People tracking in crowded scenes from closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage has been a popular and challenging task in computer vision. Due to the limited spatial resolution in the CCTV footage, the color of people’s dress may offer an alternative feature for their recognition and tracking. However, there are many factors, such as variable illumination conditions, viewing angles, and camera calibration, that may induce illusive modification of intrinsic color signatures of the target. Our objective is to recognize and track targets in multiple camera views using color as the detection feature, and to understand if a color constancy (CC) approach may help to reduce these color illusions due to illumination and camera artifacts and thereby improve target recognition performance. We have tested a number of CC algorithms using various color descriptors to assess the efficiency of target recognition from a real multicamera Imagery Library for Intelligent Detection Systems (i-LIDS) data set. Various classifiers have been used for target detection, and the figure of merit to assess the efficiency of target recognition is achieved through the area under the receiver operating characteristics (AUROC). We have proposed two modifications of luminance-based CC algorithms: one with a color transfer mechanism and the other using a pixel-wise sigmoid function for an adaptive dynamic range compression, a method termed enhanced luminance reflectance CC (ELRCC). We found that both algorithms improve the efficiency of target recognitions substantially better than that of the raw data without CC treatment, and in some cases the ELRCC improves target tracking by over 100% within the AUROC assessment metric. The performance of the ELRCC has been assessed over 10 selected targets from three different camera views of the i-LIDS footage, and the averaged target recognition efficiency over all these targets is found to be improved by about 54% in AUROC after the data are processed by the proposed ELRCC algorithm. This amount of improvement represents a reduction of probability of false alarm by about a factor of 5 at the probability of detection of 0.5. Our study concerns mainly the detection of colored targets; and issues for the recognition of white or gray targets will be addressed in a forthcoming study.