Zachary Taylor

The enemy were again met most advantageously posted in the ravine of Resaca de la Palma within three miles of Fort Brown. About 4 P.M. the battle commenced with great fury. By order of General Taylor, May, with his dragoons, charged the enemy's batteries. The Mexicans reserved their fire until the horses were near the cannons' mouth, and then poured out a broadside which laid many a poor fellow low. Those of the dragoons not disabled rushed on, overleaped the batteries, and seized the guns. The enemy recoiled, again rallied, and with fixed bayonets returned to the onset. Again they were repulsed. The Tampico veterans ' came to the rescue, were met by the dragoons now reinforced with infantry, and all but seventeen fell sword in hand after fighting with the most desperate bravery. This decided the battle. The flanks of the enemy were turned, and soon the rout became general. The Mexicans fled to the flat boats of the river, and the shouts of the pursuers and the shrieks of the drowning closed the scene. A great number of prisoners including fourteen officers, eight pieces of artillery, and a large quantity of camp equipage fell into the hands of the victors. The American loss was 39 killed and 71 wounded; that of the enemy in the two actions was at least 1000 killed and wounded. Fort Brown was relieved, and the next day Barita on the Mexican bank was taken by colonel Wilson without resistance.

The victories of the 8th and 9th filled our country with exultation. Government acknowledged the distinguished services of General Taylor by making him Major-general by brevet; congress passed resolutions of high approval; Louisiana presented him with a sword, and the press everywhere teemed with his praise.

As soon as means could be procured, General Taylor crossed the Rio Grande, took Matamoras without opposition, and made colonel Twiggs its governor. The army soon received large volunteer reinforcements, and on the 5th of August the American general left Matamoras for Camargo, and thence proceeded through Seralos to Monterey, where he arrived the 19th of September. The Mexicans, under General Ampudia, had placed this strongly fortified town in a complete state of defense. Not only were the walls and parapets lined with cannons, but the streets and houses were barricaded and planted with artillery. The bishop's palace on a hill at a short distance west of the city was converted into a perfect fortress. The town was well supplied with ammunition, and manned with 7000 troops of the line, and from 2000 to 3000 irregulars. The attack commenced on the 21st, and two important redoubts without the city, and an important work within, were carried with a loss to the Americans in killed and wounded of not less than 894. At three the next morning, a considerable force under General Worth dragged their howitzers by main strength up the hill, and assaulted the palace. The enemy made a desperate sortie, but were driven back in confusion, and the fortification was soon taken by the Americans with a loss of only 7 killed and 12 wounded. The next night, the Mexicans evacuated nearly all their defenses in the lower part of the city. The Americans entered the succeeding day, and by the severest fighting slowly worked their way from street to street and square to square, until they reached the heart of the town. General Ampudia saw that further resistance was useless, and, on the morning of the 24th, proposed to evacuate the city on condition that he might take with him the personel and materiel of his army. This condition was refused be the American general. A personal interview between the two commanders ensued, which resulted in a capitulation of the city, allowing the Mexicans to retire with their forces and a certain portion of their materiel beyond the line formed by the pass of the Rinconada and San Fernando de Presas, and engaging the Americans not to pass beyond that line for eight weeks. Our entire loss during the operations was 12 officers and 108 men killed, 31 officers and 337 men wounded; that of the enemy is not known, but was much larger. The terms accorded by the conqueror were liberal, and dictated by a regard to the interests of peace; they crowned a gallant conquest of arms with a more sublime victory of magnanimity.