Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month (Mes Nacional de la Herencia Hispana) is a period from September 15th to October 15th in the United States for recognizing the contributions and influence of Hispanic/Latinx Americans to the history, culture, and achievements of the United States.
These global contributions to the rich tapestry of innovation, invention and entertainment continues to have a impact on society as a whole. Though we take time to acknowledge these gifts from our antepasados, the celebration is ongoing, and one that should always continue daily.
Below are a few of the many pioneers that have given their gifts to the world. For additional information, click on the name of the individual.
origins of hispanic heritage month
Hispanic Heritage/Latinx Month began as Hispanic Heritage Week. Hispanic Heritage Week was established by legislation sponsored by Rep. Edward R. Roybal of Los Angeles and was signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson in 1968. In 1988, the commemorative week was expanded to a month (September 15 to October 15) by legislation sponsored by Rep. Esteban Edward Torres (D-Pico Rivera), amended by Senator Paul Simon and signed into law by President Ronald Reagan. September 15 was chosen as the starting point for the commemoration because it is the anniversary of independence of five Hispanic countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua, who all declared independence in 1821. In addition, Mexico, Chile and Belize celebrate their independence days on September 16, September 18, and September 21 respectively.
Hispanic Heritage Week was first proclaimed by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1968 in Presidential proclamation 3869. Presidents Nixon, Ford, Carter and Reagan gave annual proclamations for Hispanic Heritage Week between 1969 and 1988. National Hispanic Heritage Month was first proclaimed by President George H. W. Bush on September 14, 1989 in Presidential Proclamation 6021. Since 1989, all Presidents have given a Presidential Proclamation to mark Hispanic Heritage Month