The battle of Palo Alto
On May 8, 1846, American forces under General Zachary Taylor engaged Mexican forces under
Mariano Arista near Palo Alto Texas (approx. 6 miles from Brownsville, Texas). Although the American
forces were outnumbered (2,300 American vs. 3,400 Mexican), official reports list the battle as a draw
and the Mexican forces withdrew several miles to a dry river bed (resaca) and setup defensive positions.
Palo Alto was primarily an artillery battle (the U. S. using, what was then the innovative idea of “flying”
artillery). U.S. casualties were 9 killed and 43 wounded. While Mexican casualties are not known with
certainty, most figures list Mexican casualties as over 300 killed or wounded.