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The Latino Civil Rights Movement

Page history last edited by Mason Peng 6 months, 1 week ago


First Avenue Bridge mural in Los Angeles depicts the first female Mexican American union leader,  

Dolores Huerta



Topics on the Page


Latino History


Sylvia Mendez and the Mendez v. Westminster Court Case


Latinos and Civil Rights History



  • 1938 Pecan Shellers Strike and Emma Tenayuca


Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta

  • Movement to Create a Cesar Chavez National Holiday


Delano Grape Strike and Boycott, 1965-1970


East LA Walkouts/Chicano Blowouts, 1968






Latino History


Latinos have been fighting for their rights in the United States for a long time.


Latino Civil Rights Timeline, 1903 to 2006 shows how Latinos fought through the entire 20th century for rights, and continue to do so into the 21st century due to prejudice and discrimination that had been established in years prior.


A Latino History of the U.S

Invisible No More: The Latino Struggle for Civil Rights, National Education Association


A case study on the Chicano movement, and its impacts on Mexican-Americans, and the civil rights movement. 


Mendez v. Westminster (1946)



Dramatic Event page for Mendez v. Westminster

In third grade, Sylvia Mendez was denied admission to a White-only elementary school in Los Angeles.

Her family brought suit and the eventual Mendez v. Westminster court decisions desegregated schools in California, years before the Brown v. Board of Education case.

NPR Audio about Mendez v. Westminster

Background: Mendez v. Westminster Re-Enactment

Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez and Her Family's Fight for Desegregation. Duncan Tonatinuh, Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2014


        • A picture book history of the famous Mendez v. Westminster case


Latinos and Civil Rights



Hispanics: The Forgotten Class in Civil Rights History from LBJ Presidential Library


Emma Tenayuca

1938 Pecan Shellers Strike

In 1938, 12,000 pecan shellers (mostly Mexican- American women) in San Antonio Texas started a three-month strike to protest horrible working conditions and low wages. The strike was led by Emma Tenayuca.

1938 Pecan Shellers Strike Link to article and photos







Cesar Chavez, June 1972

Cesar Chavez and the Cesar Chavez National Holiday

An American Hero: Biography of Cesar E. Chavez, California Department of Education

Go here to learn about the movement to Create a Cesar E. Chavez National Holiday

  • It is a state holiday in California
  • Optional holiday in Colorado and Texas
  • Celebrations in Arizona, Michigan, Nebraska and New Mexico

Senator Barack Obama Statement for a Cesar Chavez National Holiday (March 2008)

Dolores Huerta, 1975
Dolores Huerta, 1975


Dolores Huerta

Biography from the National Women's History Museum


Image from United Farm Workers


Delano Grape Strike and Boycott, 1965-1970

The Grape Strike and Boycott, from United Farm Workers

Legacy of the Delano Grape Strike, 50 Years Later, San Francisco Chronicle (September 16, 2015)



Against All Odds: Cesar Chavez & the Delano Grape Strike, Cesar Chavez Foundation

    • A video on Cesar Chavez and what he did for his people.


Delano Grape Strike and Boycott, 1965 from Records of Rights, National Archives










Sal Castro and the East LA Walkouts

East LA Walkouts/Chicano Blowouts, 1968


Historic Photos from the 1968 East LA Walkouts


In 1968, East LA Students Led a Movement


Sal Castro and the East LA Walkouts


Personal stories allow people to more deeply connect with subject matter. Here are stories from Latino immigrants and their continued fight for equal rights as their neighbors. 



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