By Elaine Gallagher Hi teachers. Before we knew it, school began again, and it seems like we just barely began summer vacation. Here are some […]
Hi teachers. Before we knew it, school began again, and it seems like we just barely began summer vacation. Here are some activities to get ready for September, celebrating holiday México.
Young Heroes of ChapultepecSeptember 13th
When the American army led by General Winfled Scott began attack on the Chapultepec Castle on September 13, 1847, the director ordered all cadets to abandon the castle and return to their families. At that time the Chapultepec Castle was a Military School.
The cadets refused to leave the castle and stayed at their posts, aware that they were sacrificing their lives. The Mexican cadets who set the example of dying for their country were Juan Escutia, Fernando Montes de Oca, Agustín Melgar, Vicente Suárez, Juan de la Barrera, and Francisco Márquez.
The cadet Juan Escutia had entered the Military School on September 9th of that same year as a Castle guard when it was attacked. When the castle was taken over, Escutia took the nation’s flag so the enemy could not get to it. Since he was seriously wounded, he climbed to the top of a tower and jumped down wrapped in the flag. He fell dead.
The first monument in memory of these young heroes was built at the site where Juan Escutia died.
Independence Day September 16th
Miguel Hidalgo was born in the ranch of San Vicente in the district of Guanajuato on May 8, 1753. He studied in the city of Valladolid, the present Morelia, and was ordained priest in 1778. He occupied the chair of theology and was later named rector of the College of San Nicholas, and finally appointed parish priest of Dolores in the state of Guanajuato. The town is now known as Dolores Hidalgo. Every morning Miguel Hidalgo would ring the bell in his church. The people of his parish were used to hearing the bell. But on the morning of September 16, 1810, they heard something unusual. As Father Hidalgo rang the bell that morning he shouted, “Viva la Independencia! Viva Mexico!”
Father Hidalgo’s cry for Mexican Independence started a long fight for freedom from Spain. His words (called El Grito de Dolores) spread all over Mexico. He tried to lead a Mexican war for independence. But in 1811 he was captured by the Spanish and executed in Chihuahua on July 30th of that year as a traitor.
Today, Miguel Hidalgo is remembered as the Father of Mexican Independence. The Mexican people celebrate his famous shout on September 16th as Mexican Independence Day. Every year the President of Mexico rings the very same bell that Father Hidalgo rang in 1810, and repeats El Grito de Dolores.
To show pride in their country on Independence Day, Mexicans fly the flag and sing the national anthem. In each city and town, crowds gather in the town-square. Flags and wreaths of flowers drape the buildings. Confetti and paper streamers fly everywhere.