Centro Library and Archives Historical Preservation and Research Partnership Program Fall 2016-Spring 2017

The Center for Puerto Rican Studies Library and Archives seeks Partners to collect, archival material, conduct research, and disseminate new knowledge about the history of Puerto Rican individuals in communities in the United States.

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Centro Library

Collection Descriptions 2



Caballero, Diana [PDF] [ENGL] [ESPN]
Educator, community organizer and activist. These papers are important for the information and insight they offer on the right to equal educational opportunities in the Puerto Rican and Latino community of New York City. Advocacy for bilingual education, community efforts to get Latino representation on the Board of Education of the City of New York and the reform of district boards are all highlighted here. The collection also provides a history of the Puerto Rican/Latino Education Roundtable and perspective on the role Diana Caballero played in civil rights organizations such as the National Congress for Puerto Rican Rights. Materials include administrative files such as financial documents, minutes, news clippings, reports, and press releases. [Topics: Education; Family and Community Life; Gender and Sexuality; Organization and Leaders]

1967-1999        19.72        132      Finding Aid


Cabañas, Susana
Poet. Collection consists of two videotapes, one on Anita Vélez Mitchell and the other titled Momentos Inolvidables de la Familia San Antonio. [Topics: Literature]



1970s-1980s        0.50        1        Inventory


Cabassa Ramírez, Gonzalo
The collection consists of personal documents and correspondence belonging or relating to the Puerto Rican independence supporter and member of the Puerto Rican Nationalist Party, including government documents, such as Cabassa Ramirez’s resignation of U.S. citizenship, police and judicial records, intelligence reports, clippings and two military photographs. The collection is arranged by subject, rather than chronologically. [Topics: Politics, Government and Law; Social Reform]

1953-1999        0.12        6        Inventory


Cabrera, Elba [PDF]
Pioneering advocate for Puerto Rican and Latino arts and culture, affectionately termed "La Madrina de las Artes." Cabrera, born in Ponce, Puerto Rico, is the youngest sister of activist Evelina Antonetty and library administrator Lillian López. Her papers, spanning the years 1935-2015, document her early years and family life and chronicle her career with organizations including AHA (Association of Hispanic Arts), Lehman Center for the Performing Arts, Center for the Media Arts, Hostos Community College, Bronx Council on the Arts, and Girl Scouts USA. Collection offers rich insight into New York City's dynamic Puerto Rican and Latino arts scene from the 1970s-2000s, as well as her relationships with important Puerto Rican artists and writers, including Piri Thomas, Tato Laviera, George Aguirre, Pure Belpré, Pepón Osorio, and Nicholasa Mohr. Consists of correspondence, news clippings, publications, event programs, prints, posters, photographs, and audio and video recordings. [Topics: Arts and Culture; Family and Community Life; Gender and Sexuality]

1935-2015        15        139        Finding Aid


California Puerto Rican Historical Society West Coast Oral History Project [Audio Index]
Oral History Project documenting 24 interviewees from the West Coast Puerto Rican Elders conducted by the California Puerto Rican Historical Society with funds from the Western Region Puerto Rican Council and Hayward Area Historical Society. Centro provided assistance reformatting audiocassettes into digital format. [Topics: History; Migration and Settlement]

2008        0.05        6        Inventory


Camacho Souza, Blase [PDF] [ENGL] [ESPN]
[Audio Index]
Boricua-Hawaiana activist and educator. These papers are a significant resource for Puerto Rican migration studies and shed light on the life of plantation laborers in Hawaii in the 1900s and their descendants. The papers provide an intimate portrait of family life and work, as well as the social and cultural networks created by migrants in their efforts to preserve Puerto Rican traditions. The documents include letters, photographs, manuscripts, notes, programs, flyers, newspaper clippings, publications, posters, and artifacts. [Topics: Education; Family and Community Life; Gender and Sexuality; Migration and Settlement; Organizations and Leaders]

1899-2003        13        1,372        Finding Aid


Caragol, Taína/Latino Art Catalogs
Collection includes exhibition catalogs and information on Puerto Rican artists living in New York and on the island. [Topics: Arts and Culture]

