Battle of the North Fork of the Red River

Battle Of The North Fork Of The Red River

Military Conflict
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Battle of the North Fork of the Red River

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The Battle of North Fork or the Battle of the North Fork of the Red River occurred on September 28, 1872, near McClellan Creek in Gray County, Texas, United States. A monument on that spot marks the site of the battle between the Comanche Indians under Kai-Wotche and Mow-way and a detachment of cavalry and scouts under U.S. Army Colonel Ranald S. Mackenzie. There was an accusation that the battle was really an attempt "to make a massacre," as during the height of battle some noncombatants were wounded while mixed in with warriors.

This battle is primarily remembered as the place where the army for the first time struck at the Comanches in the heart of the Llano Estacado in the western panhandle of Texas.

Prelude to the Red River War



This battle was a precursor to the Red River War of 1873-4. In early 1872, the new Military Commander of the District of Texas decided it was time to strike at the Comanches in the heart of their homeland on the Comancheria, much as the Texas Rangers had done 14 years before at the Battle of Little Robe Creek. The Grant administration's "Quaker Peace Policy" was still in effect, which placed the appointment of Indian agents in the hands of Protestant religious organizations (Quakers were the first to participate, thus the name of the policy), not political patrons....
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