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Encyclopedia > Battle of Chapultepec
Battle of Chapultepec
Part of the Mexican-American War

James Walker, Storming of Chapultepec
Date September 12-13, 1847
Location Mexico City, D.F.
Result United States victory
Combatants
United States Mexico
Commanders
Winfield Scott Nicolás Bravo #, Mariano Monterde School Commandant, Juan N. Perez commander Remants Leon Brigade)
Strength
13,000 876 cadets, 4000 regulars
Casualties
130 killed
703 wounded
29 missing
862 total
1,800 killed and wounded
823 captured
2,623 Total
Gen. Juan Perez dead, Gens. Bravo, Monterde, Norriega, Dosamantes & Saldana captured

The Battle of Chapultepec took place in September 1847 during the Mexican-American War, at Chapultepec Castle on Chapultepec Hill, guarding the western approach to Mexico City. Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Zachary Taylor Winfield Scott Stephen W. Kearney Antonio López de Santa Anna Mariano Arista Pedro de Ampudia José Mariá Flores Strength 78,790 soldiers 25,000–40,000 soldiers Casualties KIA: 1733 Total dead: 13,271 Wounded: 4,152 AWOL: 9,200+ 25,000... This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... is the 255th day of the year (256th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 256th day of the year (257th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1847 was a common year starting on Friday (see link for calendar). ... Nickname: Motto: Ciudad en movimiento Location of Mexico City in central Mexico Coordinates: , Country Federal entity Boroughs The 16 delegaciones Founded c. ... The Mexican Federal District, known in Spanish as Distrito Federal (D.F.), is an area within Mexico that is not part of any of the Mexican states, but an independent self-governing city-state and the seat of the Federal Government. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Mexico_(1823-1864,_1867-1968). ... For other uses of Winfield Scott, see Winfield Scott (disambiguation). ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Mexico_(1823-1864,_1867-1968). ... Nicolás Bravo (September 10, 1786 – April 22, 1854) was a Mexican politician and soldier. ... Balian of Ibelin surrendering the city of Jerusalem to Saladin, from Les Passages faits Outremer par les Français contre les Turcs et autres Sarrasins et Maures outremarins, ca. ... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Zachary Taylor Winfield Scott Stephen W. Kearney Antonio López de Santa Anna Mariano Arista Pedro de Ampudia José Mariá Flores Strength 78,790 soldiers 25,000–40,000 soldiers Casualties KIA: 1733 Total dead: 13,271 Wounded: 4,152 AWOL: 9,200+ 25,000... The Siege of Fort Texas marked the beginning of active campaigning by the armies of the United States of America and Mexico during the Mexican-American War. ... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Zachary Taylor Mariano Arista Strength 2,400 infantry 2,300 infantry, 1,100 cavalry and 160 artillery 12 guns Casualties 5 killed 43 wounded 102 killed 129 wounded 26 missing The Battle of Palo Alto was the first major battle of the Mexican-American War... At the Battle of Resaca de la Palma, one of the early engagements of the Mexican-American War, Zachary Taylor engaged the retreating forces of the Mexican Army of the North under Gen. ... In the beginning of the Mexican-American War, Stephen W. Kearny brought 1,700 soldiers from Kansas in the contested Indian territory to conquer the New Mexico territory. ... Battle of Santa Fe Conflict Mexican-American War Date August 15, 1846 Place Santa Fe, New Mexico Result U.S. victory The Battle of Santa Fe occurred on August 15, 1846 during the Mexican-American War. ... The Battle of Monterrey (September 21–September 23, 1846) was an engagement in the Mexican-American War in which General Pedro de Ampudia and the Mexican Army of the North managed to fight US troops to a standstill at the important fortress town of Monterrey. ... The First Battle of Tabasco was fought during the Mexican-American War. ... The Terra Cotta relief on the current Fort Moore Pioneer Memorial Fort Moore was a historic fort in Los Angeles, California, during the Mexican-American War. ... Well, Mexican-American, was a very long war; it lasted for two whole years. ... The Battle of San Pascual was a military encounter that occurred during the Mexican_American War in what is now San Diego County, California, on the 6 and 7 December 1846. ... The Battle of El Brazito took place on December 