The CALIFORNIA REPUBLIC was an unrecognized breakaway state that, for
twenty-five days in 1846, militarily controlled the area to the north
San Francisco Bay in the present-day state of
In June 1846, a number of American immigrants in Alta California
rebelled against the Mexican department's government. The immigrants
had not been allowed to buy or rent land and had been threatened with
The name "
Three weeks later, on July 5, 1846, the Republic's military of 100 to
200 men was subsumed into the
* 1 Background of the Bear Flag Revolt
* 2 Bear Flag Revolt
* 2.1 Settlers meet with Frémont
* 2.2 Taking of government horses
* 2.3 Capture of Sonoma
* 2.4 Ide\'s proclamation
* 2.5 Need for gunpowder
* 2.6 Sutter\'s Fort
* 2.7 Castro\'s response
* 2.8 Battle of Olúmpali
* 2.9 Frémont arrives to defend Sonoma
* 2.10 Captain de la Torre\'s ruse
* 2.11 Actions in and around Yerba Buena
* 2.12 Independence Day, 1846, in Sonoma
* 2.13 Formation of the
* 3 Bear Flag * 4 Timeline of events * 5 See also * 6 Notes * 7 References * 8 Citations * 9 External links
BACKGROUND OF THE BEAR FLAG REVOLT
ALTA CALIFORNIA\'S GOVERNANCE
Decrees issued by the central government in
TEXAS, IMMIGRATION AND LAND
The relationship between the
Mexican law had long allowed grants of land to naturalized Mexican
citizens. Obtaining Mexican citizenship was not difficult and many
earlier American immigrants had gone through the process and obtained
free grants of land. That same year (1845) anticipation of war with
Alta California's Sub-Prefect Francisco Guerrero had written to U.S. Consul Thomas O. Larkin that:
a multitude of foreigners come into
During November 1845, California's Commandante General José Castro met with representatives of the 1845 American immigrants at Sonoma and Sutter’s Fort. In his decree dated November 6 he wrote: "Therefore conciliating my duty with of the sentiment of hospitality which distinguishes the Mexicans, and considering that most of said expedition is composed of families and industrious people, I have deemed it best to permit them, provisionally, to remain in the department" with the conditions that they obey all laws, apply within three months for a license to settle, and promise to depart if that license was not granted.
CAPTAIN FRéMONT IN CALIFORNIA
John C. Fremont
A 62-man exploring and mapping expedition entered
Frémont's thoughts (as related in his book, written forty years
later) after reading the message and letters were: "I saw the way
opening clear before me. War with
USS PORTSMOUTH IN THE SAN FRANCISCO BAY
Thomas O. Larkin , concerned about the increasing
possibility of war, sent a request to Commodore
John D. Sloat of U.S.
Lt. Gillespie, having returned from the
Oregon Country and his
meeting with Frémont on June 7, found Portsmouth moored at Sausalito
. He carried a request for money, materiel and supplies for Frémont's
group. The requested resupplies were taken by the ship's launch up the
BEAR FLAG REVOLT
BEAR FLAGGERS OF THE BEAR FLAG REVOLT
Los Osos (The Bears)
ACTIVE June 8, 1846 – July 9, 1846
ROLE Independence for Anglo-American settlers from Mexican rule
GARRISON/HQ Sonoma and Sutter\'s Fort
Bear Flag Revolt
* Capture of Sonoma (1846) * Battle of Olúmpali (1846)
William B. Ide
SETTLERS MEET WITH FRéMONT
William B. Ide
TAKING OF GOVERNMENT HORSES
Some of the group who had been meeting with Frémont departed from his camp and, on June 10, 1846, captured a herd of 170 Mexican government-owned horses being moved by Californio soldiers from San Rafael and Sonoma to the Californian Commandante General, José Castro , in Santa Clara . It had been reported amongst the emigrants that the officer in charge of the herd had made statements threatening that the horses would be used by Castro to drive the foreigners out of California. The captured horses were taken to Frémont’s new camp at the junction of the Feather and Bear rivers.
