History of National Hispanic Heritage Month
National Hispanic Heritage Month recognizes and celebrates the culture, contributions, and heritage of Hispanic Americans. Now observed annually from September 15 to October 15, this national observance was first established by Public Law 90-498, approved September 17, 1968 by the 90th Congress. Public Law 90-468 authorized the president to proclaim National Hispanic Heritage Week each year. On August 17, 1988, the 100th Congress enacted Public Law 100-402, which extended the observance from a week to a month.
The months of September and October cover a wide range of independence days for Latin American countries. Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua all celebrate their independence on September 15. Mexico celebrates its independence on September 16, Chile on September 18, and Belize on September 21. El Día de la Raza (Columbus Day) is observed on October 12.
Rigo Reyes: My Journey to Citizenship
September 16, 6:30 pm on Webex
In celebration of Citizenship Day, join us for a conversation with Rigo Reyes, Executive Director of the Office of Immigrant Affairs, who will share the story of his personal path to citizenship as well as resources available to our immigrant community. For adults. Register here.
La Casa de Adobe: Stories and Songs of Alta California
September 22, 6 pm on Webex
Join us as Dr. Gloria Arjona takes us on a magical journey through the history and culture of Alta California. Through music, stories, and photography, we will explore the lives of Los Pobladores, the Spanish and Mexican people who settled much of the West. For adults. Register here.
Bilingual Family Concert
Wednesday, October 6, 4 pm on Webex
Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with Colombian children’s songwriter Nathalia in an interactive bilingual concert. Through musical stories about her heritage, different rhythms and a variety of themes, her energetic songs will have families singing, dancing, even learning a little Spanish, in this fun multicultural experience! Register here.
Mayan Worry Dolls
Available September 15
Mayan Worry Dolls have been used throughout Central America as a way to relieve the worries of everyday life. It is said that if you tell your concerns to the doll and place it under your pillow, by morning the doll will have taken away all of your troubles. Make your own Worry Doll at home by picking up an Activity Kit at select library locations, starting September 15. Supplies are limited. Please call ahead to your the library to check availability. Watch this informative video for more about Mayan Worry Dolls and learn how to make them using instructions for the Activity Kit.
All About Frida
Learn about Frida Kahlo, a Mexican artist and feminist icon, best known for her portraits, self-portraits, and her nature-inspired pieces, and one of the most famous and beloved artists of the world. Then create your own artistic masterpiece in the style of Frida Kahlo!
Come celebrate the beauty of Mariachi music, and learn of its importance in the Mexican community, with this collection of resources to help you explore the heart and soul of this cherished art form!
Make your own Papel Picado, a traditional Mexican craft generally displayed for celebrations and holidays!
Meet the Artist: Frida Kahlo
Tissue Paper Art: Papel Picado
The Bell Mural Project: A Discussion with Hector Arias aka “Tetris”
Librarians Share Book Talks: My Papi Has a Motorcycle and Alma & How She Got Her Name
Los Angeles County is a region of immigrants, and each has a unique and wonderful story to tell. We want to hear yours! Do you remember the day you left? How did you feel when you first became a naturalized citizen? No matter your country of origin or current status, consider sharing your journey with us. Submit your stories in any form such as written narratives (Doc, PDF), images, audio, or video. Submissions will be reviewed and then posted on our BiblioBoard community collections so others can learn and grow from your experiences.
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Tell Your True Tale
From 2014 to 2017, LA County Library hosted 8 Tell Your True Tale Writing Workshops with author Sam Quinones. Participants in the workshops wrote, edited, and published nonfiction stories as part of a short story collection edited by Mr. Quinones. Stories from all 8 workshops are available to be read on our website.
Foto East LA
Foto East LA is a project to create an online collection of images depicting the history of one of the nation’s most culturally rich communities. From everyday events to extraordinary moments, we’re gathering historical images taken by locals—just like you—who have experienced East LA firsthand. Submit a photo to the collection today.
National Hispanic Heritage Month website, brought to you by the Library of Congress, Smithsonian Institution, National Archives and Records Administration, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, National Park Service, National Endowment for the Humanities, and National Gallery of Art.