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James Silas Calhoun

First Governor of New Mexico Territory and First Indian Agent
By Sherry Robinson

Details

Overview

Veteran journalist and author Sherry Robinson presents readers with the first full biography of New Mexico’s first territorial governor, James Silas Calhoun. Robinson explores Calhoun’s early life in Georgia and his military service in the Mexican War and how they led him west. Through exhaustive research Robinson shares Calhoun’s story of arriving in New Mexico in 1849—a turbulent time in the region—to serve as its first Indian agent. Inhabitants were struggling to determine where their allegiances lay; they had historic and cultural ties with Mexico, but the United States offered an abundance of possibilities.

An accomplished attorney, judge, legislator, and businessman and an experienced speaker and negotiator who spoke Spanish, Calhoun was uniquely qualified to serve as the first territorial governor only eighteen months into his service. While his time on the New Mexico political scene was brief, he served with passion, intelligence, and goodwill, making him one of the most intriguing political figures in the history of New Mexico.

Contributor Bios
Sherry Robinson is an award-winning author and journalist. She is the author of several books including I Fought a Good Fight: A History of the Lipan Apaches and Apache Voices: Their Stories of Survival as Told to Eve Ball (UNM Press). She lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico.