Blockading the Gulf of Mexico

May, 1846 - September, 1847

Prior to the war, U.S Navy Secretary George Bancroft placed the Home Squadron on high alert in the Gulf of Mexico. Commanded by Commodore David E. Connor, the Home Squadron consisted of eleven vessels--two frigates, two steamers, four sloops, and three brigs. With the outbreak of hostilities, shallow draft vessels were purchased for operations along Mexico's inland waterways.

Once the war began, the squadron imposed a blockade of Mexican harbors, which proved highly successful in disrupting Mexican trade. Conner seized Tampico without resistance in November, 1846.

In addition, Perry's marines sailed up the Tabasco River in October, 1846, and June, 1847. U.S. forces briefly occupied Fronteras and Villahermosa, although guerilla activity and tropical disease prompted them to evacuate the Mexican towns.

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