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Emiliano Zapata Emiliano Zapata was born on August 8 1879 in Anenecuilco Mexico He was the ninth of 10 children of Cleofas Salazar and Gabriel Zapata who worked a plot of land in the village and also raised cattle and horses Emiliano was an orphan by age 16 He was a Mexican revolutionary The family was not poor but luxuries and comforts were few Emilianos father taught him to ride a horse at a young age and his uncle taught him how to use a firearm These things he learned from his family provided skills that would help him for the rest of his life At the age of 7 young Emilianos father sent him to school Emiliano took advantage of his situation and learned to read and write he also developed an interest in Mexican History When Emiliano was 9 years old he saw his father cry because the government had unfairly reserved communal lands Zapata swore that this would not happen again and the future leader grew to see his dream of the Agrarian Reform be fulfilled in his native state Land was always a concern and ever since the sixteenth century sugar boom haciendas were sprouting up all over the state Zapata was raised on oral traditions of the long elemental struggle of his people against the hacendados Growing up he had asserted himself against the hacendados and because of this he was known to the authorities as somebody to keep an eye on It was estimated by 1909 28 hacendados controlled 77 of Morelos In 1897 he was arrested for protesting against the farmers assuming of communal lands In 1909 he declared the grievances of his fellow peasants and was elected president of the board of defense for his village On March 10th 1911 Emiliano and 72 peasants from Morelos proclaimed the beginning of their revolution Their slogan Land and Freedom has been perhaps most famous of Zapatas phrases
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