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The Mexican-American war (1846-1848) marked the very first U.S. Equipped conflict chiefly dealt with on international soil. It pitted a politically divided and also militarily unprepared Mexico versus the expansionist-minded administration of U.S. Chairman James K. Polk, who believed the joined States had a “manifest destiny” come spread throughout the continent come the Pacific Ocean. A border skirmish along the Rio Grande began off the fighting and was adhered to by a series of U.S. Victories. When the dust cleared, Mexico had lost about one-third that its territory, including nearly every one of present-day California, Utah, Nevada, Arizona and new Mexico.

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Causes that the Mexican-American battle


Texas acquired its freedom from Mexico in 1836. Initially, the unified States declined to combine it into the union, largely since northern politics interests were versus the addition of a new slave state. The Mexican government was additionally encouraging border raids and also warning that any kind of attempt at addition would bring about war.

Did friend know? gold was uncovered in California just days before Mexico delivered the land to the United says in the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo.


Nonetheless, addition procedures were easily initiated after ~ the 1844 election of Polk, who campaigned that Texas have to be “re-annexed” and also that the Oregon Territory need to be “re-occupied.” Polk likewise had his eyes on California, new Mexico and also the remainder of what is now the U.S. Southwest. As soon as his sell to acquisition those lands was rejected, he instigated a fight by relocating troops into a disputed zone between the Rio Grande and Nueces River the both countries had previously well-known as component of the mexico state that Coahuila.


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On April 25, 1846, mexico cavalry struck a team of U.S. Soldiers in the questioned zone under the command of basic Zachary Taylor, killing around a dozen. They then laid siege to an American ft along the Rio Grande. Taylor referred to as in reinforcements, and–with the help of exceptional rifles and artillery–was may be to loss the mexican at the war of Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma.


Following those battles, Polk said the U.S. Congress that the “cup of forbearance has actually been exhausted, even prior to Mexico pass the border of the unified States, attacked our territory, and also shed American blood upon American soil.” two days later, on may 13, Congress declared war, in spite of opposition native some north lawmakers. No main declaration of war ever before came from Mexico.


Mexican-American War: U.S. Army breakthroughs Into Mexico

At the time, only around 75,000 mexican citizens lived north of the Rio Grande. As a result, U.S. Forces led by Col. Stephen W. Kearny and Commodore Robert F. Stockton to be able to overcome those lands through minimal resistance. Taylor similarly had little trouble advancing, and also he caught Monterrey in September.

With the losses adding up, Mexico turned come old standby basic Antonio López de Santa Anna, the charismatic strongman who had been living in exile in Cuba. Santa Anna convinced Polk that, if permitted to go back to Mexico, that would end the war on terms favorable come the united States. Yet when the arrived, he immediately double-crossed Polk through taking regulate of the mexico army and leading it into battle. At the battle of Buena Vista in February 1847, Santa Anna suffered heavy casualties and also was forced to withdraw. Regardless of the loss, he assumed the mexico presidency the complying with month.

Meanwhile, U.S. Troops led by Gen. Winfield Scott landed in Veracruz and also took over the city. Castle then started marching towards Mexico City, essentially following the same route that Hernán Cortés complied with when he attacked the Aztec empire. The Mexicans withstood at Cerro Gordo and elsewhere, yet were bested each time. In September 1847, Scott effectively laid siege to Mexico City’s Chapultepec Castle. During that clash, a team of armed forces school cadets–the so-called niños héroes–purportedly cursed suicide quite than surrender.

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Treaty that Guadalupe Hidalgo end the Mexican-American war

Guerilla attacks against U.S. It is provided lines continued, but for all intents and purposes the war had ended. Santa Anna resigned, and also the United claims waited for a new government capable of negotiations to form. Finally, ~ above Feb. 2, 1848, the contract of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed, developing the Rio Grande and also not the Nueces River as the U.S.-Mexican border. Under the treaty, Mexico additionally recognized the U.S. Addition of Texas, and agreed to offer California and also the remainder of its are north of the Rio Grande because that $15 million plus the presumption of certain damages claims.