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Emiliano Zapata was born on August 8, 1883 in Anencuilco, a small village in the Mexican state of Morelos. An uneducated peasant of Indian blood, Zapata became known as a man with a balanced judgment and humble values. In the early 1900's new agricultural methods entered Mexico, the large plantations or haciendas began to grow and take whatever they wanted. By 1910, many of the common people were forced off their land. These injustices to his fellow Mexicans forced Zapata to form a peasant army to fight for the rights and freedom of the indigenous people.
Under the slogan, "it is better to die on your feet, than to live on your knees," Zapata was successful in overthrowing corrupt governments and installing his friend Francisco "Pancho" Villa as president of Mexico. Emiliano Zapata's success as a warrior made him many enemies. On April 10, 1919 Zapata was led into a trap where 400 of his enemies lay in wait. The assassins were ordered to kill both Zapata and his beloved white horse. Faced with a situation that no man, even one as resourceful as Emiliano Zapata could escape, he was killed. His beautiful horse however magically escaped the same 400 assassins. Legend has it that Zapata's horse can still be seen today in the hills of Mexico as a symbol of freedom to the oppressed of the world.