There’s Spaniards in the swamp
Here we see the new painting by the brilliant military artist Augusto Ferrer-Dalmau, “La Marcha de Gálvez,” or The March of Gálvez, showing a polyglot force of Spanish colonial troops looking to lick the British outside of New Orleans.
On May 18, 1779, a month before Spain officially informed England of the start of the war and four years after the Declaration of Independence, the governor of New Orleans, Bernardo de Gálvez, assembled a small army with which to attack the posts defensive that the British had in the Mississippi. In those days he barely had a few men from the Louisiana Battalion and some pickets from other regiments.
However, its popularity meant that free African-Americans, Chakras Indians, Canadians and several American volunteers joined this tiny contingent. That multicultural army ventured through the Mississippi pushing boats loaded with cannons, weeks later, conquer the forts of Manchac and Baton Rouge.
Bernardo later went on to best the British at the Siege of Pensacola in 1781, conquering West Florida for Spain in an almost forgotten sideshow to the U.S. War of Independence.
The above painting will be on display at the exhibit, “Recovered Memories, Spain, New Orleans, and support for the American Revolution” beginning April 21 at the Louisiana State Museum in Jackson Square.