These men next determined to seize the pueblo of Sonoma to deny the
Californios a rallying point north of
San Francisco Bay . Capturing
both the arms and military materiel stored in the unmanned Presidio of
Sonoma and Mexican Lieutenant Colonel
Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo
CAPTURE OF SONOMA
Bear Flag monument in Sonoma
Historian George Tays has cautioned “The description of the men, their actions just prior and subsequent to the taking of Sonoma, are as varied as the number of authors. No two accounts agree, and it is impossible to determine the truth of their statements.” Historian H. H. Bancroft has written that Frémont "instigated and planned" the horse raid, and incited the American settlers indirectly and "guardedly" to revolt.
Before dawn on Sunday, June 14, 1846, over thirty American insurgents arrived at the pueblo of Sonoma. They had traveled overnight from Napa Valley. A majority of their number had started a couple of days earlier from Fremont’s camp in the Sacramento valley but others had joined the group along the way. Meeting no resistance, they approached Comandante Vallejo's home and pounded on his door. After a few minutes Vallejo opened the door dressed in his Mexican Army uniform. Communication was not good until American Jacob P. Leese (Vallejo’s brother-in-law) was summoned to translate.
Vallejo then invited the filibusters\' leaders into his home to negotiate terms. Two other Californio officers and Leese joined the negotiations. The insurgents waiting outside sent elected "captains" John Grigsby and William Ide inside to speed the proceedings. The effect of Vallejo's hospitality in the form of wine and brandy for the negotiators and someone else's barrel of aguardiente for those outside is debatable. However, when the agreement was presented to those outside they refused to endorse it. Rather than releasing the Mexican officers under parole they insisted they be held as hostages. John Grigsby refused to remain as leader of the group, stating he had been deceived by Frémont. William Ide gave an impassioned speech urging the rebels to stay in Sonoma and start a new republic. Referring to the stolen horses Ide ended his oration with "Choose ye this day what you will be! We are robbers, or we must be conquerors!"
At that time, Vallejo and his three associates were placed on horseback and taken to Frémont accompanied by eight or nine of the insurgents who did not favor forming a new republic under the circumstances. That night they camped at the Vaca Rancho. Some young Californio vigilantes under Juan Padilla evaded the guards, aroused Vallejo and offered to help him escape. Vallejo declined, wanting to avoid any bloodshed and anticipating that Frémont would release him on parole.
The Sonoma Barracks became the headquarters for the remaining twenty-four rebels, who within a few days created their Bear Flag (see the "Bear Flag" section below). After the flag was raised Californios called the insurgents Los Osos (The Bears) and "Bear Flaggers" because of their flag and in derision of their often scruffy appearance. The rebels embraced the expression, and their uprising, which they originally called the Popular Movement, became known as the Bear Flag Revolt. Henry L. Ford was elected First Lieutenant of the company and obtained promises of obedience to orders. Samuel Kelsey was elected Second Lieutenant, Grandville P. Swift and Samuel Gibson Sergeants.
William B. Ide
To all persons, citizens of Sonoma, requesting them to remain at peace, and to follow their rightful occupations without fear of molestation.
The Commander in Chief of the Troops assembled at the Fortress of
Sonoma gives his inviolable pledge to all persons in
He also solemnly declares his object to be First, to defend himself
and companions in arms who were invited to this country by a promise
of Lands on which to settle themselves and families who were also
promised a "republican government," who, when having arrived in
He also solemnly declares his object in the Second place to be to
invite all peaceable and good Citizens of
He further declares that he relies upon the rectitude of our intentions; the favor of Heaven and the bravery of those who are bound to and associated with him, by the principle of self preservation; by the love of truth; and by the hatred of tyranny for his hopes of success. He further declares that he believes that a Government to be prosperous and happyfying in its tendency must originate with its people who are friendly to its existence. That its Citizens are its Guardians, its officers are its Servants, and its Glory their reward. — William B. Ide, Head Quarters Sonoma, June 15, 1846
NEED FOR GUNPOWDER
A major problem for the Bears in Sonoma was the lack of sufficient
gunpowder to defend against the expected Mexican attack. William Todd
was dispatched on Monday the fifteenth, with a letter to be delivered
Todd was given a second assignment. He was sent to Bodega Bay with an
unnamed companion (sometimes called 'the Englishman') to obtain powder
from American settlers in that area. On June 18, Bears Thomas Cowie
and George Fowler were sent to Rancho Sotoyome (near current-day
Sutter's Fort in 1849
Frémont's "field-lieutenant" Merritt returned to Sacramento on June 16 with his prisoners and recounted the events in Sonoma. Frémont either was fearful of going against the popular sentiment at Sonoma or saw the advantages of holding the Californio officers as hostages. He also decided to imprison Governor Vallejo's brother-in-law, the American Jacob Leese, in Sutter's Fort. Frémont recounts in his memoirs, "Affairs had now assumed a critical aspect and I presently saw that the time had come when it was unsafe to leave events to mature under unfriendly, or mistaken, direction … I knew the facts of the situation. These I could not make known, but felt warranted in assuming the responsibility and acting on my own knowledge."
