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6 Facts about Mexican Independence Day

Mexican Independence Background

Mexico has a history of war and rebellion.

In the 1800’s, during the independence movement in Mexico, there were cultural, religious, and racial differences that existed and played a major role.  

There were two different movements that led to the Independence of Mexico.  There was a social movement, an unwillingness to continue to submit to a foreign ruler; and a political movement, led by characters such as José Maria Morelos and Miguel Hidalgo.

These movements were popular among workers, miners, and indigenous peoples. The movements were mostly hidden and worked through conspiracies.

Independence was an armed conflict, a violent rebellion.  It was made up of events that moved towards gaining independence and sought to vindicate other demands. This resulted in Mexican Independence from Spain. 

In celebration of Mexican Independence Day, we provide 8 facts.

6 Facts about Mexican Independence

1. Mexico was under Spanish rule for 300 years.

In the early 1500s, Spain seized control of Mexican territory and named it New Spain. Under the oppression of a caste system, Mexicans including mestizos, Creoles, indigenous and blacks were discriminated. Land possession and mining rights were controlled by Spain. Mexicans wereforced to labor in mines and on farms; most were exploited.

2.  A priest signaled the initial revolt.

A priest, known as Father Miguel Hidalgo, gave El Grito de Dolores at his church. This signaled a call for freedom, the beginning of the Mexican War of Independence.

3. The war continued.

Spain was killing revolutionaries. Within the first year, Father Hidalgo was captured and killed. The war continued for the next 11 years.

4. Mexican Independence in 1821

A Declaration of Independence of the Mexican Empire was drafted in Mexico City on September 28, 1821, following the collapse of the royal government. Presidential elections took place two years later.

5. Independence Day in Mexico is celebrated on September 16th.

Mexican Independence Day is a national holiday. In Mexico, Independence Day is commonly associated with historical ceremonies, parades, fireworks, speeches, and celebrations.  

6. Mexican Independence is a two-day celebration.

A major historical event in Mexico in 1810, was the night of El Grito de Dolores. Thus, September 15th is a reenactment of El Grito de Dolores (The Cry of Dolores).

September 16th is the grand celebration for Dia de la Independencia (Independence Day).

In Mexico, Independence Day is commonly associated with historical ceremonies, parades, fireworks, speeches, and celebrations.  

dancers in traditional clothing during a festival in mexico

7. The “Cry of Independence” is reenacted each year.

The Cry of Independence is celebrated on the night of September 15th.  At 11pm, the President of Mexico rings the bells at the National Palace in Mexico City. He then recites a variation of El Grito de Dolores. That night, municipal presidents also recall the call for independence from Spain. Fireworks displays and music then follow.

8. Mexican Independence Day is celebrated around the world.

Mexican communities all over the world celebrate Mexican Independence.  Cities in the United States like Los Angeles, San Diego, and Houston have large celebrations for Mexican Independence Day.