National Hispanic Heritage Month runs from September 15 to October 15. This year’s theme is “Esperanza: A Celebration of Hispanic Heritage and Hope.”
History . . .
This commemoration began in 1968, “when Congress passed Pub. L. No. 90-498, which authorized and requested that the President issue an annual proclamation designating the week that included September 15 and 16 as National Hispanic Heritage Week.” On September 17, 1968, President Lyndon B. Johnson issued Proclamation No. 3869. The rationale for including September 15 & 16 was to celebrate “the anniversaries of independence for the Latin American countries of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua, as well as Mexico’s independence. . . .” In 1998, the observance was increased from one week to one month with Pub. L. No. 100-402.
Learning Resources . . .
The U.S. Department of Education has compiled a list government resources in honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month, including the following:
Census Bureau: Facts for Features: Hispanic Heritage Month 2021 (Español) – According to the 2020 U.S. Census, people who identify as Hispanic comprised 18.7% of the population. In Texas, there were 72 counties in which “the Hispanic population was the largest racial or ethnic group as of April 1, 2020, up from 64 counties in 2010.”
Library of Congress, et al.: National Hispanic Heritage Month – Explore many exhibits, collections, recordings, and images from The Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
National Archives: Hispanic Heritage Month –Discover Records Pertaining to Judge Sonia Sotomayor, an exhibit on the Zoot Suit Riots, a recorded lecture on Hispanic Americans in Congress 1822–2012, and many other resources.
In addition, previous Ex Libris Juris blog posts on Hispanic Heritage Month topics include:
9/12/2018: Hispanic Heritage Month
9/18/2020: Celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month
10/8/2020: Hispanic Activists You Should Know
10/14/2020: Jovita Idar: Texas Activist, Advocate, and Ally
10/15/2020: Hispanic and Latinx Lawyers You Should Know
On September 15, 2021, Barbie introduced two new dolls for Hispanic Heritage Month, in honor of Celia Cruz and Julia Alvarez. Celia Cruz, the “Queen of Salsa,” was a “legendary Cuban-American singer” whose career spanned from 1950 until her death in 2003. Julia Alvarez “is a Dominican-American New Formalist poet, novelist, and essayist,” who explored “[t]he theme of being caught between two cultures.”