A Quick History of Cinco De Mayo


By Mac Bettersworth, reporter

Cinco De Mayo, the day Americans tend to celebrate all things Mexican. But what is this holiday really?


Held on the 5th of May every year, Cinco De Mayo celebrates the Mexican Army’s victory over France at the Battle of Puebla.


Often incorrectly called Mexican Independence Day, Cinco De Mayo celebrates only a single victory. After falling into financial ruin, France, Spain, and Britain demanded repayment. Britain and Spain negotiated with Mexico and withdrew armed forces from the country. France, however, did not. Napoleon III decided to try to claim some Mexican territory. In 1861, a French fleet stormed Veracruz, driving Mexican soldiers into a retreat.


On May 5, 1962, a Texas-born general gathered and led an army to regain territory. This battle lasted from sunrise to almost sunset, victory coming to Mexico.


Winning this battle improved the resistance movement. In 1967- thanks to US military support- France finally completely withdrew.