Capturing Cinco de Mayo on Instagram
On the fifth of May, or el cinco de Mayo, Mexican communities celebrate their heritage. Though Cinco de Mayo as it has come to be known is celebrated primarily by Mexican-American communities in the United States, the holiday’s roots begin with the 1862 Battle of Puebla in Puebla, Mexico. In the wake of a series of wars throughout the mid-1800s, the French army marched on Veracruz, sending the Mexican president and government into retreat. At the small city of Puebla, however, Mexican resistance defeated the French army despite being heavily outnumbered. Though not a national holiday in Mexico, the town of Puebla marks the day as an official holiday and celebrates with parades and festivities. Drawing on the bolstered morale and pride from the victory, Mexican-Americans in the western United States first adopted Cinco de Mayo as a holiday in the 1860s. Today, Cinco de Mayo stands as an important celebration of cultural heritage and is celebrated with festivals and performances of traditional mariachi and baile folklórico in cities with large Mexican-American communities such as Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco and Houston.