Commemoration of the Sacrifice of Saint Patrick’s Battalion

Commemoration of the Sacrifice of Saint Patrick’s Battalion during the Mexican–American War (1847)

SanPadriciobattle SanPadricioMedalionSeptember 12

Saint Patrick’s Battalion

During the Mexican / US War of 1846 to 1848, many “Irish” joined the Mexican army for a number of reasons. While the majority of the deserters or defectors were ethnic Irish there was also an abundance of German Catholic immigrants. The battalion also included English, French, Canadians, Italians, Poles, Scots, Spaniards, and Swiss – the majority being Roman Catholics.

The primary reason sited is that they fought on the side of the Catholics and that they were treated abominably by the US forces. The Mexican Army offered to pay more, give them land and citizenship and treated them humanely. While the Mexicans have honored the Irish Battalion members throughout history, the US branded them traitors and hung those that they captured.

SanPadriciorecognotionThe San Patricio’s were a brave and fearsome battalion and imposed heavy losses for the US side. Eventually when they were captured they were tried without legal representation or transcripts and against hung by the neck en mass even though it was against the current Articles of War which stated that traitors were to be killed via a firing squad.

The Battalion continues to be honored as Mexican heroes and is memorialized on both Saint Patrick’s Day and September 12 – the anniversary of the day of the US executions.




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