José de Urrea

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José de Urrea
JOSE COSME URREA.jpg
General José de Urrea
Born(1797-03-19)March 19, 1797
Tucson, The Californias, New Spain
DiedAugust 1, 1849(1849-08-01) (aged 52)
Mexico City, Mexico
Allegiance Flag of Spain (1785-1873, 1875-1931).svg New Spain
Flag of Mexico (1823-1864, 1867-1893).svg  Mexico
Service/branchFlag of Spain (1785-1873, 1875-1931).svg Spanish Army
Flag of Mexico (1823-1864, 1867-1893).svg Mexican Army
Years of service1807–1824 (Spain)
1829–1846 (Mexico)
Rank Captain (Spain)
General (Mexico)
Battles/wars Texas Revolution Mexican–American War

José de Urrea (March 19, 1797 – August 1, 1849) was a Mexican general. He fought under General Antonio López de Santa Anna during the Texas Revolution. Urrea's forces were never defeated in battle during the Texas Revolution. His most notable success was that of the Goliad Campaign, in which James Fannin's 400 soldiers were surrounded and induced to capitulate under terms, but were massacred in Urrea's absence on the orders of Santa Anna. [1] Urrea also fought in the Mexican–American War.

Mexico Country in the southern portion of North America

Mexico, officially the United Mexican States, is a country in the southern portion of North America. It is bordered to the north by the United States; to the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; to the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and to the east by the Gulf of Mexico. Covering almost 2,000,000 square kilometres (770,000 sq mi), the nation is the fifth largest country in the Americas by total area and the 13th largest independent state in the world. With an estimated population of over 120 million people, the country is the eleventh most populous state and the most populous Spanish-speaking state in the world, while being the second most populous nation in Latin America after Brazil. Mexico is a federation comprising 31 states and Mexico City, a special federal entity that is also the capital city and its most populous city. Other metropolises in the state include Guadalajara, Monterrey, Puebla, Toluca, Tijuana and León.

Antonio López de Santa Anna Mexican politician and military

Antonio de Padua María Severino López de Santa Anna y Pérez de Lebrón, often known as Santa Anna or López de Santa Anna, was a Mexican politician and general who fought to defend royalist New Spain and then for Mexican independence. He greatly influenced early Mexican politics and government, and was an adept soldier and cunning politician, who dominated Mexican history in the first half of the nineteenth century to such an extent that historians often refer to it as the "Age of Santa Anna." He was called "the Man of Destiny", who "loomed over his time like a melodramatic colossus, the uncrowned monarch." Santa Anna first opposed the movement for Mexican independence from Spain, but then fought in support of it. Though not the first caudillo of modern Mexico, he "represents the stereotypical caudillo in Mexican history," and among the earliest. Conservative historian, intellectual, and politician Lucas Alamán wrote that "The history of Mexico since 1822 might accurately be called the history of Santa Anna's revolutions.... His name plays the major role in all the political events of the country and its destiny has become intertwined with his."

Texas Revolution military conflict

The Texas Revolution was a rebellion of colonists from the United States and Tejanos in putting up armed resistance to the centralist government of Mexico. While the uprising was part of a larger one that included other provinces opposed to the regime of President Antonio López de Santa Anna, the Mexican government believed the United States had instigated the Texas insurrection with the goal of annexation. The Mexican Congress passed the Tornel Decree, declaring that any foreigners fighting against Mexican troops "will be deemed pirates and dealt with as such, being citizens of no nation presently at war with the Republic and fighting under no recognized flag." Only the province of Texas succeeded in breaking with Mexico, establishing the Republic of Texas, and eventually being annexed by the United States.

Contents

Early life

Urrea was born at El Presio de San Augustín de Tucson (now the U.S. city of Tucson, Arizona), during Spanish regime of the region. [2] Despite being born on the northern frontier of Mexico, his family had deep roots in the state of Durango.

Tucson, Arizona City in Arizona, United States

Tucson is a city and the county seat of Pima County, Arizona, United States, and home to the University of Arizona. The 2010 United States Census put the population at 520,116, while the 2015 estimated population of the entire Tucson metropolitan statistical area (MSA) was 980,263. The Tucson MSA forms part of the larger Tucson-Nogales combined statistical area (CSA), with a total population of 1,010,025 as of the 2010 Census. Tucson is the second-largest populated city in Arizona behind Phoenix, both of which anchor the Arizona Sun Corridor. The city is 108 miles (174 km) southeast of Phoenix and 60 mi (97 km) north of the U.S.–Mexico border. Tucson is the 33rd largest city and the 58th largest metropolitan area in the United States (2014).

New Spain viceroyalty of the Spanish Empire (1535-1821)

The Viceroyalty of New Spain was an integral territorial entity of the Spanish Empire, established by Habsburg Spain during the Spanish colonization of the Americas. It covered a huge area that included territories in North America, South America, Asia and Oceania. It originated in 1521 after the fall of Mexico-Tenochtitlan, the main event of the Spanish conquest, which did not properly end until much later, as its territory continued to grow to the north. It was officially created on 8 March 1535 as a viceroyalty, the first of four viceroyalties Spain created in the Americas. Its first viceroy was Antonio de Mendoza y Pacheco, and the capital of the viceroyalty was Mexico City, established on the ancient Mexico-Tenochtitlan.

Durango State of Mexico

Durango, officially Free and Sovereign State of Durango, is a state in northwest Mexico. With a population of 1,632,934, Durango has Mexico's second-lowest population density, after Baja California Sur. The city of Victoria de Durango is the state's capital, named after the first president of Mexico, Guadalupe Victoria.