Frémont's artist and cartographer on his third expedition, Edward Kern , was placed in command of Sutter's Fort and its company of dragoons by Frémont. That left John Sutter the assignment as lieutenant of the dragoons at $50 a month, and second in command of his own fort.
While in command there news of the stranded Donner Party reached Kern; Sutter's Fort had been their unreached destination. Kern vaguely promised the federal government would do something for a rescue party across the Sierra, but had no authority to pay anyone. He was later criticized for his mismanagement delaying the search.
Word of the taking of the government horses, the capture of Sonoma,
and the imprisonment of the Mexican officers at Sutter\'s Fort soon
reached Commandante General
José Castro at his headquarters in Santa
Clara . He issued two proclamations on June 17. The first asked the
BATTLE OF OLúMPALI
On June 20 when the procurement parties failed to return as expected, Lieutenant Ford sent Sergeant Gibson with four men to Rancho Sotoyome. Gibson obtained the powder and on the way back fought with several Californians and captured one of them. From the prisoner they learned of the deaths of Cowie and Fowler. There are Californio and Oso versions of what had happened. Ford also learned that William Todd and his companion had been captured by the Californio irregulars led by Juan Padilla and José Ramón Carrillo.
Ford writes, in his biography, that before leaving Sonoma to search for the other two captives and Padilla's men, he sent a note to Ezekiel Merritt in Sacramento asking him to gather volunteers to help defend Sonoma. Ide's version is that Ford wrote to Frémont saying that the Bears had lost confidence in Ide's leadership. In either case, Ford then rode toward Santa Rosa with seventeen to nineteen Bears. Not finding Padilla, the Bears headed toward one of his homes near Two Rock . The following morning the Bears captured three or four men near the Rancho Laguna de San Antonio and unexpectedly discovered what they assumed was Juan Padilla's group near the Indian rancho of Olúmpali . Ford approached the adobe but more men appeared and others came "pouring out of the adobe". Militiamen from south of the Bay, led by Mexican Captain Joaquin de la Torre, had joined with Padilla's irregulars and now numbered about seventy. Ford's men positioned themselves in a grove of trees and opened fire when the enemy charged on horseback, killing one Californio and wounding another. During the ensuing long-range battle, William Todd and his companion escaped from the house where they were being held and ran to the Bears. The Californios disengaged from the ensuing long-range fighting after suffering a few wounded and returned to San Rafael. A Californian militiaman reported that their muskets could not shoot as far as the rifles used by some Bears. This was the only battle fought during the Bear Flag Revolt.
The deaths of Cowie and Fowler, as well as the lethal battle, raised the anxiety of both the Californios, who left the area for safety, and the immigrants, who moved into Sonoma to be under the protection of the muskets and cannon that had been taken from the Sonoma Barracks . This increased the number in Sonoma to about two hundred. Some immigrant families were housed in the Barracks, others in the homes of the Californios.
FRéMONT ARRIVES TO DEFEND SONOMA
Having learned of Ford's request for volunteers to defend Sonoma and hearing reports that General Castro was preparing an attack, Frémont left his camp near Sutter's Fort for Sonoma on June 23. With him were ninety men – his own party plus trappers and settlers under Samuel J. Hensley. Frémont would say in his memoirs that he wrote a letter of resignation from the Army and sent it to his father-in-law Thomas Hart Benton in case the government should wish to disavow his action. They arrived at Sonoma in the early morning of the 25th and by noon were on their way to San Rafael accompanied by a contingent of Bears under Ford's command. They arrived at the former San Rafael mission but the Californios had vanished. The rebels set up camp in the old mission and sent out scouting parties.
