Treaty of Cahuenga

Last updated
Treaty of Cahuenga
Tratado de Cahuenga
Campo de Cahuenga.jpg
Campo de Cahuenga, scene of the signing of the Treaty of Cahuenga
SignedJanuary 13, 1847 (1847-01-13)
Location Campo de Cahuenga, Alta California

The Treaty of Cahuenga, also called the "Capitulation of Cahuenga," ended the fighting of the Mexican–American War in Alta California in 1847. It was not a formal treaty between nations but an informal agreement between rival military forces in which the Californios gave up fighting. The treaty was drafted in English and Spanish by José Antonio Carrillo, approved by American Lieutenant-Colonel John C. Frémont and then-acting Mexican governor Andrés Pico (operating as governor of Mexican Alta California while his older brother, the official Mexican Governor Pio Pico, was in Mexico raising additional money for the fight against the United States) on January 13, 1847 at Campo de Cahuenga in what is now Universal City, California.

Contents

The treaty called for the Californios to give up their artillery, and provided that all prisoners from both sides be immediately freed. Those Californios who promised not to again take up arms during the war, and to obey the laws and regulations of the United States, were allowed to peaceably return to their homes and ranchos. They were to be allowed the same rights and privileges as were allowed to citizens of the United States, and were not to be compelled to take an oath of allegiance until a treaty of peace was signed between the United States and Mexico, and were given the privilege of leaving the country if they wished to do so.

Under the later Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848, Mexico formally ceded Alta California and other territories to the United States, and the disputed border of Texas was fixed at the Rio Grande. Pico, like nearly all the Californios, became an American citizen with full legal and voting rights. Pico later became a State Assemblyman and then a State Senator representing Los Angeles in the California State Legislature.

Events leading to the agreement

On December 27, 1846, Frémont and the California Battalion, in their march south to Los Angeles, reached a deserted Santa Barbara and raised the American flag. [1] He occupied a hotel close to the adobe of Bernarda Ruiz de Rodriguez, a wealthy educated woman of influence and Santa Barbara town matriarch, who had four sons on the Mexican side. She asked for and was granted ten minutes of Frémont's time, which stretched to two hours; she advised him that a generous peace would be to his political advantage—one that included Pico's pardon, release of prisoners, equal rights for all Californians and respect of property rights.

John C. Fremont JohnCFremont-1856.png
John C. Frémont

Frémont later wrote, "I found that her object was to use her influence to put an end to the war, and to do so upon such just and friendly terms of compromise as would make the peace acceptable and enduring. ... She wished me to take into my mind this plan of settlement, to which she would influence her people; meantime, she urged me to hold my hand, so far as possible. ... I assured her I would bear her wishes in mind when the occasion came." [2] [3] The next day, Bernarda accompanied Frémont as he continued the march south.

Andres Pico Andres Pico.jpg
Andrés Pico

On January 8, 1847, Frémont arrived at San Fernando. [4] On January 10, the combined army of Commodore Robert Stockton and Brigadier General Stephen Kearny re-took Los Angeles with no resistance. [5] Frémont learned of the reoccupation the next day. [6] On January 12, Bernarda went alone to the camp of General Andres Pico and told him of the peace agreement she and Frémont had drafted. Frémont and two of Pico's officers agreed to the terms for a surrender, and Articles of Capitulation were penned by Jose Antonio Carrillo in both English and Spanish. [7] The first seven articles in the treaty were nearly the verbatim suggestions offered by Bernarda Ruiz de Rodriguez.

On January 13, at a rancho at the north end of Cahuenga Pass, with Bernarda Ruiz de Rodriguez present, John Frémont, Andres Pico and six others signed the Articles of Capitulation, which became known as the Treaty of Cahuenga. This treaty, signed by the Mexican military commander of the area and a U.S. army colonel, was made without the formal backing of either the American government in Washington or the Mexican government in Mexico City, and even the ranking U.S. officers in the area (General Kearny and Commodore Stockton) were unaware of it. [8] Still, not only was it eventually honored by both national governments, it was immediately and permanently observed by the local American and Californio populations. Fighting ceased, thus ending the war in California. [9]

On January 14, the California Battalion entered Los Angeles in a rainstorm, and Frémont delivered the treaty to Commodore Robert Stockton. [10] Kearny and Stockton decided to accept the liberal terms offered by Frémont to terminate hostilities, despite Andres Pico having broken his earlier pledge that he would not fight U.S. forces. The next day Stockton approved the Treaty of Cahuenga in a message that he sent to the Secretary of the Navy. [10]

Historical re-enactment

In celebration, on or around the date of the original signing, a historical ceremony is conducted at Campo de Cahuenga State Historic Park and site. [11] From time to time, some of the descendants have appeared, along with actors to re-create this historical moment.

