Hispanic people have enriched the United States with their cultures, traditions, and legacies. Millions have said goodbye to their native countries and embarked on a journey to create a new life in "the land of opportunity." Today, 60.6 million Hispanics make up the largest minority group in the U.S., accounting for roughly 18% of the nation's total population. To honor and pay tribute to all of the contributions Hispanic-Americans have given to the United States — and the world — we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month.
Originally established as Hispanic Heritage Week by Rep. Edward R. Roybal and President Lyndon Johnson in 1968, the now month-long tribute is observed from September 15 to October 15, and commemorates those in the U.S. whose ancestors came from Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Spain, Uruguay, and Venezuela.
While there is currently some debate over the name — because the term Hispanic specifically refers to Spanish-speaking countries and the territory of Puerto Rico, there are those calling for the celebration to be renamed Latinx Heritage Month, which includes people who speak indigenous languages as well as Brazilians who speak Portuguese — what is unquestionable is the power and resilience of the Hispanic, Latinx, and Latino-identified people.
There's Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who has vastly changed this nation's political landscape. Others, such as Jennifer Lopez and Bad Bunny, have become legends in the entertainment world. And of course, there are countless others, including Sylvia Mendez, who have fought their whole lives for civil rights. But this month isn't just about the names we know — it's about all Hispanic people who have contributed to our society, in big and small ways, in the past, present and future.
We invite you to learn more about what makes this 30-day celebration so meaningful. Together, we can all show our love to the Hispanic, Latino, and Latinx communities in this country, each and every day.
Read and Listen
You Might Also Like