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Finding Humanity Through Pancho Villa in Mexico


by Nellie Huang

Mention Mexico and you often conjure images of mustachioed heroes roaming the Wild West on horseback, armed with rifles and big straw hats. While this era is long gone, legends from those revolutionary days have been passed down from one generation to the next.

The best representation from this period of Mexican history is Pancho Villa, a hero honored by people around the world. Known as the Robin Hood of Mexico, Pancho robbed the rich and distributed the wealth among peasants and soldiers. He was a natural, charismatic leader who earned respect from farmers, bandits and his followers. When the Mexican Revolution broke out in 1910, Villa assembled an army, known as Villistas, and became the revolutionary general who led the war in the northern region of Mexico. He was assassinated by rival politicians in 1923 in the city of Chihuahua.


Chihuahua, Mexico: Going Back in Time

Today, Mexico has moved well ahead of that time and developed into a country packed with historical richness, cultural integrity and advanced infrastructure – partly thanks to the national hero, Pancho Villa. You can still see remnants of his legendary past in the Museum of the Revolution (Museo de la Revolución) in Chihuahua. Now owned by the Mexican army, this was formerly Villa’s residence. His widow, Luz Corral de Villa, proudly showed off the 50-room mansion to visitors until she died in 1981. Today, you can still pay homage to Pancho in this magnificent building, while admiring his personal mementos and furnishings including the car in which he was shot to death.

While Chihuahua might not be a tourist-oriented city, it gives you a good glimpse into the country’s history with its collection of monuments and buildings. Standing in the heart of Plaza de Armas is the 18th-century Cathedral: Richly decorated with Baroque-style stone carvings, it is an excellent showcase of Mexico’s colonial past. Across the square is the Museo Casa de Juárez, which used to function as the National Palace during the French invasion. Other interesting monuments worth visiting include the murals on the government palace near Plaza Hidalgo, the Museo de Arte Popular that showcases the artisan work of the Tarahumara Indian people, and the Regional Museum along Paseo Bolivar for a peek into Art Nouveau works.


Photo | tetrabrain

Adapted from a post that aporiginally appeared on our blog, PassportToIberostar.

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Comment by Pablo Gonzalez on November 13, 2012 at 3:45pm

We have a very complete article on Pancho Villa on our site, called "Pancho Villa, man and legend" which you may enjoy: http://www.puertovallarta.net/fast_facts/pancho-villa.php

Kind regards


 Pablo

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