Kit Carson: A Pattern for Heroes

By Thelma S. Guild; Harvey L. Carter | Go to book overview

Chapter 19
The Coup at Adobe Walls

Carson remained at Fort Sumner only a few months. He was not actually in charge of the Navajos. From the post commander, Captain Henry B. Bristol, he had to request both supplies for the Indians and authority to carry out decisions for their welfare. As a colonel of the New Mexican Volunteers, he found this subservience to an army captain intolerable. He tried to resign because his position was not what he had expected, and he considered it not "befitting an Officer of my rank in the Service."1Carleton immediately replied that by Article of War No. 62 he could take command at the fort any time he wished, that authority had already been sent for him to come to Santa Fe for a talk, and that "I will always sustain you and give you the best command I can."2

This was the third time Carson had submitted his resignation since going to Fort Sumner. Obviously, the position was not to his liking. Carson was too valuable a man to lose, but Carleton had plans more likely to interest him. The plains Indians had been on the warpath all spring and summer. Carson would be the man to subdue them.3

By November 6 an expedition of 14 officers and 321 enlisted men was ready to leave Fort Bascom with a train of 27 wagons, an ambulance, and 2 twelve-pounder howitzers. On November 10

-250-

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Kit Carson: A Pattern for Heroes
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Maps viii
  • Contents viii
  • Preface ix
  • Chapter 1 - Moving West 1
  • Chapter 2 - Across the Prairie 16
  • Chapter 3 - Too Small, Too Young, Too Green 26
  • Chapter 4 - Trapping to California 34
  • Chapter 5 - Rocky Mountain Men 46
  • Chapter 6 - Kit Takes a Wife 59
  • Chapter 7 - Blackfoot Country 70
  • Chapter 8 - Decline of the Mountain Men 83
  • Chapter 9 - Carson Meets Frémont 96
  • Chapter 10 - Lost in the Great Basin 108
  • Chapter 11 - Across the High Sierra 122
  • Chapter 12 - Waiting for War 138
  • Chapter 13 - The Conquest of California 151
  • Chapter 14 - Famous Dispatch Rider 163
  • Chapter 15 - Farmer and Scout 180
  • Chapter 16 - Agent to the Utes 198
  • Chapter 17 - Kit Fights to Save the Union 218
  • Chapter 18 - The Navajo Campaign 231
  • Chapter 19 - The Coup at Adobe Walls 250
  • Chapter 20 - General Carson and the Utes 261
  • Chapter 21 - Adios 276
  • Afterword 285
  • Notes 297
  • Bibliography 335
  • Index 347
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