A Fort For a Young America

Exposed to the wind, within a sweeping valley of short grass prairie, amid the swales of the Santa Fe Trail, lie the territorial-style adobe remnants of the largest 19th century military fort in the region. For forty years, 1851-1891, Fort Union functioned as an agent of political and cultural change, whether desired or not, in New Mexico and throughout the Southwest.

Features

Bright muzzle flash from cannon firing demonstration

2015 Fort Union Days Event June 20 - 21

Step back into Fort Union’s history during this special two-day event filled with guest speakers, living history encampments, cannon and musket firing

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Screen shot of Fort Union Movie

Multimedia Presentations Page

On our multimedia presentattions page you will find movies about Fort Union as well as ranger updates for upcoming special events and programs.

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The Santa Fe Trail

Trade to Santa Fe

In 1821, the Santa Fe Trail opened the door for a rich exchange of ideas, languages, material culture, food, and more.

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The First Fort Union

Establishing a Federal Presence in the Territory

To protect commercial activities on the Santa Fe Trail and enforce territorial boundaries, Fort Union was established on July 26, 1851.

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The Second Fort

Union Response to Confederate Invasion

The remnants of this massive earthwork, constructed by New Mexico Volunteers and US Army Regulars, stand as a reminder of the Civil War in the West.

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The third and final fort

A Bigger Better Fort

In November of 1862, construction began on the elaborate and final Fort Union which consisted of a Post, a Quartermaster depot, and an Ordnance depot.

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