Resaca de la Palma Battlefield National Historical Park in Brownsville, Texas is the site that marks the beginning of the fight for the Texas/Mexico border. In March of 1846 the US army led by General Zachary Taylor marched into the area and established a fort. He raised the US flag over his post to claim the Rio Grande River as the southern border of Texas.
The Resaca de la Palma trail is about a half mile long. It’s a great place for a family hike to get a little exercise while taking in some history. Plan at least a half an hour to walk the trail and learn about the battlefield.
Now in the Brownsville city limits, the area is cleared with roads and lined with homes. At the time however this was miles of thick, thorny, underbrush. General Zachary Taylor’s initial clash with Mexican forces here was the beginning of a two year war over the boundary.
A resaca is a dry channel of the river. Although now the resaca is flowing with water, at the time this would have been dry.
While most of the land has been cleared, there are still areas of dense brambly thickets that you can see. Imagining the entire area like this it’s hard to believe the hand to hand combat that occurred here. Many people lost their lives. The war that started at Resaca de la Palma ended only after U.S. troops occupied the Mexican capital two years later. Only then did Mexican officials begin to negotiate and recognize the Rio Grande as the international border. A treaty was signed on February 2, 1848 and also declared that Mexicans occupying those lands would gain rights as United States citizens.
You can read more about the battle >>>>Resaca de le Palma or just plan to visit and walk the area where it happened. A walking tour is available to dial and listen on your phone as you make your way around Resaca de la Palma Park.