Texas and Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo postage stamp issued in 1998
Cinco de Mayo postage stamp issued in 1998 | Source

Cinco de Mayo: A Cultural Event

Cinco de Mayo is celebrated along the American border with Mexico with festivals, food, and dancing. In some places it is more about the cervezas and margaritas than the cultural events, but that adds to the fun atmosphere.

Many people think that Cinco de Mayo is a celebration of Mexican Independence but that is not true. The 5 of May is the anniversary of a battle in the Mexican state of Puebla that took place around 1862 with the French. The United States was involved in the civil war and was not able to offer help at the time and this battle raised the morale of the Mexican people and offered hope in a very dismal time. Although the French eventually conquored Mexico it did not last and after the Civil War the Americans helped with the rebellion and eventually the Mexican people were free of their conquorers three years after the Battle of Puebla.

The Mexican people had suffered many years of oppression dating back to the Spanish Conquistadors in the Yucatan. The Battle of Puebla celebrations began in the nineteenth century almost immediately after the hard fought battle took place in 1862.

Battle of Puebla Reenactment in Mexico City

From the early 1930s battle reenactments have taken place yearly just outside Mexico City, Mexico nearly a hundred km away from the city of Puebla where the actual battle took place on the famous route to Vera Cruz on the coast.

A markerFiestas Patrias Austin, Texas -
Austin, TX, USA
[get directions]

Fiestas Patrias in Austin since 1978

Porfirio Diaz, Mexican President from 1876-1911
Porfirio Diaz, Mexican President from 1876-1911 | Source
Cinco de Mayo Cake
Cinco de Mayo Cake
Cinco de Mayo food
Cinco de Mayo food

Little Known Fact About Cinco de Mayo

Mexican president José de la Cruz Porfirio Díaz Mori (1830-1915) was a young officer who distinguished himself during the Battle of Puebla. He rose through the military ranks to become a general who eventually turned to politics. He became a ruthless dictator. The Mexican economy boomed under his leadership and it was known as the Porfiriato. Although the economy boomed it was a time of virtual slavery for the average Mexican citizen. After rigging an election against Francisco I. Madero, Diaz was thrown out of power. His actions brought about the Mexican Revolution which lasted from 1910 - 1920.

Many Mexican immigrants left the country during the years of the revolution. They entered this country legally through Laredo in Texas and other border towns in the lower United States. Porfirio Diaz left a mixed legacy for the Mexican people. He was barely literate but was a great mind and other than Santa Anna there has been no one else so important to Mexico since the time of Independence which was declared by Father Miguel Hidalgo September 16, 1810, in the pulpit in Dolores, Mexico.

Texas Festivals

While there are many festivals along the border, there are numerous large festivals all across the state of Texas. In San Marcos there will be a Menudo cook off. Traditionally, there are parades and pinatas for the children. In Austin there will be a Cinco de Mayo 5k run, while in San Antonio there will be celebrations at the Historic Market Square. Check out Fiesta Fantasias 2010.

The Travel Texsite for Texas tourism has a lengthy list of celebrations that you can find out more about these festivals if you are in or near Texas in May 2010.

Wherever you happen to find yourself in Texas this May you will be sure to find something of interest to make your Cinco de Mayo celebration fun!

Beer and Parties

Cinco de Mayo (May 5) is one of the largest days for beer consumption in the United States, second only to St. Patrick's Day celebrated by the Irish. In spite of the common belief in the US that May 5 marks the date of Mexican Independence from France, the Battle of Puebla has served to bring together Mexican Americans and others in a cultural celebration that kick's off a month that is known for Mother's Day and Memorial Day.

Cinco de Mayo Celebration

Who do Mexican Americans celebrate Cinco de Mayo

  • To celebrate Mexican Independence
  • To celebrate the Battle of Puebla
See results without voting

2013 Cinco de Mayo Edinburg, Texas

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Comments 11 comments

Kurt 3 years ago

Holy shnitzi, this is so cool thank you.

Micky Dee profile image

Micky Dee 6 years ago

It wasn't failure but inspiration. Thanks again!

Smireles profile image

Smireles 6 years ago from Texas Author

Don't feel bad, Peggy! I did too, and I should have known better! lol

Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

I learned something! Thought it was a celebration of Independence... Thanks!

jjmyles profile image

jjmyles 6 years ago from Pacific Northwest

I love Cinco De Mayo! I grew up in Los Angeles and every year we would have a huge Cinco De Mayo celebration. The tamales were always a huge part of the celebration. The family would get together the day before and make dozens of tamales along with other authentic culinary delights for the party.

sheila b. profile image

sheila b. 6 years ago

Loved all of the pictures. Also, the explanation of the origins of the holiday. You're right, I had it wrong, though I think most young Mexican Americans also have it wrong.

sheila b. profile image

sheila b. 6 years ago

Loved all of the pictures. Also, the explanation of the origins of the holiday. You're right, I had it wrong, though I think most young Mexican Americans also have it wrong.

Smireles profile image

Smireles 6 years ago from Texas Author

Thank you Pamela99,

At the last minute I thought someone might enjoy having this list of festivals and resources in one plac.

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States

I love the pictures because of all the bright colors. This was a wonderful hub and I sure would like to try some of that food.

Smireles profile image

Smireles 6 years ago from Texas Author

Thank you, Ann. I appreciate you reading and commenting.

Ann Nonymous profile image

Ann Nonymous 6 years ago from Virginia

Wow! the food looks great! Thanks for making me hungry, smireles and for a good read!

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