Marc Simmons: Forts named for fallen soldiers in the Indian wars

"Mexico during the 19th century, a handful were named for soldiers who gave their lives in defense of the territory.

The earliest to do so was Capt. John Burgwin of Missouri. He fell mortally wounded while leading the assault on the Taos Pueblo church, which had been fortified by rebels in the Taos uprising of January 1847.

Seven years later, Fort Burgwin was built 10 miles south of Taos for the purpose of protecting the countryside from raiding Utes and Jicarilla apaches.

The other two officers who lost their lives at Valverde were Capt. George N. Bascom and Capt. Benjamin Wingate. The Army established Fort Bascom eight miles north of Tucumcari to discourage raids by Comanches and Kiowas, while Fort Wingate in Western New Mexico served as a staging point for a large-scale campaign in 1863 to defeat the Navajos. "

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