Mexican American War

 

James Knox Polk

Summary and Definition of Mexican American War
Definition and Summary: The Mexican American War, also known as the Invasion of Mexico, lasted just under 2 years from April 25, 1846 – February 2, 1848. The Mexican American War grew out of unresolved border disputes between the Republic of Texas and Mexico after the Texas Annexation by the United States. The Mexican American War was fought in  Texas, New Mexico, California and Central, Northern and Eastern Mexico including Mexico City. It ended in 1848 with the
Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in which Mexico was forced to sell Alta California and New Mexico to the United States for $15 million.

Mexican American War for kids
James Polk was the 11th American President who served in office from March 4, 1845 to March 4, 1849. One of the important events during his presidency was the Mexican American War.

What were the Causes of the Mexican American War?
What were the Causes of the Mexican American War? The causes of the Mexican American War were:

  • The goal of James Polk for American territorial expansion

  • The ideals of the Manifest Destiny

  • Cultural differences between the Mexicans and the Americans settlers in the area

  • The refusal of Mexico to acknowledge the independence of Texas and its admission to the United States

  • Border disputes - Mexico claimed the Nueces River as its northeastern border, while the U.S. claimed the Rio Grande River

The Mexican American War Map
The Mexican American War Map shows an over view of the territorial expansion of the United States and the 1845 Texas Annexation and the 1848 Mexican cession agreed in the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo granted all land from Texas to California, minus the Gadsden Purchase.

Mexican American War Map: Manifest Destiny
The Mexican American War Map provides an overview of the massive areas of dispute between Mexico and the United States. Mexico never acknowledged the independence of Texas and protested against its admission to the United States and disputed the border. Offers were made by the US to purchase the land but Mexico refused.  President James K. Polk, with his belief in the Manifest Destiny of the United States (the conviction that Americans were divinely ordained to expand and dominate the continent) ordered General Zachary Taylor to march to the Rio Grande and occupy the disputed territory. Taylor was attacked by  the Mexicans and the United States declared war on Mexico

Mexican American War Map

Mexican American War Map and US Territorial Expansion Map

The Mexican American War Summary for kids
The summary of the Mexican American War can be divided into three parts:

  • The seizure of California led by Stephen Kearny (detailed info can be found in the article on the Bear Flag Revolt and the California Republic)

  • The Mexican campaign headed by General Zachary Taylor across the Rio Grande

  • The Mexican campaign headed by General Winfield Scott that ended in the capture of the City of Mexico

The Mexican American War Summary: The General Zachary Taylor Campaign
The Mexican campaign led by General Zachary Taylor in the Mexican American War started with his orders from President James Polk The objective of the Taylor's campaign was to  preserve the line of the Rio Grande and then to advance into Mexico. The May 8, 1846 Battle of Palo Alto, the Siege of Fort Texas and the May 8, 1846 Battle of Resaca de la Palma were fought before the actual declaration of war on May 13, 1846 and resulted in victories for the United States. These victories achieved Taylor's first goal of maintaining the line of the Rio Grande. General Taylor crossed the Rio Grande in September 1846 and outnumbered by the Mexican army, faced a series of defeats. The General Taylor took his revenge at the Battle of Buena Vista on February 22-23, 1847. His victory at the Battle of Buena Vista was the last combat during Zachary Taylor's campaign.

The Mexican American War Summary: The General Winfield Scott Campaign
The goal of the Mexican campaign led by General Winfield Scott in the Mexican American War was that he should land at Vera Cruz, march 200 miles to the city of Mexico and capture Mexico city and force the Mexicans to make peace. Between August-September 1846 U.S. volunteers assemble under General John E. Wool and join General Zachary Taylor and his troops. General Winfield Scott, although still considerably outnumbered,  captured Veracruz with the help of the US navy in the Siege of Veracruz from March 9-29, 1847. Other victories followed en route to the City of Mexico. On August 20, 1847, the troops of General Scott beat the Mexicans in three pitched battles, and on September 14, 1847 he entered the city with his army. The Mexican American War continued with a few minor battles but the Mexican American War had been won by the United States and their victory sealed in the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo on March 10, 1848.

