Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Learning about the Civil War in New Mexico

March 25, 2017 was the 155th anniversary of the Battle of Glorieta that took place in and around lands in stewardship by the Pecos National Historic Park. Considered a decisive battle for the Union Army the Battle of Glorieta is often coined the "Gettysburg of the West".

Under the mentorship of Doug Crawford (far left) participants from the PROTEC program were able to film at the event and capture part of the black powder demonstrations. For many of the students it brought to life the history they have been studying with Dr. Steve Martinez. The PROTEC participants are currently studying New Mexico history from 1821 to 1865 in an effort to develop a comprehensive story of the role of the New Mexico Volunteers who helped win the Battle of Glorieta for the Union.

"I am so lucky my family supports my passion," writes Cedric Griego, a SFCC film graduate and now a participant in the PROTEC program. Griego attended the event with his daughter and granddaughter. Griego has created a detailed production book that is helping in building the documentary that the PROTEC students are producing and shooting with Santa Fe Filmworks and Santa Fe Community College. Griego is using his skills to write and produce local films focused on Santa Fe stories. He also wants to provide more jobs for local filmmakers.

By the end of April 2017 the filmmakers will have a trailer completed to show to supporters of the project. On April 8th PROTEC teachers and students will present their work to date and continuing progress to the Northern Rio Grande National Heritage Area board at their monthly meeting in Espanola. The NRGNHA is a one of the fiscal sponsors of the project and is interested in the historical and cultural research the students are performing in their effort to tell the story of New Mexicans who fought at the Battle of Glorieta.

Later this year Santa Fe County will erect a monument to honor the New Mexico Volunteers. The monument will stand between the two monuments on Highway 50 in Pecos that honor soldiers from both Texas and Colorado who participated in the Battle of Glorieta.

PROTEC participants are happy to bring this important story to light through the documentary they are helping research and write. "We have a wonderful group of dedicated filmmakers," says mentor, Doug Crawford. "It has been a pleasure to work with them and begin the process of telling this New Mexico story."

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