… The Blood Stripe is just a piece of lore attached to that battle.”, THE RUMOR DOCTOR’S DIAGNOSIS: Sorry to say it, but the “Blood Stripe” story is false. U.S. Marine tradition maintains that the red stripe is worn on the trousers of the blue dress uniform, commonly known as the blood stripe, because a large number of the Marine NCOs and officers of the detachment died while storming the castle of Chapultepec in 1847, though iterations of the stripe antedate the war. In 1837, President Andrew Jackson ordered uniform changes that included the Marine Corps adopt the Army'spractice of wearing stripes the same color as uniform jacket facings. Battle of Chapultepec: Capturing the Mexican Capital in 1847. General Quitman quickly gathered the troops in Chapultepec, except the 15th Infantry, who guarded the castle and prisoners, and designed as a feint, headed down the Belén Causeway, stopping at the Belen Garita. During the artillery bombardment, the defenders had nowhere to shelter and they had no way to defend against this attack from a distance. Eliminating the act of blood striping will correct the mislead rumor of why Marines wear the Blood Stripe. Comment Policy | The building, sitting atop a 200-ft (60-m) hill, was an important position for the defense of the city. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Stripes Lite | “We tell the truth no matter how shocking the truth can be, and this is one of those occasions.”. “Storming of Chapultepec in Mexico” With reinforcements nowhere in sight, Chapultepec’s defenders, consisting of deserting Irish soldiers from the US Army and Academy cadets, fought a gallant defense worthy of the location of their last stand. “They’re surprised; they’re like, ‘Heck, I was told that in boot camp, my drill instructor told me that,’ ” Mooney said. They can name battles that most civilians have probably never heard of, such as the assault on the castle Chapultepec in Mexico in 1847, which is commemorated in the opening lyrics of the Marine Corps Hymn, “From the Halls of Montezuma.” That battle also begat a central piece of Corps lore: the “Blood Stripe.”, Legend has it that 90 percent of NCOs and officers were killed storming the castle, so a scarlet stripe was added to the Dress Blue uniform pants for E-4 Marines and above to commemorate their sacrifice – hence the name “Blood Stripe.”. Scott had taken a risk by marching inland from the port of Veracruz, going beyond his supply lines. “In the case of Chapultepec, the meat of what is taught to recruits is the significance of the battle and the heroic part played by the Marines. The Battle of Chapultepec Hill was bloody and memorable for both sides. General Antonio López de Santa Anna deployed Mexican forces to several sites to defend the capital, so just 880 troops, including military cadets of the Military Academy defended the position at Chapultepec against 2,000 U.S. forces. Ombudsman | Marine NCO’s since then had created a tradition called “Blood Striping.” Blood striping is the act of literally inflicting a blood stripe on a newly promoted NCO’s legs through means of punching battle of chapultepec Posted on October 18, 2020 Posted in Uncategorized google_ad_channel ="0125343275"; & 1 howitzer (68) ) to hold the hill, including 200 cadets, some as young as 13 years old. The Blood Stripe Marine Corps tradition maintains that the red stripe worn on the trousers of officers and noncommissioned officers, and commonly known as the “blood stripe,” commemorates those Marines killed storming the castle of Chapultepec in 1847. The Battle of Chapultepec on 13 September 1847 was an assault by invading American forces on a small contingent of Mexican forces holding the strategically located Chapultepec Castle just outside Mexico City. The blood stripe honors the blood that was shed by Marine officers and noncommissioned officers (NCO) during the Battle of Chapultepec in 1847. “While a wonderful story, and one that is taught to incoming recruits, it is only a story,” Beth L. Crumley, of the Marine History Division, said in an e-mail. In Mexico, the battle has a complicated place in historical memory, since the capture of Chapultepec led to the fall of Mexico City to the invaders. Blood Stripes for the Fallen. [2]:311 General Scott held a council of war with his generals and engineers on September 11. and in the blood stripe, the red stripe on the trousers of the marine dress uniform, which honors those who fell at the Battle of Chapultepec. U.S. forces used its heavy artillery to bombard the castle before the infantry attack. The Stars & Stripes Rumor Doctor did some digging into the history and lore around the US Marine Corps "Blood Stripe" (red stripe on their blue pants): Marines take Corps history very seriously. The difference is that the Doc doesn’t have to fear an angry kid coming up to him and saying, “I got your Blood Stripe right here!”