FATHER OF CINCO DE MAYO
On May 5, 1862, in the Spanish Colonial city of Puebla, General Ignacio S. Zaragoza and his soldiers overpowered French expedition forces in the Battle of Puebla. The victory helped solidify President Benito Juarez’ reform movement, organized to resist French occupation of Mexico and restore a Mexican Republic. Today, the victory is celebrated in both Mexico and the U.S. and is commonly known as “Cinco de Mayo”. Zaragoza was born in the Mexican state of Coahuila y Texas in the early 1800s, in the village of Bahia de Espiritu Santo, today known as Goliad. The Zaragoza Birthplace Historic Site commemorates this moment with a period reconstruction of the Zaragoza home featuring artifacts of the General’s military career and furnishings that reflect life along the Mexican frontier in the early 19th century. Although little is known about the original building, efforts by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (stewards of the site as well as the nearby Goliad State Park) constructed what is considered an estimate of what the original home would have looked like. In 1980, the site received a larger-than-life bronze of General Zaragoza courtesy of the state of Puebla.