The Real Cinco de Mayo

Yesterday was Cinco de Mayo (the 5th of May), and we hope you all found at least some time to celebrate and enjoy the day amidst all the hard-core studying.

Often mistaken for a celebration of Mexican independence, Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army’s victory in the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War.  On May 5, 1862, General Lorencez and 6,000 French troops marched towards Puebla, Mexico.  Greatly outnumbered, the Mexicans fought and improbably defeated the French army at Puebla.

Now, Cinco de Mayo is widely celebrated in the United States as a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage.  Even Congress has officially recognized the holiday, passing a number of resolutions entitled “Recognizing the historical significance of the Mexican holiday of Cinco de Mayo.”  For example, S. Res. 128, 111th Cong. (2009),  H. Res. 230, 111th Cong. (2009), and H. Res. 347, 110th Cong. (2007).   This year, President Obama held a reception at the White House to celebrate Cinco de Mayo.

Check out these links from the Law Library of Congress for more information.