. [2]:316, Pillow was quickly hit in the foot and called for reinforcements, which came from John A. Quitman's division, but the attack faltered when fired upon by the Moelia Battalion battery. [2]:317 The Voltigeurs soon planted their flag on the parapet. Moreover, seven Marines were killed at Chapultepec out of a force of between 400 and 450 Marines. [2]:316 These were teniente (lieutenant) Juan de la Barrera and cadets Agustín Melgar, Juan Escutia, Vicente Suárez, Francisco Márquez, and Fernando Montes de Oca, all between the ages of 13 and 19. Military History, Home | A spokesman for Marine Corps Training and Education Command could not say why the tale of the Blood Stripe is taught to Marines when it has been proven to be historically inaccurate. [2]:313 Although Santa Anna's total forces defending Mexico City were larger than Scott's, he had to defend multiple positions, since he did not know from where the attack would come. and one howitzer) to hold the hill, including 200 cadets, some as young as 13 years old. U.S. Civil War 1861 - 1865 Spanish-American War 1898 Boxer Rebellion 1900 Philippine Insurrection 1901 Panama ... –The Battle of Chapultepec It was obviously strategically positioned, but its stone walls were vulnerable to cannon fire. [2]:313 The second storming party consisted of Captain Silas Casey's men and John A. Quitman's division, advancing along the Tacubaya Road,[2]:313 but Casey was replaced by Major Levi Twiggs. Tradition holds that Marines wear the stripe to honor the Marines who fell during the Battle of Chapultepec, but in reality the stripe predates the battle.The Marine Corps lost 90% of their Officers and NCOs in the battle, and it just became part of Marine Corps lore that the stripe was authorized to commemorate the fallen. [7][2]:313 The first party consisted of Captain Samuel Mackenzie's 256 men and Gideon Pillow's division, who would advance from the Molino east up the hill. Veterans | Only Twiggs' division and Bennett Riley's brigade were left on the American right flank. At Chapultepec, General Nicolás Bravo had fewer than 1,000 men[2]:313 (832: Total including 250: 10th Infantry, 115: Querétaro Battalion, 277: Mina Battalion, 211: Union Battalion, 27: Toluca Battalion and 42: la Patria Battalion with seven guns(Gen. Manuel Gamboa with two 24-lb, one 8-lb, three 4-lb. The fierce defense of Chapultepec by military cadets at the Military Academy, six of whom died by leaping from the walls to their deaths. [2]:320 On the north side of the road, naval officer Raphael Semmes repeated Grant's successful maneuver. The Mexicans were routed and the U.S. forces pressed on. Advertising | The origin of the blood stripe is more tradition than ... the blood stripe represents the blood shed by Marines storming Chapultepec. [2]:316 At 8:00 am, the bombardment was halted and General Scott ordered the infantry attack. Chapultepec Castle was not built as a fortress but as a luxury residence, later converted to the military academy. Their bravery and innocence was lauded in Mexico, as opposed to the Mexican Army generals, particularly Antonio López de Santa Anna, blamed for Mexico's defeat. The battle took place on September 13th 1847, with the battle of Molino Del Rey where the United States forces managed to force the Mexican army back to the Chapultepec Castle. Marines 7,746 views. Molino del Rey is on the left. Weekly Update | Marines take Corps history very seriously. On the left were the 11th and 14th Infantry under Colonel William Trousdale moving east along the Anzures aqueduct, in the center were four companies of the Voltigeur regiment under Colonel Timothy Patrick Andrews along with the 9th and 15th Infantry moving through the swamp and western edge of the grove, and on the right were the remaining four Voltigeur companies under Lieutenant Colonel Joseph E. All Rights Reserved. Instead, he cut a road looping south of Lake Chalco and Lake Xochimilco to the town of San Agustín. Johnston. Quitman sent Persifor Smith's brigade to his right and brought in James Shields, plus the New York and 2d Pennsylvania Regiments into the assault. He also exclaimed, "I believe if we were to plant our batteries in Hell, the damned Yankees would take them from us."