Mexican Revolution Curious facts that you did not know about
Por: PDI Now!
The pioneers of the Mexican Revolution were the writers and journalists brothers Ricardo and Enrique Flores Magón, who published various newspapers opposing Porfirio Díaz (the main newspaper was Regeneración), who were imprisoned and exiled. In fact they are the creators of the famous revolutionary phrase ‘Lnd and freedom’.
The role of women was really important for the revolutionary struggle because they were responsible for tasks such as preparing food, washing clothes, caring for the wounded, but at the same time they were stealthy spies, arms dealers and some also took up arms.
One of the famous was Petra Herrera who is known for dressing as a man to fight in the north army, however despite his skills on the battlefield once Pancho Villa fond out she was a woman, he refused to give military credit to a woman and he did not promote Petra Herrea as General, so she abandoned Villa’s forces and formed her own brigade exclusively for women.
As well as the famous “La Adelita” of the popular revolutionary song, which is said to be inspired by Adela Velarde Pérez, born in Ciudad Juárez Chihuahua, on September 8, 1900. In the revolutionary environment, everyone besieged her, but she was elusive and without losing the kindness got rid of the “gallants” who sought their favors. Adela joined the army of nurses who assisted the wounded revolutionaries; he specialized in talking to the dying to prepare them to die, and in many cases he warned his relatives when they died.
Likewise, children as young as 5 years old were entrusted with actions such as caring for animals, carrying water from wells to camps or stores, as well as bringing tortillas and food to revolutionaries.
Later when they were between 7 and 9 years old, the men joined the war bands and continued with the care of the animals. After 10 years, the revolutionaries assigned them war work and military training. The children could already carry rifles and some were sent directly to combat. However, one of the most common functions for children was espionage.
According to testimonies of the time and historical documents, the revolutionaries sent contingents of children to the villages that were still on the way to let them know what the situation was. In addition, they sent them in advance to see if there were troops around and returned to give notice, says Velázquez García.
Emiliano Zapata was not poor. Although in history they have painted him as a man of scarce resources, there are records about his possessions of land and animals. He even liked French food and cognac.
His great passion was horses, so he was dedicated to the trade of these animals when work in the field decreased. At 30 he was the best horse tamer in the region and many haciendas disputed it.
It is believed that he used a double for some public events due to the Government’s constant siege. However, people recognized him because he was taller than his double. After being killed, people looked for the mole that was on the top of his eye to verify that it really was his corpse.
He did not like to drink alcohol, he thought that it was the main cause of the problems, he destroyed several canteens and threatened to kill anyone inside his battalion who tried to get drunk.
Some research indicates that he was married at least 27 times, both by the church and outside it, had about 26 children. He gave shelter to all of his women and children, even sent some to college in the United States.
In an interview with The New York Times he said: “I did not go to school one day in my whole life.” However, Villa knew the importance of education and its transforming role: when governor of Chihuahua created 50 schools in a month, he brought teachers, whom he convinced by telling them that it was the profession he most admired.
Just as in the Spanish conquest, many men did not fall for the war but for diseases such as smallpox, typhus, malaria and the Spanish influenza that invaded the country during the revolution. In fact, of the 14 million inhabitants that existed in Mexico at that time, 11 million lived within the hacienda system, of which 9 million were peonage workers, that is, they were slaves of the haciendas with subhuman living conditions.
Agustín Víctor Casasola was a Mexican photographer who captured the reality of the Mexican Revolution in images, whichs forms the collection of the Casasola Archive. It was one of the first documentary photographers in Latin America.
Although one of the most popular images about that time, it was not taken by Casasola, but by Gerónimo Hernández. We refer to the one where a woman looks out of a train car. It is also known that the Mexican hero Francisco Villa was so charismatic and photogenic that the American production company Mutual Film Company produced a fiction film about his life and allowed himself to interpret it, “The Life of General Villa”, 1914. Movie fragmentes are preserved in Mexico.
Although the phrase ‘effective suffrage, no reelection’ is awarded to the Mexican businessman and politician Francisco I. Madero, who with his proclamation against the Porfiriato initiated the Mexican Revolution of 1910. This phrase was said by Porfirio Diaz, who did not want Benito Juarez re-elected. Finally, although it was a war where a great deal of blood flowed from social revolutionaries, the ideals of the popular and peasant currents of the Mexican Revolution were embodied in the Mexican Constitution of 1917, which at that time was the most advanced in the world.