“The Battle of Fort San Carlos” by Margaret Carr
We usually think of the American War for Independence as being fought on the east coast in the 13 colonies, but one of the important battles was fought here in St Louis. The defenders of St Louis fought off the British-led attack and ended Britain’s effort to gain control of the Mississippi River and the interior of the North American continent.
Description of the historic battle below is from Wikipedia:
The Battle of St. Louis (San Luis in Spanish), also known as the Battle of Fort San Carlos, was an unsuccessful attack led by the British on St. Louis (a French settlement in Spanish Louisiana, founded on the West Bank of the Mississippi River after the 1763 Treaty of Paris) on May 26, 1780, during the Anglo-Spanish War. A former British militia commander led a force primarily of Indians and attacked the settlement. Fernando de Leyba, the Lieutenant Governor of Spanish Louisiana, led the local militia to fortify the town as best as they could and successfully withstood the attack.
On the opposite bank of the Mississippi, a second simultaneous attack on the nearby former British colonial outpost of Cahokia, occupied by Patriot Virginians, was also repulsed. The retreating Indians destroyed the crops and took captive civilians outside the protected area. The British failed to defend their side of the river and, thus, effectively ended any attempts to gain control of the Mississippi River during the war.
Web references about the Battle of San Carlos
Sourceof image above of Mural of the attack in the Missouri State Capitol
This presentation is part of the monthly 2018 history speaker series sponsored by SCHS at Friendship Village South in Sunset Hills.
See list of all 2018 SCHS events