1980-2006        0.5        1        Inventory


Cardona, Alice
Long-time activist Alice Cardona is best known for her commitment to advocacy for bilingual education, women’s rights and political representation. She worked and volunteered for ASPIRA, the National Conference of Puerto Rican Women, the Puerto Rican/Latino Education Roundtable and the Puerto Rican Association for Community Affairs and the National Latinas Caucus. From 1983-1995, as the assistant director of the New York State Division for Women, she supported numerous initiatives and community-based groups. The papers document the bilingual education movement in New York City, as well as the development of organizations that served the needs of women and those oriented toward community development. The materials consist of biographical information, correspondence, news clippings, photographs, speeches, articles, and documents from various organizations, including regulations, programs, correspondence and meeting minutes. Finding Aid available as part of Ventana al Pasado collaboration between Centro and The New York State Archives. [Topics: Education; Organizations and Leaders; Politics; Government and Reform; Social Reform; Women]

1923-2001        34        36        Finding Aid


Cardona, Luis [Audio Index]
Luis Cardona was an officer of the Migration Division of the Offices of the Government of Puerto Rico in the U.S. The collection consists of 37 audiocassette interviews of community leaders dating circa early 1980s. [Topics: Migration and Settlement]


1980s        0.50        1        Inventory


Caribbean Cultural Center
The collection consists of photographs of Taíno Indians and African art, and early images of Puerto Rico. Many of the photographs were taken by Hiram Maristany. These images were exhibited at the Caribbean Cultural Center gallery. [Topics: Culture; History; Visual Arts]

1980s        2.0        1        Inventory


Carro, John
The collection consists of various documents on the Puerto Rican and Hispanic Leadership Forum, including newspaper articles, correspondence, writings and reports donated by Judge John Carro, a member of the Forum’s Executive Committee. [Topics: Organizations and Leaders; Politics, Government and Law]




1958-1994        1.0        7        Inventory


Castilla, Rudy
This photograph collection of Puerto Rican and other Hispanic entertainers, performers and celebrities were taken by the famed Castilla Photo Studio in East Harlem (El Barrio), New York. Many prints from this period were destroyed when the studio underwent changes in ownership. There are also miscellaneous items, such as postcards of Puerto Rico. The collection is arranged alphabetically by name, where available. [Topics: Community Life; Culture]

1930s-1960s        0.40        7        Inventory


Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños
The only research center devoted to the study of the Puerto Rican diaspora. The records document the founding, administration, programs and intellectual production of this pioneering and innovative institution. In addition, the collection attests to Centro's role within the Puerto Rican/Latino community, its influence in academic circles and its ongoing commitment to chronicling and interpreting the Puerto Rican experience in the United States. An extraordinarily rich collection, highlights of the records include materials on the origins of Centro, its alternative modes of internal governance, the numerous projects and initiatives undertaken by its research task forces and units and the multiple organizations staff helped establish and/or actively participated in. The collection chronicles institutional efforts to document, through writings, archival initiatives, oral history interviews, publications and film, the history, culture, social, civic and political contributions of the Puerto Rican community to contemporary American life. Records include correspondence, memoranda, minutes, photographs, flyers, clippings, proposals, reports, speeches, videos, slides, financial statements and artifacts. Additions include: Felix Matos Rodriguez (Centro Director), Camille Rodriguez (Administrator and researcher in the Higher Education Task Force), Blanca Vazquez (Centro Bulletin editor), Pedro Pedraza (Language Task Force), Susan Zeig (Film and Media), The Library Vertical Files, Slide Collection, CENTRO/LEMC audio, video and transcripts files. [Topics: Arts and Culture; Education; Organizations and Leaders; Health and Community Welfare; Social Reform]

See Frank Bonilla

1973-2013        135        182        Finding Aid


Founded in the 1960s as The Real Great Society, Inc., by Chino Garcia, Armando Perez, Bimbo Rivas, Alfredo Irizarry and Roberto Nazario to help catalyze the revitalization of the surrounding Loisaida (Lower East Side). Collections contains records, correspondence and art materials. [Topics: Arts; Community Life]

