Pancho Villa was a top military leader of the Mexican Revolution whose exploits were regularly filmed by a Hollywood company.
Born on June 5, 1878, in San Juan del Rio, Durango, Mexico, Pancho Villa started off as a bandit who was later inspired by reformer Francisco Madero, helping him to win the Mexican Revolution.
After a coup by Victoriano Huerta, Villa formed his own army to oppose the dictator, with more battles to follow as Mexican leadership remained in a state of flux.
n 1910, while still living as a fugitive, Pancho Villa joined Francisco's Madero successful uprising against Mexican dictator Porfirio Díaz. With Villa's skills as at reading, writing, fighting and his knowledge of the land, Madero was named a revolutionary leader and his company won the first Battle of Ciudad Juárez in 1911.The rebels eventually drove Díaz out of power, and Madero took the position of president, having named Villa a colonel.
The fact that the majority of Villa's battles were on the northern border of Mexico brought the revolutionary to the spotlight in terms of photographs and stories covering the events in Mexico. And surprisingly, the bandit who once hid his presence and changed his name to avoid attention loved being photographed. He even signed a contract with Hollywood's Mutual Film Company in 1913 to have several of his battles filmed.
After the numerous battles that occurred, Carranza rose to power in 1914. Disappointed with Carranza's skills as a leader, a rebellion broke out yet again, with Villa joining forces with Zapata and President Woodrow Wilson to bring down Carranza.
He was assassinated on July 20, 1923, in Parral, Mexico.