I think this is a good time to show maps of the battle area. This is more difficult than one might think. Not that maps aren’t available—just that the older maps don’t have North arrows on them for orientation, and every map shows a different layout. It is impossible to determine which is the most accurate map.
The first map, the oldest, shows Galveston Bay, Buffalo Bayou and Lake Anna Maria Francisco. It shows the Mexican camp, several trails, and the Texian locations, but it is difficult to orient from this map. After studying subsequent maps, I determined the top of this oldest map is facing almost due West. This map is the hardest to read because of that fact. Maps are supposed to read Up, Down, North, South, in my book.
The second map is provided by the Texas Parks and Wildlife department’s website. It indicates the location of the San Jacinto monument and reflecting pool with an overlay of the historical locations of the Mexican army, the Texians, and Santa Anna’s camp. This map is tilted off North by about 35 degrees to fit the document format. Very disconcerting, but a good legend because it shows where the different players are for modern day visits.
The area where the battle occurred has subsided by more than ten feet since 1836, according to the historical documents. Also the grounds were altered extensively for the construction of the monument and reflection pool, changing the look and feel of the area.
The third map is a screen shot from Google Maps showing the top as North. I added the locations according to the TP&W map on this map to show where they fit on today’s map. If you plan visiting San Jacinto soon, print this map because it will help.
The last map is a close-up of the reenactment area. I hope this gives an idea of where I was when the different pictures were taken. Yesterday’s pictures of the Mexican camp were taken where that label is on this map. Tomorrow’s pictures of the Texian camp are all taken where their camp is on the map.
That gives a better feel for the area, showing where the skirmish took place, and the battle of the 21st.