Irish in Mexico

For Irish Heritage Month, we welcome Cindy A. Medina as our guest blogger. 

Today, you will find many Mexicans with Irish heritage. Much of that also comes from the Irish soldiers who joined the Mexican side and stayed in Mexico during the Mexican-American War.

Mexicans continue to celebrate the Irish because of the Saint Patrick’s Battalion and all the brave men who fought for Mexico. The batallion was under the command of John Riley. The battalion was primarily Irish and German Catholics.

I have the pleasure of working with Dr. Michael Hogan, whose book “Irish Soldiers of Mexico” was the inspiration of the movie” One Man’s Hero” with Tom Berenger in 1999. In the movie Berenger’s stellar performance is highly admired as he portrayed John Riley.

The book is a must read for any American student who wishes to understand our mutual Irish and Mexican history. The movie was romanticized of course, so you will get the best knowledge from the book!

As genealogists understanding the unification between both cultures will help us see why so many Mexicans have Irish roots and help chase the paper trail.


Cindy A Medina is genealogist concentrating in Mexico & Spain. She is also a History Activist for New Spain & Mexico, discussing the merge of the Native Americans with the Spaniards in North America to create “el mestizaje”, people of mixed descent like her, who proudly claim their Mexican heritage as well (upon their Independence from Spain). There is a craving of knowing their roots and real history so they can proudly see and promote their ancestors accomplishments in both Mexico and the U.S.