Military career

In 1807 Urrea entered the Spanish army. [3] In 1824 he rose to the rank of captain, but he resigned from the army and entered private life. In 1829 he rejoined the military as a major and helped to liberate the city of Durango, allying himself with Antonio López de Santa Anna. [4] He was promoted to colonel for his actions. In 1835 he reluctantly took part in Santa Anna's attack on the state of Zacatecas (the state had openly rebelled against his rise to power). Santa Anna promoted Urrea to Brigadier General for his role in this. [4]

Zacatecas State of Mexico

Zacatecas, officially the Free and Sovereign State of Zacatecas, is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided into 58 municipalities and its capital city is Zacatecas City.

Texas Revolution

When the Mexican state of Texas also revolted against Santa Anna's Centralist government, Urrea was sent there to help put down the colonists. [4] He easily defeated small groups of Texan forces at the Battle of San Patricio, Battle of Refugio, and Battle of Coleto. The last, also known as the "Goliad Massacre", included the deliberate slaughter of Texans who had surrendered. The execution of prisoners, however, was not Urrea's choice, but an order by General Santa Anna. [5]

Coahuila y Tejas former Mexican state

Coahuila y Tejas was one of the constituent states of the newly established United Mexican States under its 1824 Constitution.

Battle of San Patricio 1836 battle in the Texas Revolution

The Battle of San Patricio was fought on February 27, 1836, between Mexican troops and rebellious immigrants from the Mexican province of Texas, known as Texians. The battle marked the start of the Goliad Campaign, the Mexican offensive to retake the Texas Gulf Coast. It took place in and around San Patricio.

Battle of Refugio battle

The Battle of Refugio was fought from March 12–15, 1836, near Refugio, Texas. Mexican General José Urrea and 1,500 Centralista soldiers fought against Amon B. King and his 28 American volunteers and Lieutenant Colonel William Ward and his approximately 120 Americans. The battle, a part of the Goliad Campaign of the Texas Revolution, resulted in a Mexican victory and splintered Texan resistance.

Due to Urrea's string of victories, Santa Anna decided to stay in Texas and personally finish off the rebellious Texas government. His motives were personal and political [6] as Urrea was getting all the headlines and would be seen back in Mexico as a more popular figure.

Aftermath

The military defeat of Santa Anna's forces at the Battle of San Jacinto on April 21, 1836 resulted in Santa Anna's capture, and him being forced to order all Mexican forces to withdraw from Texas soil. Urrea was infuriated and, after linking up with Vicente Filisola's forces, he wanted to continue the war against the Texans since the Mexicans still had over 2,500 troops in Texas against less than 900 of Sam Houston's Texans. But both Urrea and Filisola had no choice but to comply with Santa Anna's orders, so by the middle of June, Urrea and all Mexican forces had withdrawn from Texas. The Mexican authorities criticized Filisola for leading the retreat, stripped him of his command, and made Urrea the new commander of the army. Within a few months, Urrea gathered an army of 6,000 troops near Matamoros to finally reconquer Texas. However, the invasion never occurred as he and his troops were redirected to address several federalist rebellions across Mexico.

Battle of San Jacinto decisive battle of the Texas Revolution

The Battle of San Jacinto, fought on April 21, 1836, in present-day Harris County, Texas, was the decisive battle of the Texas Revolution. Led by General Sam Houston, the Texian Army engaged and defeated General Antonio López de Santa Anna's Mexican army in a fight that lasted just 18 minutes. A detailed, first-hand account of the battle was written by General Houston from Headquarters of the Texian Army, San Jacinto, on April 25, 1836. Numerous secondary analyses and interpretations have followed, several of which are cited and discussed throughout this entry.

Vicente Filisola Mexican general and politician

Vicente Filisola was a Spanish military figure, Mexican military and political figure in the 19th century.

Matamoros, Tamaulipas City in Tamaulipas, Mexico

Matamoros, officially known as Heroica Matamoros, is a city in the northeastern Mexican state of Tamaulipas. It is located on the southern bank of the Rio Grande, directly across the border from Brownsville, Texas, in the United States. Matamoros is the second largest city in the state of Tamaulipas. As of 2016, Matamoros had a population of 520,367. In addition, the Matamoros–Brownsville Metropolitan Area has a population of 1,387,985, making it the 4th largest metropolitan area on the Mexico–US border. Matamoros is the 39th largest city in Mexico and anchors the second largest metropolitan area in Tamaulipas.

In 1837, Urrea turned against Santa Anna upon his return to Mexico, and fought against him at the Battle of Mazatlán in 1838. The attempted uprising resulted in his eventual arrest, and he was sent to Perote Prison. [3] He later revived his military career with the invasion of French forces into Mexico, and another failed coup attempt followed.

The Mexican–American War saw Urrea leading a cavalry division against invading American troops. [4] Urrea died August 1, 1849 of cholera shortly after the war ended. [4]

See also

Notes

  1. The Goliad Massacre, Presidio La Bahia, Goliad, Texas, Presidio Nuestra Senora De Loreto De La Bahia, Friends of the Fort website, accessed 28 Oct 2006"
  2. Roell, Craig H. (2013), Matamoros and the Texas Revolution, Denton, TX: Texas State Historical Association, p. 69, ISBN   978-0-87611-260-1
  3. 1 2 Ohlendorf, Shelia M. "Urrea, José de". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 2007-11-07.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 Roell (2013), p. 70.
  5. Long, Jeff (1990), Duel of Eagles: The Mexican and U.S. Fight for the Alamo, New York: William Morrow and Company, Inc., p. 280, ISBN   978-0-688-07252-0 .
  6. Edmondson (2000), p. 287.

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References

Further reading