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   Chapter 32 SALTILLO, PARRAS, TAMPICO

The War With Mexico, Volume I (of 2) By Justin H. Smith Characters: 27018

Updated: 2017-12-06 00:03


1. Probably he did not include Wool's troops. A Mexican reported that on Oct. 14 Taylor had not over 4000 in camp near Monterey, 600 regulars in that city and 1080 men in the hospitals there, and that 600 volunteers, who had arrived Oct. 15, marched with 400 from the camp to other points. According to Gen. Patterson, commanding, there were in the Camargo region, Oct. 8, about 7000 effectives, but by Oct. 31 these numbered only 5700, viz., Second Dragoons, 150; Second Infantry and Mounted Rifles, 500; Kentucky horse, 450; Tennessee horse, 450; Second Kentucky, 400; Second Ohio, 500; First Indiana, 550; Second Indiana, 600; Third Indiana, 650; Second Tennessee, 350; Alabama, 400; Third Illinois, 370; Fourth Illinois, 330. The Mounted Rifles were classed as cavalry, but had no horses. Nov. 10 the sick at Camargo numbered 1400 or 1500, said a letter. Below Camargo there were troops now at Reynosa, Matamoros, Camp Belknap, mouth of the river, Point Isabel and Brazos Island. Nov. 2 Capt. W. S. Henry, a very good regular officer, doubted whether Taylor had more than 10,000 effectives (Camp. Sketches, 239). The returns showed only 13,000, he said.

2. It was stated, Dec. 1, that fully 120 had deserted. (Priests) Henry, Camp. Sketches, 240; Roberts, diary, Nov. 27. The Mexican government went so far as to pay the expense of sending a British subject named Sinnott to the north for the express purpose of seducing Taylor's Irish (Roman Catholic) soldiers (76Sinnott, Oct. 12; 76Guerra to Santa Anna, Dec. 5; 76to Hacienda, Dec. 2; 76S. Anna, Jan. 1, 1847).

3. 61July 21, 1846, Patterson wrote to the war department that he was born in Ireland and entered the army as a first lieutenant in 1813. He was then hardly more than a boy. Apparently he did not see much service. Later he became rather active in the Philadelphia militia.

4. Taylor protested twice, and demanded that his subordinates should be compelled "to keep in their proper places." Due retribution soon followed. He sent an order to Col. Baker, one of Patterson's officers, upon which that general demanded sharply that correspondence with his subordinates should go by the usual channel (Ho. 60; 30, 1, pp. 381, 384). Nov. 5 Taylor wrote a long and studied letter to Gen. Gaines, defending himself and attacking the administration, and this was published in the N. Y. Herald, Jan. 24, 1847. Evidently it was not a mere bit of friendly correspondence. To many it seemed to be the opening gun of a Presidential campaign, and certainty it was improper, for the writer presented information and opinions about the American military operations, and said that success would be worth little to the United States-a view evidently calculated to discourage the Americans and stimulate the enemy. Taylor was neatly punished for this imprudence by a public revival of paragraph 650 of the army regulations of March 1, 1825, which forbade private letters or reports from officers regarding military operations. Doubtless Polk was to a large extent right in believing that Taylor was now in the hands of political tutors, and he regarded him as "a vindictive and ignorant political partisan." See Marcy to Taylor, Jan. 27, 1847, and reply (Ho. 60; 30, 1, pp. 391, 809); 108Marcy to Bancroft, April 28; 256Id. to Wetmore, Apr. 25; adj. gen., gen. orders 3, 1847; Polk, Diary, Jan. 25–7; Phila. Pub. Ledger, Jan. 26–7; Ho. 37; 30, 1.

