At dawn on September 16, 1810, priest Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla began the fight for the Independence of Mexico in the town of Dolores, Guanajuato. After eleven years of the armed movement, Agustín de Iturbide, leader of the royalist forces, and Vicente Guerrero, commander of the insurgent forces of the South, agreed to publish the Plan of Iguala on February 24, 1821.
In said document, the bases for the Independence of Mexico were established and in turn the Trigarante Army was created, made up of royalist and insurgent forces. In addition to this, a Sovereign Provisional Government Board was formed to take charge of the government, points that were ratified in the Treaties of Córdoba in August of that year.
Finally, on September 27, 1821, with the entry of the Trigarante Army into Mexico City, Independence was consummated, the act of which was signed the next day and a Regency chaired by Iturbide was created in the Viceregal Palace (today the National Palace).
For the organization of the country’s public administration, the Regency created on October 4, 1821, four Secretariats of State (ministries), which were: Business and Internal and Foreign Relations; Justice and Ecclesiastical Business; Tax authorities; and that of War and Navy, the latter directed by retired Navy Lieutenant Antonio de Medina Miranda. With this action began the history of the Mexican Navy as a war body of the Mexican State.
Meanwhile, in the port of Veracruz, Spanish troops under the command of Field Marshal José Dávila did not recognize the Independence of Mexico, so on October 26, 1821 they took the fortress of San Juan de Ulúa, located on an island, which represented a strategic place for a possible attempt to reconquer New Spain.
In Mexico City, on November 8, 1821, the Regency promulgated the regulations for the functions and powers of the Secretariats of State, as well as those in charge. The Secretary of War and Navy, based in the now National Palace, was assigned war matters on sea and land. Likewise, on November 14 of that same year, the Board and the Regency appointed Agustín de Iturbide as Supreme Chief of both arms with the rank of Admiral Generalissimo.
The officials who made up the Ministry of War and Navy took office on December 11. The organic structure was as follows: Secretary of War and Navy Antonio Medina Miranda, then two First Officers and eight sections: First Section, Infantry; Second Section, Cavalry; Third Section, Navy; Fourth Section, Artillery; Fifth Section, Fortifications and Engineers; Sixth Section, Captaincies and General Commands; Seventh Section, Prisons and Military Points; and Eighth Section, Retirements, Hospitals, Montepíos, Pensions and Awards. The Third Section (Navy) was led by Second Officer José Velasco.
Due to the threat that San Juan de Ulúa represented for a possible Spanish reconquest attempt, the Mexican government saw the need to develop the Navy, so in 1822 the Naval Departments of Campeche, San Blas and Veracruz were created; In the latter the Marine Infantry and Artillery Battalions were established. Given the lack of warships, Captain Eugenio Cortés y Azúa was commissioned to the United States where he acquired the first naval squadron, made up of the schooners Iguala and Anáhuac , the gunboat sloops Tuxpan, Papaloapan, Tampico, Tlaxcalteca, Chalco, Chapala , Orizaba, Campechana and Zumpango . It is worth mentioning that the Iguala was the first Navy ship to fly the flag of Mexico; it arrived at the port of Veracruz on April 17 of that year.
Due to the bombardment carried out by the Spanish from the fortress of Ulúa, to the port of Veracruz, on September 25, 1823, the ships and the Marine Infantry Battalion of the National Navy carried out a naval blockade that was decreed on September 8. October of that year. In 1824, a second squadron was acquired, made up of the frigate Libertad and the brigs Bravo and Victoria , to increase its naval power.
On August 16, 1825, President Guadalupe Victoria appointed Captain Pedro Sainz de Baranda y Borreyro as Head of the Navy Department of Veracruz , who was assigned the task of reorganizing the naval squadron in the face of the threat of a raid by Spanish warships . Later, from October 5 to 11, 1825, ships were sighted trying to arrive at San Juan de Ulúa, but the position of the Mexican squadron blocked the main access to the anchorage, which caused the withdrawal of the Spanish ships.
Faced with the impossibility of receiving aid, the shortage of food and supplies and the diseases that developed in the fortress, due to the successful naval blockade, the Spanish surrendered days later. On November 23, 1825 they set sail for Havana, this event meant the consolidation of national Independence.
Throughout the 19th century, the Mexican Navy distinguished itself by participating in some naval combats to safeguard national sovereignty. During the campaign of harassment of Spanish trade on the coasts of Cuba between 1827 and 1828, it projected its naval power outside its coastlines by combating different Spanish ships. One of the most notable battles was that of Mariel, when the Mexican brig Guerrero faced the frigate Lealtad on February 11, 1828. Later during the conflict with Texas between 1830 and 1845, the victory of the steamers Guadalupe and Moctezuma , as well as the schooner Águila, under the command of Captain Tomás Marín, against a Texan squadron stood out. in the Naval Battle of Campeche on May 16, 1843.
Parallel to the conflict with Texas, in 1838 France invaded Mexico, so Navy troops, under the command of Frigate Captain Blas Godínez Brito, defended San Juan de Ulúa during the bombardment carried out by French warships. Another of the triumphs of the Navy occurred during the context of the War with the United States (1846-1848), when the defensive strategy of Captain Tomás Marín prevented the landing of North American troops in Alvarado in 1846. The following year, Navy Lieutenant Sebastián José Holzinger stood out when he defended the bastion of Santa Bárbara during the North American siege of the city of Veracruz in March 1847.
During the Reform War, some members of the Navy, such as Captain Juan Emilio Foster, defended the liberal principles of the Constitution of 1857 and the government of President Benito Juárez. They also fought the French on several occasions during their second intervention in Mexico.
The Porfiriato represented a significant advance for the National Navy, since several warships were acquired and the Naval Military School was created in the port of Veracruz. The outbreak of the Mexican Revolution brought about one of the first naval combats in the world, in which the ship Tampico and the biplane Sonora of the constitutionalist side participated against the ship Guerrero of the Federal Army. During the second US invasion, the cadets of the Naval Military School, together with the people of Veracruz, defended the port on April 21, 1914, in which Cadet Virgilio Uribe Robles died and days later Lieutenant José Azueta Abad died.
The ideals of the Mexican Revolution were expressed with the promulgation of the Constitution on February 5, 1917, in which the Navy was nationalized with the reforms to Article 32, where it was stipulated that to belong to the Navy it was necessary to be Mexican. by birth and for the crews of merchant ships would be two thirds of it.
In the context of the Second World War, the Department of the National Navy was given autonomy, separating from the Secretariat of National Defense (previously the Secretariat of War and Navy) in 1939, which gave rise to the creation of the Secretariat of Navy on December 31, 1940, this is how the basis of the current institutional structure began, where the Mexican Navy stands out as an operational component of the Secretariat of the Navy.
The surface and air units, as well as the Marine Infantry, are the pillars of the Mexican Navy that have evolved from 1821 to the present, reaffirming the commitment to use the naval power of the federation for external defense and assist in the internal security of the country at sea, in the air and on land.