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cinco de mayo

Cinco de Mayo, May 5th, will soon be here!!  At La Posta de Mesilla Restaurant and Cantina, the occasion is always a colorful and festive one. This cultural event is celebrated throughout the southwest and parts of our country with Fiestas inspired by what happened in 1862 between a ill-equipped group of Mexicans and one of the most powerful armies in the world. 

In 1861, Benito Juarez became president of Mexico at a time when the country was in financial crisis. They owed money to many of the largest countries in the world but simply could not pay their debt and soon defaulted. Juarez was able to negotiate settlements and agreements with Britain and Spain, but the French wanted more. In fact, they wanted Mexico.

France invaded Mexico in 1861 with 6,000 soldiers in an attempt to force Mexico to repay their debts, knowing full well they couldn’t. Juarez managed to assemble 2,000 men under General Ignacio Zaragoza, who met the French forces at the small town of Puebla de Los Angeles.

Most of the soldiers under Zaragoza’s command were indigenous Mexicans or had indigenous ancestry. They were also poorly supplied and equipped, facing one of the best armies in the world.

The battle lasted all day. When the French finally retreated, they had lost nearly 500 soldiers while less than 100 Mexicans had lost their lives.

In reality, the battle was small. But in the end, France managed to take over the country and install Austrian Archduke Maximilian as emperor. However, the battle became a rallying cry for all of Mexico. Six years later, the people of Mexico would fight for and win their independence.

 In the 1960s, the story of the battle was revisited by Latino pride activists who drew attention to the fact that the Mexican soldiers at Puebla were indigenous or partly indigenous. In other words, they were truly “Mexican”!

From these roots, Cinco de Mayo became a celebration of Mexican heritage and has since grown into a Fiesta of pride for those who trace their family’s history south of the border. This Fiesta now takes place in many cities and towns across the United States!

If you’re going to host your own celebration, we have some great ideas you might consider. Try our famous Salsa recipe, or our recipe for Guacamole. And what’s a celebration without Margaritas? Our YouTube channel shows you how to make some of our most popular ones.

But if you’re close by, let us do the work for you!  Stop by and join us on for this special day and share the food, drink, fun and culture that are at the heart of who we are at, “La Posta de Mesilla!”

Happy Cinco de Mayo!