Pancho Villa, also called Francisco Villa was among the prominent generals during the Mexican Revolution. He was born on 5th June 1878 in Durango, Mexico. During his youthful age, Villa helped his parents in the farm. His father died when he was 15 years old and this made him the head of his family.
To him, this implied that he was responsible for protecting his family and in 1894 he killed a man for harassing his sister. For this reason, he fled his home and spent 6 years in the mountains. This is where he joined fugitives and later he turned to banditry.
It is not known what exactly happened to Villa while he was in the mountains but this time changed him and he even adopted another name to avoid being caught while on the run. In 1890s, Villa worked in Chihuahua as a miner while selling stolen livestock at the same time.
However, he did not do this for long before adding more offences in his record. Among the other crimes that Villa committed include robbing from the banks and the wealthy people. While still a fugitive, Villa joined the Franscisco’s Madero in 1910. This was an uprising that was fighting Porfirio Diaz, a Maxican dictator.
With the skills of Vila in writing, reading and fighting as well as his experience in land matters, the uprising won the Battle of Ciudad Juarez. Eventually, the rebels succeeded in ousting Diaz from power. Madero became the president and named Villa the colonel.
Nevertheless, things were not easy under the new regime because another rebellion challenged the position of Madero. Pascual Orozco led this rebellion after feeling scorned by the Madero’s regime. Villa and General Victoriano Huerta sough to fight for the newfound authority of Madero. However, General Huerta accused Villa of stealing a horse. This led to an order of his execution.
However, Madero granted him a reprieve before he was executed but he had to be imprisoned from June 1912. He escaped in December at a time when Huerta was fighting Madero’s regime. On 22nd February 1913, Huerta assassinated Madero and rose to power. Villa formed a group with former allies such as Venustiano Carranza and Emiliano Zapata to overthrow Huerta.
As an experienced revolutionist, Villa led the forces in Northern Mexico during this revolt. In 1913, he entered a contract with the Mutual Film Company of Hollywood so that the company could film some of his battles. Villa was supported by the U.S and eventually Carranza became the leader in 1914.
Later, Villa was disappointed by the leadership skills of Carranza and he joined forces with President Woodrow Wilson and Zapata to oust Carranza. Later, Woodrow stopped supporting Villa due to his atrocities. Wilson and Carranza started a search for Villa but he was never captured even after being hunted from 1916 to 1919.
Later Carranza assassination occurred and Adolf De La Huerta took over presidency. Villa withdrew from fighting Huerta and retired from revolutionary activities in 1920. Villa was killed on 20th July 19234 in Parral, Mexico 3 years later.
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