanguard, under W. R. Scurry, was met near Fort Union, in the Cañon Glorietta, or Apache Pass, fifteen miles from the capital of New Mexico, by about thirteen hundred National troops, under Colonel John P. Slough. These were mostly Colorado Volunteers, with a few regulars. A greater part of these had just traversed the mountain wilderness from Denver, and during the latter part of their journey, after hearing of Sibley's approach to Santa Fé, they had marched at the rate of forty miles a day. In that narrow defile, where flanking was out of the question, a very severe fight

between the infantry and artillery of both parties occurred,in • March 24which the Texans were victorious, after a loss of thirty-six killed

and sixty wounded. The National loss was twenty-three killed and fifty wounded.'

Sibley entered Santa Fé without further resistance. His army was greatly crippled, and the people were either indifferent or actively opposed to him. He seized whatever property might be useful to him, and hoped to hold his position; but a month had not elapsed before he was compelled to fly back to Albuquerque, which he had made his depot of supplies, for these were threatened by the forces of Colonel Canby, approaching from below. He accomplished that purpose, but was so satisfied that he could not hold New Mexico, that he evacuated Albuquerque on the 12th of

April, leaving his sick and wounded in hospitals there and at

Santa Fé. After skirmishing with his opponents along the river, each party moving on opposite sides of the stream, and perceiving imminent danger to his whole command, Sibley fled under cover of the night to the mountains, with his scanty provisions on pack mules, dragging his cannon over rugged spurs and along fearful precipices, for ten days. Then he again struck the Rio Grande at a point where he had ordered sup

plies to meet him. He then made his way to Fort Bliss, in c May 4. Texas,' a wiser if not a happier man, Canby did not follow him

. over the mountains, but returned to Santa Fé, and reported to the Secretary of War that Sibley, who had been compelled to evacuate New Mexico, had left behind him, “in dead and wounded, and in sick and prisoners, one-half of his original force."

Let us now observe events eastward of the Mississippi River, within the Departments of Generals Halleck and Buell,' having a connection with the

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1 On the previous morning, in a skirmish with Pyron's Cavalry, Colonel Slough took fifty-seven prisoners, bat losing fifteen of his own men. In the fight just recorded, Major Chivington, with four Colorado companies, gained the rear of the Texans, and was indicting serious injury upon them, when he heard of Slough's defeat, and was compelled to withdraw,

2 At Albuquerque, according to Sibley's report, the brothers Raphael and Manuel Armijo were so warmly interested in the Confederate cause that they placed at bis disposal stores valued at $200,000. They fled over the mountains with Sibley. Their generosity and sacrifices so touched his heart, that he expressed a hope that they might not be forgotten by the Confederate Government" in the final settlement. * See page 179.

4 See page 179.

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PROVISIONAL GOVERNMENT IN KENTUCKY.

189

grand plan for expelling the Confederates from Kentucky, and liberating Tennessee from their grasp.

We have seen how the loyalists in the Kentucky Legislature foiled the efforts of the Governor and his political friends to link the fortunes of that State with those of the “Southern Confederacy.” These efforts were met, as we have observed, by the occupation of the whole southern portion of the commonwealth by Confederate troops, all of which were within the Department commanded by General Albert Sidney Johnston. That officer had been an able veteran in the army of the Republic, and was then about sixty years of age. He was a Kentuckian by birth, and his sympathies were with the conspirators. He was on duty in California when the war was kindling, and was making preparations, with other conspirators there, to array that State on the side of the Confederacy,' when he was superseded in command by Lieutenant-Colonel E. V. Sumner, of Massachusetts. Johnston then abandoned his flag, joined the conspirators in active rebellion, and was appointed by Jefferson Davis to the command of the “Western Department," with his head-quarters at Nashville.

