1-3-1889: The Federal Government extends its contract with the Santa Fe Railroad Company for another three years.

1-8-1889: The Federal Government hires the Thiel Detective Service, an American company operating out of El Paso, to conduct intelligence operations for the nation. TDS is the second-largest private detective agency in the USA; the Pinkertons declined to take the contract as they are in the employ of many US-owed companies operating in Mexico.

1-18-1898: A major expedition by the Federal Army clashes with a sizable force of Indio rebels near GuaymasSonora. In a day of heavy fighting the Federals prevail, losing 54 killed and 125 wounded; the Indio lose 90 killed and 66 captured.

2-1-1889:  A Tinta force attempts to seize Ciudad Juárez, across the Rio Grande from El Paso, but the garrison holds them off. However, the rebel siege cuts the vital rail line to the USA.

2-4-1889: The Federal 10th Infantry Regiment led by Colonel Antonio Rábago leave Casas Grandes by train to aid their comrades in defending Ciudad Juárez. They get as far as Bauche station (Agua Prieta, Sonora; opposite Douglas NM) where the rebels had cut the rails.

2-5-1889: Colonel Rabago fights through the rebel defense line, reaching Ciudad Juárez, and reopening the rail line south.

2-25/27-1889: The Torreon Massacre.

2-28-1889: An eyewitness report of the Massacre hits the newsstands.

3-1-1889: The Massacre is the talk of the USA and the news goes world-wide. The President issues a sharp condemnation of the rebellion in general, and the Maderist faction in particular. 

3-4-1889: The Massacre is an international incident; the British and French governments condemn the faction and tighten controls on arms deals known to do business with the faction. The Chinese government expresses outrage, and offers troops and the use of a warship to the Federal government, which declines.

3-6-1889: A Tinta force of about 800 infantry and cavalry troops  attacked Casas Grandes, population 500 (150 miles S of El Paso). The Federal garrison included just over 500 infantry who were commanded by Col. Agustín A. Valdez of Mexico's 18th Infantry Battalion. The Tintas attacked the federal positions in Casas Grandes at 5am. Fighting lasted until 7:15 am, when another Federal column of 562 men reinforced the 18th Infantry Battalion. With the reinforcing Federals were two howitzers, which were quickly put into use. The fighting ended with the rebel retreat at around 5pm. The rebels lost 58 killed, an unknown number of wounded and 41 captured. Of the rebel casualties, 15 of the dead were American volunteers, along with 17 of the captured. In addition to casualties, the rebels lost about 150 horses, 153 mules and 101 firearms. Federal losses were 37 killed, 60 wounded.

3-21-1889: Reyista forces cross into the USA and steal more than 600 head of cattle, 400 head of horses, and burn over 70 ranch structures. 11 US citizens are killed and four are kidnaped.

3-28/30-1889: Elements of the US 5th and 9th (Colored) Cavalry attack four different Reyista outposts across northern Mexico; the outposts range from 30 to 45 miles inside Mexican territory. The Cavalry kill 105 rebels at the cost of six killed, fourteen wounded. They recover eight hostages, burn over 600 small arms, 24 wagons, and several tons of ammunition. They recover 45 US-branded horses, and put down 105 cattle, 176 goats, 54 horse, and 31 mules  (they were unable to drive them north). The Mexican Federal government issues what appears to be token protests.

4-6-1889: US Marines land 50 miles north of Vera Cruz to raid a Reyista stronghold. In several hours of heavy fighting 11 Marines and two USN personnel are killed; Reyista  losses are 65 dead, an unknown number of wounded, and tons of freshly-delivered arms and ammunition are destroyed with explosives. Six small craft used for smuggling are burned at the docks before US force re-embark and depart.

4-8-1889: The Mexican gunboats Tampico and Morelos (Federalists)  sail dangerously close to the armored cruiser USS Boston off Vera Cruz; both gun boasts were clearly standing to battle stations. The Boston  went to battle stations, and a tense confrontation followed, narrowly avoiding violence as all three ships refused to give way. The Boston, due to her deeper draft, finally had to change course, but nearly rammed Morelos in the process. In the wake of the incident tensions between the USA and Federalist Mexico visibly worsen.

4-15-1889: The US government purchases the modern armored cruiser Amazonas, which was being built for the Brazilian Navy by Armstrong, Mitchell and CompanyNewcastle-on-Tyne, England. The ship is re-named the USS New Orleans, with a delivery date expected in 1891. This, in conjunction with the accelerated Navy building program (five US battleships are expected to be completed by 1892) dramatically raises tensions between the USA and Spain, as the latter suspects the USA to challenge its ownership of colonies in the Caribbean and the Pacific.

5-8/9-1889: Reyista forces attack Tijuana and secure it after two days of fighting. Twenty rebels and twelve Federal troops are killed.

5-12-1889: Reyista  leadership meets in San Antonio, only to have the meeting raided by Texas Rangers supported by a company of National Guard; a gun battle breaks out, and Santiago Reyes, the founder of the movement, and two key subordinates are killed; eight other leaders are jailed. This throws the movement into disarray.

5-20-1889: The Reyistas settle their leadership issues after a lengthy meeting held near Torreon, but the result is that they split into two movements: the Verde Reyistason the Gulf Coast, and Azure Reyistas on the west (named for the colors of their flags).

5-25-1889: The Maderistas made peace with the Federal government in return for pardons and a few adjustments of the Civil Code. Over 300 join the Federal Army.

6-22-1889: Federal forces land near Tijuana and engage the Reyistas, who are short on ammunition and poorly prepared. After two hours of long-range fire, the Federals charge and the rebels break. The Federals lose a few wounded, the rebels loose 30 killed, mostly by cavalry as they attempted to flee the fight. Tijuana is back in Federal hands. 

6-28-1889: At Guaymas the Mexican Navy gunboat Tampico was refitting for a cruise when Executive Officer Lieutenant Hilario Rodríguez Malpica and three other officers  to rallied the remaining crew to mutiny in favor of the Reyistas.

7-2-1889: Captain Navio Torres with the gunboats  Guerrero and Morelos headed for Topolobampo, where they sighted Tampico as she entered the channel. A running battle ensued, but none of the three ships hit within 50 yards of the target, and eventually Tampico escaped.


Mexico: 1889 Bud Bud