The battle of Glorieta Pass concluded 150 years ago today (1862). Union troops from Fort Union, New Mexico, joined by volunteers from Colorado, effectively ended Confederate attempts to march north up the Rio Grande and on to the gold fields in Colorado.
Estimated casualties: Union 142, Confederate 189.
The Civil War Sites Advisory Commission Battle Summary: Glorieta Pass provides somewhat more detail on the three days, including this:
Glorieta Pass was a strategic location, situated at the southern tip of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, southeast of Santa Fe, and on the Santa Fe Trail. . . . Both Slough [Union] and Scurry [Confederate] decided to attack and set out early on the 28th to do so. As Scurry advanced down the canyon, he saw the Union forces approaching, so he established a battle line, including his dismounted cavalry. Slough hit them before 11:00 am. The Confederates held their ground and then attacked and counterattacked throughout the afternoon. The fighting then ended as Slough retired first to Pigeon’s Ranch and then to Kozlowski’s Ranch. Scurry soon left the field also, thinking he had won the battle. Chivington’s men, however, had destroyed all Scurry’s supplies and animals at Johnson’s Ranch, forcing him to retreat to Santa Fe, the first step on the long road back to San Antonio, Texas. The Federals had won and, thereby, stopped Confederate incursions into the Southwest. Glorieta Pass was the turning point of the war in the New Mexico Territory.