The (Real) History of Cinco de Mayo
Cinco de Mayo is thought of as Mexican Independence Day by nine out of every 10 Americans, but those nine out of ten are mistaken.
Napoleon III, hoping to gain control of Mexico, sent general Charles de Lorencez with an army to storm and take control of Mexico's capital. Little did they know they would be faced with heavy resistance from the Mexican General Ignacio Zaragoza and his army of roughly 2,000 (There is some speculation as to how many men were in the French invading army, but it is estimated to be anywhere from 4,000-6,000), who were able to fend off the French and win the battle.
This battle took place on May 5, 1862, and was declared a holiday by Benito Juarez (President of Mexico) on May 9, just four days later! Even though in 1864 the French took control of Mexico, the battle still lifted spirits of the resistance, and by joining up with the rest of the Americas, they were able to drive out the French.
This hard-fought battle is the real story behind Cinco de Mayo. Hopefully this clears up any misconceptions that are to be had.
Happy Cinco de Mayo!