In 1848 the Southwest was acquired by the United States in the War with
Mexico. Arizona was part of the region that became known as the
New Mexico Territory consisting of what is today known as the States of
Arizona and New Mexico.
In 1849 "The Gadsden Purchase" acquired the region south of the Gila
River extending from the California border to the Rio Grande
River. With Gold discovered in California, migration through
Arizona was extensive and eventually those who were unsuccessful in
California came to Arizona to settle.
The southern region of the New Mexico Territory, especially Tucson and
Mesilla, would become settled primarily by pioneers from the south,
including many Virginians. There would also be heavy settlement
by the Mormons throughout most of the Arizona part of the Territory.
On March 16, 1861, an "Ordinance of Secession"
was passed by a Convention of the People of Arizona at Mesilla, Arizona
Territory. On August 1st, the Territory of Arizona was created
and seceeded from
the Union. The Arizona Territory consisted of the portions of the
region of the New Mexico Territory which was south of the Gila River
El Paso to Yuma.
On February 14th, 1862, the Territory of Arizona was recognized by the
Confederate States of America. Granville H. Oury of Tucson, a
Virginian, was elected as the first delegate to the Confederate
On February 14th, 1863, the Territory of Arizona was
recognized by the United States Government, but to spite the
Confederacy the borders were established as we know it today.
From 1865 to 1900, there was a great influx of settlers mostly from the
southern states, most of whom were ex-Confederates or refugees from the
Reconstruction South, including a great many from the war devastated
regions of Virginia. As the mining boom hit, many more settlers
came to Arizona from the mid-west, and from countries around the world,
including Germany, Ireland, Wales and China.
On February 14th,
1912 Arizona became the 48th State.