Cinco de Mayo (1862)
On May 5th, Mexicans all around the world celebrate the day that the Mexican army defeated the French at the Battle of Puebla. When Emperor Napoleon III of France attempted to build a French-controlled empire in Mexico, this critical incident occurred.
A smaller Mexican army led by General Ignacio Zaragoza was able to repel the superior French forces and save the city of Puebla. Despite the boost to Mexican morale, the triumph did not end the French intervention, which continued for another few years.
In the United States, where Mexican-American communities commemorate their ancestry, Cinco de Mayo has become a symbol of Mexican resistance, pride, and solidarity. Although Cinco de Mayo did not significantly alter the French intervention, it does serve as a reminder of Mexico’s resolve to protect its independence.