Battle of Glorieta Pass.

Today at Forked Lightning Ranch near Pecos National Monument, we witnessed the 146th anniversary of the Battle of Glorieta Pass, the bold Confederate offensive into Union territory on the western frontier. Many Civil War scholars see this battle, which occurred March 26-28, 1862, as an important turning point in the Civil War as Confederate forces had to retreat back into Texas, destroying hopes of a Confederate States of America that included the west. The timing of the event was particularly good for us, as next week we begin homeschool study of the Civil War and the role of figures such as Clara Barton.

I am no fan of the Civil War industry....As a former armored cavalry platoon leader in Vietnam, I recoil against any attempt to render war attractive—the Civil War, the Vietnamese war, any war; and particularly as regards the perverse spectacle called re-enactment, I remain absolutely clueless as to why grown people, all their attestations about "living history" notwithstanding, would want to dress up in period uniforms and go out for weekends of mock-battle where between bouts of sleeping in soggy bedrolls and grim repasts of sowbelly and hardtack, they pretend to maim and slaughter each other. Ted Turner et al. at Gettysburg; or, Re-Enactors in the Attic, Philip D. Beidler, Virginia Quarterly Review, Summer 1999

But notwithstanding some perplexity we may have, the reenactment made for a memorable day. We attended a talk about Civil War medicine and had a chance to speak with reenactors who had really done their research. Everything from knapsacks to haversacks to canteens to brogans to regimental bands to field artillery were spot on.