By Steve Kovacs (Introduction by Chuck Gibson)

LOVELAND, OH (May 5, 2022) – In Issue 2022-080 of Steve Kovacs Fun with Maps, we celebrate Cinco de Mayo along with Mexico.


Although the US has come to consider May 5th as the official celebration of Mexican-American culture, much as St. Patrick’s Day has come to represent the Irish-American culture, the origins of May 5th celebrations have little to do with the US.

The celebrations serve as remembrance of Mexico’s victory over the French at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. 

Although the victory was a morale booster for the smaller, less equipped Mexican forces, in the long run the French were victorious and eventually occupied Mexico City.

In Mexico, celebrations tend to be ceremonial, with parades and battle reenactments, but the US has embraced the holiday with gusto.  It has been celebrated in California since 1863 and spread nationwide in the 1940s.

So, sip your margarita and dip your chips in salsa to the Mexican, but mostly American, Cinco de Mayo!

Here is Colton’s map of Mexico from 1854.

Mexico map – 1854 (Credit Steve Kovacs)

Steve Kovacs and his wife Theresa reside in Loveland, Ohio where they raised their two children. He is a passionate collector of antique maps.

Visit his antique map boutique world-on-paper online. Watch for his daily feature Steve Kovacs: Antique Maps & Fun Facts here on Loveland Beacon.