El Carmen Cemetery (Cementerio del Carmen)

Texas Historical Marker - El Carmen Cemetery (Cementerio del Carmen)

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Numerous 19th-century journals and other written historical accounts trace the origin of this cemetery to the burial of casualities of the Battle of Medina. Fought on August 18, 1813, the battle was the result of a failed attempt by a Republican Army of the North, consisting of about 1200 to 1500 Mexicans, Anglo-Americans, and Indians, to free Mexico from Royalist Spanish Rule. The Royalist army was victorious, and hundreds of men who died on the battlefield later were interred at this site between 1813 and 1817. The church of Nuestra Senora del Carmen traces its origin to a chapel built over the soldiers' burial crypt.

The burial site became a community cemetery as pioneer settlers established homes in this area. Among those interred in the graveyard are the families of Domingo Losoya and Dionicio Martinez, who received Mexican land grants surrounding the cemetery property. Also buried here are Enrique Esparza, who as a child survived the Battle of the Alamo, and French immigrant Gustave Toudouze, a prominent local naturalist and businessman. A cemetery association formed in 1927 maintains the historic site, which continues in use as a cemetery for the local community.

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