Cuauhtémoc Statue (Benito Juarez Community Academy)

BJCA Campus Park, West Cermak Road and South Ashland Avenue, Chicago, IL 60608

Cuauhtémoc was the 11th and final Tlatoani (ruler) of the Aztec (Mexica) empire. Cuauhtémoc was the nephew and son-in-law of Montezuma II. He was elected Tlatoani in 1520, after Montezuma II’s successor, Cuitláhuac, died of smallpox. Just 25 years old, Cuauhtémoc valiantly led his people in resisting the Spanish invasion. The Spanish, bolstered by tens of thousands of Indigenous allies, waged a three-month siege against Tenochtitlan. Outnumbered, and with his people starving and beleaguered by smallpox, Cuauhtémoc surrendered to the Spanish and their Indigenous allies on August 13, 1521. Cuauhtémoc is reported to have made his final speech to his Governing Council on August 12, 1521. A statue of Cuauhtémoc was gifted to Chicago by the government of the Mexican state of Guerrero on September 15, 2010. It was placed outside of Benito Juarez Community Academy, in the Estatuas de Heroes Plaza, alongside statues of other Mexican national heroes.

Additional Information

EVENT: Unpacking Chicagotlan Panel Discussion on Sunday, August 15