Valles Mines, Missouri, U S A
Founded in 1749 by Francois Valle in the French Upper Louisiana before Lewis and Clark. 275 years later the Valle Mining Company's 4000+ acre property every year absorbs 21,000 tons of carbon dioxide and generates
14,000 tons of oxygen, enough to meet the needs of 63,000 people. [USDA Forest Facts]
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The Battle of Fort San Carlos

Defender of St Louis

"...a little-known part of the history of the American Revolution..."

fleurdelis "Mangez plomb, cochons!" fleurdelis

"Eat Lead, You Pigs!"

A few good cannons can save a day.

While Francois Valle first made his mark in the region as founder of French Colonial Valles Mines after arriving from Quebec in 1748 and in later years, after moving to Ste Genevieve, ultimately he served as Commandant of the Fort there.

He made history a second time 32 years after Valles Mines by risking everything to help a Spanish fort named Fort San Carlos, 60 miles to the North, a vulnerable settlement caught in a battle for the New World, a place today we today call...Saint Louis, Missouri.

"...In his early 70's and commandante of Ste. Genevieve, he sent his two sons and all the Ste. Genevieve militia he could spare to the Spanish settlement at St. Louis in May 1780 to defend against the coming British-Indians' attack. " [With the attack on its way, St. Louis had still not been fortified].

"In two weeks the garrison of 350 defenders withstood 1000 attackers. May 26th, outnumbered 3 to 1, the garrison still prevailed after a desperate struggle...It does not seem excessive to claim that the men from Ste. Genevieve added the weight that tipped the scale of battle in favor of the defenders... * royal decree on April 1, 1782 King Carlos III of Spain conferred upon Francois I the rank of lieutenant in the regular Spanish army. Francois Valle, French Canadian habitant, thus became a Spanish don..."

"...At the same time that the Franco-Spanish garrison repelled the Anglo-Indian attack on St Louis, Colonel John Montgomery and General George Rogers Clark fended off a secondary British thrust at Cahokia across the Mississippi. These British setbacks in the western theater of action are a little-known part of the history of the American Revolution. Nonetheless, they prevented Great Britain from seizing control of the lucrative fur trade of the lower Mississippi River,...."

From Colonial Ste. Genevieve, Carl J. Ekberg 1996 pg. 66
See Also

NOTE 1: Valle gave the defenders a major tactical advantage in two ways, first by supplying genuine lead musket and cannon balls and secondly, by supplying his own Ste. Genevieve militia, well trained and equipped.

NOTE 2: Riflemen in those days knew the best projectiles came from casting their own. Making musket balls from lead gave them huge knock-down power. Shooting pebbles did not carry far and had a lot less penetrating power. You can see Mel Gibson in "The Patriot" for how he melted down his murdered son's toy lead soldiers into musket balls.[0:38/1:35]

At 100 feet getting hit with a pebble or stone did not compare to the damage and knockdown power of a typical 52-caliber lead rifleball at that distance, even to this day used for medium game [weighing] up to 300 lbs. Lead is 15 times heavier than limestone [0.409 lbs/ vs. dolomite's 0.0266 lbs/
"The Battle of Fort San Carlos" [May 26, 1780] has been called the western-most battle of the Revolutionary War. Commemoration Committee for the Battle of Fort San Carlos
For more info, click here:

LITTLE KNOWN FACT: The ruins of Fort San Carlos are buried under Ballpark Village and The Spanish Pavilion nearby.

"...A Stunning Defeat" In October 1781, the war virtually came to an end when General Cornwallis was surrounded and forced to surrender the British position at Yorktown, Virginia. Two years later, the Treaty of Paris made it official: America was independent. From

"Yorktown was the last major engagement of the war however there are documented cases of skirmishes occurring up til late 1783. One of the last occured in New Jersey near Tuckerton on April 3, 1783." From The State Of New Jersey's NJ Historic Trust, 11.The American Revolution

"August 27, 1782 - The last fighting of the Revolutionary War between Americans and British occurs with a skirmish in South Carolina along the Combahee River. November 10, 1782 - The final battle of the Revolutionary War occurs as Americans retaliate against Loyalist and Indian forces by attacking a Shawnee Indian village in the Ohio territory."

...France fought alongside the United States, against Britain, from 1778..." Francois Valle supplied lead to the Revolutionary War effort as a Frenchman. The French were a great help to the colonists, often at their own expense." From Wikipedia's "France in the American Revolutionary War