Battle of Saint George's Caye held in Corozal 2017
The Battle of St. George's Caye was a short military engagement that lasted from 3 to 10 September 1798, off the coast of what is now Belize. However, the name is typically reserved for the final battle that occurred on 10 September. The Spaniards had previously attempted to expel the British settlers and their slaves on six occasions, most recently in 1779. September 10, 1798, marked the final Spanish attempt to take over the area. Today, the Battle of St. George's Caye is a national public and bank holiday.
Dates: Sep 3, 1798 – Sep 10, 1798
Result: British victory
Location: Saint George's Caye, off the coast of Belize
Combatants: Spanish Empire, Kingdom of Great Britain
Today, We are celebrating 219th years since the Battle of Saint George's Caye around Belize. And, each district is represented by a mayor to give a speech about what is the meaning of Battle of Saint George's Caye and our Independence Day. ““Belize: Confronting Challenges! Celebrating Triumphs! Renewing our Resolve!” was this year's Theme. The theme focuses on our unified Belizean people, cultures, and country. The theme calls on us to recognize the often difficult decisions that must be made to ensure our nation’s progress. It acknowledges the moment in which we take pleasure in the victories of our past and present, and uses these accomplishments to strengthen our advancement into the future.
On Sunday, September 10th, 2017, everyone had gathered at Central Park in Corozal to await the crowning of the Miss Corozal 2017-2018 Queen of the Bay Ms. Nalisha Acosta. The Event commenced at 10 am with a short ceremony. The Ceremony was based on our History of Belize and to pray for those of who got hit by Harvey and those being hit by Irma. to learn our history of Belize and why this holiday is important for us to learn. And, to respect our National Anthem, National Prayer and our 10th day of September Music.
Every year after the Corozal Queen of the Bay take's place in Corozal, Usually, they crown the Official Queen on the 10th of September at Corozal Central Park. At 11 am, the parade in Corozal was being organized by its list. As the Ceremony had ended everyone lined up in front of the Central park and throughout the streets of Corozal to watch the parade. Red, White, and Blue were the main color attraction everyone had for the parade. And, other's were casual in different colors as they watched the parade. Children and adults painted their faces, some put water paint tattoo's on their hand, or even dressed up for Independence day.
It was a quite exciting to watch this event to grow bigger every year and to continue celebrating our Independence day. Here are the Pictures below on what happened this past Sunday in Corozal. We apologize for Having the Flag on the way which I did not know it would be there. And, I hope you enjoy this Blog.
Baymen's preparationsThe Merlin's command in 1798 was Captain John Moss, a strategist on the order of Barrow. By July 18, 1798 the fleet had reached Cozumel, leading the settlers to agree to arm their slaves, an act that affected the outcome of the battle due to the slaves' knowledge of warfare. There were still some who were cautious and demanded evacuation, including Potts, but Balcarres ignored them and imposed martial law on July 26. The Settlement lineup consisted of the following:
Merlin, HM's sloop of war; two sloops, Towser and Tickler, with one 18 pounder and 25 men each; one sloop, Mermaid, with one short 9 pounder and 25 men; the schooners, Swinger and Teazer, with six four pounders and 25 men each; seven gun-flats, one 9 pounder and 16 men each.
In addition there were 700 troops ready to deter attack by land.
From September 3 to 5, the Spaniards tried to force their way through Montego Caye shoal, blocked by the defenders. The military commanders, Moss and Barrow, differed on where to put their resources for the next phase of the fight: Barrow thought they would go to the land phase, while Moss decided on defending St. George's Caye. Moss arrived in time to stop the Spaniards, setting the stage for September 10.
At 1:00 pm that afternoon, the Spaniards and British lined up off St. George's Caye. The Spaniards stormed through the channel, and at 1:30 engaged the British in a two-hour fight which ended in defeat for the confused Spaniards. Moss reported no one killed and the side in good spirits. Barrow was dispatched and arrived in time to see the end of the battle and prevent the slave men from boarding the enemy. The Spaniards were in full retreat by September 13, and Barrow agreed to send vessels to further push the Spaniards back.
Conditions in Belize did not improve much after the battle, though the threat of Spanish attacks decreased significantly. The event is celebrated every September 10 in Belize as St. George's Caye Day or National Day.