June 25, 2010

The 8th Cavalry or ROTC?

"The most stately building in the Territory," as the old Sierra County Courthouse was once called, stands on the hill behind this military encampment. That dates this photo as post-1892, when courthouse was built. Is this an ROTC camp from New Mexico A&M (present-day NMSU) 70 miles to the south, or is this U.S. Cavalry? The Apache Indian threat was much reduced by the 1890s.  George Albion Miller, who was born in the home behind the tree near the courthouse in 1905, was an engineering student at A&M,was in ROTC, and did own a camera, we know. Photo courtesy Matti and Patti Nunn

June 22, 2010

Camp Boyd aka Camp Hillsboro 1885

U.S. Cavalry were encamped at Hillsboro for about a year, from 1885 to 1886. This image shows men in formation, near the present site of the Cunningham ranch in Percha Creek. Photo courtesy Matti Nunn.

Correspondence conducted at Camp Boyd are housed at the National Archives and Records Center.

June 4, 2010

Nana the Apache

Nana, pronounced Naw-Nay, a Warm Spring Apache leader took the U.S. Cavalry on a circuitous route that went through Hillsboro in 1881.  Nana, an arthritic 75-year-old and his band of about 40 men alluded hundreds of soldiers, killing an estimated for 40 to 80 people.

Nana blasted through Gold Dust, a tent camp northeast of Hillsboro, then skirted Hillsboro. He was pursued by citizens and soldiers, led by Lt. George Smith from Ft. Cummings and mining engineer, George Daly near the site of Lake Valley.  Both were killed by the Apaches in Gavilan Canyon, Smith's body grossly mutilated.  Lake Valley was originally called Daly, later called Sierra City before the name it's known by today.  Nana's band continued on, making their way into Mexico.

"Nana's Raid" a book by anthropologist Stephen Lekson is a well-documented read about the historic event.

Photo National Archives and Records Administration.