“Last Paper Standing” covers Denver’s newspaper war


“Colorado in the Civil War,” by John Steinle (Arcadia Publishing)

Colorado in the Civil War.  By John Steinle.  Arcadia Publishing.

For a small territory of just 30,000, Colorado contributed an outsized number of volunteers — some 5,000 men — during the Civil War.  And they made a significant difference in stopping the war from going west to the California gold and silver mines.  At the Battle of Glorieta Pass, Colorado volunteers, led by Maj. John Chivington, routed the Confederates and sent them back to Texas.  The engagement was known as “the Gettysburg of the West.”

After distinguishing himself in that battle, Chivington, of course, went on to become the despised commanding officer at the Sand Creek Massacre. Colorado’s volunteers went on to fight the Rebels in Kansas and Missouri and confront Quantrill’s Raiders.

The territory’s role in the War Between the States is summarized in “Colorado in the Civil War.”  Using early photographs, many of them rare, author John Steinle pictures the scenes of the war in the West and the men who participated.  A copy of a rare recruitment poster for sharpshooters reads, “Hunters Come Forward and Join.”

“Last Paper Standing,” by Ken J. Ward (University Press of Colorado)

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