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County
Cameron
Region
Gulf Coast
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Parks
Palo Alto Battlefield National Historic Site
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Palo Alto Battlefield National Historic Park Information:
The May 8, 1846 Battle of Palo Alto was the first battle of the Mexican-American War. At this two day battle the forces of Mexican General M. Arista were defeated by the forces of General Zachary Scott Taylor. After this battle, the defeated Mexican forces retreated across the Rio Grande River. The current site consists of 3,400 acres. Private owners still control over 2,000 acres of the original battlefield. The park also includes the 29 acre Resaca de la Palma Battlefield located inside the Brownsville City limits. A one mile round trip park trail leads to a battlefield overlook where interpretive panels and replica cannon are located. The trail and battlefield close at 4:30pm. There are several ADA accessible ponds and trails which are good birding sites. The trail from the Visitor Center to the Battlefield may present difficulties for those with mobility issues, but several benches are located along the trail. A nine mile trail connects to Brownsville’s 7 miles Paseo de la Resaca Trails at the Brownsville Events Center. Check the park events calendar for reenactments and other events. The 15 minute “War on the Rio Grande” video shown in the Visitor Center is fully captioned in English and Spanish, and the Visitor Center is equipped with a hearing assistance system. The park is operated by the National Park Service. Call for tours. The park has traveling trunks for schools. Rangers are available to speak in school classrooms. Open daily, 8am-5pm; closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Days. The battlefield is located at 7200 Paredes Line Road near the intersection of FM 1847 (Paredes Line Road) and FM 511, approximately five miles north of Brownsville, and 7 miles south of Los Fresnos. The Visitors Center is located on the east side of FM 1847, approximately 300 yards north of the intersection. The Visitors Center features a bookstore, historic displays from the perspective of each side, and shows a video detailing the history of the war. The center also offers guided tours seasonally and hosts special events. School field trips are available by calling (956) 541-2785, Ext. 332. 
 
Palo Alto Battle, Texas Historical Marker Text:
“On May 8, 1846, the first battle of the Mexican-American War, the Battle of Palo Alto occurred on this site between the forces of General Zachary Scott Taylor, and the Mexican General M. Arista. On the morning of May 9, the battle was continued on the site of a dry river bed channel (called a Resaca); this site is called the Resaca de la Parma. After this battle, the defeated Mexican forces were driven across the Rio Grande River.”
 
Battle of Palo Alto, Texas Historical Marker Text:
“Was fought here May 8, 1846 and was won by the Army of the United States.” From Brownsville, take FM 1847 north approximately 5.5 miles to the intersection of FM 1847 and FM 511.
 
Annual Palo Alto Battlefield NHS Park Day:
Park Day is an annual event which seeks volunteers to clean and repair the grounds of Civil War battlefields. At each site, volunteers receive a free T-shirt, patches (while supplies last) and have the opportunity to hear historians interpret the battle. This event is hosted by the Texas Historical Commission, the Civil War Trust and History (formerly the History Channel) and the National Park Service. Please email the Texas Historical Commission’s Military Sites Program Coordinator for details regarding the current event. 
 
Annual Show the Trail Who's Boss Run, March:
This event is sponsored by the Brownsville Trailblazers. Routes include a half marathon, a coed relay, a male relay, a female relay, a 5K, and a 1 mile fun run. All races begin at the Brownsville Events Center at 1 Event Center, 78526. Some runs transverse the Palo Alto National Historic Site Trail.  (956) 592-0200.   Email
 
Birding - Great Texas Coastal Birding Trail, Lower Gulf Coast Region:
Arroyo Colorado Loop:  Harlingen. Rio Hondo, Los Palomas WMA, Adolph Thomae Jr. Co. Park
Longoria Loop:  west of Harlingen; Santa Rosa, Combes, Sebastian
Los Loros Loop:  Harlingen Area
Laguna Madre Loop:  Los Fresnos, Palo Alto Battlefield, Laguna Vista, Port Isabel
Texas Birds Checklist
Cameron County Butterfly Checklist
South Padre Island WBC Bird Checklist
Resaca de la Palma WBC Bird Checklist, Brownsville
Resaca de la Palma State Park (Prior to being a WBC) Bird Checklist, Brownsville
Laguna Atascosa NWR Bird Checklist
Laguna Atascosa NWR Butterfly Checklist
Rio Grande Valley Rare Bird Alert:(956) 584-2731.
 
Palo Alto Battlefield National Historic Site Directions:
The park is located approximately five miles north of downtown Brownsville near Los Fresnos, Texas at the northeast corner of the intersection of FM 1847 (Paredes Line Road) and FM 511/FM 550, approximately 600 feet from the historical marker.  Map