San Patricios – the Chieftains tell the story

This will be a good CD! “San Patricio” – the Chieftains with Ry Cooder on Hear Music.

I’ve always found the story of the San Patricios fascinating for the cross cultural aspects and also the way the story shows how history is viewed depending on the side writing it.

Paddy Moloney and I are on the same wave length. 😉

When the Irish arrived in America they were met by army recruiters at the docks who promised the immigrants a paycheck and opportunity if they signed up. Once they enlisted the Irish found themselves very poorly treated by the, mainly English descended, Americans who pretty much thought of the Irish as a sub-species. In the American Land Grab Mexican war (1846-1848), many of these Irish soldiers deserted to fight besides the Mexicans, their fellow Catholics.

The members of the “San Patricios” battalion were mostly Irish and German Catholics but also Canadians, African Americans, Italians and others. They fought bravely and at the war’s end many were hanged — a violation of the then “Articles of War”. To this day the San Patricios are much loved and revered by the Mexicans and honored with a national day, September 12.

In American history they are reviled as deserters and traitors.

Watch this short YouTube introduction.

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