Mexican American War Timeline and Facts for kids
The Mexican American War Facts and Timeline for kids is detailed below. The history of the Mexican American War is told in a factual timeline sequence consisting of a series of short facts providing a simple method of relating the famous people and events surrounding the Mexican American War. 

Mexican American War Timeline and Facts for kids

 
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 1:1821: The Mexicans won their independence from Spain and founded the Mexican Republic. Immigrants from the US settled in Texas and Alta California
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 2:April 6, 1830: The Mexican government bans US immigration
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 3:October 2, 1835: The Texas Revolution began and on March 2, 1835 Texas declares independence from Mexico
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 4:March 3, 1837: United States recognizes the Republic of Texas
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 5:March 4, 1845: James Polk becomes US President. His goal is American territorial expansion to the Pacific coast
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 6:1845: John O’Sullivan initiates the phrase 'Manifest Destiny'
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 7:1845: President James Polk offers to purchase the lands but the Mexican government refuses to sell the land at any price
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 8:December 29, 1845:  President Polk signs the Joint Resolution admitting Texas as a  state - refer to Texas Annexation.
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 9:Mexico refuses to acknowledge the independence of Texas and its admission to the United States. Disputes arose regarding the southern boundary of Texas
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 10:U.S. forces invade Mexican territory on two main fronts. U.S. cavalry under Stephen W. Kearny invades western Mexico, reinforced by a Pacific fleet under John D. Sloat. Zachary Taylor and John E. Wool invade the south of Mexico as far as Monterrey
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 11:May 8, 1846: U.S. troops defeat the Mexicans at the Battle of Palo Alto, the first official battle of the war
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 12:The Battle of Resaca de la Palma when Mexican troops attack Fort Texas
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 13:May 13, 1846: Congress declares war on Mexico
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 14:June 14, 1846: The start of the Bear Flag Revolt and the California Republic launched by American settlers (the Bear Flaggers) against Mexico in the Mexican territory of Alta California. The Bear Flag Revolt lasts 25 days
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 15:June 14, 1846: William B. Ide is made the first, and only, President of the California Republic for 25 days
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 16:June 23, 1846: John C. Fremont arrives in California with 60 American soldiers
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 17:July 7, 1846: John D. Sloat leads the US navy to victory at the Battle of Monterey and issues a proclamation announcing that California was now part of the United States.
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 18:July 9, 1846: William B. Ide and the other "Bear Flaggers" joined John C. Fremont and the U.S. armed forces in taking possession of California from Mexico.
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 19:July 9, 1846: The Bear Flag revolt ends due to the California Annexation by the United States.
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 20:August 8,1846: The amendment known as the Wilmot Proviso was introduced in the US Congress to the $2million appropriations Bill to finance the settlement of the Mexican American War
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 21:September 20, 1846: General Zachary Taylor captures the Mexican city of Monterrey. Between August-September 1846  U.S. volunteers assemble under General John E. Wool and join General Taylor and his troops
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 22:September 25, 1846: Stephen Kearny sets out for California on with a force of 300 men to assist in the conquest of California
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 23:September 22-30, 1846: Mexican Victory at the Siege of Los Angeles
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 24:September - December 1846: Mexican victories at the Battle of Chino, the Battle of Dominguez Rancho and the Battle of San Pasqual
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 25:December 1846: Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna returns from exile in Cuba, stages a coup against the government and declares himself the new President of Mexico
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 26:January 10, 1847: Stephen Kearny's dragoons, Robert Stockton's marines, and two companies of John Fremont's California Battalion win the battles of San Gabriel and the La Mesa and retake control of Los Angeles
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 27:February 23, 1847: The U.S. under General Zachary Taylor wins the Battle of Buena Vista against General Santa Anna
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 28:March 9-29, 1847: American victory at the Siege of Veracruz
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 29:April 17-18, 1847: The U.S. wins the Battle of Cerro Gordo under the leadership of General Winfield Scott
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 30:July 1847: U.S. diplomat Nicholas Trist is unsuccessful at reaching an agreement with Santa Anna and the war continues
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 31:August-September 1846: U.S. volunteers assemble under General John E. Wool and join General Taylor and his troops.
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 32:September 13-15, 1847: American victory at the Siege of Los Angeles
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 33:September 14, 1847: The U.S. under General Scott wins the Battle of Mexico City.
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 34:January 13, 1848: The Californio forces in California capitulated to John C. Fremont and his California Battalion.
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 35:January 13, 1848: The informal Treaty of Cahuenga ended the fighting of the Mexican–American War in Alta California
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 36:January 24, 1848: The California Gold Rush started with the discovery of gold by James W. Marshall at Sutter's Lumber Mill in Coloma
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 37:February 2, 1848: Mexico formally ceded  territories to the United States under the terms of the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 38:March 10, 1848: The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, is ratified by the U.S. Senate on March 10th
Mexican American War Timeline Fact 39:May 25th, 1848: The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo  is ratified by the Mexican Congress on May 25th

