Cinco de Mayo – The Day David Walloped Goliath

A day of great pride and celebration in the United States. In Mexico; not so much. Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army’s victory over the invading French army at a place called Puebla, May 5, 1862. Point of fact, Cinco de Mayo does not celebrate Mexican Independence; that occurs on September 16th.

In a campaign to establish a strong foothold in Mexico, with possible sights on the United States, Napoleon III landed a large force in Veracruz, and those soldiers were marching toward Mexico City, when over 8,000 of them met up with Mexico’s 4,000 man army in a little place called Puebla. The outcome? Mexico’s under-manned and under-equipped army gave the French a battle to remember. David beat the daylights out of Goliath, and provided Mexico a much-needed boost in morale and hope.

It was not the end of the war, nor did France retreat from Mexico. The French ultimately succeeded in capturing Mexico City, and installed Emperor Maximilian I, who governed for around three years. In 1867, Mexico reclaimed itself, and was able to replace French rule with its own government, led by Benito Juarez.

But, thanks to a large Mexican-American population in the American West and Southwest, the Puebla victory has not been forgotten. It has emerged from the 1860’s gun firing salutes to today’s annual celebration of Mexican heritage and culture. Food, dance, music, patriotism; these fill the hearts, homes, and Latino communities with pride in a nation’s history and a people’s future.

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About Valleygrail

Native Californian by birth, Pacific Northwesterner by choice. Jack of all trades, master of none; always wishing I could stick with just one thing long enough to become expert. But then what about all those things left unattended? See? Not possible. I love life, my family, friends, a good book, Irish music, rain, fog, and a pint of Guinness. It's a good journey, and sharing with companions makes it even better. Thanks for being with me as I embrace it and you!
This entry was posted in American History, Baby Boomers, Current Events, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Cinco de Mayo – The Day David Walloped Goliath

  1. Doobster418 says:

    Thanks for the history lesson.


  2. Thanks — like so many of us, I actually had no idea what Cinco de Mayo actually commemorates. Good to know.


    • valleygrail says:

      There is a strong Mexican-American presence in and around my hometown in California, so I grew up with an awareness of such things. I love cultural celebrations, and thought it might be fun to share about this one. Thanks for the comment!


  3. btg5885 says:

    Thanks. I was not aware of the details.


  4. Tony says:

    Thanks for this very informative post. I honestly thought it was a creation of the liquor companies.


  5. I did not know about its roots in Mexico. Miami has a huge Cuban population and is celebrated with many events.


  6. lauramacky says:

    Here in California we do celebrate this holiday….thank you for sharing the meaning to all 🙂


  7. Don says:

    You’ve really taught me something. Thank you.


  8. YES! You tell it as it is. 🙂


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