On August 1, the USS Puritan under the command of Captain Frederic W. Rodgers, was sailing by the coastline of the city of Fajardo, when Rogers noticed the "Faro de Las Cabezas de San Juan" (Cape San Juan lighthouse) which was supposed to be the landing site for the US Army in Puerto Rico. Rodgers ordered some of his men ashore, which included Puerto Rican volunteers, with the mission of posting the American Flag atop the lighthouse.
On August 2, three more ships, the USS Amphitrite, USS Leyden, and the USS Hannibal arrived and joined the Puritan. The 25-man Spanish garrison stationed in the city became aware of the American presence and, after notifying their superiors in San Juan, were told to withdraw. When Dr. Santiago Veve Calzada, the mayor of the city, realized that the garrison was gone and that the city was defenseless against the invading Americans, he implored the Spanish authorities in San Juan to dispatch troops to defend his city. Believing that the Spanish forces would not come to his aid, Dr. Santiago Veve Calzada then went to the lighthouse to seek protection for the city from the Americans. On the afternoon of August 3, Dr. Veve Calzada entered the city with a contingent of Marines and the United States flag was hoisted over the Fajardo Customs House and City Hall.
On August 4, Governor General Macias sent Colonel Pedro del Pino and 200 men to recapture the city. When Colonel Pino entered Fajardo he found it nearly deserted because the residents, fearing a battle, had fled to the Fajardo lighthouse. Pino waited until darkness fell and then ordered his men to attack the lighthouse. The Marines signaled the ships that they were under attack and the ships began to bombard the shore in a protective pattern. The Spanish forces retreated back to the city.
The following day U.S. Marine Lieutenant John A. Lejeune came ashore with a detachment of Marines and evacuated the civilians and Marines for transport to Ponce, and the ligh...