On Sunday the 28th a small boat was spotted coming across the bay.
Kit Carson and some companions went to intercept it. It held twin
brothers Francisco and Ramón de Haro, their uncle José de la Reyes
Berreyesa, and an oarsman (probably one of the Castro brothers from
San Pablo) – all unarmed. The Haro brothers and Berreyesa were
dropped off at the shoreline and started on foot for the mission. All
three were shot and killed. Beyond that almost every fact is disputed.
Some say Frémont ordered the killings. Others, that they were
carrying secret messages from Castro to Torre. Others that Carson
committed the homicides as revenge for the deaths of Cowie and Fowler
or they were shot by Frémont's
CAPTAIN DE LA TORRE\'S RUSE
Late the same afternoon as the killings a scouting party intercepted a letter indicating that Torre intended to attack Sonoma the following morning. Frémont felt there was no choice but to return to defend Sonoma as quickly as possible. The garrison there had found a similar letter and had all weapons loaded and at the ready before dawn the next day when Frémont and Ford's forces approached Sonoma – almost provoking firing by the garrison. Frémont, understanding that he had been tricked, left again for San Rafael after a hasty breakfast. He arrived back at the old mission within twenty-four hours of leaving but during that period Torre and his men had time to escape to San Pablo via boat. Torre had successfully used the ruse not only to escape but almost succeeded in provoking a 'friendly fire' incident among the insurgents.
After reaching San Pablo, Torre reported that the combined rebel
force was too strong to be attacked as planned. All three of Castro's
divisions then returned to the old headquarters near Santa Clara where
a council of war was held on June 30. It was decided that the current
plan must be abandoned and any new approach would require the
ACTIONS IN AND AROUND YERBA BUENA
On July 1, Frémont and twelve men convinced Captain William Phelps to ferry them in the Moscow's launch to the old Spanish fort at the entrance to the Golden Gate . They landed without resistance and spiked the ten old, abandoned cannon. The next day Robert B. Semple led ten Bears in the launch to the pueblo of Yerba Buena (the future San Francisco) to arrest the naturalized Englishman Robert Ridley who was captain of the port. Ridley was sent to Sutter's Fort to be locked up with other prisoners.
INDEPENDENCE DAY, 1846, IN SONOMA
A great celebration was held on the
Fourth of July beginning with
readings of the
FORMATION OF THE CALIFORNIA BATTALION
On July 5, Frémont called a public meeting and proposed to the Bears
that they unite with his party and form a single military unit. He
said that he would accept command if they would pledge obedience,
proceed honorably, and not violate the chastity of women. A compact
was drawn up which all volunteers of the
The next day Frémont, leaving the fifty men of Company B at the Barracks to defend Sonoma, left with the rest of the Battalion for Sutter's Fort. They took with them two of the captured Mexican field pieces, as well as muskets, a supply of ammunition, blankets, horses, and cattle. The seven-ton Mermaid was used for transporting the cannon, arms, ammunition and saddles from Napa to Sutter's Fort.
U.S. NAVY AND U.S. MARINE CORPS CAPTURES MONTEREY
Sloat had learned of Frémont's confrontation with the Californios on
Gavilan Peak and of his support for the Bears in Sonoma. He was also
aware of Lt. Gillespie's tracking down of Frémont with letters and
orders. Sloat finally concluded on July 6 that he needed to act,
saying to U.S. Consul Larkin , "I shall be blamed for doing too little
or too much – I prefer the latter." Early July 7, the frigate USS
Savannah and the two sloops , USS Cyane and USS Levant of the United
States Navy , captured Monterey,
CONCLUSION AND AFTERMATH
Two days later, July 9, the
Bear Flag Revolt and whatever remained of
The most notable legacy of the "
The design and creation of the original Bear Flag used in the Bear Flag Revolt is often credited to Peter Storm. The flags were made about one week before the storming of Sonoma, when William Todd and his companions claim to have made theirs, apparently based on Mr. Storm's first flags.
