Cinco de Mayo

Battle of Puebla

Taking advantage of the disordered state of Mexico and the American Civil War, in late 1861 French Emperor Napoleon III, acting in conjunction with both Spanish and British forces, sent French troops to Mexico to collect debts that had been repudiated by Mexican President Benito Juarez.

On May 5th 1862 these French forces under General Charles de Lorencez were defeated at the Battle of Puebla by the Mexican soldiers of General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguin.

Cinco de Mayo comemmorates this victory over French invaders, and, although not an official holiday in Mexico, is celebrated widely.

Despite the Mexican victory at Puebla, the French ultimately triumphed, and in spring 1864 established the short-lived regime of Emperor Maximilian. This Second Empire of Mexico ended when Benito Juarez, aided by foreign powers including the reunified United States, defeated and executed Maximilian in 1867.

Published in: on May 5, 2010 at 12:01 am  Leave a Comment  

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