1960-2008        25.0        76        Inventory


Cintrón, Humberto/Realidades
The first national Latino public affairs bilingual television series for adults ever funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcast produced at WNET, Channel 13, New York City (1971-1977). Topics include the Young Lords, ASPIRA and migrant women. This collection consists of papers, reports, banner, photographs, negatives and 3/4 inch video masters. Humberto Cintrón is best known for his role as host, writer and executive producer of Realidades. [Topics: Culture; Education; Organizations and Leaders]

1971-1979        3.0        1        Description


Cintrón, Josefina
The collection consists of various personal documents, including certificates, newspaper articles, clippings, programs and correspondence relating to cultural and literary organizations, including Instituto de Puerto Rico of New York and El Círculo de Escritores y Poetas Iberoamericanos (CEPI). [Topics: Arts and Culture; Organizations and Leaders]

1933-1971        0.12        5        Inventory


Claridad Bilingüe
This consists of thousands of photographic negatives intended for use in the pages of the bilingual edition of the leftist Puerto Rican newspaper, Claridad. [Topics: Politics, Government and Law; Social Reform]

1967-1980        1.0        5        Description


Club Puertorriqueño de San Francisco
The oldest Puerto Rican community organization stateside. Originally founded with the intention to represent Puerto Rico in the Panama Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco in 1915. The organization received the remaining funds of La Sociedad Puertorriquena de Beneficiencia Mutua, 1907 to 1915. The minutes are all in Spanish, but as early as 1927, there is discussion of allowing members to speak in English at general assemblies since some members were not born on the island. In 1932, the Club discussed offering membership to women, and in fact, they even rented out their space to Las Puerto Rican Daughters to host a dance. By 1934, there are female members, who paid special (lower) membership dues. Collection consists of 2 microfilm reels. [Topics: Family and Community Life; Migration and Settlement]

1915-1969        0.1        1        Description


Colón, Clara [PDF] [ENGL] [ESPN]
Political activist, feminist and writer. Resource for examining the Communist Party of the United States of America and the independence movement of Puerto Rico, as well as political persecution, feminism and trade-unionism. Most of the materials date from the 1950s to the 1970s. Collection consists of manuscripts, notes, letters, press releases, programs, flyers and newspapers clippings. [Topics: Gender and Sexuality; Politics, Government, and Law; Social Reform]

1932-1970        1.44        17        Finding Aid


Colón, Jesús [PDF] [ENGL] [ESPN]
Pioneeer, community leader, labor organizer and a prolific writer. The papers are a significant contribution to the study of Puerto Rican history, especially for the reconstruction of the Puerto Rican community's history in New York. They support research on such topics as organizational development and political participation among Puerto Ricans in New York, employment, discrimination and the labor movement. Puerto Rican involvement in labor and leftist organizations in New York are also documented. In the collection, there are letters, notes, drafts of published and unpublished works, reports, clippings and photographs. A majority of the papers consist of organizational records such as by-laws, lists, programs and policy statements. [Topics: Family and Community Life; Gender and Sexuality; Migration and Settlement; Organizations and Leaders; Politics; Social Reform]

1901-1974        25.5        773        Finding Aid


Colón, Máximo
Photographer. Collection includes photographs, buttons, posters and clippings. The papers demonstrate Colón’s work as a photographer and activities in the Puerto Rican community, which focus on New York City. [Topics: Community Life]


1960s-1980s        1.5        7        Inventory


Colón, Miriam/Puerto Rican Traveling Theatre
Actor and founder of the Puerto Rican Traveling Theater. Miriam Colón was born and raised in Ponce, Puerto Rico. She studied at the University of Puerto Rico, where she received a scholarship to study at the Dramatic Workshop and Technical Institute in New York. Miriam currently serves as the artistic director of the Puerto Rican Traveling Theater, which she founded in 1969. Colón became one of the first Puerto Rican actors to become a great success in Hollywood, starring in many films alongside famed actors such as Marlon Brando. She has also appeared on Broadway and off-Broadway productions. The collection consists of personal and biographical information, correspondence, programs, and clippings. [Topics: Arts and Culture]

