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Federalist Wars: First Phase

The troops were landed upon arrival at Tuxpan, but the guns and other effects were left on board without any orders as to their disposition. While awaiting further orders before Tuxpan, one of the American captains became disgusted and left the Federal service. After fourteen days in this employ, eight of which was at sea before Tuxpan without orders, "riding in an open roadstead, having parted my chain and lost my anchor," wrote the captain of the Andrew Jackson, whose men were showing signs of mutiny, "I left this service and set sail for Mobile," where the arms were voluntarily surrendered to the customs collector.[87]  Mejía's subsequent defeat was in part attributed to his shortage of arms and munitions due to the departure of the Andrew Jackson.

After some delay at Tuxpan, the troops were loaded on the four remaining vessels and transported along with the supplies to the Barra de Tecolutla,[88]  forty leagues from Vera Cruz, where the troops were landed on April 14, a week after the French evacuated San Juan de Úlloa,[89]  and moved inland by-passing the Fortress of Perote to strike the Puebla-Vera Cruz-Mexico City road. The combined forces of Mejía and Urrea, numbering some nine hundred men, sought to advance upon Puebla, approximately seventy miles from the City of Mexico,

87. John M. Meldrum [Captain of the Andrew Jackson] to the Editor of the Mobile Register, reproduced in the Telegraph and Texas Register, June 12, 1839; Telegraph and Texas Register, May 15, 1839; see extract of an unsigned letter, dated Tampico, April 18, 1839, in Morning Star, May 6, 1839.

88. John G. McCall to John Forsyth, Tampico, April 19, 1839, in Consular Dispatches (Tampico), ms., microfilm; El Mosquito Mexicano, April 19, 1839, says the expedition landed at Tecolutla, and on May 14, quoting La Concordia of April 18, says the contracted vessels had sailed for Vera Cruz, but while en route two American vessels appeared and demanded that they strike the United States colors, otherwise they would be considered violating the neutrality laws of the United States. The American captains refused to haul down their colors, and it was implied that Mejía paid off at this point. The American captains, we know, were paid in advance; what is probably meant by Mejía's paying off at this point was that the troops were landed and it was presumed that the vessels were released from further service. We know that the troops were landed at Tecolutla, and it must be presumed that the United States naval units intercepted the merchantmen in that vicinity.

89. The Mexican government concluded a treaty on March 9 ending its difficulties with the French. The treaty was ratified by Mexico on March 21 and accepted by Admiral Baudin on March 29, 1839. In compliance with the terms of the treaty, the French evacuated San Juan de Úlloa on April 7, 1839. See Charles Baudin's Order of the Day, Frigate Nereide, Port of Vera Cruz, March 29, 1839, in Telegraph and Texas Register, April 24, 1839; Bancroft, History of Mexico, V, 203-204, 210.

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AFTER SAN JACINTO: The Texas-Mexican Frontier, 1836-1841
Joseph Milton Nance, 1963