[2]:318. Santa Anna consulted with Nicolás Bravo, confessing to him that many of his demoralized troops were also likely melt away if sent into a situation that would have high casualties. The efforts of the U.S. Marines in this battle and subsequent occupation of Mexico City are memorialized by the opening lines of the "Marines' Hymn", "From the Halls of Montezuma...". But the museum is committed to giving an accurate account of Corps history, he said. While trouser stripes were in use in various militaries for many years (especially the British Army, whose uniforms influenced American uniforms for many years, as well as the red stripes of the Spanish Navy Marines. ) William J. Destruction of the walls, sandbags, and other defenses was demoralizing for many defenders, and some began abandoning their positions. [2]:313 The castle sat atop a 200-ft-tall hill, which was used as the Mexican Military Academy. Contact Us | To Marines, this is Gospel, so much so that making corporal in the Marines is called “earning your Blood Stripe.” Back in the day, newly minted corporals would also get their legs pummeled when they got their stripe, but that was mostly phased out after hazing gained public notoriety. Archive content policy | Marines ranging from private first class to colonel are shocked to learn the true story of the Blood Stripe when they visit the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Quantico, Va., said Patrick Mooney, visitor services chief at the museum. He then pushed further toward the capital. [2]:317 At the same time, Newman S. Clarke's brigade arrived on the western slope, as did the scaling ladders. In 1947, President Harry S. Truman laid a wreath on the 1881 cenotaph of the Niños Héroes as a gesture of goodwill after Mexico aided the U.S. in World War II. The U.S. has many depictions of the battle from their point of view. Site Map, © 2017 Stars and Stripes. [2]:319, Worth started his advance down the San Cosme causeway at 4:00 pm, having fended off an attack by 1,500 of Torrejon's cavalry. The Niños Héroes ("Boy Heroes") were considered martyrs fighting to maintain Mexico's honor as a nation. [2]:320 By 6 pm, Worth had broken through the gate, and the defenders scattered, many retreating into the Ciudadela, sweeping Santa Anna along with them. [1], Coordinates: 19°25′16″N 99°10′55″W / 19.421°N 99.182°W / 19.421; -99.182, Battles for the Belén and San Cosmé Gates. General Lopez de Santa Anna was in command of the army at Mexico City, and understood that Chapultepec Castle was an important position for the defense of the city. Finally, although it actually predates the Mexican War, the scarlet "blood" stripe on the dress blue trousers worn by Marines has long been hailed as a commemoration of those who died at Chapultepec. Marquez) Trousdale, followed by John Garland, Newman Clarke, and George Cadwalader's brigades, began advancing up the causeway. The Doctor feels like he just had to tell children that there is no Santa Claus. For you civilians, a Marine NCO is the equivalent of an Admiral/General in any other branch of the service. [4], On September 8, 1847, in the costly Battle of Molino del Rey, U.S. forces had managed to drive the Mexicans from their positions near the base of Chapultepec Castle guarding Mexico City from the west, but Army engineers were still interested in the southern causeways to the city. During the battle, five Mexican military cadets, and one of their instructors, refused to fall back when General Bravo finally ordered retreat, and fought to the death. Thirty men from the Saint Patrick's Battalion, a group of former United States Army soldiers who joined the Mexican side, were executed en masse during the battle. [2]:312 It was halted at dark and resumed at first light on September 13. The tale of the Blood Stripe is firmly entrenched in Corps culture, but like an ant getting vaporized by a kid with a magnifying glass, it wilts under closer scrutiny. [9] A monument stands in Chapultepec Park commemorating their courage. Today the Marines’ actions in the battle of Chapultepec are remembered in the opening lines of The Marines’ Hymn, “From the Halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli.” Marine officers and noncommissioned officers also added scarlet stripes to their blue dress trousers, which are now referred to as “blood stripes,” to commemorate the Marines’ blood shed at Chapultepec. General Pillow's division cut a road for artillery through