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Battle of Santa Clara
The event, nicknamed the Battle of the Mustard Stalks because it began in a mustard field, was really more of a skirmish than an actual battle. It lasted only two hours and there were no deaths.
As a result, an American force was sent to rescue the sailors who were eventually released after negotiations. Another marker nearby indicates the location where the formal surrender and release took place.
There is an interesting side note to the battle at Santa Clara. One of the battle's participants was James Reed, one of the leaders of the doomed Donner Party. Reed was in the area to attempt to secure a relief party for the trapped remnants of his party, but had difficulties as many of the able-bodied men were fighting in the war.
Sources"The Battle of Santa Clara January 2-7, 1847." Historical Marker Database. Accessed June 24, 2015. http://www.hmdb.org/Marker.asp?Marker=81727 Hoover, Mildred Brooke; Hero Eugene Rench; and Ethel Grace Rench. Historic Spots in California. Revised by William N. Abeloe (3rd ed.). Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1966. Tinkham, George Henry. The California Conquest: California Men and Events: Time 1769-1890. Record Publishing Company, 1915. Regnery, Dorothy F. The Battle of Santa Clara, January 2, 1847: The only campaign in the northern district between the Californios and the United States Forces during the Mexican War. Smith and McKay, 1978.
Santa Clara, CA 95050
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