See also

Related Research Articles

Battle of Monterey

The Battle of Monterey, at Monterey, California, occurred on 7 July 1846, during the Mexican–American War. The United States captured the town unopposed.

Pío Pico Governor of Alta California

Don Pío de Jesús Pico was a Californio politician, ranchero, and merchant that served as the last Governor of Alta California under Mexican rule. Pico was one of the wealthiest men in California at the time and also served on the Los Angeles Common Council.

Stephen W. Kearny United States general (1794–1848)

Stephen Watts Kearny ; was one of the foremost antebellum frontier officers of the United States Army. He is remembered for his significant contributions in the Mexican–American War, especially the conquest of California. The Kearny code, proclaimed on September 22, 1846, in Santa Fe, established the law and government of the newly acquired territory of New Mexico and was named after him. His nephew was Major General Philip Kearny of American Civil War fame.

Robert F. Stockton United States Navy officer

Robert Field Stockton was a United States Navy commodore, notable in the capture of California during the Mexican–American War. He was a naval innovator and an early advocate for a propeller-driven, steam-powered navy. Stockton was from a notable political family and also served as a U.S. senator from New Jersey.

Californios Term for Hispanic natives of California

Californios are Hispanic people native to the U.S. state of California. California's Spanish-speaking community has resided there since 1683 and is made up of varying Criollo Spaniard, Mestizo, and Indigenous Californian origins. Alongside the Tejanos of Texas and Neomexicanos of New Mexico and Colorado, Californios are part of the larger Chicano/Mexican-American/Hispano community of the United States, which has inhabited the American Southwest and the West Coast since the 16th century.

Battle of San Pasqual Mexican-American War battle

The Battle of San Pasqual, also spelled San Pascual, was a military encounter that occurred during the Mexican–American War in what is now the San Pasqual Valley community of the city of San Diego, California. The series of military skirmishes ended with both sides claiming victory, and the victor of the battle is still debated. On December 6 and December 7, 1846, General Stephen W. Kearny's US Army of the West, along with a small detachment of the California Battalion led by a Marine Lieutenant, engaged a small contingent of Californios and their Presidial Lancers Los Galgos, led by Major Andrés Pico. After U.S. reinforcements arrived, Kearny's troops were able to reach San Diego.

Battle of Rio San Gabriel

The Battle of Rio San Gabriel, fought on 8 January 1847, was a decisive action of the California campaign of the Mexican–American War and occurred at a ford of the San Gabriel River, at what are today parts of the cities of Whittier, Pico Rivera and Montebello, about ten miles south-east of downtown Los Angeles.

Battle of La Mesa

The Battle of La Mesa was the final battle of the California Campaign during the Mexican–American War, occurring on January 9, 1847, in present-day Vernon, California, the day after the Battle of Rio San Gabriel. The battle was a victory for the United States Army under Commodore Robert F. Stockton and General Stephen Watts Kearny.

Andrés Pico

Andrés Pico was a Californio who became a successful rancher, fought in the contested Battle of San Pascual during the Mexican–American War, and negotiated promises of post-war protections for Californios in the 1847 Treaty of Cahuenga. After California became one of the United States, Pico was elected to the state Assembly and Senate. He was appointed as the commanding brigadier general of the state militia during the U.S. Civil War.

Campo de Cahuenga United States historic place

The Campo de Cahuenga, near the historic Cahuenga Pass in present-day Studio City, California, was an adobe ranch house on the Rancho Cahuenga where the Treaty of Cahuenga was signed between Lieutenant Colonel John C. Frémont and General Andrés Pico in 1847, ending hostilities in California between Mexico and the United States. The subsequent Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo of 1848, ceding California, parts of Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Arizona to the United States, formally ended the Mexican–American War. From 1858 to 1861 the Campo de Cahuenga became a Butterfield Stage Station.

