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Battle of Dominguez Rancho
Part of Mexican–American War
DateOctober 8–9, 1846
LocationDominguez Hills, California
Result Mexican victory
 Mexico  United States
Commanders and leaders
Captain José Antonio Carrillo Captain William Mervine
~50 militia ~200 marines
Casualties and losses
none 14 killed,
2 wounded

The Battle of Dominguez Rancho or The Battle of the Old Woman's Gun (October 8–9, 1846) was a military engagement of the Mexican–American War. The battle took place within Manuel Dominguez's 75,000-acre (300 km2) Rancho San Pedro.


Captain José Antonio Carrillo, leading fifty Californio Lancer troops, successfully held off an invasion of Pueblo de Los Angeles by some 200 United States Marines, under the command of US Navy Captain William Mervine, who was attempting to recapture the town after the Siege of Los Angeles. During the battle, four US Marines were killed and twelve were wounded. Ten US troops died of their wounds on Snake Island, Terminal Island, the following day. The Californios suffered no casualties. The dead were buried on a little island in San Pedro Bay called Isla de los Muertos, or more commonly called Deadman's Island.[1][2]

By strategically running horses across the dusty Dominguez hills in the area now known as Dominguez Hills and Carson, while transporting their single small cannon to various sites, Carrillo and his troops convinced the Americans they had encountered a large enemy force. Faced with heavy casualties and the superior horsemanship fighting skills displayed by the militia "Lancers", the remaining Marines were forced to retreat to their ships berthed in San Pedro Bay.

See also


  1. Bancroft, Hubert Howe, History of California: Vol. V, 1846-1848, p. 320.
  2. Walker, Dale L., Bear Flag Rising: The Conquest of California, 1846. [New York, 1999]. See page 200.

External links

Coordinates: 33°46′12″N 118°19′12″W / 33.77°N 118.32°W / 33.77; -118.32

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