25th, 1846, early in the Mexican-American war. ... Combatants United States of America Californios, Mexico Commanders Robert F. Stockton Stephen Watts Kearny José Mariá Flores Strength U.S. naval and army forces 600 sailors, marines and dragoons Californios 160 Militia soldiers Casualties 143 80 The Battle of Rio San Gabriel was a decisive action of the California campaign... The Battle of La Mesa occurred on January 9, 1847 in present-day Vernon, in which the outgunned and outnumbered Californios (The Americans having rifles, the Californios fighting on horseback with only lances)almost gained the advantage, but they fell back and camped at present-day Pasadena, giving up Los... Insurgents in New Mexico under the leadership of Pablo Chavez, Pablo Montoya and Jesus Tafoya began marching south towards the American-held city of Santa Fe. ... Combatants United States Mexican Insurgents Commanders Israel R. Hendley Jesse I. Morin Manuel Cortez Strength 80 200 Casualties 1 killed 3 wounded 25 killed 17 prisoners The Battle of Mora was part of the Taos Revolt, a popular insurrection against the United States. ... Combatants United States Mexican/Indian Insurgents Commanders John Burgwin Ceran St. ... The Siege of Pueblo de Taos was an engagement between U.S. forces and Insurgent forces in New Mexico during the Mexican-American War. ... The Battle of Buena Vista was a land battle of the Mexican-American War fought on 23 February 1847 in Buena Vista, Coahuila, seven miles (12 km) south of Saltillo, in northern Mexico. ... The Battle of the Sacramento took place on February 28, 1847 during the Mexican-American War. ... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Winfield Scott (Army) David Conner (Navy) Matthew C. Perry (Navy) Juan Morales Strength 12,000 3,360 Casualties 18 killed 62 wounded 180 killed and wounded 100 civilian The Battle of Veracruz was a 20-day siege of the key Mexican seaport of Veracruz, Veracruz... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Winfield Scott Antonio López de Santa Anna Strength 8,500 12,000 Casualties 417 4,000 Gen Ciriaco Vasquez dead Gens. ... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Matthew C. Perry Martin Perfecto de Cos Strength 1,519 400 Casualties 3 killed 11 wounded  ? The Battle of Tuxpan was a battle fought during the Mexican-American War. ... The Second Battle of Tabasco (also known as the Battle of Villahermosa) was a battle fought during the Mexican-American War as part of the U.S. blockade of Mexican Gulf ports. ... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Winfield Scott Antonio López de Santa Anna Gabriel Valencia Strength 8,500 20,000 Casualties 60 killed and wounded 700 killed 843 surrendered Gen Frontera dead Gen Salas, Nicolas Mendoza captured The Battle of Contreras (also known, particularly in Mexico, as the Battle of... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Winfield Scott Antonio López de Santa Anna Manuel Rincón Strength 8,497 2,641 Casualties 133 dead 865 wounded 40 missing 263 dead 1,261 captured 20 missing. ... The Battle of Molino del Rey turned out to be one of the bloodiest fights of the Mexican-American War. ... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Winfield Scott Antonio López de Santa Anna Strength 7,200 16,000 Casualties 1,651 4,500 The Battle for Mexico City refers to the series of engagements from September 8 to September 15, 1847, in the general vicinity of Mexico City during the... The Battle of Huamantla was a U.S. victory late in the Mexican-American War that forced the Mexican army to lift the Siege of Puebla. ... The Siege of Puebla began the same day Mexico City fell to Winfield Scott and lasted for 28 days when a relief force was able to fight its way into the city and lift the siege. ... 1847 was a common year starting on Friday (see link for calendar). ... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Zachary Taylor Winfield Scott Stephen W. Kearney Antonio López de Santa Anna Mariano Arista Pedro de Ampudia José Mariá Flores Strength 78,790 soldiers 25,000–40,000 soldiers Casualties KIA: 1733 Total dead: 13,271 Wounded: 4,152 AWOL: 9,200+ 25,000... Aerial view of the Chapultepec Castle and the Monument of the Heroic Cadets. ... Chapultepec Park with Polanco at the right, as seen from Torre Mayor observation deck. ... Nickname: Motto: Ciudad en movimiento Location of Mexico City in central Mexico Coordinates: , Country Federal entity Boroughs The 16 delegaciones Founded c. ...

