The August 1861 Battle of Cook's Canyon




After the Americans were driven out of Tubac, Arizona and forced to flee to nearby Tucson, they agreed to flee to southwestern New Mexico after they reached Tucson. In all, they numbered 24 men, 16 women, and 7 children. They brought along with them over 1,000 head of livestock. The small group of whites left Tucson on August 15, 1861. After the small group of whites entered Cook's Canyon which is in southwestern New Mexico, they were attacked soon after the last wagon entered the canyon, by about 100 Anishinabe soldiers and their allies. During the assault the whites formed their wagons into a circle to better defend themselves. After a long day of fighting Anishinabe ogimak lifted the siege but they had captured nearly all the livestock of the whites and killed 4 whites and wounded 8 more in the battle. After the battle, a small group of the whites who survived made it to the Mimbres River. From there, they sent for military support at Pinos Altos. Confederate soldiers assembled and the Battle of the Florida Mountains was fought two days later.