Boggs Unleashed

The Civil War Turns 150

What does the American West have to do with that?

What does the American West have to do with that?

Click image above for larger view

The Civil War and the American West are forever connected.

The Battle of Glorieta Pass occurred in March 1862, but folks re-enact it every May at El Rancho de las Golondrinas in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

It’s too cold to have that re-enactment in March, they tell me.

Oh, really. Well, here I am in May, freezing my butt off, waiting for the battle to begin. Every now and then, I taste snowflakes on my tongue. At least I could...if my lips weren’t frozen.

Maybe they should consider holding the Glorieta re-enactment in September. That’s when the John Brown Museum re-creates the Battle of Osawatomie of August 1856. Well, here I am, in mid-September, broiling in triple-digit Kansas heat, waiting for the battle to begin.

Why am I torturing myself? What does the American West have to do with the Civil War, which began—some say—150 years ago?

Everything. “It began here,” Judy Billings says. And she means before 1861. Billings, of Lawrence, Kansas, is touting Freedom’s Frontier National Heritage Area, which encompasses 29 counties in Kansas and 12 in Missouri. This Kansas-Missouri collaboration—that’s right, Jayhawkers...

The full text of this article is available to registered users of Register now!

Registration is FREE and takes only a few seconds to complete. If you are already registered on, please log in below.

Already Registered?

SUBSCRIBE today and save!

Get instant access to subscriber content on!

When it comes to keeping the lore of the West alive, nobody does it better. True West readers get the no-holds-barred, straight shootin' facts about the West from our staff of experts and historians.

Save up to 67% off the newsstand cover price!

1 year (12 issues) - only $29.95
(Newsstand cover price--$71.88)

For even greater savings:

2 years (24 issues) - only $49.95
(Newsstand cover price--$143.76)

3 years (36 issues) - only $69.95
(Newsstand cover price--$215.64) BEST OFFER!

After subscribing, just come back here and register with us by clicking on the register link below.


True West Magazine Issue November 2014
Buy This Back Issue: Nov 2014


True West Magazine Issue December 2014
Buy This Back Issue: Dec 2014


True West Magazine Issue January 2015
Buy This Back Issue: Jan 2015


True West Magazine Issue February 2015
Buy This Back Issue: Feb 2015

MARCH 2015

True West Magazine Issue March 2015
Buy This Back Issue: March 2015

True West Site Guide


True West captures the spirit of the American West with authenticity, personality and humor by linking our history to our present. Whether you call it the Wild West, the Old West or the Far West, America's frontier history comes to life in True West, the world's oldest, continuously published Western Americana magazine.

Western movie fans, re-enactors, history buffs and road warriors, we got your history covered: outlaw, cowboy, Indian, lawman, gunfighter, fur trapper, miner, prospector, gambler, soldier, entertainer and pioneer. Check out these True Westerners now!

Product of the Month

The Illustrated Life and Times of Wyatt Earp

Wyatt Earp

"Your book is fascinating, coupling your powerful illustrations [and] tracking...from birth to Tombstone to the legend [Wyatt] had become;...even Wyatt would approve." --By Hugh O'Brian, of the TV series The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp

"Hands down the definitive books on Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday." --By Allen Barra, New York Newsday