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Día de Independencia - Not The Day Independence was Won

After years of teaching my students about Independence day (el Día de Independencia), having fiestas on September 16th, and explaining what 'el Grito' is, I FINALLY got to experience the holiday in Mexico with locals! Viva Mexico!

September 16 is one of Mexico's most important holidays. It is considered Independence day not because Mexico gained its independence from Spain on September 16th, 1810, but to celebrate the day Miguel Hidalgo is believed to have made his cry of independence, called El Grito de la Independencia. This was a motivating speech that priest Father Hidalgo gave in the town of Dolores, in the state of Guanajuato (in north-central Mexico). It was actually on September 15th, 1810, that Hidalgo, one of the nation's leaders during the War of Independence, gave a speech known as the cry of Dolores (el Grito de Dolores).  

In this speech, Hidalgo motivated the common people to revolt against the oppressive Spanish regime. Within hours, Hidalgo had an army: …

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