An introduction to the cinco de mayo mexicos second biggest national holiday

This is a do-it-yourself procedure. When fajitas are cooked cut into small slices.

An introduction to the cinco de mayo mexicos second biggest national holiday

People will flood into the bars and the streets with sombreros on their heads and mariachi bands at their sides, showing their deep respect for Mexican culture by getting as drunk as humanly possible.

None of which is part of the holiday. As it turns out, Cinco de Mayo is easily the most misunderstood holiday on the calendar. The first Cinco de Mayo celebration was held on May 5,in California.

They spent their May 5,trying to keep the French Foreign Legion from killing their families. It put a bit of a damper on the mood. Mexico never managed to turn May 5 into a holiday, but the US did. For most Mexicans, May 5 is just a day like any other. The second-largest one is in Chicago, followed by Houston and then a whole bunch of other US cities.

Usually, people make speeches, have picnics, and put up flags. There is only one city in Mexico that really celebrates it: So, if you want an authentic Mexican Cinco de Mayo, you might want to get your hands on a real French Foreign Legion uniform.

The holiday is supposed to commemorate a battle that was fought there. Yes, Mexico does have an Independence Day, but they celebrate it on September France was storming in on Mexico at the time and had the city of Puebla under siege.

They were outnumbered two to one, and they were up against what was considered the most powerful army in the world at the time. On that day, Mexico made a stand against France. Against all odds, they managed to repel the French attack and force them to retreat. It was a decisive victory: The Mexicans lost fewer than men but managed to take down French soldiers.

Not Mexican independence or culture. And with that new assurance in their own strength, they got conquered by France, lost the war, and briefly became a French colony. As it turns out, Cinco de Mayo just celebrates one day of victory in what was otherwise a terrible war for Mexico. Sure, they managed to beat the French back for a day.

But afterward, France called in reinforcements and absolutely destroyed the Mexican army. A year after the Battle of Puebla, while Californians were celebrating the first Cinco de Mayo, the Mexicans tried to recreate their victory. This time, they totally failed. The French beat them and, by May 17, captured the fort in Puebla and destroyed it.

Not long after, the French installed an Austrian archduke as emperor of Mexico. So Mexico thoroughly lost that one. Yes, they did eventually get their independence back, but Cinco de Mayo celebrates a battle that ended with Mexico spending three years under French rule.

There were two men who were celebrated as the heroes of the Battle of Puebla: General Ignacio Zaragoza and Porfirio Diaz. Zaragoza died of typhoid fever shortly afterward.

An introduction to the cinco de mayo mexicos second biggest national holiday

But Diaz lived long enough to make a legacy of his own—and the things he did after the war make it a little hard to call him a hero.

At the time, Mexicans saw Diaz as a national hero. He was so well-loved after that battle that he ended up running for president. InDiaz won a presidential election that historians generally agree was rigged, and he liked being in power so much that he decided not to leave.

Diaz became the de facto dictator of Mexico, denying the people fair elections and refusing to leave power for 35 years. The holiday is about how the war affected the US.Cinco de Mayo is not to be confused with Mexican Independence Day, which falls on September The latter holiday was established in , some 50 years before the Battle of Puebla occurred.

The latter holiday was established in , some 50 years before the Battle of Puebla occurred. These close ties were also real in , the year of Cinco de Mayo and second year of the American Civil War.

The two events were tied, as Brian Greene reported for US News and World Report: As the French were making war with Mexico, the American Confederacy was courting Napoleon’s help in its conflict with the United States.

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Ramos noted that prior to the first Cinco de Mayo, Mexico was a nation with strong regional differences, from the Pacific coast to Northern Mexico to the Yucatan. “The Battle of Puebla helped the country coalesce around the idea of a unified Mexican identity.” 2.

Cinco de Mayo commemorates a military victory over France — not Spain. Day of the Dead is a joyful time that helps people remember the deceased and celebrate their memory.

An introduction to the cinco de mayo mexicos second biggest national holiday

TREATS FOR THE DECEASED First, people set up a candlelit altar in their homes so spirits can find their way back to their relatives. This was Cinco de Mayo, north-of-the-border style, a second-year repeat project of the mothers with children in Westminster School District's Title 1 compensatory education program.

American potluck, augmented by such gringo mainstays as macaroni salad and Boston baked beans. Cinco de Mayo is one of the biggest celebrations in the United States, with estimates for beer sales on the holiday outweighing even the Super Bowl.

While many people think May 5 is the Mexican Day of Independence, the date actually marks the country’s small, but significant battle against the French in Mexico’s city of Puebla.

Cinco de Mayo - HISTORY