In early spring of this year the Houston Public Library decided to begin using the smaller branch libraries to host exhibits of archival material from the Houston Metropolitan Research Center. The library recognized the importance of bringing the archives directly to the community and chose Carnegie Neighborhood Library in Houston’s Northside as its first location for this effort.
For more than one hundred years, generations of Mexican Americans have called Northside home. A century of history reveals a neighborhood that has greatly impacted Houston: from laboring in the city’s railroad and port industries to contributing a significant number of young men to the war effort during World War II to being the site of some of the city’s major protesting efforts for equal rights. Thus it was clear that the first exhibit should focus on the history of the neighborhood and that the Hispanic Collections Archivist would oversee this effort. More than anything the exhibit is meant to be a conversation piece. The archivist saw this as an opportunity to promote its related materials and to show the community a genuine interest in collecting more.
Through a variety of documents and photographs this exhibit offers a glimpse into the history of a Mexican American neighborhood in Houston and seeks to encourage the preservation of more Northside stories. It is without a doubt that our identities are impacted by our sense of place. Where we call home and which neighborhood we claim is important to understanding our experience in Houston and thus our place in its history. The library's goal with this exhibit is simply to encourage Houstonians to share their personal history of living in the Northside. Every single interview and photograph preserved furthers our understanding of this history.
Exhibit Title Northside - A Mexican American Community / Documents and Photographs from the Houston Metropolitan Research Center
Dates October 9, 2014 – December 2014
Location Carnegie Neighborhood Library and Center for Learning (1050 Quitman Rd., Houston, TX 77009)
For more information visit www2.houstonlibrary.org/hmrc or call HMRC at 832-393-1662.