In 1878, at the request of the
TIMELINE OF EVENTS
DATE EVENTS SURROUNDING THE BEAR FLAG REVOLT
August 16, 1845
John C. Frémont, leading a U.S. Army topographical expedition to
Oct 1845 Frémont's expedition reached the Salt Lake.
October 17, 1845 Secretary of State James Buchanan dispatched a secret message to U.S. Consul Thomas Larkin in Monterey instructing him to take advantage of any sign of unrest among the Californians.
October 30, 1845
James K. Polk
General José Castro, the senior military officer in California,
issued a decree ordering all American immigrants in Alta California
(about 800) to proceed to Sonoma to swear an oath to
Commodore John D. Sloat, commander of the Navy's Pacific Squadron,
then off Mazatlan, Mexico, was joined by the Cyane, which carried
orders that if Sloat learned "beyond a doubt" that war between the
November 11, 1845 General Castro visited Colonel Mariano Vallejo, commandante of the Mexican garrison in Sonoma.
November 16, 1845 Lt. Archibald Gillespie departed Washington for Vera Cruz, Mexico.
November 27, 1845 The two parts of Frémont's split party had a rendezvous at Walker Lake, northeast of Yosemite Valley.
Dec 1845 The Frémont expedition entered the Sacramento Valley.
December 10, 1845 Splitting up once more, Frémont and 16 others (including scout Kit Carson) reached Sutter's Fort.
John Slidell, appointed by Polk, arrived in Vera Cruz on a mission
to negotiate a boundary agreement, and, if
Jan 1846 Frémont and his smaller group crossed the San Joaquin Valley to Monterey.
January 27, 1846 Frémont visited Thomas Larkin, the U.S. Consul in Monterey. Frémont also met Jose Castro, who agreed to let Frémont winter in the San Joaquin Valley, away from the coast.
mid-Feb 1846 Frémont met up with the other 45 men in his party and traveled north to the vicinity of the San Jose Mission.
March 5, 1846 After moving his camp to Santa Cruz, Frémont moved it again closer to Monterey on the Salinas River. Via courier, General Castro ordered Frémont to leave. Frémont then set up camp at Gavilan Peak, near San Juan Bautista.
March 6, 1846 Mexican president José Herrera rejected all points of Slidell's proposed negotiation.
March 8, 1846 General Castro assembled a cavalry force of nearly 200 men to confront Frémont near San Juan Bautista.
March 8, 1846
Zachary Taylor moved his army across the Nueces River in Texas,
March 9, 1846 After receiving a message from Larkin not to oppose Castro, Frémont's band left Gavilan Peak and headed for Sutter's Fort.
Larkin sent a message to Sloat at Mazatlán asking one of his ships
to come to Monterey. Sloat sent the Portsmouth, John B. Montgomery
commanding. Montgomery was tasked to distribute copies of the U.S. and
March 28, 1846
Zachary Taylor's force arrived at the
March 30, 1846
Frémont's party reached Rancho Bosquejo on Deer Creek, 200 miles
north of Sutter's Fort. His tentative plan was to map a route from the
western slope of the Cascades across the
end Mar 1846 Alarmed by Frémont's transgression at Gavilan Peak, General Jose Castro called a military council in Monterey.
April 17, 1846 In Monterey, Larkin met with Lt. Gillespie, who had finally arrived in Monterey via Honolulu on the Cyane.
April 17, 1846
April 21, 1846 The Portsmouth anchored in Monterey Bay.
April 24, 1846
Mexican President Mariano Paredes y Arrillaga (who had deposed
Herrera), having earlier sent a 5,000-man army northward to Texas,
declared a "defensive war" against the United States. Also, the
Mexican army arrived in Matamoros on the
April 25, 1846
Troops under Zachary Taylor and Mexican General Mariano Arista
skirmished north of the Rio Grande. 16
May 8, 1846
Frémont, then camped at Upper Klamath Lake in
May 9, 1846 Frémont met with Gillespie and received letters from wife Jessie, Senator Benton and Secretary of State James Buchanan, as well as Gillespie's memorized messages from Polk, Benton and Larkin.
May 9, 1846
At the Rio Grande, the U.S. and Mexican armies met at Reseca de la
Palma. Arista's army was routed, leaving behind 400 wounded. 33
May 9, 1846 President Polk received General Taylor's April 25 message.