5. A pleasanter outcome of the correspondence was the release of seven American and a number of Mexican prisoners.

6. Preliminary incidents. Ho. 60; 30, 1, pp. 424 (Wool); 341, 344, 355, 367, 369, 391 (Marcy); 472–3 (Jones); 635 (Jesup); 325, 1270 (Scott); 682 (Whiting); 386, 439, 442 (S. Anna); 350–1, 358, 361, 381, 424, 437–40, 444, 526, 809 (Taylor); 384 (Patterson). 69Patterson to Marcy, Oct. 8; to Bliss, Oct. 8, 31; Nov. 23. Meade, Letters, i, 145–6, 152. Morning News, New London, Conn., Dec. 10. Henry, Camp. Sketches, 240. 307Roberts, diary, Nov. 27. 69Wool to Bliss, Nov. 2. 69Riley to Bliss, Dec. 14, 1846. Niles, Jan. 9, 1847, p. 290. 65Patterson, orders 1, 6, Sept. 5, 29. 169Scott to Taylor, Sept. 26. 169Taylor to Crittenden, Jan. 26, 1847. Sen. 32; 31, 1 (Hughes). Wash. Union, Sept. 26. Polk, Diary, May 14; Sept. 19–22, 24, 26; Oct. 12, 13, 20; Nov. 21. 69Patterson to Marcy, Oct. 8. 234A. Johnson to -–, Dec. 2. Claiborne, Quitman, i, 273–4. Marcy, report in Sen. 1; 30, 1, p. 45. Eyewitness, Complete Hist., 48. 205Graham, mem. book. Diario, Nov. 14, 29; Dec. 15. Taylor, Letters (Bixby), 178. 65Id., gen. orders, no. 139, Nov. 8. 69González, Sept. -. Negrete, Invasión, ii, 346, 354, 356. Also the following from 76: Comte. gen. Oaxaca, Dec. 3. Circular, Nov. 28. S. Anna to Taylor, Dec. 17. S. Anna, Nov. 28; Dec. 12. Sinnott, Oct. 12. Ordó?ez to Worth, Nov. 12; to P. F. Smith, Nov. 20, Worth to Ordó?ez, Nov. 12. Smith to O., Nov. 20. Ampudia, Oct. 4. J. F. Rada, Oct. 17. Parrodi, Sept. 16. Worth to alcalde, Nov. 5. On the origin of the proposed Tamaulipas expedition see chap. xxvii, note 4.

7. Lieut. Mackall's battery, the Seventh Infantry, and one company of the Artillery Battalion were left at Monterey under P. F. Smith.

8. The maguey (agave Americana) is the century plant, and produces the liquid known as pulque which, after it ferments, is about as intoxicating as beer, and is consumed liberally by the common people of Mexico. The stiff, thick, wide-spreading leaves are protected with thorns.

9. The governor expected a reply, and on finding that none was to be made he retired to Parras.

10. The occupation of Saltillo. 65Gen. orders 139. Ho. 60; 30, 1, pp. 361, 374, 377, 436, 543, 545 (Taylor); 362–3 (Marcy); 378 (Aguirre). Sen. 1; 30, 1, p. 45. 364Worth to S., Nov. 20. Taylor, Letters (Bixby), 71. 267Memo. (probably from Major Smith). Meade, Letters, i, 144, 152, 155, 157–8. Wilhelm, 8th Inf., ii, 295–9. Balbontín, Invasión, 24. Apuntes, 65. Sen. 32; 31, 1, p. 59. Calendario de Ontiveros, 1847. 69Worth to Arnold and Deas, Nov. 19. Smith, Chile con Carne, 175, 192, 195. Henry, Campaign Sketches, 245. Smith, To Mexico, 77. Eyewitness, Complete History, 48. 299Posey to Gordon, Feb. 19, 1847. The following are from 76. S. Anna to Ampudia, Sept. 30. S. Anna, Sept. 29; Oct. 3; Nov. 21. González, Nov. 19. Id. to R. Vázquez, Saltillo, Nov. 16; to S. Anna, Nov. 21; to Mejía, May 27. Mejía, June 9. Id. to Ampudia, Aug. 31. Worth to alcalde, Nov. 17. Memo., dated Nov. 22, of a conference with Taylor. Wool's advance may have helped to cause Ampudia's abandonment of Rinconada Pass. The distance from Monterey to Saltillo by the railroad is about 68 miles, and that by road must be about the same. (Marcy, Oct. 22) see p. 350.

11. The celebrated military writer, Clausewitz, on whose work our present views of strategy are principally founded, recognized two distinct kinds of war: that aiming to overthrow the enemy's forces, and that aiming to make conquests on the frontier, either to be held permanently or to be used in exchanges on the settlement of peace (Clausewitz, Vom Kriege, nachricht, par. 1; Donat, Strat. Science, 112). Polk aimed to accomplish both ends by having the main army bring Mexico to terms, and at the same time taking possession of territory; but he did not apply the principle understandingly. He overrated the influence that the occupation of the northern provinces would have on the Mexican government; he thought peace was near at hand, and was figuring on the terms of a treaty when he should have been taking steps to bring Mexico speedily to the point of making a treaty; and he ordered this expedition without knowing the conditions under which it would have to be conducted in Mexico, and without asking proper expert advice. The occupation of the frontier provinces would have been sagacious had it been part of a strong coercive military policy. Quotation at the end of the second paragraph: Meade, Letters, i, 152.

