Guadalupe Center

Displaying 1 - 10 of 19

Series of interviews with Kansas City, Kansas residents of Mexican descent about the 1951 Flood and its aftermath. Interview subjects recall having little time to save items from their homes or escape the flood waters, losing houses and businesses, taking refuge in locations including including Memorial Hall, Riverview School and with families in Kansas City, Missouri's West Side neighborhood, the wreckage that was left behind after water receded, and families choosing to rebuild in Kansas or permanently moving to Missouri.

Video Recording

Interview with Jessie Garcia Nieto about her parents' immigration to Kansas City from Mexico via Texas, attending Our Lady of Guadalupe and Manual High schools, her sister and cousins' work in the local garment industry, life in the Westside neighborhood, and her experiences working and raising a family. She also shares memories of Ralph Sifuentes and the accomplishments of her children.

Video Recording

Interview with IMAGE president and Rockhurst High School teacher Dan Torres about his life and work. Born in 1949, he recounts his early life being raised by supportive grandparents in Las Vegas, New Mexico, working as an agricultural laborer during the summer, and his family's distrust of English-speaking priests. He discusses being expelled from New Mexico Highlands University after a a protest with a Chicano political organization, moving to Kansas City at the age of 20 to study for the priesthood, completing his religious education, and ultimately deciding he was called to be a teacher and not a priest. He went on to work at Westport High School, the Guadalupe Parish Center, and Rockhurst High School, worked in other capacities with young people in the East Bottoms and Westside neighborhoods, and discusses his involvement with IMAGE and other organizations and shares his concerns about Westside development.

Audio icon
Audio Recording

Interview with retired engineer and boxing coach Lawrence Abdalla. Abdalla discusses working for General Motors in Warren, Michigan, and later the Kansas City, Kansas, Fairfax Plant, working as a page for Kansas State Senator George Haley and United States Senator Bob Dole, and becoming a boxing coach who was a member of the 1996 Team USA Olympics staff before returning to coach in Kansas City at the East Side Gym and Community Boxing and Fitness in Kansas and the Guadalupe Center in Missouri. He also discusses his volunteer work and prominent athletes he's worked with.

Audio icon
Audio Recording

Interview with Department of Housing and Urban Development neighborhood affairs representative Ricardo Parra about his life. Born in 1946, he recalls his family moving from Kansas City, Kansas to Kansas City, Missouri's Westside neighborhood after the 1951 Flood, being called Richard instead of Ricardo in school, and shares memories of neighborhood businesses and neighbors. He also discusses other memories of his school years, his work for the Guadalupe Center and Midwest Council of La Raza, and his involvement with other organizations.

Audio icon
Audio Recording

Interview with Severiano Alonzo, born in 1938 in the Armourdale neighborhood of Kansas City, Kansas. His father migrated from Aguas Calientes, Mexico and his mother migrated from San Luis Potosi, Mexico. They both finished high school in the Kansas City Area. Severiano grew up on 3rd Street his whole life until the Great Flood of 1953 forced his family to live in Missouri for two years before moving back to Armourdale and rebuilding their house. As a child, Alonzo recalls a community swimming pool that was filled with dirt because the white community did not want to share the pool with the Hispanic community. As a young adult, Alonzo came to the realization that a hard-labor job was not the only way to make a living and decided on a more professional path. In 1968, Alonzo and his brother worked at the Internal Revenue Service and performed various duties throughout their years there. Later, he worked at the Guadalupe Center as Executive Director which propelled him to participate in other community-led organizations such as Image, the GI Forum, and as a Program Coordinator with the Business Management Center, while also serving as a Hispanic program coordinator for federal agencies.

Audio icon
Audio Recording

Interview with Mary Bustamante, resident of the West Side of Kansas City, Missouri. Bustamante was born in Kansas City, Missouri, on May 2, 1924. Her parents, Manuel Lopez and Elvira Garcia de Lopez escaped the Mexican Revolution by migrating from San Luis Potosi, Mexico to Texas and then moved permanently to Kansas City. Bustamante attended Our Lady of Guadalupe School, Missouri for elementary school and partially completed her high school education at Manual Training High School. In her later years, Bustamante led Guadalupe Center fiestas from small locations up to a larger event at Crown Center in Kansas City, Missouri. She recalls the challenges of creating a kitchen and handling those large scale culinary responsibilities for the fiesta.

Audio icon
Audio Recording

Interview with artist Henry Montes about his life in Kansas City's Westside neighborhood. Born in 1956, he recalls the schools he attended, his mother working in the garment industry, playing sports and drawing as a young person, and later joining the Marine Corps and being stationed in California. He discusses returning to Kansas City, starting a family, getting his GED, and creating murals for the Guadalupe Center, KMBC, and having his work including in exhibitions of Latin American artists.

Audio icon
Audio Recording

Interview with Ninfa Garza, site manager of the Guadalupe Center's Casa Feliz, about her life and work. She recounts her roots in Texas and the family's return to Mexico during the Great Depression, where she grew up, attended college, was involved in Catholic charitable organizations, and worked in printing. She discusses meeting her husband while working in San Antonio, their move to Kansas City in the late 1950s, and her involvement with the Guadalupe Center where she established social services and community programs for Latino senior citizens.

Audio icon
Audio Recording

Interview with Rita Botello, former director of the Guadalupe Parish Cente, and born in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1951. Botello spent most of her childhood near 21st and Jefferson until the moving to Westport in 1951. Botello talks about her parent's struggle in buying a home until her uncle was killed in the Korean War, and his military service insurance which allowed them to make that purchase. As a child and teenager, Botello loved going to the library and reading and participating in summer reading programs. She graduated high school from St. Teresa's Academy in 1969, and went on to college at the University of Missouri-Kansas City where she joined the United Mexican American Students (UMAS) student group and became the executive vice president of the student council. After working various clerical and administrative jobs, Botello remained in the community by working at the Guadalupe Parish Center and other community-led initiatives.

Audio icon
Audio Recording