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Recognizing Hispanic Heritage Month

September 29, 2022

Pitzer: Past, Present, and Future Mural

Hispanic Heritage Month is observed from September 15 to October 15 each year in the United States to celebrate Americans, including those with indigenous backgrounds, whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. (With this in mind, please note that The Claremont Colleges Library acknowledges that the term “Hispanic” may be viewed as an oversimplified term and may not necessarily be fully inclusive.)

Children in swimming pool photo from Marilyn Noble Scrapbook
Marilyn Noble Scrapbook

To highlight these individuals’ contributions, history and heritage, we invite you to explore the following books and materials from the Library’s digital and physical collections.

Hispanic American Newspapers (New!) – This newly acquired database is the single largest compilation of Spanish-language newspapers printed in the U.S. during the 19th and 20th centuries. The collection includes bilingual newspapers and titles like El Clamor Público, the first Spanish-language newspaper in California after the American occupation.

Biographical sketch of Rosa Garcia Torrez in Judy Wright’s Claremont Women, 1887-1950: They Created a Culture – Rosa Garcia Torrez was an early Mexican American resident of Claremont and served as president of the Club de Damas for many years. Rosa joined many more organizations and received various honors for her community service and activism.

Close-up of hand-written letter from the Early California Letters collection
Early California Letters

Marilyn Noble Scrapbook (Claremont Barrios Digitization Project) – A scrapbook containing photographs, articles, newspaper clippings and ephemera related to Claremont’s Arbol Verde neighborhood. Marilyn Noble, a Pomona College graduate, community leader and former Arbol Verde resident, assisted in numerous neighborhood academic, recreation and social programs which are reflected throughout the scrapbook.

Early California Letters (Newly digitized!) – The collection consists of over 100 manuscript letters in Spanish originating from various writers in California dating from 1773 to 1856, which covers the Spanish Colonial and Mexican Period as well as the beginning of U.S. statehood. Over half of the letters originate in Monterey, California. The most frequently occurring writer, with 16 letters, is Spanish soldier, California pioneer and twice governor of California José Dario Argüello, who was also involved in the founding of Pueblo de Los Angeles, present day Los Angeles.

Relampago cover

Paul Botello in Murals at Pitzer College – Features photographs of murals (like the featured image at the top of the page), like Interhueman and Pitzer: Past, Present and Future, on Pitzer College’s campus created by East LA artist and muralist Paul Botello with students, faculty and staff in 1997 and again in 2006. Botello’s murals address themes of race, color and unity.

Relampago (New and soon to be available!) – A comic book, written and self-published by Judge Margarito C. Garza, featuring Relampago, the first Mexican American superhero in the American comic book industry. The fictional character, whose true identity is Marco Zapata, made his first appearance in 1977.

Matt Garcia Papers – The collection consists of research, writing and teaching materials created by author, educator and historian Matthew J. Garcia. The materials document Dr. Garcia’s work on topics related to agriculture, labor, food, immigration, ethnicity and popular culture in California. Primary subjects of interest include the citrus industry and Mexican-American laborers in Southern California, especially the farm labor movement under Cesar Chavez.

Social Movements Collection – This collection includes materials from the Chicano Movement, the United Farm Workers, the Young Lords movement and the surrounding events of the Zoot Suit riots in Los Angeles.

If you are interested in examining any of the physical materials, we invite you to make a Special Collections Reading Room appointment. Questions can be directed to or (909) 607-3977.