McGRath
Sins of Omission

Bear Flag Revolt

Most Americans have no idea that California was once an independent republic and came into the Union, like Texas, without going through a territorial stage.  This is symbolized by California’s state seal, which features Minerva, who sprang from Jupiter’s head fully formed.  During the 1950’s we Golden State schoolchildren were taught all about our Bear Flag Revolt and the men who led it.  But because they were independent, courageous, and armed white men, they are not to be revered in these politically correct times.

By 1846 several hundred Americans were farming and ranching in the Sacramento, Sonoma, and Napa valleys.  They were hearty pioneers who had crossed overland to California, intending on extending the American frontier to the Pacific.  They had no desire to become Mexican citizens or to conform to the customs and mores of the sleepy province known as Alta California.

Mexican authorities began to worry about them as war with the United States was looming over the admission of Texas to the Union.  In April 1846, Gen. Jose Castro issued a proclamation ordering the American settlers to vacate California within 40 days under penalty of death.  There is also evidence that Castro dispatched agents to incite the Indians of the interior to attack the American settlers.  Said Marine Lt. Henry Watson, who arrived in San Francisco...

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