What exactly is Mexican Independence Day?

A souvenir vendor wearing a Mexican hat and a mask to curb the spread of the new coronavirus pushes his cart to a new location after authorities allowed the selling of patriotic souvenirs for the upcoming independence day celebration, further away from the city's downtown area as a precaution against the spread of COVID-19 in Mexico City, Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)
A souvenir vendor wearing a Mexican hat and a mask to curb the spread of the new coronavirus pushes his cart to a new location after authorities allowed the selling of patriotic souvenirs for the upcoming independence day celebration, further away from the city's downtown area as a precaution against the spread of COVID-19 in Mexico City, Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano) (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

September 16 is Mexican Independence Day, and the background behind it no doubt resonates deeply with many.

This is the day in 1810 where a Catholic priest named Miguel Hidalgo uttered a plea for freedom and independence for Mexico from Spain, which had begun taking control of Mexico in the 1500′s. Father Hidalgo’s cry for freedom came in the form of a speech known as the Grito de Dolores.

It spurred the beginning of the Mexican Independence War, which lasted for over a decade and led to around 15,000 Mexican deaths (including Hidalgo, who was beheaded in 1811), and ultimately led to Mexico gaining its independence in 1821.

Although September 27 is the day that independence was ultimately won and declared, September 16 is recognized as Mexican Independence Day because that day is looked upon as the ultimate key that led to the country earning its freedom. It marks the beginning of the struggle, the beginning of hope.


About the Author:

Born in Canada but raised in Houston, Howard joined KPRC 2 in 2021 after five years at ESPN. Before that, Howard was a reporter on Houston Rockets and Houston Astros game broadcasts. Among the events that Howard has covered on site: the NBA bubble and the Basketball Hall of Fame inductions for both Yao Ming and Tracy McGrady. He's H-town proud!