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Saturday, May 30, 2009--"3rd Annual Barrio History Symposium"

The FAMILIA Ancestral Research Association invites you to the 3rd Annual Barrio History Symposium to be held May 30, 2009 at Golden West College in Huntington Beach, CA.

Understanding FAMILIA’S role in the Barrio History Symposium: If you participated at the 1st Barrio Symposium, you might recall the words of panelist Professor Francisco Balderrama, “Why isn’t someone recording this! You’re making history!” True in the sense that never before had an organization taken such a powerful initiative to create a forum for discussion on documenting the recent history of Mexican American residents that once lived in the Barrios of So. California.

Since FAMILIA’s creation ten years ago, the organization has maintained an awareness of our need to reach out to the Mexican community and to expound the significance of ancestral research. We have strived to provide the resources on finding and interpreting Mexican and Spanish era documents and have stressed the importance of documenting information for future generations. Presentations have been made in schools, churches, community centers, and of course during our informative general meetings, all with the purpose of educating and informing the community.

To document the history of a family, however is not limited to Mexico or Spain. To be “objective genealogists” leads us to follow the first principal of ancestral research: Ancestry begins at home, begin with yourself, your parents and grandparents. And I would add the following: Make certain to document the history of the area, explain the events that shaped the lives of these families, and be aware of the challenges and obstacles that had to be overcome. These are the reasons FAMILIA embarked on such an important endeavor we called the Barrio History Symposium.

After the 2nd Barrio Symposium Javier Alcala, a GWC employee wrote back “That was the best symposium I’ve ever been to in my life!” Yes, it was that good as attendees learned a wealth of information on the history of local communities with Chavez Ravine being a prime example. Presentations were also given on the efforts by universities, USC in particular, to address issues surrounding local history, and of efforts by Mexican American historical societies such as La Historia Society of El Monte and Orange County Mexican American Historical Society to memorialize the barrios so that the families that once resided in them are not forgotten. Obviously not all communities were represented, but the effort to include as many areas as possible continues.

This event (the 2nd symposium) almost did not take place. Fortunately the Orange County Mexican American Historical Society offered to sponsor the event, with FAMILIA acting as co sponsors. This union ensured that precious resources could be dedicated to making the symposium a reality and a success. In the process, the symposium received encouragement and support from other organizations involved in Mexican American history, as well as from several college professors that continue to encourage their students to attend.

Through our involvement in the 3rd Barrio History Symposium, FAMILIA continues to play a role in educating our communities by promoting efforts to study local history and ancestry while preparing future generations for their personal research. FAMILIA considers this a tremendous opportunity for our membership to become engaged with the community and to promote the work we are involved in – ancestral research! It is our objective that those who attend and take an interest in their family history will some day be studying the lives of the early colonists and Native Americans, all the while being conscious of the fact that family history does not begin with a Conquistador or African Queen, but rather with the recent past and threads its way back in time with many twists and interesting findings.

We also remind our members that the symposium serves as FAMILIA’s Quarterly meeting and stress the importance of continuing to support the organization by attending and participating in the projects and events we are involved in. This year FAMILIA will have a large display area with computer access to help visitors quickly access the Family History Library and the International Genealogical Index (IGI). There will also be materials on researching Censuses, Military and Immigration Records, and examples of Mexican and Colonial period documents. FAMILIA member and book seller, Carlos Yturralde will be on hand with his growing collection of books on history and genealogy. As an added treat to attendees, the symposium includes entertainment by a tremendously popular musical trio, catered food, and the visit by a very important Mexican American politician that no one will want to miss.

We hope you take the time to make plans to attend the symposium and to stop by the FAMILIA display area. You can inspire and motivate our hard working volunteers by taking a minute to greet and support them.

FAMILIA Board of Directors Ed Morga-President Interim, Marty Grajeda-Vice President, Sylvia Magdaleno-Secretary, Alfonso Garcia-Treasurer

Saturday, January 31, 2009--“A Historical Overview of Nueva Vizcaya; New Spain’s Northern Frontier”

FAMILIA is pleased to announce the first of our 2009 lecture presentations.

Our guest speaker for January 31, 2009 will be Professor Rick Hendricks of New Mexico State University. Prof. Hendricks is well known for his numerous publications and scholarly work on Colonial New Mexico and the greater southwest, and on this occasion he examines the history, events and people of Nueva Vizcaya, bastion of the Spanish frontier.

Students of history and ancestral researchers are encouraged to attend as this is an excellent opportunity to learn of a region that has influenced the development of northern Mexico and the American southwest. Mexican states that once formed Nueva Vizcaya include; Durango, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Sonora and Sinaloa.

As always, visitors and guests are welcome and there is no charge for the lecture. Location:Community Center Building, Golden West College, Huntington Beach, CA between 9 AM —12 PM. We recommend that you arrive early for best parking.


Individual Familia Members met together on this past Saturday, October 11, 2008 at the West Los Angeles to exchange information and hear John P. Schmal presentation. "Indigenous Mexico: Past and Present" (a 40-frame presentation on Mexico's Indigenous Peoples. To see the power point presentation, see INDIGENOUS MÉXICO: An Introduction to México’s Remarkable Diversity) and "Hispanic Genealogy for Beginners." Those in attendance were given individual attention and were helped with their search by his expertise. John volunteers as an expert for hispanic genealogy at the Los Angeles Regional Family History Center is located at 10777 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90025 and their telephone number is (310) 474-9990 to find out what days he volunteers in the month.

For further information call: (714) 687-0390