Contents

Background

On September 8, 1847, in the costly Battle of Molino del Rey, U.S. forces had managed to drive the Mexicans from their positions near the base of Chapultepec Castle guarding Mexico City from the west. However Army engineers were still interested in the southern approaches to the city. General Winfield Scott held a council of war with his generals and engineers on September 11. Scott was in favor of attacking Chapultepec and only General David E. Twiggs agreed. Most of Scott's officers favored the attack from the south including Major Robert E. Lee. A young Captain Pierre Beauregard gave a text book speech that persuaded General Pierce to change his vote in favor of the western attack. Scott officially declared the attack would be against Chapultepec. is the 251st day of the year (252nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1847 was a common year starting on Friday (see link for calendar). ... The Battle of Molino del Rey turned out to be one of the bloodiest fights of the Mexican-American War. ... Aerial view of the Chapultepec Castle and the Monument of the Heroic Cadets. ... The USACE gold castle insignia, worn by officers of the Corps The United States Army Corps of Engineers, or USACE, is made up of some 34,600 civilian and 650 military men and women. ... For other uses of Winfield Scott, see Winfield Scott (disambiguation). ... is the 254th day of the year (255th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Brigadier General David E. Twiggs David Emanuel Twiggs (1790 – July 15, 1862) was a United States soldier during the War of 1812 and Mexican-American War and a general of the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. ... // This article is about the Confederate general. ... Pierre Gustave Toutant de Beauregard Pierre Gustave Toutant de Beauregard (BOH-rih-gahrd) (May 28, 1818 – February 20, 1893), best known as a general for the Confederate States of America during the American Civil War, was also a writer, civil servant, and inventor. ... Birthplace of Franklin Pierce Franklin Pierce (November 23, 1804 — October 8, 1869) was an American politician and the fourteenth President of the United States, serving from 1853 to 1857. ...


Antonio López de Santa Anna was in command of the army at Mexico City. He understood that Chapultepec Castle was an important position for the defense of the city. The castle sat atop a 200-foot (60 m) tall hill which in recent years was being used as the Mexican Military Academy. General Nicolás Bravo however had less than 1,000 men ( 832 Total including 250 10th Infantry, 115 Queretaro Battalion, 277 Mina Battalion, 211 Union Battalion, 27 Toluca Battalion and 42 la Patria Battalion) with 7 guns)to hold the hill including 200 cadets, some as young as 13 years old. A gradual slope from the castle down to the Molino del Rey made an inviting attack point. Antonio de Padua María Severino López de Santa Anna y Pérez de Lebrón (February 21, 1794 – June 21, 1876), also known simply as Santa Anna, was a Mexican political leader who greatly influenced early Mexican and Spanish politics and government, first fighting against independence from Spain... Nicolás Bravo (September 10, 1786 – April 22, 1854) was a Mexican politician and soldier. ... Battle of Molino del Rey Conflict Mexican-American War Date September 8, 1847 Place Mexico City, D.F. Result U.S. victory The Battle of Molino del Rey turned out to be one of the bloodiest fights of the Mexican-American War. ...


According to the military records at the General National Archives in Mexico City, Chapultepec Castle was only defended by 400 men, 300 from de Batallón de San Blas under command of Lieutenant Colonel Felipe Xicoténcatl, and the castles's garrison of 100 men, including the cadets. This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


Scott organized two storming parties numbering 250 hand picked men. The first party under Captain Samuel Mackenzie would lead Gideon Pillow's division from the Molino east up the hill. The second storming party under Captain Silas Casey would lead John A. Quitman's division against the southeast of the castle. Gideon Johnson Pillow (June 8, 1806-October 8, 1878) was an American general. ... Silas Casey Silas Casey (July 12, 1807 – January 22, 1882) was a career United States Army officer who rose to the rank of Major General during the American Civil War. ... John Anthony Quitman (September 1, 1798–July 17, 1858) was an American politician. ...