Mexican American War Timeline and Facts for kids

Mexican American War for kids
The info about the Mexican American War provides interesting facts and important information about this important event that occured during the presidency of the 11th President of the United States of America.

 

Presidential Seal

 

Mexican American War Battles
The names and dates of Important Mexican American War battles were as follows:

 
Dates of BattlesNames of BattlesResults of Battles
May 8, 1846Battle of Palo AltoAmerican Victory
May 8, 1846Siege of Fort TexasAmerican Victory
May 9, 1846Battle of Resaca de la PalmaAmerican Victory
August 3, 1846Battle of CanoncitoAmerican Victory
August 18, 1846Battle of Santa FeAmerican Victory
September 21-24, 1846Battle of MonterreyAmerican Victory
September 22-30, 1846Siege of Los AngelesMexican Victory
September 26-27, 1846Battle of ChinoMexican Victory
October 7, 1846Battle of Dominguez RanchoMexican Victory
December 6, 1846Battle of San PasqualMexican Victory
January 2, 1847Battle of Santa ClaraAmerican Victory
January 8, 1847Battle of Rio San GabrielAmerican Victory
January 9, 1847Battle of La MesaAmerican Victory
January 29, 1847Battle of Embudo PassAmerican Victory
February 22-23, 1847Battle of Buena VistaAmerican Victory
February 28, 1847Battle of the SacramentoAmerican Victory
March 9-29, 1847Siege of VeracruzAmerican Victory
April 17-18, 1847Battle of Cerro GordoAmerican Victory
July 6, 1847Battle of Las VegasAmerican Victory
August 20, 1847Battle of ContrerasAmerican Victory
August 20, 1847Battle of ChurubuscoAmerican Victory
September 8, 1847Battle of Molino del ReyAmerican Victory
September 12-13, 1847Battle of ChapultepecAmerican Victory
September 13-15, 1847Battle for Mexico CityAmerican Victory
October 2, 1847Battle of MulegeMexican Victory
October 12, 1847Siege of PueblaAmerican Victory
October 31, 1847Bombardment of GuaymasAmerican Victory
November 16/17, 1847Battle of La PazAmerican Victory
November 20/21, 1847Battle of San Jose del CaboAmerican Victory
November 27-December 8, 1847Siege of La PazAmerican Victory
Dates of BattlesNames of BattlesResults of Battles

Mexican American War for kids: US and Mexico
For additional facts and information about the history of the US and Mexico refer to
US and the Mexican Revolution.

Mexican American War for kids - President James K Polk Video
The article on the Mexican American War provides an overview of one of the Important issues of his presidential term in office. The following James K Polk video will give you additional important facts and dates about the political events experienced by the 11th American President whose presidency spanned from March 4, 1845 to March 4, 1849.

 

 

 

Mexican American War
 
Facts and James K Polk history timeline for kids and schools
Definition of the Mexican American War in US history
Facts about the Mexican American War
James K Polk Presidency from March 4, 1845 to March 4, 1849
Fast, fun, Mexican American War about Important events in his presidency
Foreign & Domestic policies of President James K Polk
James K Polk Presidency and the Mexican American War for schools, homework, kids and children

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