George Nicholas Bascom was born about 1837 in Owingsville, Bath, Kentucky. He received an appointment to the United States Military Academy, where he graduated next to last in his class of 1858. Bascom’s first posting was at Camp Floyd in Utah, and then in Arizona at Fort Buchanan where he was the 2nd Lieutenant on the United States 7th Infantry. The Bascom Affair at Apache Pass in January 1861 is named for him. He sent 54 troopers to look into a kidnapping of rancher John Ward’s stepson, and he had Cochise and some other Chiricahua Apache arrested and held as hostages. It was that event that brought on the 1861 – 1872 Apache War.
When the Civil War started Bascom received a promotion to Captain of the United States 16th Infantry. Before he could join his new regiment the 7th Infantry was moved to Fort Craig in the New Mexico Territory. It was there on February 21st 1862 that Bascom was killed in action during the Battle of Val Verde. He was buried at the post cemetery in Fort Craig. After the fort was closed in 1885, his body was moved to the Santa Fe National Cemetery, but he has no marker.