May 10, 1846 While asleep in the early morning hours, the Frémont camp was attacked by Klamath Indians, killing three of Frémont's party. The Klamath chief was shot dead during the fight.
May 12, 1846 The Frémont party attacked a Klamath village, killing 14 Indians and burning the lodges. The expedition turned back toward California.
May 13, 1846
The war secretary sent orders to Colonel Stephen Kearny at Fort
Leavenworth, in what is now Kansas, to march west to conquer and
occupy the Mexican departments of New
May 18, 1846
General Taylor's army entered
May 18, 1846 Commander Sloat in Mazatlan received detailed news of Taylor's army fighting at the Rio Grande.
May 24, 1846 On its way south, the Frémont expedition reached Peter Lassen's ranch and learned that the Portsmouth was anchored at Sausalito. Lt. Gillespie was sent to request supplies (8000 percussion caps, 300 pounds of rifle lead, one keg of powder and food provisions) from Montgomery and to continue on to Monterey to inform Larkin that the expedition would be heading back to St. Louis.
May 31, 1846 Frémont's party, along with Gillespie and his escort, camped at the Buttes, 60 miles north of Sutter's Fort.
late May 1846 With rumors swirling that General Castro was massing an army against them, American settlers in the Sacramento Valley banded together to meet the threat.
May 31, 1846 Sloat received trustworthy news of Taylor's battles of May 8–9. His orders required him to sail north upon learning "without a doubt" that war had been declared.
early Jun 1846 John Sutter, a Swiss who was a naturalized Mexican citizen, notified his immediate superior, General Castro, of Gillespie's true identity and urged Castro to send a respectable garrison north in the event of trouble.
June 5, 1846 Jose Castro again visited Mariano Vallejo in Sonoma and collected horses and supplies for his men from Vallejo's ranch.
June 7, 1846 Sloat received news that an American squadron had blockaded Vera Cruz.
June 8, 1846 Among the settlers, William Knight visited William Ide to report the rumor that "armed Spaniards on horseback" had been seen in the valley. The two rode to Frémont's camp north of New Helvetia. Another report to Frémont said that Lt. Francisco Arce, militia officer Jose Maria Alviso, and eight armed men were near Sutter's Fort, driving a herd of 170 horses, destined for Santa Clara.
June 8, 1846 Sloat set sail for Monterey on the Savannah.
June 10, 1846 Four men from Frémont's party and 10 volunteers rode out to intercept Arce, surprised him and seized the horse herd, thus initiating the open rebellion of the Osos.
June 11, 1846
June 13, 1846 34 armed men (none was from Frémont's party) rode from the Buttes to seize the town of Sonoma, force the surrender of Colonel Vallejo, and thus forestall Castro's plan to harry the settlers and force them to leave Mexico. The Osos knew that Sonoma had had no garrison for a year and no finances for one.
June 14, 1846
The Osos entered Sonoma at dawn, rode to Vallejo's Casa Grande and
knocked on the door. Vallejo served the Oso leaders food and brandy
during a 3 hour period in which surrender documents were drafted, with
provisions for the
June 14, 1846 Frémont and his band rode to Sutter's Fort, not yet aware of the raid's outcome, to receive the supplies that were requested from Montgomery.
June 15, 1846
June 15, 1846 William Ide proclaimed his " Bear Flag Manifesto." Within a week, over 70 more American volunteers joined the Osos.
June 15, 1846 Ide sent Todd to the Portsmouth to notify Montgomery of the events in Sonoma. Todd also requested gunpowder, which was denied.
June 16, 1846 Prisoners and escorts arrived at Frémont's camp. Frémont denied responsibility for the raid. The escorts removed the prisoners to Sutter's Fort. Frémont began signing letters as "Military Commander of U.S. Forces in California."
June 16, 1846 John Montgomery of the Portsmouth in Sausalito sent a small landing party to Sonoma. Ide, in his first act as commander-in-chief, reappointed Jose Berryessa alcalde, to continue as local magistrate.
June 16, 1846 Todd returned to Sonoma. He and a companion were then assigned to ride toward Bodega Bay to obtain arms and powder from American settlers.
