Following the Mexican Revolution of 1910, various factions vied for political and military control and there were many cross-border raids into Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico. On 9 March 1916, General Pancho Villa raided Columbus, NM, killing numerous civilians as well as U.S. soldiers stationed at Camp Furlong. President Woodrow Wilson ordered Gen. John J. Pershing to pursue Villa into Mexico and capture him. Wilson also federalized the National Guard, ordering 150,000 soldiers to secure the 2,000-mile long U.S.-Mexican border. Connecticut’s 1st and 2nd Infantry Regiments spent the summer of 1916 in Nogales, AZ.
Their story is a forgotten chapter of Connecticut’s military history and one that turned out to be a precursor to mobilization for World War I.
Museum of Connecticut History, Dave Corrigan gave a talk on the Commemoration of the 100th Anniversary of the Mexican Border Campaign: