- August 1914
- Bullets, Bottles and Gardenias
- Gringo Rebel
- A Fine Fellow
- Timeline of Revolution
- Battle of Tierra Blanca
- Gray Automobile Affair
- Gringo Rebel
- Gun Running
- John Reed
- Lifelong Friends
- Massacre of Huitzilac
- Nordenskjold Lives!
- Pancho Villa
- Soldier Under 13 Flags
- The Devil's Dictionary
- Villa's Swedish Gunner
- Yaquis capture Acaponeta
- ¡Vamanos Con Pancho Villa!
- Centennial Edition
- Veracruz Expedition
A Timeline of the Mexican Revolution
The three hundred years of Spanish Colonial History, and the hundred years that followed the War of Independence, are so full of persecution of the Indians and Peons that it would fill a large volume to scratch only a small part of the surface of these centuries.
The Conquest was a brilliant achievement by the Spanish forces. It was, nevertheless, reduced to a sordid enterprise by the greed for gold. The shameless murder of Emperor Montezuma and the torture of the gallant Guatemozin and his companion by burning their feet over a fire to force from them the whereabouts of the hidden treasure of the Aztecs, was a disgrace.
The “Painted Books”—the priceless literature of the Aztecs which gave the records of their astronomy and sciences and, perhaps, their origin, were put to the torch because the stupidity of superstition proclaimed them heathen and hence work of the Devil.
The period mentioned is characterized by a tyrannical domination by the upper class, religious intolerance, slavery, inquisition and brutality toward the Indians. What was done in the name of Christianity during these four centuries seems to put Genghis Khan and Attila into the shade as second raters.
When the Indians did not willingly accept Christianity the bull-whip came into play and was freely used. They were also robbed of their land, their temples and civilization destroyed, and they themselves were enslaved by the hundreds of thousands. The Indians were made to obey a God whose teachings, as well as language, were beyond their understanding, except, perhaps, that this new God was obviously more savage in his demands than their own deities had been.
As time progressed the peonage system was established. The peon received a meager salary from the hacendado but the man was forced to purchase everything he needed from the hacienda store. His wages were not enough to cover expenses and he ran into debt. Month after month, year after year, the debt increased — that was the system. Not only must he work but his wife and children were pressed into the peonage service “to pay off the debt” which, due to the system, was impossible.
The peons wanted to rid themselves of these oppressors, but they were powerless because they had only bows, arrows, knives and slings with which to fight. From these conditions there was no escape, not even hope. Not yet. There was, however, ill will and deep resentment brewing in every Indian pot throughout the land.
When the Indians were in the depth of despair, their ancient gods seemed to have taken compassion on them as there appeared two signs that gave them hope. In 1909, there was an eruption of the Colima Volcano and the sky became dark and threatening. The descendants of the priests before the Conquest came out of hiding and predicted that the war of deliverance was near.
In 1910, there was a sign in the heavens — Halley’s Comet. Some Indians thought it was a good omen, but when the cattle and goats became restless, and the people couldn’t sleep, it was a bad omen — it meant war, pestilence — death. Some of the shamans predicted war, but who was going to lead them?
Then like a miracle, a strange voice was calling them to rebel against their oppressors and promising “Land and liberty”
I. Thord Gray