12. La Vaca, now Port Lavaca, is on Matagorda Bay.

13. In view of the Mexican charge that the Americans incited the Indians to ravage the southern side of the border, it should be mentioned that not only Taylor, but Wool, exerted himself to prevent such raids (Ho. 60; 30, 1, p. 425).

14. Harney committed a further impropriety by raising a company of Indians for the U. S. service. It was not our policy to employ Indian troops.

15. The author's description of Wool is based largely on the 147diary and 148recollections of Gen. S. E. Chamberlain, who served as his orderly for a time in the Mexican War; also on 257Hughes to Markoe, Dec. 13, 1847; Niles, May 8, 1847, p. 156; 61Horton, Dec. 3; Sen. 32; 31, 1 (Hughes); 371Mitchell, statement; 316Bragg to Sherman, March 1, 1848. Wool was a spare man of medium height, light complexion and brown hair. His manner was reserved and gentlemanly.

16. Buhoup says this section set out with 1244 effectives. Wool soon joined it with 144 men. At the Rio Grande, Oct. 12, eight companies (aggregate, 574) of the First Illinois came up. The second section (not over 1200) did not leave San Antonio until Oct. 14, and some of the men were detained there still longer. The whole force consisted of Washington's six-gun battery, to which were attached two small guns taken by the Texans from the Mexicans years before and destined to be lost at Buena Vista and recovered at Contreras; a squadron of the First Dragoons, a squadron of the Second Dragoons, a regiment of Arkansas horse, three companies of the Sixth Infantry, one company of Kentucky foot and the First and Second Illinois regiments. The aggregate was given by Capt. Hughes of the Topog. Engineers as 3400, of whom about 600 were regulars. Wool's route to Monclova was in general that of the So. Pacific and Mexican International railroads.

17. Shields, Irish by birth, practised law in Illinois, became a judge of the state supreme court and was then appointed commissioner of the General Land Office, Washington. He became discontented under Wool's command, and sent Davis, his aide, to Washington in the hope of obtaining command of the Illinois regiments or possibly of displacing Wool.

18. Frequently not all of the troops arrived at a place on the same date.

19. Possibly news of the restoration of the constitution had reached Monclova but not Santa Rosa.

20. The authorities of Monclova stated that Wool kept every pledge, and they complained only that the Americans ate up provisions needed for the people. The officers who criticised Wool most appear to have been Shields, who-besides being notably egotistical (Ill. State Hist. Soc. Trans., ix, pp. 36–8)-had been appointed by Polk on a confidential basis (Davis, Autobiog., 96) and therefore felt entitled to be ambitious; Harney, whose characteristics have been explained; Bonneville, who proved himself later incompetent or worse; and Yell, whose men were soon to disgrace themselves at Buena Vista in consequence of lacking discipline. Nov. 10 Taylor issued orders detaching Shields and Harney from Wool's command (Ho. 60; 30, 1, p. 542). This change doubtless tended to promote harmony. In December Harney brought charges against Wool, asserting that his "extreme imbecility and manifest incapacity" ruined the expedition. The judge advocate general advised that the charges should be ignored (61Horton, Dec. 3).

21. Just after leaving Parras Wool learned that 2700 Mexicans with four guns had moved from Zacatecas against him. One fault of the expedition was that it could neither support nor be supported by Taylor's army (see Halleck, Mil. Art, 410 and chap. xi, note 5, of this history). One asks why Ampudia was not ordered to attack Wool. With Blanco's irregulars he would have been formidable. The explanation probably is that Santa Anna wished to build up at S. L. Potosí as large an army as possible under his own command. Besides, he expected Wool to turn west.

22. Wool received on Nov. 14 Taylor's instructions to give up the expedition, and on Nov. 26 his instructions to go to Parras and await orders (61Wool, Jan. 17, 1847). He moved, however, in anticipation of the latter instructions (61Wool, Dec. 7). Nov. 16 he reported that he expected three mounted and two infantry companies as escorts to the last wagons, and after their arrival would have about 2750 in all. 60Marcy to Taylor, May 6, 1847: It is not important to hold Chihuahua, for you are in advance of it. Ripley (War with Mexico, i, 337), probably to have a fling at Wool, says Wool "only" wished to give up the expedition in order to go toward Durango and Zacatecas in pursuit of glory; but the document he cites does not so state, and Taylor wrote that Wool proposed to join him (Bixby coll., 71).

