Commodore Thomas Catesby Jones, commander of the Pacific Squadron of the United States Navy, heard a rumor that the United States and Mexico had gone to war, and he seized the opportunity to claim California as part of the United States. Jones sailed into Monterey Bay with two ships, the USS Cyane and the USS United States. The third member of his squadron, the USS Dale had been sent to Panama with an urgent dispatch stating his intent to capture several Mexican coastal towns. The Mexicans in Monterey surrendered immediately. Jones’ force vastly outgunned them, and many of the locals were pro-America anyway. Not a single shot was fired.