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José de Urrea
José de Urrea

The Battle of San Patricio was fought on February 27, 1836, between Mexican troops and Texians, rebellious settlers in the Mexican province of Texas. The battle marked the start of the Goliad Campaign, the Mexican offensive to retake the Texas Gulf Coast. By the end of 1835, all Mexican troops had been driven from Texas. Frank W. Johnson, the commander of the volunteer army in Texas, gathered volunteers for a planned invasion of the Mexican port town of Matamoros. After spending several weeks gathering horses, in late February Johnson and about 40 men led the herd to San Patricio. He assigned some of his troops to a ranch outside town to guard the horses. Unbeknownst to the Texians, on February 18 Mexican General José de Urrea (pictured) had led a large contingent of troops from Matamoros into Texas. Urrea's men easily followed the trail left by the horses, and surprised the sleeping Texians in San Patricio. After a fifteen-minute battle, all but six Texians had been killed or imprisoned. (Full article...)