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All About the Holidays: Cinco de Mayo

2 minutes

(male narrator) Cinco de Mayo in English means "the 5th of May." That's the day, in 1862, when the Mexican Army won a surprising victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla. Many people think Cinco de Mayo celebrates Mexican independence, but that's not true. Mexico had been independent from Spain since 1810 but was unable to pay its debts to Europe. France saw an opportunity to move in and claim territory. Six thousand French troops advanced on Puebla, a small town in eastern Mexico. An underdog force of about 2,000 loyal Mexicans defeated them. Their heroism was a source of great pride for Mexicans. Today Cinco de Mayo is celebrated more in the U.S. than it is in Mexico, especially in areas with large Mexican-American populations, like Los Angeles and Chicago. It is celebrated with Mexican food, mariachi music, dancing, and other special customs. Cinco de Mayo honors the strength and courage of the Mexicans at the Battle of Puebla and a victory that seemed impossible. Have you ever overcome an obstacle that made you want to celebrate?

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On May 5, 1862, the Mexican Army won a surprise victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla. Find out more about how people celebrate and honor this historic day. Part of the “All About the Holidays” series.

Media Details

Runtime: 2 minutes

All About the Holidays
Episode
1 minute
Grade Level: 4 - 8
All About the Holidays
Episode
2 minutes
Grade Level: 4 - 8
All About the Holidays
Episode 1
2 minutes
Grade Level: 4 - 8
All About the Holidays
Episode 2
2 minutes
Grade Level: 4 - 8
All About the Holidays
Episode 3
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All About the Holidays
Episode 4
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Episode 5
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Episode 6
1 minute
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Episode 7
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Grade Level: 4 - 8
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Episode 8
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Grade Level: 4 - 8