Charreria (a sport, a tradition, a culture and an Art of Mexico) evolved from the traditions that came to Mexico from Spain in the 16th century. When the Spanish first settled in MEXICO, they were under orders to raise horses, but not to allow the Indigenous to ride. However, by the Mid 1850’s the Spanish had very large cattle-raising estates (haciendas) and found it necessary to employ indigenous people as herdsman, who soon became excellent horsemen. Smaller landholders, known as rancheros or ranchers, were the first genuine Charros and they are credited as the inventors of the charreada.
Prior to the Mexican Revolution, ranch work competitions were generally between haciendas. Following the breakup of the haciendas by the Mexican Revolution, the charros saw their traditions slipping away. They met in 1921 and formed the Asociación Nacional de Charros to keep the charrería tradition alive. The advent of the Mexican cinema brought greater popularity, especially musicals which combined rancheras with the charro image.
Mexican Americans in the United States also held various charreadas during the same period, but in the 1970s, the Federacion Mexicana de Charreria (FMCH) began assisting them in establishing official charreadas north of the border. They are now quite common. At times, US champion teams compete in the national competition of Mexico.