1953-1987        0.25        8        Inventory


Colón, Ramón
Ramón Colón was a Puerto Rican politician, member of the Republican Party. He was brother-in-law to distinguished writers Jesús and Joaquín Colón. This collection includes an invitation to the inauguration of President Eisenhower, 21 photographs of political meetings and events, an event booklet signed by Ramon Colón containing a list of members and supporters of the club and a publication entitled El Estado Puerto Rico, endorsing statehood for Puerto Rico. [Topics: Politics, Government, and Law]

1950s-1960s        0.25        5        Inventory


Colón, Yarisa
Poet. Collection of several art books donated by Yarisa Colon. Included are some of her works, such as Desvestida (2001) and others created in collaboration with Tanya Torres like Imagenes femeninas (2002). [Topics: Arts and Culture; Organizations and Leaders]


2001-2005        -        1        Description


Colón López, Joaquín
Joaquín Colón López was a Puerto Rican activist and writer, brother to writer Jesús Colón. He also co-founded the Club Democrático de Brooklyn with J.V. Alonso. The collection consists of documents and 262 photographs dating from 1917 to 1947. Included among the documents are biographical information, articles, and a typewritten manuscript of Colón Lopez’s book, Pioneros Puertorriqueños en Nueva York 1917-1947. This manuscript was submitted by Centro and published by Arte Público Press in 2001. The photographs include personal and family photos as well as political activities and events. [Topics: Community Life; Migration and Settlement; Social Reform]

1917-1947        0.50        9        Inventory


Concepcion de Gracia, Gilberto
Collection consists of digitized documents and photographs. Founder and President of the Puerto Rican Independence Party (PIP), Concepción de Gracia is an outstanding figure in Puerto Rican political history. He passionately argued for Puerto Rico’s independence and for social justice for all Puerto Ricans. He was also a distinguished lawyer, journalist and professor. In 1936, he moved to the United States where he fought, first in New York City and later in Washington D.C., for the rights of Puerto Ricans and their communities. As a Senator (1952-1960) in the Puerto Rican parliament, he introduced key progressive legislation on social, political and cultural issues. He presided over the Puerto Rican Bar Associations’ Civil Liberties Commission and appeared before the United Nations on the question of Puerto Rico. A firm believer in democracy, Concepción de Gracia fought tirelessly until his death for the Puerto Rican Independence Party to remain as an instrument to attain national sovereignty. [Topics: Community Life; Migration and Settlement; Politics]

1936-1939        0.25        139        Inventory


Conde Pérez, Helen
Collection consists of 3 family photographs from the early 1930s. [Topics: Family and Community Life]






1930s        0.01        1        Inventory


Conzo, Joe
Photographer. Born and raised in the South Bronx growing up around his grandmother, the dynamic South Bronx leader and activist Dr. Evelina Lopez Antonetty and his father, long time confidant and historian of the late Tito Puente, Joe Conzo, Sr.,Conzo's photo­graphic work was deeply influenced by a strong legacy of Puerto Rican activism in the South Bronx, as well as the vibrancy of Puerto Rican musical culture in New York. The collection consists of five photographs representing his scope of work as presented in The Bronx: Mi Barrio, Mi Orgullo photography by Joe Conzo exhibited in the Centro Gallery in 2010. [Topics: Photography; Visual Arts]

1979-1981        0.05        5        Inventory


Cordero, Félix
Painter. Collection comprises one legal size folder and includes slides, exhibition catalogues and information, pamphlets and a postcard. [Topics: Visual Arts]



1981-1986        0.05        7        Inventory


Cordero Meléndez, Félix Luis
Felix Melendez Cordero is a photographer and painter who studied in New York City and Chicago. In 1984, he received the Artist of the Year Award from the Institute of Puerto Rico in New York. The collection consists of biographical information, slides of photographs, descriptive information, exhibit programs, and two photographs dating 1992. [Topics: Arts]


1980s-1994        0.25        5        Inventory


Cortijo, María
A resident of Brooklyn since the 1950s, