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 At the beginning of February 1817

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tung_chick88
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PostSubject: At the beginning of February 1817    Sat Feb 12, 2011 9:09 am

At the beginning of February 1817 the troops of San Martín finished his crossing of the Andes and prepared to put an end to Spanish dominion in Chile. The Army of the Andes (as San Martin's force was called) had suffered heavy losses during the crossing, losing as much as one-third of its men and more than half of its horses. The Royalist forces had rushed north to respond to their approach, and a force of about 1,500 under Brigadier Rafael Maroto blocked San Martin's advance at a valley called Chacabuco, near Santiago. In the face of the disintegration of the royalist forces, Maroto proposed abandoning the capital and retreating southward, where they could hold out and obtain resources for a new campaign. The military conference called by Royal Governor Field Marshal Casimiro Marcó del Pont on February 8th adopted Maroto's strategy, but the following morning the captain general changed his mind and ordered Maroto to prepare for battle in Chacabuco.

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