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Sunday, 22 April 2018

9 Interesting Facts About the History of Cinco de Mayo

9 Interesting Facts About the History of Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo is an annual celebration held on May 5. The date is observed to commemorate the Mexican Army's unlikely victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla, on May 5, 1862, under the leadership of General Ignacio Zaragoza.

Here are some facts about Cinco de Mayo

It's not Mexico's Independence Day.

Many people believe that Cinco de Mayo marks Mexico gaining independence as a country, similar to Independence Day in the U.S. And while it does celebrate a national victory, Cinco de Mayo isn't Mexican Independence Day (which is actually on September 16).

Cinco de Mayo (Spanish for May 5) celebrates the Mexican army's victory over France at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.

Mexico was the underdog in the Battle of Puebla.

The Battle of Puebla was part of the Franco-Mexican War. One of the reasons it's so significant is because the French army was much larger and better prepared than the Mexican army. They had more weaponry and more men at their disposal but still lost the battle to Mexico (though they did eventually win the war).

President Franklin Roosevelt helped bring Cinco de Mayo celebrations to the U.S.

The holiday started to be celebrated in the U.S. after President Roosevelt created the “Good Neighbor Policy” in 1933 to improve relations with Latin American countries.

The holiday became really popular in the U.S. in the 1980s.

It wasn't until the '70s and '80s that Cinco de Mayo became the party-friendly event we know today. Beer companies were looking to target more Spanish-speaking populations, so they capitalized on Cinco de Mayo and made it into a drinking holiday. Today, Cinco de Mayo is more of an American holiday than a Mexican one.

Americans eat 81 million pounds of avocados on Cinco de Mayo.

Yes, Americans eat a ton of avocados on Cinco de Mayo. And we wash it down with $2.9 billion dollars worth of margaritas, according to Forbes.

Los Angeles is home to the largest Cinco de Mayo celebration in the country.

Los Angeles hosts one of the biggest Cinco de Mayo parties in the world, called Fiesta Broadway. The event attracts hundreds of thousands of people and features musical performances, dancing, traditional Mexican food, and more.

Mexican clothing used to be made with agave, cotton, and bark.

If you've ever been to a Cinco de Mayo parade or any other Mexican cultural celebration, you've probably seen dancers wearing gorgeous colorful dresses like this one. They're often called "Puebla dresses" or "China problem." Today, they incorporate a variety of materials including lace, satin, and silk, but the earliest dresses were made with naturally available materials like cotton, bark, and agave plants.

Mariachi music was created in Mexico and dates back to the 19th century.

Mariachi originated in Jalisco, Mexico, in the 19th century. The musicians would travel from town to town singing songs of revolutionary heroes and enemies, and carrying news from one place to another.

The traditional dance is called the "Baile folklórico."

Baile folklorico is a traditional Mexican folk dance that dates back to Mexico's 1810 War of Independence, when the country was becoming more nationalistic and proud of its cultural identity. It's characterized both by the colorful clothing and the mariachi music.

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