San Jacinto re-enactment dampened by floods

April 25, 2009 5:02:58 PM PDT
For many of us, the flooding that came with last night's heavy rain was a brief nuisance, but the storms threatened to wash out a huge weekend celebration at the San Jacinto State Park.[SIGN UP: Get headlines and breaking news sent to you]

The sights and sounds of battle barely made it to the San Jacinto State Park this weekend. The park grounds rained out Friday night.

"All of our tents, half of them are down from last night. It rained very hard. The field got swamped like a lake. This came upon us, as everyone knows, suddenly, we had no warning," said Colonel John Baker, Commander of the Texas Army.

Saturday was to be the big day when hundreds of people from around the state met to re-enact the battle of San Jacinto, the moment Texas won its independence from Mexico.

"This is what began everything. This is what started Texas as to what it is today," said visitor Ted Sanders.

Heavy rains damaged the Texans side of the 1800s-style campground.

"One fellow I talked to said he hung out until the water got to his cot. It was impressive. Everything in the Mexican camp this morning was floating," said Charles Yates of the Mexican artillery crew.

It flooded the Mexican campground, forcing many to find other shelter elsewhere Friday night.

"Parks and wildlife said they emptied the rain gauge twice last night and it's a three inch rain gauge. In two hours," said Yates.

With the sunshine Saturday came visitors and those living historians, fully dressed and engrossed in their duties of the 1800s with some battle skirmishes but no big battle reenactment this year.

"Most of the gunpowder in the Mexican camp got wet. Things like that," said Yates.

They were unwilling to give up the rest of the day's festivities, mostly because of the kids.

"We were going to cancel out completely, but we said for the children, we'll do it for them. There's going to be some showing up we're staying for them," said Colonel John Baker of La Porte.

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