June 17, 1846 General Castro and Pio Pico, governor of Alta California, condemned the takeover.
June 18, 1846 Thomas Cowie and George Fowler were sent to Rancho Sotoyome (near modern-day Healdsburg) to pick up a cache of gunpowder from Moses Carson, brother of Frémont's scout.
June 20, 1846
After both parties failed to return, a 5-man group obtained powder
and also learned from a captured Californian that Cowie and Fowler
were tortured and murdered by a patrol of
June 23, 1846 50 to 60 men under Captain Joaquin de la Torre traveled to San Pablo and crossed the San Francisco Bay by boat to Point San Quentin.
June 23, 1846 Led by Henry Ford, about 20 Osos rode toward Santa Rosa to search for the two captives and Padilla's men.
June 24, 1846 The search party captured four Californians near San Antonio and also found a corral of horses at Olompali, near the mouth of the Petaluma River, which they assumed belonged to Padilla's group. When they approached the ranchhouse, they discovered about 50 uniformed Californio lancers, in addition to Padilla's group, under the command of Captain Joaquin de la Torre. Ford's men opened fire from a distance, killing one and wounding one. Todd and his partner escaped, while the Californios returned to San Rafael and the Osos went to Sonoma. The "Battle of Olompali" was the only fight of the Bear Flag Republic.
June 25, 1846 After learning of Cowie, Fowler and Ford's patrol, Frémont and his men rode to Sonoma.
June 26, 1846 Frémont, Ford and a detachment of Osos rode south to San Rafael, but were unable to locate de la Torre and his Californios.
June 27, 1846 Two additional divisions of General Castro's troops with a total of about 100 men arrived at San Pablo.
June 28, 1846
General Castro, on the other side of
June 28, 1846 Frémont's men intercepted a messenger with a letter advising Castro that de la Torre was about to attack Sonoma. Frémont and his forces immediately went there, only to find the Osos prepared to fire upon them as they approached.
June 29, 1846 Realizing he had been tricked, Frémont hurried back to San Rafael and Sausalito in pursuit of de la Torre and his men, who had escaped across the bay and joined Castro in a retreat to Santa Clara.
July 1, 1846
The merchant ship Moscow transported Frémont and several others
from Sausalito to Castillo de San Joaquin, an abandoned fort south of
the entrance to
July 1, 1846 Sloat reached Monterey harbor
July 2, 1846 Several Osos occupied Yerba Buena without resistance.
July 4, 1846 The Bear Flaggers, including Frémont and his men, celebrated Independence Day in Sonoma.
July 4, 1846 Sloat met with Larkin in Monterey.
July 5, 1846
Ide's rebels numbered nearly 300. Frémont, Ide and their officers
met to discuss strategy. Frémont announced that a disciplined army
was to be formed, which he volunteered to command, by combining his
and the Osos' forces. In order to march south, engage Castro and any
other Californians, the
July 5, 1846 Sloat received a message from Montgomery reporting the events in Sonoma and Frémont's involvement.
July 6, 1846
One of the four companies of the
July 6, 1846 Believing Frémont to be acting on orders from Washington, Sloat began to carry out his orders.
July 7, 1846
A landing party demanded the surrender of Monterey. An artillery
officer in charge refused. Sloat then landed 225 sailors and marines
on the beach. Within minutes the American flag was hoisted, the
American ships' cannons added a 21-gun salute, and Sloat read his
proclamation of the annexation of
July 9, 1846 Castro answered in the negative.
July 9, 1846 At 8:00 a.m., Lt. Joseph Warren Revere, with 70 sailors and marines, landed at Yerba Buena, raised the American flag and claimed San Francisco Bay for the United States, and read Sloat's proclamation. No Mexican officials were in Yerba Buena.
July 10, 1846 At his camp, Frémont received a message from Montgomery on the U.S. Navy's occupation of Monterey and Yerba Buena.
July 12, 1846 The American flag flew above Sutter's Fort and Bodega Bay.
July 12, 1846 Frémont's party, including the Bear Flaggers, rode into New Helvetia, where a letter from Sloat awaited, describing the capture of Monterey and ordering Frémont to bring at least 100 armed men to Monterey. Frémont would bring 160 men.