Battle of Natividad

The Battle of the Natividad took place on November 16, 1846, in the Salinas Valley, in present-day Monterey County, California, United States, during the California Campaign of the Mexican–American War, between United States organized California militia and loyalist Mexican militia.

Major Archibald H. Gillespie was an officer in the United States Marine Corps during the Mexican–American War.

José María Flores

General José María Flores was an officer in the Mexican Army and was a member of la otra banda. He was appointed Governor and Comandante Generalpro tem of Alta California from 1846 to 1847, and defended California against the Americans during the Mexican–American War.

José Antonio Carrillo

Captain José Antonio Ezequiel Carrillo (1796–1862) was a Californio politician, ranchero, and signer of the Californian Constitution in 1849. He served three terms as Alcalde of Los Angeles (mayor).

The California Battalion was formed during the Mexican–American War (1846–1848) in present-day California, United States. It was led by U.S. Army brevet lieutenant colonel John C. Fremont and composed of his cartographers, scouts and hunters and the California Volunteer Militia formed after the Bear Flag Revolt. The battalion's formation was officially authorized by Commodore Robert F. Stockton, commanding officer of the U.S. Navy Pacific Squadron.

Conquest of California Early military operation of the Mexican–American War where the United States was able to occupy and eventually annex Alta California

The California Campaign (1846–1847), colloquially the Conquest of California or Conquest of Alta California by the United States, was an early military campaign of the Mexican–American War that took place in the western part of Mexico's Alta California Department, in the present-day state of California. The California Campaign was marked by a series of small battles throughout 1846 and early 1847.

Bernarda Ruiz De Rodriguez was a native Californio who may have had a hand in brokering the Treaty of Cahuenga between American Lieutenant-Colonel John C. Frémont and Mexican General Andrés Pico on January 13, 1847 at Campo de Cahuenga in what is now Universal City, Los Angeles, California.

California interim government, 1846–1850

A California interim government existed from mid-1846 until September, 1850. United States military occupation of territory comprising today's U.S. state of California came soon after the outbreak of the Mexican–American War in 1846. Occupation replaced the previous system of government under Mexico with a "Law of war" system centralizing and combining military command and civil governance under a series of military commanders/governors. Existing local government structure, however, was largely left in place.

Sycamore Tree (Santa Paula, California)

The Sycamore Tree is a historic tree used for many years as a special meeting place. The tree is located just off California State Route 126 in the middle of Hall Road, 4 Miles East of Santa Paula, California in Ventura County. Address is in the 3800 block of Sycamore Road, Fillmore, California, just north of the Santa Clara River. The site became California Historical Landmark number 756 on February 22, 1960. The tree has been used in the past as a polling place, Padres resting place on the El Camino Real, outdoor chapel and post office. In December of 1846 General John C. Frémont passed the tree on his trip to sign a treaty with General Andrés Pico to secure California's annexation to the United States, called the Treaty of Cahuenga. The Treaty was signed on January 13, 1847 at Campo de Cahuenga in what is now Universal City, California.

Pico family of California

The Pico family is a prominent Californio family of Southern California. Members of the family held extensive rancho grants and numerous important positions, including Governor of Alta California, signer of the Constitution of California, and California State Senator, among numerous others. Numerous locations are named after the family across California.

References

  1. Walker, Dale L. (1999). Bear Flag Rising: The Conquest of California, 1846 . New York: Macmillan. p.  235. ISBN   0312866852.
  2. "Campo de Cahuenga, the Birthplace of California" . Retrieved 24 August 2014.
  3. "L.A. Then and Now: Woman Helped Bring a Peaceful End to Mexican-American War". Los Angeles Times. 5 May 2002.
  4. Walker p. 239
  5. Walker p. 242
  6. Walker p. 245
  7. Walker p. 246
  8. Eisenhower, John S. D. (1989). So Far from God: The U.S. War with Mexico, 1846–1848. New York: Random House. pp. 229–230. [Frémont] took it upon himself to sign it on behalf of the United States. Never mind that he was subordinate to both Stockton and Kearny and that they were both within communicating distance.
  9. Meares, Hadley (11 July 2014). "In a State of Peace and Tranquility: Campo de Cahuenga and the Birth of American California" . Retrieved 24 Aug 2014.
  10. 1 2 Walker p. 249
  11. "Campo de Cahuenga – Events" . Retrieved January 11, 2018.