Insignia

Society of Colonial Wars

in the State of Ohio

Ohio Society of Colonial Wars
:: Colonial Wars

1706 - 1785

   ||    Comanche Wars   ||    Comanche vs. Spain, Mexico, Texas and USA

The Comanche Wars began in 1706 with raids by Comanche on Spanish colonies in New Mexico and continued until the last bands of Comanche surrendered to the United States in 1875 although a few Comanche warriors continued to fight in conflicts such as the Buffalo Hunters' War in 1876 and 1877.

The Mexican government negotiated additional treaties, signed in 1826 and 1834, but in each case failed to meet the terms of the agreements.

1759Responding to a Comanche attack that destroyed two missions on the San Saba River in central Texas, a Spanish force of 600 marched north to the Red River where they engaged several thousand Comanche and other Plains Natives fighting behind breastworks and armed with French rifles. The Spaniards were routed, losing a cannon in their retreat, and Comanche raids became a constant threat to settlers throughout Texas.
1821Jose Francisco Ruiz negotiated a truce with the Penatucka Comanche, the band closest to the settlements in East and Central Texas. Following that truce, he was able to complete a treaty of peace and friendship, which was signed in Mexico City in December 1821. But, within twelve months the Mexican Government failed to pay the presents promised to the Pentucka, who resumed raiding at once. For the same reason, failure to pay promised tributes, the peace treaties signed for New Mexico broke down. By 1823 war raged the entire length of the Rio Grande. Most of the remaining Mexican settlements were destroyed; only those in the upper Rio Grande were secured.
May 19, 1836a huge war party of Comanche, Kiowa, Witchita, and Delaware attacked the settler outpost of Fort Parker. Completed in March 1834, it had been regarded by the settlers as a strong-point, sufficient to protect them from any Native Americans not observing the peace treaties. Elder John Parker had negotiated with local Natives. Unfortunately for the settlers, because these Native Americans were subject nations to the Comanche, the tribe did not feel bound to observe the peace. The massacre of settlers at Fort Parker, also resulted in the Comanche taking two women and three children as captives. The Parkers were well known, and the destruction of most of their clan produced shock throughout Texas.

In the 1840s, Comanche raids became larger, more deadly, and penetrated deeply into Mexico. In September 1840 and continuing until March 1841 came the first of the great raids. During this period six Comanche armies numbering between two hundred and eight hundred warriors invaded northern Mexico. The most far reaching of the raids reached the region of San Luis Potosi and Zacatecas 400 miles south of the Big Bend, their most common crossing point into Mexico. 472 Mexicans were reported killed and more than 100 captives were taken from these raids. Many others were left homeless, their livelihoods destroyed, their livestock stolen or killed. So much wealth did the Comanches obtain that the number of raids dropped off slightly for the next three years, but resumed even more intensely between 1844 and 1848 - after the Comanches had made peace with Texas.

Raids like this would continue until the last bands of Comanche surrendered to the United States in 1875 although a few Comanche warriors continued to fight in conflicts such as the Buffalo Hunters' War in 1876 and 1877.

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