The Battle of Monte de las Cruces is considered one of the first confrontations to be fought for the independence of Mexico from Spanish control . In it, the indigenous people who wanted the freedom of the Spaniards and to regain tranquility in their lands that had belonged to them for so many years also joined. However, although they represented a larger number of combatants than their enemies, they were not as well prepared militarily. Battle of monte de las cruces
When and where did the Battle of Monte de las Cruces take place?
The Battle of Monte de las Cruces was one of the first fights to be fought within the development of Mexico’s independence from Spanish rule in the 19th century. The battle took place specifically on October 30, 1810 , which indicates that it was a short-lived battle and that it was not a major one.
The site where this battle was fought was the well-known Monte de las Cruces, which is located within the Mexican municipality of Ocoyoacac , very close to the well-known city of Toluca de Lerdo, a mountain that turns out to be the division between the municipality and the Mexico’s valley.
Who participated in the Battle of Monte de las Cruces?
As this battle is located within the framework of Mexican independence from the Spanish yoke, it is not very difficult to identify the sides that participated in this battle. On the one hand, there was the royalist army, that is, the army that was loyal to the Spanish Crown, which was led by General Torcuato Trujillo . On the other side were the insurgent forces fighting for the freedom of the Spanish , which were commanded by the well-known Miguel Hidalgo, protagonist in the Grito de Dolores, and his faithful companion Ignacio Allende .
It is said that the insurgent forces numbered a total of 80,000 warriors, while the royalist side only had about 2,500 soldiers, but they had the advantage of being better trained on the battlefield and had good weapons.
In addition, already at the beginning of the confrontation between these two forces, Commander Trujillo reached the Lerma region in order to block the passage of the patriots who were on their way to Mexico City, he did so by closing the way with some trenches and moats. However, he later realized that the enemies could cross the well-known Atengo bridge and reach their destination, so he also decided to destroy said bridge to prevent them from taking this route, although they had already crossed some of the insurgent forces.
On the other hand, Hidalgo and his men were determined to achieve their objective, advancing with great conviction and impetus, so Trujillo had to devise a plan to reach Monte de las Cruces and wait for reinforcements both at the level of soldiers and soldiers. armament, which gave him some strength and preparation for the attack. At this time the action of Colonel José Mariano Jiménez stands out, who was in charge of about three thousand soldiers and accompanied by Ignacio Aldama, who with a cannon and a good strategy managed to decimate the royalists, achieving a good start to this battle.
Causes of the Battle of Monte de las Cruces
To know about the causes that originated this battle we would have to go a little further back in history, to the time of Napoleon Bonaparte in 1808, who invaded Spain and therefore created a chain of conflicts in Mexico and other Latin American countries. which started the war of independence. The viceroyalty of New Spain faced in that same year the political crisis that arose in Mexico, followed by conspiracies in Valladolid in 1809 and in Querétaro in 1810.
Later, the situation got out of control in Mexico with the famous Grito de Dolores initiated by Miguel Hidalgo, giving rise to the independence of Mexico as such that same year. The Battle of Monte de las Cruces is considered the first formal warlike confrontation that the insurgents hold against the royalist forces, since although the Taking of the Alhóndiga de Granaditas had previously occurred , the latter is considered more a looting or mutiny than a battle in reality.
So we can say that the main cause of this Battle of Monte de las Cruces was to finish or decimate as much as possible the forces that defended the Spanish crown in order to get rid of this yoke once and for all . This idea became a possibility thanks to the fact that King Fernando VII was in captivity, so using his enormous desire to get rid of Spanish power, the Mexicans started a conspiracy in Querétaro where many dissidents sided with the patriots in order to end the Spanish government. Later, they had the plan to establish a new power to rule by the captive king and later to act as independent and sovereign government of those regions .
After having triumphed in the Guanajuato region, the rebels went to the city of Valladolid on September 28 of the same year 1810, where they managed to enter without any resistance, and then went to Toluca. It was at that moment that Viceroy Francisco Xavier Venegas decided to confront and stop the revolts caused by the insurgent forces .
One of the most obvious consequences was the number of casualties that occurred as a result of this battle, where it is estimated that some 2,000 men were lost on the side of the royalists and a much greater number on the part of the insurgents , perhaps due to their little military and war strategy experience. Despite this, the dedication of these rebels who sought their independence because they had a shortage of arms and ammunition is worthy of admiration, so those two thousand royalists turned out to be the fruit of the courage of these men.
After this battle, the insurgents settled in the Cuajimalpa region without executing any military action or movement against the royalist forces until November 1 of that same year.
In this Battle of Monte de las Cruces, it is worth highlighting the great victory by the patriotic forces who numbered more than 80,000 men , managing to defeat the royalist army and advance through various regions of the country, they even had the strength and momentum necessary to take Mexico City and achieve independence the same year, but for unknown reasons Hidalgo decided not to do so at that time. Later, they lost the necessary strength when suffering defeat in the Battle of Aculco .