Engagement

The Americans began an artillery barrage against Chapultepec at dawn on September 12. It was halted at dark and resumed at first light on September 13. At 08:00, the bombardment was halted and Winfield Scott ordered the charge. Following Captain Mackenzie's storming party were three assault columns from George Cadwalader's brigade of Pillow's division. On the left were the 11th and 14th regiments under Colonel William Trousdale, in the center were 4 companies of the Voltigeur regiment under Colonel Timothy Patrick Andrews, and on the right were the remaining 4 Voltigeur companies under Lieutenant Colonel Joseph E. Johnston. Pillow was quickly hit in the foot but ordered the attack forward. Andrews's column followed Mackenzie out of the Molino and cleared a cypress grove to their front of Mexican troops as Trousdale and Johnston moved up on the flanks. The attack stalled when Mackenzie's men had to wait for storming ladders to arrive, and there was a lull in the battle. Chapultepec Park, Mexico City. ... Chapultepec Park, Mexico City. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Aerial view of the Chapultepec Castle and the Monument of the Heroic Cadets. ... is the 255th day of the year (256th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 256th day of the year (257th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses of Winfield Scott, see Winfield Scott (disambiguation). ... George Cadwalader (May 16, 1806-February 3, 1879) was a United States general during the Mexican-American War and American Civil War. ... William Trousdale (September 23, 1790 - March 27, 1872) was Governor of Tennessee from 1849 to 1851. ... The Voltigeurs (Vaulters) were French skirmish military units created in 1804 by Napoleon. ... Joseph E. Johnston Joseph Eggleston Johnston (February 3, 1807 – March 21, 1891) was a career U.S. Army officer and one of the most senior generals in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. ... “Flanking” redirects here. ...


To the southwest, 40 Marines led Captain Casey's storming party followed by James Shields' brigade of volunteers north towards Chapultepec. Again the storming party stalled while waiting for ladders, and the rest of Shields' men halted in the face of Mexican artillery. The scaling ladders arrived, and the first wave ascended the walls. In fact so many ladders arrived that 50 men could climb side by side. George Pickett (later famous for "Pickett's Charge" and the Battle of Five Forks during the American Civil War) was the first American to top the wall of the fort, and the Voltigeurs soon planted their flag on the parapet. Colonel Trousdale's column supported by Lieutenant Thomas J. Jackson's artillery faced superior numbers of Mexicans in a spirited defense. Newman S. Clarke's brigade brought new momentum to the fight on Pillow's front. General Shields was severely wounded when his men poured over the walls, but his troops managed to raise the U.S. Flag over the castle. Caught between two fronts, General Bravo ordered a retreat back to the city. Before he could withdraw, Bravo was taken prisoner by Shields' New York volunteers. The Mexicans retreated at night down the causeways leading into the city. Several Mexican cadets wrapped themselves around Mexican flags and jumped from the walls disregarding height to prevent the seizure of the Mexican flag from the attackers. Santa Anna watched disaster befall Chapultepec while an aide exclaimed "let the Mexican flag never be touched by a foreign enemy". United States Marine Corps Emblem The United States Marine Corps (USMC) is the second smallest of the five branches of the United States armed forces, with 170,000 active and 40,000 reserve Marines as of 2002. ... James Shields (May 10, 1810 – June 1, 1879) was an American politician and U.S. Army officer who was born in Altmore, County Tyrone, Ireland. ... George Edward Pickett (January 28[1] or January 16, 1825 – July 30, 1875) was a career U.S. Army officer who became a general in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. ... Map of Picketts Charge, July 3, 1863. ... Battle of Five Forks Conflict American Civil War Date April 1, 1865 Place Dinwiddie County Result Union victory The Battle of Five Forks, April 1, 1865, was the final Union offensive in the American Civil War. ... Combatants United States of America (Union) Confederate States of America (Confederacy) Commanders Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee Strength 2,200,000 1,064,000 Casualties 110,000 killed in action, 360,000 total dead, 275,200 wounded 93,000 killed in action, 258,000 total... For the 1960s country music artist, see Stonewall Jackson (musician); for the submarine, see USS Stonewall Jackson (SSBN-634). ... Newman S. Clarke was a career military officer in the United States army who served with distinction during the Mexican-American War. ... Flag ratio: 10:19; nicknames: Stars and Stripes, Old Glory The flag of the United States of America consists of thirteen equal horizontal stripes of red (top and bottom) alternating with white; there is a blue rectangle in the upper hoist-side corner bearing 50 small, white, five-pointed stars... “NY” redirects here. ...


