Francisco González Pavón, in command of the First Regiment of Cavalry at Mier, was making hasty preparations to abandon the town. The Federals determined to push on immediately, having rested two hours. They entered Mier half an hour after sunrise without meeting resistance, Pavón having fled toward Monterey only a short time before with five hundred regulars and four pieces of artillery -- one long nine-pounder, two six-pounders, and a seven inch howitzer. Within an hour the Federalist troops were filing through the city in pursuit. The Texans, it was reported, displayed their lone star flag triumphantly over the town, but Canales later explicitly denied that the Texan flag had ever been raised at Mier or elsewhere in the northern towns.
The Federalists, with Ross' 231 Texans out in front, pursued and overtook Pavón at the Alamo, twelve miles southwest of Mier on the old road between Mier and Paras, where on an eminence in the rolling, rough country Pavón had drawn up his forces to await the Federalist assault on October 3. Pavón's cannons were mounted on top of a knoll to protect his infantry and cavalry, which were stationed at a short distance down the hill.
As the Federalists came up about 11 o'clock in the morning, the
99. Francisco González Pavón, native of San Salvador el Verde, Department of Puebla, entered service as a soldier in the Regimiento del Comercio de Puebla on March 30, 1809; in 1834 he was commander-in-chief of Puebla, and later commanded a brigade in the Army Corps of the North which he surrendered in October 1839, to a combined Federal-Texan army. For the surrender he was court-martialed by his government and sentenced to six months in prison. From 1853-1855 he served as commandant general of Zacatecas. Alberto M. Carreño (ed.), Jefes del ejército mexicano en 1847: biográfias de generals de division y de coronels del ejército mexicano por fines del año de 1847, p. 217.
100. Colorado Gazette and Advertiser, Jan. 4, 1840. The Gazette reported that the Centralists evacuated Mier at 8 a.m., and that the Federalists began filing through the streets in pursuit an hour later. In Matamoros it was said that Pavón had about 600 troops under his command. D. W. Smith to John Forsyth, Matamoros, Nov. 10, 1839, no. 160, in Consular Dispatches (U. S.), 1837-1839, (Matamoros), ms., microfilm. The Colorado Gazette and Advertiser, Jan. 4, 1840, reporting what is described as an authentic account of the engagement with Pavón gave the size of his force as 780 men.
101. D. W. Smith to John Forsyth, Matamoros, Nov. 10, 1839, no. 160, in Consular Dispatches (U. S.), 1837-1839 (Matamoros), ms., microfilm; Same to Same, Matamoros, Dec. 24, 1839, no. 161, in ibid.
102. The rock house at this point, which served as Pavón's hospital and asylum following his defeat, still stands.
103. Colorado Gazette and Advertiser, Jan. 4, 1840.