Page:Notes of the Mexican war 1846-47-48.djvu/135

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

and blood. When Gen. Twggs, with the head of his division, arrived, was heartily cheered by our regiment. They brought with them, as already stated, the 3,000 (some have it 5,000) Mexican prisoners, and some officers high in rank. Amongst them was Gen. La Vega, who commanded the division and batteries that we were to charge upon. They reported that Gen. Vasquezea, a gallant Mexican officer, was killed behind his battery, and that our gallant old friend, Gen. Santa Anna, and Gens. Camaliza and Almonta, with about 10,000 troops, had retreated and fled in all directions just before Gen. Twiggs stormed the telegraph hill. Gen. Twiggs' division also captured Gen. Santa Anna's field carriage, containing drawers under the seats, filled with papers, plans and maps and his field service, a splendid mounted saddle and several wooden or cork legs, and, the best of all, over $60,000 in specie, portion of which Gen. Santa Anna made a levy and had assessed on the citizens of Jalapa on his way to Cerro Gordo; and to the carriage was harnessed three splendid black mules. The fourth mule and Gen. Santa Anna were so hotly pursued by Col. Harney's dragoons that he (Gen. Santa Anna) was compelled to cut him loose and make his escape from the field by taking what they call a blind road. The capturing of the specie caused much rejoicing amongst our victorious soldiers, and the prospect of soon getting paid off by the captured cash.

The prisoners were marched down to our Camp Plan del Rio, there formed into line, stacked their muskets and cartridge boxes, after which they were dismissed on parole of honor, and not to take up arms again, unless exchanged, as long as the two nations are at war with each other. After the defeat of the Mexicans, Gen. Scott sent Col. William S. Harney in hot pursuit of Gen. Santa Anna and his scattered and flying army, but I doubt whether Col. Harney will overtake Gen. Santa Anna, as I have been informed that he had over a half-hour start on him, and he, of course, being well acquainted with the country and all the by-roads, has all the chances of not getting caught even on a mule. Col. Harney has orders not to stop until the spires of Jalapa City appear in sight.