San Jose residents urge city to melt down Thomas Fallon statue for celebrating ‘genocide’


Thomas Fallon, born in Ireland in 1825, joined the 1845 third expedition led by John C. Fremont – a military officer who committed a number of massacres against Native American — to explore what is now the American West.

The War Department tasked Frémont with surveying mountainous areas including the central Rockies and the Sierra Nevada and to turn his scientific expedition into a military force if war started with Mexico.

Fallon chose to stay in Santa Cruz after visiting the area with the expedition amid the brink of the Mexican-American War.

When the war broke out in 1846, five years before California joined the union, Fallon appointed himself recruited 22 volunteers to join Freemont’s military forces.

Fallon and his men charged into El Pueblo de San José de Guadalupe, what is now San Jose, on July 11, 1846 but discovered the local Mexican general had vacated the premises two days earlier.

Three days later, Commodore John D. Sloat – who claimed California for the United States – sent Fallon an American flag, which he ceremoniously flew over the city declaring it for the United States.

Fallon and his volunteers then joined Fremont’s California Battalion for the rest of the war, and he became mayor of San Jose in 1859.

The Irishman, who a worked as a hotel and saddle shop owner in Santa Cruz, married his first wife Carmel Fallon in 1849 – with whom he had nine children, three of which died from cholera.

Carmel found her husband in what newspapers called ‘a compromising position’ with housekeeper Maggie McBride on December 9, 1876.

She filed for divorce and accused of him of ‘adultery, mental cruelty and physical abuse.’

Fallon briefly married another woman who also accused him of severe abuse.

Hispanic Americans have long called for a statue dedicated to Fallon to be removed, based upon his treatment of Native Americans and Mexicans while a part of Fremont’s genocidal expeditions.

American colonists enslaved, kidnapped, raped, and murdered at least 9,500 California Natives between 1849 and 1870.

Sources: friendsof1800.org; historyofsanjose.org



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