Ricardo Flores Magon (1874-1922)
Ricardo Flores Magon, born in 1874, was the most important and influential anarchist in the Mexican revolutionary movement. He became active in the struggle against the dictator Porfirio Diaz at an early age. In 1901 he came to the forefront of the liberal movement, a reformist organisation opposed to the excesses of the regime and, as editor of the opposition newspapers, Regeneracion (founded by his brother) and El Hijo del Ahuizote he was imprisoned several times by the dictatorship. Forced to take refuge in the U.S. in 1904 he continued the struggle against Diaz first from St. Louis and later from Los Angeles, in spite of continual persecution and imprisonment by the U.S. authorities at the instigation of the Mexican dictatorship In 1905 Magon founded the Partido Liberal Mexicano which organised two unsuccessful uprisings against Diaz in 1906 and 1908.

During his early years of exile he became acquainted with Emma Goldman, and it was partly through her he became an anarchist. With the outbreak of the revolution of 1910, the revolution that he and the P.L.M., more than any other group or person, had paved the way for, Magon devoted the rest of his life to the anarchist cause. Through his influence large areas of land were expropriated by the peasants and worked in common by then under the banner of Tierra y Llbertad, the motto of the P.L.M., later to be adopted by Zapata. During the years of struggle Magon opposed and fought successive so called "revolutionary regimes," resisting both the old and new dictatorships with equal vigour. Imprisoned by the U.S. authorities in 1905, 1907, and 1912 he was finally sentenced to 20 years under the espionage laws in 1918. He died in Leavenworth Prison, Kansas, on November 22, 1922. (Land & Liberty, Black Rose Books, 1977)