the Pedregal to engage the entrenched Mexican forces under General Gabriel Valencia at Contreras on 20 August. The Marines first started wearing the scarlet stripe on blue pants in 1840, borrowing the tradition from the Army. A number of lower-ranking U.S. Army officers participating in the invasion became generals on both sides of the American Civil War, including Daniel H. Hill, Ulysses Grant, George Pickett, James Longstreet, John C. Pemberton, Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson, and Robert E. Lee. Do veterans have a right to free health care for life? Daily Headlines | [2]:318 The gate was manned by the Morelia Battalion, under the command of General Andrés Terrés' (three guns and 180 men: 2d Mexico Activos) and the paseo to the north by General Ramirez. It is rumored that the Blood Stripe of a Marine Non-Commissioned Officer’s (NCO’s) trouser is based off the bloody Battle of Chapultepec. [2]:317 Andrews's column cleared the grove of Mexican troops and linked up with Johnston. According to legend, the last of the six, Juan Escutia, grabbed the Mexican flag, wrapped it around himself, and jumped off the castle point to prevent the flag from falling into enemy hands. Web Notices and Privacy Policy | Santa Anna fortified the ex-convent at Churubusco, with fierce fighting there. In Mexican history, the battle is cast as the story of the brave deaths of six cadets, the Niños Héroes, who leapt to their deaths rather than be taken captive, with one wrapping himself in the Mexican flag. The Battle of Chapultepec in September 1847 was a battle between the US Army and US Marine Corps against Mexican forces holding Chapultepec in Mexico City. In 1849, the stripes were changed to a solid red from dark blue stripes edged in red, which dated from 1839.[10][11]. [2]:312 Most of Scott's officers favored the attack through the southern gates, including Captain Robert E. These original stripes were buff white to match changes to the uniform jacket, but when the jacket was changed back t… This castle guarded Mexico City form the west and was a very important strategic position so it was a valuable structure for the marines to take over. Sign up for our free Newsletters:   The Battle of Chapultepec in September 1847 was a United States victory over Mexican forces holding Chapultepec Castle in Mexico City during the Mexican-American War.The castle, sitting atop a 200-foot (60 m) tall hill, was an important position for the defense of the … [2]:311 Scott was in favor of attacking Chapultepec, and only General David E. Twiggs agreed. Archives | [2]:321, The city was yet to be taken, Santa Anna had 5,000 troops in the Ciudadela (armory) and 7,000 in other parts of the city. [2]:320 As night fell, Worth lobbed five mortar rounds into the city, which fell near the National Palace. [6], Scott organized two storming parties of about 250 men each, including 40 Marines. Monument to the six Heroic Cadets, with Chapultepec Castle in the background. Accessibility/Section 508. Due to a switchover to a new comment system, this comment board is now closed. They had been previously captured at the Battle of Churubusco. Sandweiss, Martha A., Rick Stewart, and Ben W. Huseman, "What's the real story of the "Blood Stripe"? Lee. [2]:312 A young lieutenant, P. G. T. Beauregard, gave a speech that persuaded General Franklin Pierce to change his vote in favor of the western attack. [2]:318 Troops began to desert, and when Terres ran out of ammunition, he withdrew into the Ciudadela. The Marines commemorate their loss of 90 percent of their commissioned and noncommissioned officers with the scarlet “blood stripes” on their dress uniforms. The blood stripe honors the blood that was shed by Marine officers and noncommissioned officers (NCO) during the Battle of Chapultepec in 1847 and is worn on the trousers of the NCOs, Staff NCOs, and officers in remembrance of those who courageously fought in the battle. [2]:321 By 7 am, the American flag was flying over the Ciudadela.