A Historical Review | The Irish Soldiers of Mexico by Michael Hogan

Why is it that history becomes all that more interesting and fascinating only after the conclusion of our formal schooling years? It is no doubt that History class torments young students and puts others to sleep. Is it because history textbooks are “predominantly histories written by the winners” and therefore this one-sided perspective does not lend itself to wonder and academic discussion? How about historical fiction? Yet another perspective that allows both the author and reader to contemplate astutely and ingeniously about the “true” account of the past. So it is because of this marvel that The Irish Soldiers of Mexico by Michael Hogan should be on every reading list from secondary education to graduate studies.

Dr. Hogan has succeeded as a creative and comprehensive historian to document a diverse history that would otherwise not exist. History of the Mexican-American War would continue to exist only in separate worlds, that of the US and Mexico, perhaps never to converge with the history of Ireland and Britain, not to mention the indigenous people of the Americas. One-sided perspectives, never to be merged in an attempt to present a collective history of various nations, cultures, and philosophies on a global plane. What a class discussion this would be! Particularly in this present day of multicultural, multiethnic student bodies. Coupled with a historical fiction such as C.M. Mayo’s The Last Prince of the Mexican Empire, this History block would be the talk of the lunch room and the envy of the teacher’s lounge.

From the detailed elements of the controversy, to the objective description of the San Patricios, through the mindset of the United States in the 1840’s, and concluding with the atrocities of war and punishment, The Irish Soldiers of Mexico proves to be an enlightening perspective of a multicultural history. A history that should serve as a lesson in the current battle between Mexico and the US. Has the US obtained such a strict national identity that an emergent global identity has conceived a fear of losing Americans’ loyalties and therefore territorial power? What about the nation’s inferiority complex? Why is it difficult to value the advantages of mixed races and cultures? And how does faith and spirituality fit into the current struggle between two nations, the Americas, and their diverse inhabitants? All perfect queries for numerous History classrooms across the Western Hemisphere, the US in particular. Let the discussions begin to lead into new diverse and global perspectives.


The Irish Soldiers of Mexico 

By Michael Hogan

Pub: Fondo Editorial Universitario in cooperation with Intercambio Press and Createspace

Pub Date: May 2011

ISBN: 9781463502454

$19.95 | Paperback

Dulce Special Order 


About the Book

The Irish Soldiers of Mexico sold out four editions in English and two editions in Spanish from 1997 to 2001. It has been the basis of an MGM feature film and two documentaries; it has also been used in many history classes both in the United States and abroad. Includes new historical material such as the location of what purported to be a death certificate for John Riley located in a church in Veracruz. The edition includes updated "After the War" and "Commemorations" sections. Many positive changes in public perception of the San Patricios have taken place since the first publication of this book in 1997. In addition, there have been a number of new vehicles for dissemination of the history, not the least of which was the production of "One Man's Hero," starring Tom Berenger, three novels on the San Patricios, a new sculpture in Mexico City of John Riley donated by the people of Ireland, and the Chieftains new CD with songs commemorating the Irish battalion.

About the Author

Michael Hogan lives in Colonia Providencia, Guadalajara, México, with his wife Lucinda Mayo, the internationally known fabric artist. Born in Newport, Rhode Island in 1943, he is the author of sixteen books, including a collection of short stories, six books of poetry, collected essays on teaching in Latin America, a novel, and a history of the Irish battalion in Mexico which formed the basis for an MGM movie starring Tom Berenger. His work has appeared in many journals such as the Paris Review, the Harvard Review, Z-Magazine, Political Affairs and the Monthly Review. He is a consultant to the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Overseas Schools in Latin America. As an author he has received wide recognition for his work, including a PEN Award, two Pushcart Prizes, an NEA fellowship, the Benjamin Franklin Award, the gold medal of the Mexican Geographical Society. Dr. Hogan received his B.A. and MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona. He holds a Ph.D. in Latin American Studies from the University of Guadalajara and the Institute of Advanced Studies. For many years he worked as an international educator and is currently a consultant for the College Board’s programs overseas. He has given workshops and presentations at over sixty conferences in 36 countries.


About the Book Tour

Book Tour Schedule

Mon Aug 22 Condor Musings (Author Guest Post)

Tues Aug 23 Latino Book Examiner (Author Q&A)

Wed Aug 24 Dulce Bread & Book Shop (Review)

Thurs Aug 25 Juan of Words ( Review)

Fri Aug 26 New Latina (Author Q&A)

Mon Aug 29 Vida de Oro (Author Interview)

Tues Aug 30 La Bloga (Author Guest Post)

Wed Aug 31 Franky Benitez (Review)

Thurs Sep 1 Latina Book Club (Review)

Fri Sep 2 Chica Writer (Review)


  • This post is an official tour stop of The Irish Soldiers of Mexico Condor Book Tour
  • FTC Disclosure: Dulce Bread &Book Shop received a free copy of the book from the author as part of a Condor Book Tour. Dulce was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed are our own.

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