In the early nineteenth century, Mexico, with a little influence from the US and France, began talking about a revolt against Spain. Father Miguel Hidalgo from Dolores, Mexico, was a leader of one of the rallying groups. Hidalgo and his officers were planning a revolt for late fall of 1810. The Spanish people found out about the revolt which led the Spanish Government to order the arrest of Hidalgo and his officers. When Hidalgo found out, he called a meeting at his church. He rang the church bell on the night of September 15, 1810, to call his congregation to mass. Here Father Hidalgo rallied the people to fight. He gave the speech which is now known as ‘Grito de Delores’, saying “Viva Mexico” and “Viva la independencia!” These famous words have been remembered and are said each year at the Independence Day celebrations.
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INDEPENDENCE DAY IS SEPTEMBER 16, NOT MAY 5
In countries outside of Mexico, the holiday Cinco De Mayo is very popular and has gotten labeled as Mexican Independence Day, however, this is incorrect. The fifth of May actually marks the Mexican victory over France in the Battle of Puebla. September 16th is the day Mexico claimed its independence and began the war against Spain, also known as Mexican Independence Day.
INDEPENDENCE DAY IS A TWO-DAY CELEBRATION.
Mexicans participate in “El Grito de Dolores” every September 15 at 11 PM, and the following day they have celebrations much like the 4th of July in the United States with parades, food, and family parties. On the 16th of September schools, most workplaces, and federal buildings are closed.
THE LEADER OF THE MEXICAN WAR OF INDEPENDENCE WAS ALSO A PRIEST.
Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, also known as simply, Miguel Hidalgo, was the “Father of the Nation” and rallied his people during mass on the evening of September 15, 1810, in Dolores, Guanajuato, Mexico. His proclamation that night that all people should band together and fight against the Spanish government became known as the infamous “El Grito” or Cry of Independence.
EACH YEAR EL GRITO IS REENACTED BY THE CURRENT MEXICAN PRESIDENT
He rings the bell of the National Palace in Mexico City then recites a cry of patriotism, ending with ¡Viva Mexico!, a phrase that Mexicans commonly use to express their love of country. Additionally, other reenactments occur all over the country by officials of towns and cities. They even perform the EL Grito in Puerto Vallarta, recited by the mayor each year.
PEOPLE ALL OVER THE WORLD CELEBRATE MEXICAN INDEPENDENCE DAY, NOT JUST PEOPLE IN MEXICO.
Being one of the most important holidays in Mexico, anyone with Mexican roots decorates their house with the flag colors of red, green, and white at this time of the year. Cities with large Mexican populations such as Houston, Texas, and Los Angeles, California have their own Mexican Independence day parades and celebrations where “paisanos”, or fellow countrymen, can join each other in celebration of their country.