Latino Heritage

The San Francisco Latino Historical Society and Heritage are excited to embark upon a new partnership to document and preserve the city’s rich Latino history. Read below for more information about two of our innovative new projects!


Nuestra Historia: Documenting the Chicano, Latino, and Indígena Contribution to the Development of San Francisco

Our Lady of Guadalupe_SFHeritage

Our Lady of Guadalupe Church. Photo from Heritage Archive.

In September, the organizations received a grant to fund the first citywide Latino historic context statement, entitled Nuestra Historia: Documenting the Chicano, Latino, and Indígena Contribution to the Development of San Francisco. Funded by the City of San Francisco’s Historic Preservation Fund Committee, this citywide historic context statement will document Latino history as it pertains to the physical and cultural landscape of San Francisco and will offer recommendations on how best to preserve and maintain architectural, cultural, and historical resources important to Latino communities.

This innovative community-based project comes at a time of rapid change in the Mission District and throughout San Francisco, when numerous longtime Latino businesses and community institutions face uncertain futures due to gentrification, rising rents, and displacement. Together, Heritage and the Latino Historical Society aim to build public awareness for the diverse history of Latinos in San Francisco, identify significant historic and cultural places for conservation, and offer recommendations for preserving and protecting this longstanding legacy. The project is expected to begin in early 2014.


Calle 24: Cuentos del Barrio

“Calle 24″ participants practicing their newly learned interview techniques at the offices of Accion Latina. Photo by Heritage staff.

Calle 24: Cuentos del Barrio is an effort to bring visibility to the Latino heritage of 24th Street and to support its continued vitality. The project launched in summer 2013 at the offices of Acción Latina, where a group of local high school and college students participated in urban history workshops and received training in oral history methodology from Dr. Carlos Cordova of San Francisco State University and Oscar Grande of PODER. Students then conducted over a dozen interviews with community leaders from 24th Street to recover stories dating from the 1940s to the present-day. The project culminated in a series of youth-led walking tours of 24th Street, held on July 28th during “Sunday Streets” in the Mission. A self-guided walking tour booklet is available in PDF format. Funding for Calle 24: Cuentos del Barrio came from the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the Bland Family Foundation.