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Peggy McCormick

The San Jacinto battleground was actually the land of Peggy McCormick. She took possession of the land after her husband died in 1824 and continued to live on it. She abandoned her home before the battle but returned soon after. Upon her return, she discovered over 700 Mexican corpses scattered near her home. She appeared before General Houston and demanded he remove the bodies but Sam Houston replied “Madam, your land will be famed in history as the classic spot upon which the glorious victory of San Jacinto was gained! Here was born, in the throes of revolution, and amid the strife of contending legions, the infant of Texas Independence! Here the latest scourge of mankind, the arrogantly self-styled ‘Napoleon of the West,’ met his fate!” McCormick then responded “To the devil with your glorious history!” The request to remove the bodies was denied. The corpses were left to decompose and McCormick with the help of her neighbors, buried the bones. She also lost 230 livestock and 75 bushels of corn consumed by both armies. She tried to receive compensation from the government three separate times but was denied for that as well. Despite the hardships, McCormick succeeded in building one of the largest ranches in what became Harris County. She lived on the battleground until 1859 when her house burned down with her inside it, a suspected victim of murder.

The information is taken from “Women and the Texas Revolution,” edited by Mary L. Scheer and chapter by Jeffrey D. Dunn.

The photo is a map of the San Jacinto Battleground which took place on McCormick’s land. No pictures of McCormick could be located.