Cinco de Mayo (GV-3)

Cinco de MayoCinco De Mayo

Cinco De Mayo translated to Fifth of May is a Mexican holiday, mostly celebrated by Puebla and most of the United States,  is a holiday dedicated to the Battle of Puebla on May the Fifth.

President Benito Juarez

Benito Juarez was a lawyer before becoming President in 1861.  Once he became president he realized that Mexico was too poor to pay it’s debts to Spain, England and France.  All three sent naval forces to Veracruz, Mexico. In that time both Spain and England found a way to negotiate with Mexico and they withdrew the debts.  France on the other hand, ruled by King Napoleon the Third, wanted to gain more land in all of Mexico. There in Veracruz the french troops made Benito and his troops retreat out.

The Battle of Puebla

In the famous Battle of Puebla Napoleon was confident that he’ll overthrow Mexico . He sent 6,000 troops, all lead by General Charles Latrille de Lorencez, to attack. They were sent to go to Mexico City but on their way there they had to go through Puebla, a small city not to far from Mexico City. In Puebla Benito had 2,000 men led by General Ignacio Zaragoza ready to fight off the French . On May 5th 1862 the french troops arrived at Puebla. To the French’s surprise the Mexicans were ready and fought a tough fight. The battle lasted about a day and the French lost about 500 men while the Mexicans lost around 100 men.  Even though the Mexicans lost the war a year later this war  gave Mexicans and Mexico hope as well as the California who was a free state fighting the COnfederacy. The Mexican army was outnumbered 2 to 1 by the French.  America helped Mexico get rid of the French giving Juarez control again. THis battle was heard in the United States and Americans of Mexican heritage used this as inspiration for resistance and power.

Cinco de MayoCelebrating Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo isn’t celebrated much in Mexico besides the city of Puebla where it all went through. In Puebla there are parades, folk dancing, speeches, and enjoying traditional Mexican food such as traditional tacos and mole pueblano. Cinco de Mayo is actually a bigger holiday in the United States. Most Americans celebrating by drinking margaritas, eating tacos, and it’s common if you see someone with a sombrero, poncho or fake mustache. Big cities like  Los Angeles, Chicago, and Houston celebrate it like Puebla does in Mexico. Other than that Cinco De Mayo isn’t celebrated around the world. Mostly since it’s a geographical thing like the 4th of July where only America celebrates it and Chinese New Year in China.

It’s not Mexico’s Independence Day for the 100th time!

A common misconception is that Cinco De Mayo is Mexico’s Independence day. Well it’s not! Mexico’s independence Day is September 16th 1810.  That’s almost a 50 years of a difference between Cinco de Mayo and Mexico’s Independence Day.


Mexico had debts with France and France took this opportunity to try and seize the land. On their way to take land the Mexican army attacked them in a city named Puebla where Mexico defeat the French in a monumental battle known as the Battle of Puebla. Even though Mexico might have lost the war this battle gave them hope and a feeling of resistance. We celebrate it by having parades, reenactments, and eating. And as a common error made by people unknown to this it’s not Mexico’s Independence that is being celebrated. Hopefully this article helped in the understanding of this holiday celebrated on the fifth of May and not trying to look clueless on May fifth.

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