23. In chap. xix.

24. July 2 Taylor had expressed the opinion that the expedition might prove very important (Ho. 60; 30, 1, p. 329), but suggested that only mounted men should be employed.

25. Marcy said that the expedition prevented a considerable part of Mexico from sharing in the campaign against Scott, and to some extent this was doubtless true.

26. Wool's expedition. Polk, Diary, May 14, 16; Oct. 20. 164Conner to Bancroft, May 31. N. Orl. Commerc. Bulletin, Aug. 17. Meade, Letters, i, 152. Ho. 60; 30, 1, pp. 323, 363 (Marcy); 325 (Scott); 458 (Freeman); 328, 454, 466 (Jones); 424, 426 (Wool); 428 (Thomas); 305, 329, 351, 361, 374, 377, 400, 409, 418, 424, 433 (Taylor); 410 (Bliss); 567 (Jesup). 254Mansfield, report, Apr. 19. 61Wool, July 28; Aug. 5, 15; Sept. 2, 15, 28; Oc

t. 15, 19; Nov. 4; Dec. 16. 256Wool, July 29. Sen. 1; 30, 1, pp. 45, 545. Sen. 32; 31, 1 (Hughes and others). 65Adj. gen., gen. orders 19. Wash. Union, Oct. 19; Nov. 20, 21, 28, 1846 Feb. 8; Mar. 23, 1847. 61Maynadier, Aug. 25. 61Horton, June 23; Aug. 8; Oct. 20; Dec. 3. 69Harney, Aug. 12. Reavis, Harney, 155. Sen. 178; 29, 2. Diario, Sept. 11. 68P. F. Smith, Oct. 2. 245Duvall to Lamar, June 27. Buhoup, Narrative. Davis, Autobiog., 105–19. 61Shields, Aug. 28. Niles, Oct. 24, p. 118; Dec. 26, p. 263; May 8, 1847, p. 156. 61Kingsbury to Wool, Oct. 13. Sen. 64; 31, 1. National Intelligencer, Nov. 3, 21. Carleton, Buena Vista, 161–76. Balbontín, Invasión, 76. 65Wool, orders 89, 117, 121, 126, 143, 144, 148, 155. 61Wool to Taylor, Jan. 17, 1847. N. Y. Eve. Post, Jan. 4, 1849. 180McDowell to Newton, Sept. 16, 1846. 132Butler, Dec. 10. Wool in Ceremonies. Bishop, Journal. 69Duncan to Worth, Aug. 8. Taylor, Letters (Bixby), 71. 63Marcy to Kearny, Dec. 10. Picayune, Mar. 4, 6, 17, 1847. 69Wood to Taylor, Dec. 7. 66Lee to Totten, Dec. 5. Donnavan, Adventures, 41. Wallace, Wallace, 21–9. 69Wool to Taylor, Dec. 24, 1846; Jan. 20, 1847 Baylies, Wool's Camp. Journ. Milit. Serv. Instit., xiv, 443. Wilhelm, 8th Inf., ii, 301. 82S. Anna to comte. gen. Zacatecas, Dec. 6. Neville, diary. The following are from 76: Gov. Coahuila, Sept. 7, Oct. 8. Gefe Partido del Rio Grande, Aug. 28; Oct. 2. Comte. gen. Zacatecas to comte. gen. Durango, Oct. 14; to S. Anna, Oct. 21. Gefe político, Monclova, to Wool, Oct. 24; reply, Oct. 26. Comte. gen. Durango, Dec. 11. Heredia to comte. gen. Durango, Dec. 10. Gov. Coahuila to Id., Nov. 30. R. Vázquez to S. Anna, Oct. 1. Casta?eda to Vázquez, Sept. 24. S. Anna, Sept. 29; Nov. 4; Dec. 19, 24. Wool to Arziniega et al., Oct. 9. Aldrete to Mejía, Aug. 30. Ugarte, Sept. 26. Comte. gen. Zacatecas, Dec. 31. Lobo to R. Vázquez, Nov. 2. Comte. gen. Zacatecas to S. Anna, Dec. 17. Gov. Coahuila to Id., Nov. 30. Comte. gen. Coahuila, Sept. 7. Gefe político, Parras, to S. Anna, Dec. 17. Ampudia, Aug. 25. Rives (U. S. and Mexico, ii, 208) places Polk in a rather absurd position with reference to the expedition. He misunderstands a statement in Polk's Diary, May 28, 1846. The orders to Wool there mentioned had prime reference to getting volunteers in motion to Taylor (Military Historian and Economist, ii, 32 and note on p. 33).