Los Niños Héroes

During the battle, six Mexican military cadets refused to fall back when General Bravo finally ordered retreat and fought to the death against superior U.S. forces. One by one they fell; when one was left (Juan Escutia), and the U.S. forces were about to kill him, he grabbed the Mexican flag, wrapped it around himself and jumped off the castle point. Flag ratio: 4:7 The flag of Mexico was first introduced in 1821 as a basic green, white, and red tricolor. ...

Sam Chamberlain, Hanging of the San Patricios following the Battle of Chapultepec.

A moving mural decorates the ceiling of the palace, showing Juan Escutia wrapped in the flag, apparently falling from above [1]. A monument stands in Chapultepec Park commemorating their courage. The cadets are eulogized in Mexican history as the Los Niños Héroes, the "Child Heroes" or Heroic Cadets. Hanging of the San Patricios following the Battle of Chapultepec. ... Hanging of the San Patricios following the Battle of Chapultepec. ... Mexico is a country of North America and the largest Spanish-speaking country in the world. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ...


Saint Patrick's Battalion

Approximately fifty men from the Saint Patrick's Battalion (el Batallón de San Patricio or San Patricios), a group of former U.S. Army soldiers who joined the Mexican side, were executed en masse during the battle. They had been previously captured at the Battle of Churubusco. General Scott specified that they were to be hanged with Chapultepec in view and that the precise moment of their death was to occur when the U.S. flag replaced the Mexican tricolor atop the citadel. The Saint Patricks Battalion (Spanish: Batallón de San Patricio) was a unit of several hundred Irishmen, Germans, Scotsmen and other European Catholics who deserted the United States Army and fought as part of the Mexican Army against the United States in the Mexican-American War of 1846 to... The Army is the branch of the United States armed forces which has primary responsibility for land-based military operations. ... Combatants United States Mexico Commanders Winfield Scott Antonio López de Santa Anna Manuel Rincón Strength 8,497 2,641 Casualties 133 dead 865 wounded 40 missing 263 dead 1,261 captured 20 missing. ...


Belén and San Cosmé Gates

General Scott arrived at the castle and was mobbed by cheerful soldiers. He detached a regiment to garrison Chapultepec and the prisoners there. Scott then planned for the attack on the city. He ordered a secondary attack against the Belén Gate and brought up the rest of William J. Worth's division to support Trousdale's men on La Verónica Causeway (now Avenida Melchor Ocampo) for the main attack against the San Cosme Gate. Defended by Gen. Rangel (Granaderos Battalion, part Matamoros, Morelia & Santa Anna Battalions (Col. Gonzalez), part 3d Light (Lt. Col. Echeagaray), & 1st Light (Comdt Marquez) William Jenkins Worth was a United States general during the Mexican-American War Early Life Worth was born on March 1, 1794 in Hudson, New York. ...


Trousdale, followed by John Garland's, Newman Clarks' and George Cadwalader's brigades, began advancing up the causeway. However, General Quitman quickly gathered the troops in Chapultepec and Persifor F. Smith's brigade, turned east and immediately headed down the Belén Causeway. Intended only to be a feint, Quitman's attack soon became the center of the attack as he chased Chapultepec's retreating defenders back into the city. His troops were met by strong resistance in front of the gate, which was supported by a battery of artillery. Using the stone arches of the aqueduct running down the center of the causeway, Quitman's men crept forward. General Andrés Terrés' troops (3 Guns and 200 men : 2d Mexico Activos) began to desert and flee back to the citadel. Led by the Mounted Rifles (fighting on foot), Quitman breached the Belén Gate at 1:20 p.m. General Scott later commented "brave Rifles, you have gone through fire and come out steel". John Garland (1792-1861) was a career United States soldier in the Regular Army who had a long and distinguished career spanning fifty years of service during the War of 1812, Seminole Wars, Mexican-American War, Utah War and the early part of the American Civil War. ... Newman S. Clarke was a career military officer in the United States army who served with distinction during the Mexican-American War. ... Persifor Frazer Smith (November 16, 1798-May 17, 1858) was an U.S. army officer during the Mexican-American War. ...


