Corps of Rediscovery

Battle of San Pasqual

Corps of Rediscovery - Battle of San Pasqual Re-enactment
L-R: Corps of Rediscovery members Friar, Capt. Strummer, Julie (the dog), Hatman and Shoulda Made waiting out the historically authentic rain prior to facing Mexican lancers in the re-enactment of the Battle of San Pasqual. Once the battle commenced, the Americans lost — again.
Photos by Bead Woman   (click the pix to see a larger image)
On the foggy morning of December 6, 1846, a contingent of the U.S. Army of the West commanded by General Stephen Watts Kearny fought the Battle of San Pasqual — the bloodiest encounter of the Mexican American War — in the San Pasqual Valley southeast of Escondido.

General Kearny and his approximately 120 troops had just arrived from Kansas via Santa Fe, New Mexico. Among Kearny's scouts were mountain men Kit Carson, Antoine Robidoux and Alex Godey.

It had rained, and reportedly was so cold the buglar could not blow his horn. Tired, hungry, wet and cold, Kearny foolishly attacked and was defeated by a smaller force of Californios, led by General Andres Pico.
Friar the fiddling fool prior to the battle.
(click the pix to see a larger image)

Because of the wet weather, the Americans' gun powder became damp and their guns misfired, allowing the Mexican lancers to cut them to shreds. Obviously, they had not followed one of the mountain man's chief dictums: Keep yer powder dry!

With some 35 dead or wounded, Kearny sought refuge on Mule Hill, where he and his men were pinned down by a seige. A daring midnight escape by Kit Carson, along with Edward Beale and an unnamed Indian, prevented a total massacre. They alerted U.S. Navy Commodore Robert Stockton, whose ship, the U.S.S. Congress, was anchored in San Diego Bay. Stockton sent a contigent of one hundred sailors and eighty marines, who chased the Mexican soldiers away and led Kearny's beleaguered troops to safety in San Diego. The combined forces went on to win the Battle of the San Gabriel River on January 8-9, 1847, giving the Americans control of Los Angeles.
A monument in San Pasqual Valley commemorates the battlefield, and each year living history enthusiasts — including members of the Corps of Rediscovery — re-enact the event on the first weekend in December.

Hatman and his skunk bag
Hatman showing off a beaded bag he made from a skunk hide.
(click the pix to see a larger image)
Strummer arriving in camp
Strummer arriving in camp.
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Copyright © , Larry M Edwards