27. The idea that the occupation of Tampico would mask and aid the expedition against Vera Cruz came forward a little later (Sen. 1; 30, 1, p. 949).

28. This is inferred from the fact that Marcy's letter, which was published in the Diario of Oct. 6, would naturally have met Santa Anna about Oct. 3, and from the character of Santa Anna's letter of that date.

29. None of these statements should be taken too literally. The various accounts, which come mainly from Parrodi and Santa Anna, differ considerably though not essentially, and both men had reasons for exaggerating the weakness of Tampico.

30. Parrodi and the court that tried him declared that he threw away nothing of value. But many did not believe this, and it is hard to see why he should have taken the trouble, when in such haste, to transport a large quantity of material to the river, if it was worthless. The government naturally wished the evacuation to appear inexpensive.

31. This sentence is inferential. Writing to his wife, Nov. 17, 162Conner stated that he was much surprised to find the city evacuated, and that, had the garrison been there, he would have had hard work. Why Mrs. Chase did not give notice of the evacuation cannot be explained. No doubt there was a high state of popular excitement and, as she had been suspected of playing the spy, the people perhaps cut her off more effectually than the military men had done. Later she presented a claim to Congress, and it was supported by letters from some of Conner's officers but by none from himself. This fact may be a hint that he was not pleased with her course. It seems to have been from her that Parrodi heard the imaginary tale of Conner's heavy landing force, which probably counted for a great deal in bringing about the evacuation. Chase had sent a sketch of Tampico to Conner in June, and later his wife forwarded a plan with a description of the forts, the number of guns, etc. We do not know, however, that Conner received these papers. Taylor belittled the capture of Tampico, saying that Santa Anna's order to evacuate the town had been printed in the Mexican papers, and that Conner must have been aware of the fact; but Conner was on a ship at some distance from any town, and his letter of Nov. 17 shows that he was not aware of it. The names of the captured gunboats were Nonata, Bonita and Reefer.

32. Signed by Tattnall and Ingraham; approved by Conner; accepted by the deputation of the ayuntamiento. The Americans felt that formal terms would bind them yet could be repudiated by the Mexican government.

33. Two merchant vessels also were captured.

34. According to Apuntes, pp. 82–6, Dr. Francisco Marchante of the Mexican medical service, who had charge of other public property, was not far away, but the Mexicans persuaded Tattnall that he could not be overtaken. On Tattnall's return to the port, however, a Mexican declared this could not have been true, and hence a second expedition set out in all haste. It was unavoidably delayed; and finally, as the Americans learned that a Mexican force had been sent forward to protect Marchante, the chase was abandoned. A large amount of ammunition was thrown into the river at Pánuco by Marchante. The total loss of material was thus of considerable moment. Some of the ammunition was saved by sending it to Tuxpán.

35. Gates had two companies of his own (Third Artillery). The other five were Belton's. A steamer carrying ordnance and ordnance stores was lost.

36. Perry flew the pennant of a vice commodore (Conner, Home Squadron, 12).

37. Brooke had at first intended to send also four companies of Mounted Rifles; and Taylor, on hearing of this, protested sharply to the government that "a large and efficient force of cavalry," on which he counted, had been diverted to a place where they were not needed (Ho. 60; 30, 1, pp. 382, 388), overlooking the fact that this corps had no horses (orders no. 149: ibid., 512). Now that Tampico had been captured by the navy, Taylor said it was of no consequence (Letters (Bixby), 78). These points are mentioned to show his state of mind, which will need to be understood when we come to Scott's operations. The Alabama regiment was ordered to Tampico by Patterson (Bliss: Ho. 60; 30, 1, p. 383).

38. Occupation of Tampico. Eco, June 9; Sept. 12; Oct. 29; Nov. 18, 19, 25. 303Juanito del Bosque, Jan. 6, 1847. Apuntes, 78–86. 61Gates to Barnard, May 4, 1849. 69Prout to Patterson, Oct. 28. 164Chase to Conner, June 4. Parrodi, Memoria (including letters to and from S. Anna and others). Ampudia, To Fellow-citizens, July 10. Commerc. Review, 1846, p. 165. 47Conner, Oct. 7; Nov. 5, 21; Dec. 1. Polk, Diary, Sept. 19–22. 297Mackenzie to Buchanan, July 7. Ho. 60; 30, 1, pp. 480–1 (Jones); 339, 341 (Marcy); 378–9, 387 (Taylor); 252 (Mason); 270 (Conner); 271 (Tattnall and Ingraham); 271 (Cervantes et al.). 162Morris to Conner, Sept. 21. 162Tattnall to Conner, Nov. 20. Parker, Recolls., 68. Conner, Home Squad, 11 (Conner), 12. 48Bancroft to Conner, Aug. 29. 48Mason to Id., Sept. 22. Balbontín, Estado, 52. Diario, Sept. 22; Oct. 6; Nov. 28. S. Anna, Apelación, 29–31. 99S. Anna to Tampico ayunt., Oct. 27. 245Bee to Lamar, Dec. 5. 99Parrodi to Tamp. ayunt., Oct. 26. 99Urrea to Id., Oct. 29. 99Gov. Tamaul. to Id., Oct. 25. 99Gov. Tamaul., circular, Nov. 17. Vindicación del Gen. Parrodi. 69Worth to Bliss, Dec. 4. Steele, Amer. Camps., 125. 226Beauregard to Totten, Nov. 27. 69Chase, Dec. 3, 1845. 313Id. to Saunders, May 26, 31. Public Ledger, Jan. 7, 1847 (Mrs. Chase). 52Mrs. Chase to Conner, Oct. 20. 316Judd to Sherman, Feb. 26, 1848. Ballentine, Eng. Sold., i, 267. 69Shields to Bliss, Jan. 13, 1847. 60Id. to Barnard, Apr. 20, 1849. Meade, Letters, i, 159–60. 46Perry to Mason, Nov. 15, 19. 46Declaration, Nov. 15. N. Y. Eve. Post, Nov. 18, 1847. 165Conner letter book, Nov. 13-Dec. 4. Taylor, Letters (Bixby), 77–8. Negrete, Invasión, iii, 170–3. Balbontín, Invasión, 54. Ho. 1; 30, 2, pp. 1171, 1173 (Conner); 1174–5 (Tattnall). Ho. 4; 29, 2, p. 381. 69Perry, memo., [Nov. 16]. 61Gardner, Dec. 2. 61Gates, Nov. 20. 61Brooke, Nov. 21. 69Gates, Nov. 26. 163Perry to Mason, Nov. 16. 61Patterson to Marcy, Nov. 23. 162Tattnall to alcalde, Nov. 19. Bennett, Steam Navy, 93. Monitor Repub., Dec. 2. 166Patterson to Perry, Nov. 22. 166Perry to Conner [about Nov. 30]. 166Tattnall to Id., Nov. 22. 313Saunders to Taylor, June 5. 61Jones to Scott, Nov. 28, 30; to Patterson, Nov. 29; to Taylor, Nov. 30. 313Letters from Conner to Saunders, Nov. 61Gardner to Taylor, Nov. 17. Smith, Remins., 28. 61Shields, Dec. 23. Espía de la Frontera, no. 7. 76Gov. Tamaul., address, Nov. 27. Memoria de ... Relaciones, 1846 (circular, Nov. 21). Picayune, Jan. 2, 1847. 112Barnard, Dec. 20, notes on the fortifications. 112Id. to Gates, Dec. 11; to Shields, Dec. 28. 112Beauregard to Totten, Feb. 2, 1847; to Gates, Feb. 24. 61Gates to Barnard, May 4, 1849. 66Beauregard to Totten, Jan. 9, 1847. The following are from 76. Parrodi, Oct. 17. S. Anna to Urrea, Oct. 18. Prefect Huejutla, Nov. 23, 30. Mú?oz, Nov. 21, 23, 26; Dec. 1. Order, April 24. Gov. Guanajuato, Nov. 27. Gov. Michoacán, Nov. 26. Mú?oz to Gov. Tamaul., Nov. 14. Tampico ayunt. to Conner, Nov. 14. Parrodi, proclam., June 9. To Parrodi, June 3; Aug. 28. Circular, Nov. 21. To Bravo, May 14. Bravo, May 18. Mejía, June 9. To comte. gen. Querétaro, Nov. 21. Parrodi, May 20; June 17; July 8; Sept. 2, 5. Mú?oz to Parrodi, Nov. 14. S. Anna to Parrodi, Oct. 12. To S. Anna, Oct. 15; Nov. 8. Ampudia, Sept. 29. S. Anna, Oct. 3, 10, 12; Nov. 4, 12, 21. Affidavit of M. Dorante, Dec. 23. Comte. Nat. Gd., Tampico, to Urrea, Nov. 4. To Ampudia, Aug. 28. When Perry reached Brazos Id. the weather was so bad that he could only leave an officer on an anchored vessel.

