Episode 89: Preserving Houston’s Hispanic History

To understand our present, we must learn about our past. It can be a personal journey, or it can be about learning how our cultural ancestors’ diverse contributions helped to build and develop our grand cities and countries. In Houston, many people from different cultural backgrounds have in many ways had a hand in the growth of the city, but before it’s founding, countless of Hispanics were already in the area, they were here centuries before Texas even was even a thought. Hispanics throughout the years have played an incredible role to make Houston what it is today, so it is only right that this history needs to be preserved and not forgotten.

This week, host Blanca Quezada is joined by Dr. Jesse Esparza associate professor and interim chair of the department of history at Texas Southern University. His area of expertise is on the history of Latinos in the United States. He is also an award-winning author.

Dr. Esparza discusses the complexity of Latino people in Houston and the United States, how their traditions and cultures have made a difference in the patchwork of peoples that live in Houston and the county. Beginning with the misconception that if we speak Spanish or have a certain look, we are all Mexican.

Dr. Esparza also talks about s the upcoming Bayou City History Harvest Day Event which is devoted to recording and preserving the records of the community, including the Houston Police Department. Dr. Esparza is inviting people to bring their stories, photographs, newspaper clipping, and personal artifacts. Everything will be scanned recorded or photographed and returned to the owners. There will also be a film screening.

The Bayou City History Harvest Day is on Saturday, June 1st from 10 am to 2 pm at the Leonel J. Castillo Community Center on 2101 South St., 77009.  For more information contact Carlos Cantu at and Jesse Esparza at jesus.esparza@tsu.edu.

Remember, Spotlight Houston episodes now drop every Monday! Tune in next week for more engaging stories that celebrate the vibrant spirit of our city. Have an idea or feedback? We’re always listening!

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