Under the shadow of Johnston's protection, and behind the cordon of Confederate troops stretched across the State, the disloyal politicians of Kentucky proceeded to organize an independent government for the commonwealth. They met at Russellville, the capital of Logan County, in the southern part of the State, on the 29th of October. They drew up a manifesto, in which the grievances of Kentucky were recounted, and the action of its Legislature denounced. They then called upon the people of the State to choose, “in any manner” they might see fit,“ delegates to attend a "Sovereignty convention,'” at Russellville, on the 18th of November. At the appointed time, about two hundred men from fifty-one counties, not elected by the people, assembled, and with difficult gravity adopted a “Declaration of Independence," and an “ Ordinance of Secession,”a and then proceeded to organize a “Provisional Government,” by choosing a governor, a legislative council of ten, a treasurer, and an auditor.' Bowling Green was selected as the new capital of the State. Commissioners were appointed to treat with the “Confederate Government,” for the admission of Kentucky into the league;" and before the close of December the arrangement was made, and so-called

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ALBERT SIDNEY JOINSTON.

a Nov. 20,

1961,

1 Annual Cyclopædia for 1562. Article-A. S. Johnston.

? George W. Johnson, of Scott County, was chosen Governor. The ministers of the Legislative Council were: William B. Machin, John W. Crockett, James P. Bates. James S. Critman, Philander R. Thompson, J. P. Burnside, II. W. Bruce, J. W. Moore, E. M. Bruce, and George B. Hodge.

3 The Commissioners wero: llenry C. Burnett, W. E. Simons, and William Preston.

190

THE WAR IN SOUTHERN KENTUCKY.

1861.

6 Dec. 16.

representatives of that great commonwealth were chosen by the “Legisla

tive Council" to seats in the “Congress” at Richmond.' The • Dec, 16, people had nothing to do with the matter, and the ridiculous

farce did not end here. All through the war, disloyal Kentuckians pretended to represent their noble old State in the supreme council of the conspirators, where they were chosen only, a great portion of that time, by the few Kentuckians in the military service of Jefferson Davis.

While these political events in Kentucky were in progress, military movements in that quarter were assuming very important features. General Johnston concentrated troops at Bowling Green, and General Hardee was called from Southeastern Missouri, to supersede General Buckner in command there. The forces under General Polk at Columbus were strengthened, and Zollicoffer, having secured the important position of Cumberland Gap, proceeded to occupy the rich mineral and agricultural districts

around the upper waters of the Cumberland River. He issued a

proclamation to the people of Southeastern Kentucky, declaring, in the set phrases used by all the instruments of the conspirators, when about to plant the heel of military despotism upon a community, that he came as their “ liberator from the Lincoln despotism” and the ravages of “Northern hordes,” who were “attempting the subjugation of a sister Southern State.”

In the mean time, General Buell had organized a large force at Louisville, with which he was enabled to strengthen various advanced posts, and throw

forward, along the line of the railway toward Bowling Green, about forty thousand men, under General Alexander McD. McCook. As this strong body advanced, the vanguard of the Confederates, under General Hindman (late member of Congress from Arkansas), fell back to the southern bank of the Green River, at Mumfordsville, where that stream was spanned by one of the most costly iron bridges in the country. This was partially destroyed, in order to impede the march of their pursuers. The latter soon con

structed a temporary one. For this purBUELL'S HEAD-QUARTERS AT LOUISVILLE.

pose, a greater portion of Colonel Auguste

Willich's German regiment (the Thirtysecond Indiana), forming McCook's vanguard, were thrown across the river,

where they were attacked,' at Rowlett Station, by a regiment of • Dec. 17.

mounted Texas Rangers, under Colonel Terry, supported by two

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1 These were: Henry C. Burnett, John Thomas, Thomas L. Burnett, S. H. Ford, Thomas B. Johnson, Georgo W. Ewing. Dr. D. V. White, John M. Elliott, Thomas B. Monroe, and George B. Hodge. On the day when these inen were chosen by the “ Council,” two of them—Henry C. Burnett and Thomas Monroe-were sworn in at Richmond as members of the Confederate Senate. Of such usurpers of the political rights of the people, the "Confederate Congress," so called, was composed.

? This is a view of General Buell's head-quarters on Fourth Street, between Green and Walnut Streets, in the most aristocratic portion of the city of St. Louis.

3 See page 851, volume I.

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