39. An estimate of Taylor's strength on Dec. 9 was 14,000 for the entire field (Picayune, Dec. 27). One of Wool's companies was still at San Antonio, one on the Rio Grande, and four at Monclova on Dec. 16, he stated; several were left behind when he marched from Parras, and he probably had 200 sick. Dec. 24 he reported about 2000 effectives as with him. At Camargo and doubtless elsewhere in that region there was considerable sickness. See a letter (probably from P. F. Smith) in Littell, no. 141, p. 191. One may doubt whether Taylor had a fighting force of over 12,000 at this time. The lines are reckoned as from Point Isabel or the mouth of the Rio Grande to Camargo, Saltillo and Parras, and from Monterey to Tampico. They were soon longer, because Taylor advanced beyond Saltillo. His advance to Victoria began Dec. 13 (chap. xviii, p. 357).

40. Opinions as to the number of men under Santa Anna at this time differed. Taylor's report on Dec. 4 (Ho. 60; 30, 1, p. 441) was 20,000 infantry and a large cavalry force; Meade, Nov. 24, 35,000; Meade, Dec. 8, 30,000. 69Wool wrote on Dec. 24 that according to spies sent out from Parras Santa Anna had 12,000 at San Luis Potosí, 30,000 at some distance from there, and 9000 on their way from Guadalajara. 69Butler wrote from Saltillo on Dec. 20 that Santa Anna appeared to have 35,000 at S. L. P. and 9000 at Tula.

41. Taylor's military policy. Taylor, Letter to Gaines, Nov. 5 (and in Picayune, Feb. 2, 1847). 169Id. to Crittenden, Oct. 9. 370Id. to Davis, April 18, 1848. Ho. 60; 30, 1, pp. 351–4, 377, 379–82, 441, 514–5 (Taylor); 389–91 (Marcy). 256Marcy to Wetmore, Jan. 24; Mar. 29, 1847. Scribner, Campaign, 55. Meade, Letters, i, 152, 168–9. Polk, Diary, Jan. 5, 1847. 61Wool, Dec. 16. 69Id. to Taylor, Dec. 24. Journ. Milit. Serv. Instit., xiv, 443. Taylor, Letters (Bixby), 71–2. 330Id. to brother, Dec. 12. 256Scott to Marcy, Dec. 27, priv. Morning News, New London, Conn., Dec. 10. 267Memo. (probably from Maj. Smith). P. F. Smith, Memoir, Oct. 15.

There was also the difficulty of supervising lines so extended. At this very time Taylor was afraid things were going badly in his rear (330to brother, Dec. 12). It is particularly hard to find any good reason for posting a (necessarily large) force at Victoria, so very far from support. The pass between that point and Tula was not practicable for artillery, and was not the only pass by which infantry and cavalry could cross the mountains. Taylor (Ho. 60; 30, 1, p. 380) argued that from Victoria he could threaten the Mexican flank, should Santa Anna advance. But he would have had to force the pass, and without artillery he could not have accomplished much. In case of Santa Anna's advancing and succeeding, this flanking force would have been in great peril, while in case of his failing it would have been useless. Anyhow it would have been more useful with the main army. Not only were the Americans scattered at posts, but they moved about in parties of only 200 or 300 with a carelessness that astounded the Mexicans (Camargo letter: N. Y. Journal of Commerce, Jan. 8, 1847). Taylor could not safely count upon co?peration between Wool and Worth in the case of an advance of the Mexicans, for it was likely that Santa Anna's first care would be to block the road, as probably he could have done.

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