July 15, 1846 Commodore Robert Field Stockton arrived in Monterey to replace the 65-year-old Sloat in command of the Pacific Squadron. Sloat named Stockton commander-in-chief of all land forces in California.
July 16, 1846 Frémont raised the U.S. flag over San Juan Bautista.
July 16, 1846 Governor Pico issued a proclamation on the American invasion and a conscription order for Mexican citizens, which produced about 100 men to join with Castro's force.
July 19, 1846 Frémont's party entered Monterey. Frémont met with Sloat on board the Savannah. When Sloat learned that Frémont had acted on his own authority, he retired to his cabin.
July 23, 1846 Stockton mustered Frémont's party and the former Bear Flaggers into military service as the "Naval Battalion of Mounted Volunteer Riflemen" with Frémont in command.
July 26, 1846
Stockton ordered Frémont and his battalion to
July 29, 1846
Sloat ordered the release of Vallejo and the other prisoners at
Sutter's Fort. Sloat turned command over to Stockton and left for
home. Stockton issued a proclamation annexing
July 29, 1846 The battalion landed and raised the U.S. flag in San Diego.
end Jul-1846 A garrison of Stockton's men raised the U.S. flag at Santa Barbara.
August 1, 1846 An ill and much thinner Vallejo was released from Sutter's Fort. While in confinement, 1000 of his cattle and 600 horses were stolen.
August 1, 1846 Stockton's 360 men arrived in San Pedro.
August 2, 1846 Two representatives of Castro arrived at Stockton's camp with a message expressing Castro's willingness to negotiate for peace. Stockton rejected the terms of the letter.
August 7, 1846
Stockton penned a return message to Castro, who also rejected its
terms, including that
August 9, 1846 Castro held a war council at La Mesa, expressed doubts about his forces, and wrote a farewell address to the people of California. Governor Pico read Castro's message to the legislature in Los Angeles, which then adjourned sine die. Pico penned an open farewell letter.
August 10, 1846
Castro and 20 men rode toward the
August 13, 1846
Stockton's army entered
August 17, 1846
Stockton issued a proclamation announcing that
August 22, 1846
Stockton sent a report to Secretary of State Bancroft that
* ^ "Department" was a territorial and administrative designation used by Mexico’s centralized government under The Constitutional Laws of 1836. * ^ "Ide\'s Letter". June 15, 1846.
* ^ Bancroft V: 131–144
* ^ Richman p 261
* ^ Bancroft; IV: 598–608
* ^ A B Richman p 308
* ^ Bancroft V:146
* ^ A B Harlow p. 103
* ^ Bancroft V: 185-86
* ^ Walker p. 42-43
* ^ Bancroft IV:540–545
* ^ Hague p 99
* ^ A B Walker p. 60
* ^ Walker p. 58
* ^ Hague p.118
* ^ Bancroft; IV:598–608
* ^ Bancroft IV:p.606-7
* ^ Hague p. 128
* ^ Frémont p. 490
* ^ Harlow p. 85
* ^ Rogers Montgomery p. 21-23
* ^ Rogers, Montgomery p. 25
* ^ Ide p. 112-3
* ^ Bancroft V:104
* ^ Bancroft V:101–108
* ^ A B Bancroft V:109
* ^ Frémont p. 509
* ^ CSMM
* ^ Tays p.240 Note 1
* ^ Walker p. 121
* ^ Harlow p.98-99
* ^ Walker p. 125-6
* ^ Harlow p. 102
* ^ Bancroft V:117
* ^ Harlow p.101
* ^ SSHP p. 82
* ^ Bancroft V:158
* ^ Rogers, Ide p. 82, Appendix A
* ^ Bancroft V:156
* ^ Harlow p. 104
* ^ A B C D E Walker p. 132
* ^ Bancroft p. 155-59
* ^ Bancroft V:120-21
* ^ Frémont p. 520
* ^ A B Californiamilitaryhistory.org: Historic
* Bancroft, Hubert Howe (1886). History of California, Vol V. San
Francisco: History Publishing Company. Also at History of California,
VOL. V. 1846–1848
* CSMM, The
Bear Flag Revolt\' (U.S.
National Park Service