CALIFORNIA COLUMN. The California Column, a force composed of a few more than 1,500 men, chiefly California volunteer troops, was organized in 1862 under Col. James H. Carleton and moved eastward to discourage invasion of California by the Confederates. An advance party under Lt. Col. Edward E. Eyre arrived at Fort Thorne on the Rio Grande on July 4, 1862, and Carleton and the main body arrived in August. Detachments were sent to pursue the Confederates and reoccupy army posts as far east as Fort Davis, in Jeff Davis County, where the United States flag was raised on August 29, 1862. Carleton replaced Lt. Col. Edward R. S. Canby as commander of the Department of New Mexico and organized his men for Indian fighting. Most of the members were discharged in August and September 1864. After the war many of the California Column elected to remain in New Mexico and West Texas, and several of them played prominent roles in the history of the region. Charles E. Ellis, killed during the Salt Warqv, was one member; Albert J. Fountain and Albert H. French became prominent in El Paso politics of the 1860s. When Texas cattlemen began to settle in the area in the 1870s and 1880s, the men of the California Column lined up with the native Mexicans against the invading Southerners in a number of disturbances.
Image Use Disclaimer
All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.Handbook of Texas Online, C. L. Sonnichsen, "California Column," accessed June 30, 2016, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/qlc01.
Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.