Battle of San Pasqual
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.
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.
Copyright © , Larry M Edwards