Today in 1753 the father of Mexican independence Padre Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla was born in Corralejo, Mexico near Guanajuato. The Jesuit trained priest met his destiny when he became a parish priest in Dolores.
As a priest he saw first-hand and was moved by the suffering of his parishioners under Spanish rule. Hidalgo y Costilla quickly joined in the anti-Spanish movement that advocated independence from Spain.
The priest and others were uncovered and labeled as traitors to Spanish rule and instead of fleeing to avoid a sure death he made history. On September 16, 1810, now known as the day of Mexican Independence, Hidalgo y Costilla ran the church bells at his church to declare that Mexico was revolting against the Spanish – the bell served as a call to action to the people of Dolores and throughout all of Mexico.
The Mexican priest then gave the famous “Grito de Dolores” calling for equality for all, equal treatment under the law for all and the redistribution of appropriated land taken by the Spanish. The brave Hidalgo y Costilla after declaring war on Spain marched from his church throughout Mexico joined by throngs of other insurgents.
It was in Chihuahua, Mexico on July 30, 1811 the great Padre Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla was captured stripped of his priesthood and killed by a firing squad.
The passion for equality in Mexico was sparked by Hidalgo y Costilla but it would not be for another ten years that Mexico would gain its independence in 1821 from Spain after 400 years of colonial rule.
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