When you think of the Civil War, you probably think of Vicksburg, Gettysburg, Shiloh, and Atlanta. . .Southern locales where the fighting was heavy and rivalries between neighbors and families were heated and angry. People don’t usually think of New Mexico as being associated with the Civil War.
But we had battles here, two of them fought in 1862 near Santa Fe at Glorietta and in Apache Canyon. This year marks the 150th anniversary of New Mexico’s Civil War battles, and this weekend you can get a glimpse of what those battles were like at El Rancho de Las Golondrinas, where living history actors and Civil War buffs will reenact both battles.
Union and Confederate camps will be recreated, as will cannon fire, military drills, and of course, skirmishes and battles. The Territorial Brass Band will provide period music and local historians and docents are scheduled to give talks on Civil War medicine and surgery.
Battlefield New Mexico : The Civil War and More is scheduled for this Saturday and Sunday, May 5 and 6 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. , with battle reenactments to take place at 2:00 p.m.
Las Golondrinas is located south of Santa Fe, near La Cienega, at 334 Los Pinos Road. Admission is $8 for adults, seniors and teen $5, and children under 12 get in free. You can download the event poster here.
Las Golondrinas is one of my favorite places in New Mexico. If you’ve never been there, you have to put it on your bucket list. Even if you can’t make it this weekend, plan to go there sometime soon. “The Ranch of the Swallows” dates back to the 1700s and was an important place for travelers and merchants to stop along the famous Camino Real, the Royal Road that ran from Santa Fe to Mexico City.
It’s a living history museum located on 200 acres just south of Santa Fe. Volunteers/villagers dressed in authentic period costume demonstrate how life was lived on the frontier in New Mexico. Las Golondrinas has a full event schedule . In July they host the Santa Fe wine festival . I definitely plan to be there again for that.
Santa Fe is a living city with lots of history. Las Golondrinas is the perfect place to steep yourself in that history, and this weekend’s Civil War activities will be unique to anything else offered in the state. Check it out. I’ll see you there!
And if you need a place to stay in Santa Fe, consider Two Casitas. With locations all over the city, Wendy Kapp and Two Casitas can put you up in the most historic of districts, but in incredible luxury.
My recommendation this week is the Hummingbird at 1130 Camino Delora.
With it’s amazing views of the Sangre de Cristos to the east and the Jemez Mountains to the west, you may end up doing all your sightseeing on the deck. . .It’s a gorgeous setting, just like El Rancho de Las Golondrinas!