Little or not much has been said about one of the most crucial moments in the political and social history of Mexico, but at the beginning of the 20th century a series of events occurred that marked the trajectory and destiny of the country for 10 years. The Maderismo movement, by its ideologist Francisco I. Madero (1873 – 1913), was a short but intense period of political revolution in the Latin American country.

The Maderismo lasted no more than a year and a half, among other things, because of its scarce revolutionary nature, because of internal disagreements within the movement and, finally, because of a military coup d’état carried out in 1913 by General Victoriano Huerta and with the approval of the United States, which supported the uprising against Maderismo politically and logistically. However, the effects of this stage still resonate in the culture of Mexico.

The precedents of woodworking

No political or social uprising can be explained without understanding the background. Mexico had been living for decades an era of government hermeticism, political corruption and misappropriation of public funds. José de la Cruz Porfirio Díaz (1830 – 1915), president of the country for almost 30 years, tried to extend his mandate with a decree that stirred up the spirits of society.

The period Diaz was in power, known as “porfirismo”, laid the foundation for a dictatorial, repressive government with civil rights (such as freedom of the press and organization) and which led Mexico with an iron hand. He imposed his legitimacy by excusing himself in the stability and peace that had been established in the country in previous times. As is often the case in this type of political system, Porfirio came from an outstanding military background, with the support of the elites and the backing of the army.

Despite the economic improvement in general terms and the modernization of the country, the mandate of the dictator Porfirio was characterized by the impoverishment of the social majority, especially the agrarian one , which saw its conditions deteriorate more and more. As if that were not enough, the personalism and despotism that the Porfirian government acquired further fuelled the voices against it.

The role of Francisco Madero

As it could not be any other way, the Maderismo had as its representative its maximum representative, Francisco Madero, who started his career in politics in 1904, leading anti-reelection policies to avoid a new mandate of the governor of his state, Coahuila. Later, became involved and supported the Mexican Liberal Party in order to promote a more radical change for the country. However, due to ideological discrepancies he left the party.

It was that same year, 1906 when founded the Anti-Reelection Party, which had its ideological foundation in the reform of the Mexican electoral system , making it more participatory, more democratic and with the ultimate goal of eliminating the scourge of political corruption. Although it was given less importance because of its brief impact on public life, Maderismo also included reforms to the health and education system, making it more accessible to the common people, measures that were quite advanced for its time.

In this way, Francisco fought with equal strength against President Porfirio in a social and electoral battle, but he did not even manage to participate in the elections. Porfirio decides to imprison Madero, afraid of the popular support that his movement and person was acquiring . Obviously, Diaz wins the elections again and Madero decides to go into exile in the United States when his attempt to become vice president fails.

Plan of St. Louis and the fall of porphyria

Frustrated by having failed in his plan to assault power through legal and democratic means, Madero understood that the only way to bring down Porfirio was through violence and popular uprising . He did so with the famous Plan de San Luís of 1910, where he called to arms for November 20 of that same year. The document asked all the opposition to veto the re-elected government, to unite against it and to fight directly with the weapons.

The call for rebellion was so successful that in just a few months the whole country was in the hands of the rebels , guided mainly by the promises of the lumber industry to improve the conditions of the proletariat and wage-earning workers, with measures such as the expropriation of land and profound agrarian reforms. All this precipitated Porfirio’s exile to the U.S.

Failure of woodworking

Unfortunately for the country, logging turned out to be a mirage. Francisco I Madero did not keep most of his promises to the farmers. He took a much more reformist and moderate character than expected , disappointing his followers. Timid measures of redistribution of wealth, of the productive system and more political freedom, were not enough to legitimize the timber government.

Between opposites within its own bosom, and the nostalgic Porfiristas, logging found itself cornered and with no room for manoeuvre. Due to these facts, the mandate only lasted 15 months, full of instability and fratricidal struggles that were followed by a coup d’état in 1913 by the hand of Victoriano Huerta . Curiously, this historical moment would mark the future of the next decade of the Mexican country, plunging once again into popular revolts and military repression.