A few months ago, I was reading a newspaper article headlined "Kit Carson: The most hated white guy in American history?"
The Taos town council wanted to rename its Kit Carson Memorial Park to something more politically correct,
given the common misperception that Carson was an "Indian hater." The article referenced a book, "Blood and Thunder:
The Epic Story of Kit Carson and the Conquest of the American West" by Hampton Sides,
which I was compelled to read to gain some perspective on the subject. It's not like I'm related to Kit Carson,
but I'll admit to a certain fascination if only because we share a name.
"Blood and Thunder" truly was an epic story and one of the most engaging books I've ever read.
Many of the turning points in how the west was
won stolen happened in New Mexico,
so all of these historical events that happened from 1820 through the 1860s seemed oddly personal and relatable.
I so enjoyed learning and/or re-learning this part of American history that I then had to binge-watch
Ken Burns' PBS series "The West." How did I miss that the first time around? It's must-see tv for history nerds like me.
Anyway, having immersed myself in the settlement of the West over these past few weeks,
I'll never look at this land and my surroundings in the same way again.