To the north, Robert E. Lee led Worth's attackers down the La Verónica Causeway. It was 4 p.m. by the time Worth reached the junction of the La Verónica and San Cosme causeways, where he beat back a counter attack of 1,500 cavalry before turning east down the San Cosme causeway. Progress was slow, and casualties were mounting. Finding the buildings alongside the roadway filled with enemy troops, Colonels Garland and Clark were sent with the 1st and 2nd brigades to approach the defenses under cover by burrowing through the buildings on both sides with crowbars and pickaxes. Lieutenant Ulysses S. Grant discovered the bell tower of San Cosme Church south of the causeway, where he mounted The Howitzer and began firing shots down onto the defenders from his lofty position. On the north side of the road, naval officer Raphael Semmes repeated Grant's successful maneuver. Lieutenant George Terrett then led a group of Marines behind the Mexican defenders and, climbing to the roof, unleashed a deadly volley on the artillery gunners. By 6 p.m., Worth had broken through the gate, and the defenders scattered. Many retreated to the ciudadela, sweeping Santa Anna along with them. As night fell, Worth lobbed five mortars into the city which fell near the National Palace. Ulysses S. Grant[2] (born Hiram Ulysses Grant, April 27, 1822 – July 23, 1885) was an American general and the eighteenth President of the United States (1869–1877). ... 19th century 12 pounder (5 kg) mountain howitzer displayed by the National Park Service at Fort Laramie in Wyoming, USA A howitzer is a type of artillery piece that is characterized by a relatively short barrel and the use of comparatively small explosive charges to propel projectiles at trajectories with... Raphael Semmes (September 27, 1809 – August 30, 1877) was an officer in the United States Navy from 1826 to 1860 and the Confederate States Navy from 1860 to 1865. ... US soldier loading a M224 60-mm mortar. ...


Aftermath

The battle had been a significant victory for the U.S. Lasting throughout most of the day, the fighting had been severe and costly. Generals Twiggs and Shields had both been wounded as well as Colonel Trousdale. The heaviest losses occurred during Quitman's attack on the Belén Gate. Every member of Quitman's staff had lost their lives in the close fighting on the causeway.


Santa Anna lost General Bravo as a POW, and General Juan N. Pérez was killed. In a fit of rage Santa Anna slapped General Terrés and relieved him of command for losing the Belén Gate. In his memoirs Santa Anna branded Terrés as a traitor and made him the scapegoat for the defeat at Mexico City. Geneva Convention definition A prisoner of war (POW) is a soldier, sailor, airman, or marine who is imprisoned by an enemy power during or immediately after an armed conflict. ...


Legacy

The efforts of the U.S. Marines in this battle and subsequent occupation of Mexico City are memorialized by the opening lyrics to Marines' hymn. "From the Halls of Montezuma..." is a reference to the Chapultepec Castle, also known as the Halls of Montezuma. The Marines Hymn is the official hymn of the United States Marine Corps. ... Aerial view of the Chapultepec Castle and the Monument of the Heroic Cadets. ...


Further, the red stripe (known as the "blood stripe") along the side of modern day Marines dress blue uniform trousers, worn by officers and non-commissioned officers, is a reminder of the 90%-casualties suffered by Marines from those ranks during the Battle of Chapultepec.


References

  • Nevin, David; editor, The Mexican War (Time-Life The Old West Series, 1978)
  • Bauer, K. Jack, The Mexican War, 1846-1848
  • Alcaraz, Ramon et al. ' ' Apuntes Para la Histria de la Guerra entre Mexico y los Estados Unidos ' '
  • Ramsey, Albert C. ' ' The Other Side' '
  • Winfield Scott's Official Report

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