- May 5 -

Cinco de Mayo

Literally

Cinco de Mayo

Literally "the Fifth of May," Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican Holiday celebrating the Battle of Puebla, which took place on May 5, 1862. In 1861, France sent a massive army to invade Mexico, as they wanted to collect on some war debts. The French army was much larger, better trained and equipped than the Mexicans struggling to defend the road to Mexico City. It rolled through Mexico until it reached Puebla, where the Mexicans made a valiant stand, and, against all logic, won a huge victory. It was short-lived, as the French army regrouped and continued; eventually taking Mexico City, but the euphoria of an unlikely victory against overwhelming odds is remembered every May fifth.

Cinco de Mayo is celebrated more in the United States of America, by Mexicans and Americans alike, than it is in Mexico. One theory for why it is more popular in the USA is that at one time, it was celebrated in all of Mexico and by Mexicans living in former Mexican territories such as Texas and California. It was ignored in Mexico after a while but still celebrated north of the border, which never got out of the habit of remembering the famous battle.

In Puebla and in many USA cities with large Mexican populations, there are parades, dancing and festivals. Traditional Mexican food is often served or sold. Mariachi bands fill town squares, and a lot of Dos Equis and Corona beers are served. It’s a fun holiday, really more about celebrating the Mexican way of life than about remembering a battle which happened 150 years ago. It is sometimes referred to as a “Mexican St. Patrick’s Day.” In the USA, schoolchildren do units on the holiday, decorate their classrooms and try their hand at cooking some basic Mexican foods. All over the world, Mexican restaurants bring in Mariachi bands and offer specials for what’s almost certain to be a packed house.

Source:
http://latinamericanhistory.about.com/od/thehistoryofmexico/p/10cincodemayobasics.htm

Categories:

More holidays on this day:

International Midwives' Day
Kodomo no Hi - Children's Day (Japan)

You may also like...

Interesting events from History category.

Italy's Liberation Day - Festa della Liberazione

Italy's Liberation Day (Festa della Liberazione), also known as the Anniversary of the Liberation (Anniversario della liberazione d'Italia), Anniversary of the Resistance (anniversario della Resistenza), or simply April 25 is a national Italian holiday commemorating the end of the second world war...

Cinco de Mayo

Literally "the Fifth of May," Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican Holiday celebrating the Battle of Puebla, which took place on May 5, 1862. In 1861, France sent a massive army to invade Mexico, as they wanted to collect on some war debts. The French army was much larger, better trained and equipped than...

First Polish Legislative Election, 1989

The Polish legislative election of 1989 was the tenth election to the Sejm, the parliament of the People's Republic of Poland, and eleventh in Communist Poland. It took place on 4 June (first round) and 18 June (second round). Not all parliamentary seats were freely contested, but the...

Purple Heart Anniversary

'Let it be known that he who wears the military order of the purple heart has given of his blood in the defense of his homeland and shall forever be revered by his fellow countrymen.' - George Washington, August 7, 1782 The Purple Heart is a decoration awarded in the name of the President to...

Dream Day Quest and Jubilee

'I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal'...I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their...

United Nations Day

On October 24, 1945, the United Nations (UN) came into force when the five permanent members of the security council ratified the charter that had been drawn up earlier that year. These members were: France, the Republic of China, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom and the United States. Since...

Download KeepIn Calendar

Enjoy the interesting stories even on your phone or tablet