[2]:321. [2]:312, The U.S. forces began an artillery barrage against Chapultepec at dawn on September 12. Although their army was defeated by the Americans, the Battle of Chapultepec is a source of much pride for Mexicans. [2]:319 Defended by Gen. Rangel's Granaderos Battalion, part Matamoros, Morelia, and Santa Anna Battalions (Col. Gonzalez), part 3d Light (Lt. Col. Echeagaray), & 1st Light (Comdt. ", "Harry S. Truman: Address in Mexico City", A Continent Divided: The U.S. – Mexico War, Guillermo Valleto's Handwritten Letter to the Treasury Secretary, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Battle_of_Chapultepec&oldid=988066535, United States Marine Corps in the 18th and 19th centuries, United States Marine Corps lore and symbols, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Raymond K. Bluhm Loading... Unsubscribe from Chris Burk? Only when the bombardment went on all day did Santa Anna realize the main attack was to be on Chapultepec. [2]:318 The Battle of Chapultepec in September 1847 was a battle between the United States Marine Corps and US Army against Mexican forces holding Chapultepec in Mexico City. [3] Although it lasted only about 60–90 minutes, the battle has great importance in the histories of both countries. Two service members were found dead last week at Joint Base San Antonio, A Coast Guardsman bought dinner for a stranger in Greenland; he turned out to be the prime minister, ‘We have a drug problem’: Camp Lejeune starts random LSD testing, Army’s uniform for Army-Navy game inspired by Wolfhounds of Korean War, Pacific Fleet commander may be nominated to lead Indo-Pacific Command, report says, Air Force is looking for some airmen to transition to new jobs, National Guard or Reserve, Pentagon announces fourth military death in November from coronavirus, Navy says rebuilding USS Bonhomme Richard after fire would be too expensive, Administration pushes pay freeze for federal workers, after initially calling for a 1% raise, ‘So many families have been targeted’: US troops say German tax officials are asking for sensitive personal information. In 1967, Gabriel Flores painted a mural depicting Los Niños Héroes. [12][13], A painting of the American assault on the Chapultapec Castle, Battle of Chapultepec by James Walker, 1857. In the end, it can probably never be said with 100 percent certainty that the “blood stripe” has nothing to do with the Battle of Chapultepec or vice versa, which actually might be the best way of all of ensuring the legend lives on. The Marines and American forces were about to launch a campaign with the sole mission of capturing the Mexican capital and bring a swift end to the Mexican-American War.. Opinion | [2]:319 General Scott later commented, "Brave Rifles, you have gone through fire and come out steel". On Sept. 13, 1847, 120 U.S. Marines and soldiers stormed the Chapultepec castle, a fort being used as a Mexican military academy, to engage in the last battle before invading the Mexican, Thinking that the attack would come from the south, Santa Anna devoted preparation time and troops there, both before and during the bombardment. [2]:320 Clarke's men on the right passed through a tunnel made by sappers. Losses: U.S., 130 dead, 703 wounded, 29 missing; Mexican, at least 1,000 dead, wounded, or captured. Turns out this is a half-truth. [8] The mural decorates the ceiling of the palace, showing Escutia wrapped in the flag, apparently falling from above. Annual Reports 1894, War Department lists trophy guns: 1- 24pounder bronze, 1- 8 inch howitzer and 2- 4-pounder bonze howitzers. He fought a major battle at Cerro Gordo, but encountered virtually no resistance in capturing Mexico's second-largest city, Puebla. The scarlet stripe found on some U.S. Marine's trousers. Feedback | The Battle of Chapultepec on 13 September 1847 was an assault by invading American forces on a small contingent of Mexican forces holding the strategically located Chapultepec Castle just outside Mexico City.The building, sitting atop a 200-foot (60 m) hill, was an important position for the defense of the city. The Mexican defenders blocked the route to the capital at Hacienda of San Antonio, with marshes to their north and a lava field to the south, known as the Pedregal. If he sent forces there, they would be exposed to U.S. fire in the flat land below the hill, and they could not reach the hill to help the defenders there during the bombardment. Template:Campaignbox Mexican-American War The Battle of Chapultepec (September 1847) was a U.S. victory over Mexican forces holding Chapultepec Castle west of Mexico City during the Mexican-American War. 'S men on the right with Johnston correct the mislead rumor of why Marines the... Dead, 703 wounded, or captured strategically positioned, but its stone walls were vulnerable to fire! Feels like he just had to tell children that there is no Santa Claus of Churubusco 200,... Attack from a distance later converted to the New York Regiment, and this is one those... 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