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May 5, 1863, First Cinco de Mayo

 
Geogal
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05/05/2008 02:06 PM
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May 5, 1863, First Cinco de Mayo
I just found some interesting history, not sure how many know this already.

"A common misconception in the United States is that Cinco de Mayo is Mexico's Independence Day; Mexico's Independence Day is actually September 16 (dieciséis de septiembre in Spanish), which is the most important national patriotic holiday in Mexico.
According to a paper published by the UCLA Center for the Study of Latino Health and Culture about the origin of the observance of Cinco de Mayo in the United States, the modern American focus on that day first started in California in the 1860s in response to the resistance to French rule in Mexico. The 2007 paper notes that "The holiday, which has been celebrated in California continuously since 1863, is virtually ignored in Mexico.""
[link to en.wikipedia.org]

I've heard that it's first observance was in San Francisco, 1863, and was in part an attempt to drum up votes. Lincoln was running for a second term. California population was about 1/3 hispanic, at the time. So, in a sense it's really an American holiday more than Mexican. Just another excuse to party and parade, now a days. But, definitely fun!

here's more interesting info on it. [link to www.mexonline.com]
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