28th Annual OIW Assembly
September 27-30, 2007
Kit Carson's Southwest
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Bob Utley called Kit Carson the greatest of the mountain men, but he was much, much more. During his lifetime, he fought almost every major Indian tribe in the western United States – Paiute, Comanche, Apache, Navajo, Shoshone, Blackfoot, Sioux, Arapahoe, Ute, and many others. Carson rose to the rank of brevet brigadier general in the US Army – the only illiterate person to ever reach this rank. He might have been illiterate, but he spoke fluent Spanish, and could converse in several Indian languages. He made his home in Taos – one of the most fabled towns of the American west. We visited that home, plus Carson’s home in Rayado. Our itinerary included the town created by Lucian Maxwell – he of the famous Maxwell Land Grant – Cimarron. We saw the hotel built by the chef to both General Grant and President Lincoln. Across the street from the hotel was the mill where Carson recruited the Ute scouts who would accompany him on his last fight, as he narrowly averted disaster at the first battle of Adobe Walls.
We visited the very room where governor Charles Bent was killed by the Pueblo Indians, and saw the ruins of Turley’s Mill, home of the famous Taos Lightning! We went from Albuquerque to Taos, Cimarron, Las Vergas (NM) to Glorietta Battlefield, Pecos National Monument to Santa Fe and back to Albuquerque. For the first time in our 28 years of assemblies, this was a traveling trip. Luxurious buses, terrific guides, and great sites – that was the 28th Annual Assembly of the OIW.