What is Hispanic Heritage Month?
Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates the contributions that Latino and Hispanic Americans have made to the United States. This is a special month that allows people to reflect and learn about the history, heritage, and culture of the Hispanic and Latino U.S. population.
When is Hispanic Heritage Month?
Hispanic Heritage Month 2022 begins on Thursday, September 15th, and concludes on Saturday, October 15th.
What is the history of Hispanic Heritage Month?
The contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans have been vital to the economic and cultural prosperity of the United States. This is why having a commemorative week or month to celebrate them is integral. After the civil rights movement reached the mainstream, the work of the Hispanic and Latino communities in America became more popular and gained momentum in the 1960s.
President Lyndon B. Johnson first signed National Hispanic Heritage Week into law in 1968. It wasn’t until 1988 that the week was expanded, becoming a month-long celebration. Hispanic Heritage Month is now an annual event from September 15th to October 15th. This was signed into law by President Ronald Reagan.
The date September 15th holds significance and was chosen to begin Hispanic Heritage Month, as it marks the anniversary of the Cry of Dolores (September 1810), signaling the start of the Mexican War of Independence. This war resulted in independence for the New Spain Colony (now Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua).
Mexico, Chile, and most Central American countries commemorate their independence from Spain on September 15th, September 16th, and September 18th, respectively.
Since 1989, all presidents have given a Presidential Proclamation to mark Hispanic Heritage Month.