The other day, while recording the fact that I live in Saltillo on facebook, a number of other Saltillos popped up as possible states for the location of "my" Saltillo. Among them, I discovered that there is a Saltillo, Indiana!
I'm from Indiana, but I live in Saltillo. That little town just combines two of my favorite places--how cool is that?
This got me to thinking: why is Saltillo, Indiana named Saltillo?
While I was busy noting the randomness of Indiana towns and their connections to Mexican areas (and other places of foreign origin), Mario reminded me that there is also a Churubusco, Indiana. Churubusco is also an area on the south side of Mexico City. To the best of my knowledge, Churubusco, Indiana was named after this area of Mexico City, thanks to an ugly battle near the climax of the Mexican-American War in 1846.
Apparently, among the gringo army was a batallion of Irish soldiers. After months of fighting their way into the heart of Mexico, these Irish soldiers, being Catholic just like the Mexicans, realized that they had more in common with the Mexicans they were fighting against than with the gringos with whom they had enlisted. Therefore, right before this battle at Churubusco, a significant number of these Irish immigrants switched sides and fought for the Mexicans. Legend has it that those that survived the battle (and managed to not get shot for treason) made their way back to Indiana after the war and founded the town of Churubusco.
I do know there was an earlier battle during the same war near here. Would Saltillo, Indiana have a similar history to Churubusco, Indiana? Curious.
If anyone else knows of other details to this story, feel free to leave a comment!