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1857 Henry A. Crabb invasion of Sonora

Last modified: 2022-10-14 by juan manuel gabino villascán
Keywords: mexico | sonora | caborca | filibustering | republic sonora | crabb (henry a.) | us invasion | usa | west ward ho |
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Historical background

In 1857, D. Agustín Aínza presented before Sonora Governor Ignacio Pesqueira in order to plan the repatriation of some Mexicans who left in Upper California, segrated from the Mexican territory after the 1846-1848 US invasion, and settle them in the region between the Altar and Magdalena Rivers. Aínza was given authorization to seek for inhabitable places. When Aínza was traveling over the territory, he realized that Henry A. Crabb followed by armed men would secede the region from Sonora. Prefect Aínza immediately informed about the matter, then the Executive ordered preparing the defense. On March 24, 1857, a 104-group of filibusters led by Crabb invaded Mexican territory through Sonoita informing Altar Prefect José María Redondo, they came armed for thier security and 900 followers will join them soon. The National Guard was summoned under the Captain Lorenzo Rodríguez's command facing the filibusters on April 1. Lieutenant Colonel José María Girón supported Rodríguez from Ures.

On April 6, 59 filibusters gave up being shut next day. Another group that fled towards Pitiquito was persecuted and dispersed reaching the US-Mexican border.

On April 7, 1857, another American leading 15 filibusters arrived to Caborca. They were defeated by Lieutenant José Roldán. All the filibusters were passed by arms on April 9.

Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, May 01, 2002

Crabb's flag

[Flag used by Henry A. Crabb during his 1854 invasion to Mexico] [Historic flag no longer in use]     [Detail of the canton of the Crabb's flag]
Images by Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, May 01, 2002.

At the Chapultepec Castle [Museo Nacional de Historia] in Mexico City, there is a flag with the following note: "Flag captured by Mexican troops in Caborca, Sonora, on April 6, 1857, when the filibusters led by Henry A. Crabb were defeated."

This flag resembles that of the US one, thirteen horizontal stripes in red and white, a blue squared canton with a circle of fourteen white six-pointed stars surrounding a larger five-pointed one. There is a text in the upper part of the canton that reads: "Westward ho!!".

Juan Manuel Gabino Villascán, May 01, 2002.

Anything below this line was not added by the editor of this page.