Before Father Miguel Hidalgo was captured by Royalist forces in March of 1811, he commissioned a modest but vocal supporter from the Rio Grande Valley as his emissary to the United States. With a dozen or so loyal followers, that emissary — José Bernardo Gutiérrez de Lara — escaped Royalist capture and crossed over the Sabine, where he would spend the next two years rallying recruits and resources to the cause of Mexican independence.

Multiple contemporary accounts of the Battle of Medina relate the Republican army’s route to the battlefield. Unfortunately, they almost all relate it differently or contradict each other on some material point. Despite their contradictions and ambiguities, what details might they have in common?

Map 2.04 showing possible Royalist and Republican positions the night before the Battle of Medina. Credit: Courtesy / Brandon Seale – Samantha Alaniz

Related Links:

William Shaler’s Letter containing an account of the “Defeat of the Revolutionary Army Commanded by Toledo” suspected to be written by James Wilkinson (September 5, 1813)

Lexington Reporter Account of the Battle of Medina (1815)

Henry Adams Bullard Memoirs, Account of the Battle of Medina begins page 16 (ca: 1840)

Information derived from John Villars, a native of Kentucky (ca. 1847)

William McLane’s Narrative of the Magee-Gutiérrez Expedition, 1812-1813 (1861), pp. 234-55, pp. 457-479, and pp. 569-588

Autobiography of Carlos Beltran (ca. 1876)

Brandon Seale

Brandon Seale is the president of Howard Energy México. With degrees in philosophy, law, and business, he writes and records stories about the residents of the borderland and about the intersection of...

Read more