Extenso artículo publicado en la revista Motography el 4 de octubre de 1913 (Vol. X, No. 7, p. 254) sobre la Decena Trágica. No se trata de una cinta o película; es una serie de 45 fotos fijas que se pone a la venta por $15.00 y el artículo es una descripción de las fotografías que la integra. Se incluye el anuncio de página entera sobre este material, también publicado en Motography.
Interesting Mexican Views
One of the very interesting features listed for release in the near future will be a set of views of war scenes in Mexico, from photographs made on the spot, and secured by the Columbia Transparency Company, Lees building, Chicago, and put on the market at considerable expense. During the recent bombardment in Mexico City much havoc was wrought by the artillery, owing to the poor marksmanship of the Mexican soldiers and the volunteers within the citadel. The shooting was wild, high and low, and the shells seemed to explode in almost every location except those for which they were intended. Some close-up views of this destruction were obtained by the photographer, and are here reproduced on the slides. It is incredible to believe that gunners firing at a range of less than one mile could possibly effect the unnecessary destruction depicted in these views.
For instance, the battery on one of the streets protecting the citadel was attempting to silence a gun of the government forces placed about five blocks away. In line with the gun, but two or three blocks beyond the position of the enemy, was a very ancient church, a historic place, where Cortez stopped while on his retreat after the defeat administered by the Indians in the City of Mexico. This church is one which is pointed out with a deal of pride to the tourist on account of its age. It is not complimentary to the Mexican gunners to state that the tower and clock on top of this church were perforated by shells which should have fallen short of the stones of the foundation.
Another view is that of a clock which formerly topped a concrete tower in Bucareli street. The shells passing through this tower completely destroyed the stone and concrete work, although the steel angle iron of the structure remained erect, only allowing the chimes to fall over at right angles with their original position, completely ruined. A flower bed now occupies the spot where the clock formerly stood, and only the surrounding buildings, with their fronts torn out by bursting shells, remind one of the struggle of last February.
Many scenes are depicted in the slides which will prove interesting from an historical point of view. The views of the National Palace of Mexico, where the first charge was made, the Castle of Chapultepec, the home of the presidents of that country, which passed through the ordeal undamaged, the troops encamped in the streets of Mexico City, which is generally referred to as “The Paris of America,” all are interesting and educational.
The rurales, rural police of Mexico, were used for the first time in their history as cavalry, against a fortified foe on the streets of a city. The men who go to make up the rank and file of these rurales are men whose courage and daring are unquestioned, but in their charges against the men who are were following the fortunes of Felix Diaz proved that they are of no value except in the open, as the close streets seemed to disconcert them.
The first charge against the citadel was made by these men, and it was believed by the Mexican army officers that they would be successful in reaching the outer works of the cidadel, when it was planned to bring up the artillery and shell the enemy’s position from close quarters. But the artillery was never advanced, and the rurales will long remember the futile charge in which their comrades in arms were mowed down like weeds by the heavy rifle and machine gun fire which checked their advance. One similar charge was tried a few days later, but they were of faint heart then, and only failure resulted, the rurales thereafter refusing to sacrifice themselves in useless cavalry charges.
Many of the pictures will show that the women of Mexico are not averse to sharing the dangers which beset their husbands or lovers, and many follow even to the battle front. The woman of the Mexican army is a creature demanding a great deal of sympathy and pity, and in hundreds of cases real respect must be given them for their daring and devotion to the fortunes and misfortunes of their loved ones.
The Mexican army has no commissary department, nor does it in the least attempt to provide sustenance necessary for the soldiers who fill its ranks. Every lucky Mexican soldier has his “soldadera,” which is Spanish for “female soldier.” Sometimes these women are the wives, married by the church, of the men whose fortunes they follow. In other cases, the formality of marriage is waived, they follow the line of least resistance, and the sweetheart of the soldier who falls today will have another lover tomorrow—but that does not detract in the least from the faithful attention she gives to the one she is actually serving. To this woman of the army falls the duty of securing food for her soldier boy. Cooking his beans and if in. battle, she must seek him on the battlefield and share the scanty meal with him, with no care for the morrow, no thoughts of the future welfare of either, only living in the moment.
Mexico is rich in those things -which attract and at the same time repel, and so far as the American is concerned, the country is as yet unknown, misunderstood and maligned. Through such means as that offered by the Columbia Transparency Company some real knowledge of this fascinating land can be gained, and there can be viewed some of the vast differences that exist between Mexico and the United States.