Exploros_logo

Battle of Medina

The battle of Medina was fought on August 18, 1813, between the republican forces of the Gutiérrez-Magee expedition under General José Álvarez de Toledo y Dubois and a Spanish royalist army under General Joaquín de Arredondo. The battle took place twenty miles south of San Antonio. The battle affected the destinies of Spain, Mexico, the United States, England, and France. Mexico and Latin America were fighting against Spain, and the United States was at war with England in the War of 1812. At the same time, José Bernardo Gutiérrez de Lara and Augustus William Magee, with aid from the United States, had organized an expedition to free Texas from Spain. On August 7, 1812, the expedition captured Nacogdoches, Trinidad de Salcedo, La Bahía, and San Antonio. A declaration of independence for the State of Texas under the Republic of Mexico was proclaimed on April 6, 1813. The republic was short lived. Within months, a royal army came to stamp out the rebellion.

With 1,400 men made up of Anglos, Tejanos, Indians, and former royalists, Toledo met the Spanish enemy south of the city. He planned to attack the royalists as they traveled through a valley along the Laredo road. The next morning, the royalists lured the republicans into a trap in a dense forest. The republicans, without permission from Toledo, marched through deep sand for several hours looking for the cavalry unit, which they thought was an army. Arredondo ordered his men not to fire until the rebels were within forty steps of them. When the republicans came close, they were hot, thirsty, and tired. After a four-hour battle, the republicans ran away. Most of those who did not die during the battle were caught and killed. Less than 100 republicans escaped; Arredondo only lost 55 men.

The Gutiérrez-Magee expedition of 1812–13 ended at the battle of Medina. The men who lost their lives in the battle are mostly unknown and uncelebrated.


Source: Battle of Medina
Copyright © Texas State Historical Association

Back to top