Historic Controversy on the Santa Fe Plaza

This past weekend protestors gathered on the Santa Fe plaza leading up to the March 28,1862 Battle of Glorieta. Santa Fe will not rebuild the controversial Civil War obelisk destroyed on June 2, 2020. The structure celebrated the end of slavery but referred to the indigenous as savage Indians. 

One of seven Confederate tombstones at Santa Fe’s national ceemtery.

The Battle of Glorieta played a significant role during the American Civil War. Also known as the Gettysburg of the West, it was fought in New Mexico territory in March 1862, between Union and Confederate forces. The Confederacy was attempting to take control of the West by invading from Texas, but the Union forces were able to stop them at Glorieta Pass.

Stopping a Westward Battle

The outcome of the battle was crucial, as it marked the end of the Confederate’s westward expansion and their hope of gaining access to the gold fields of Colorado. The Union victory allowed them to maintain control of the Southwest and protected shipments along the Santa Fe Trail, a critical supply route for the Union armies.

While the Battle of Glorieta was a relatively small battle in the context of the overall Civil War, it had a significant impact on the outcome of the conflict. It demonstrated the importance of the western territories in the Civil War, and the Union’s successful defense of the area played a vital role in ultimately securing victory for the North.

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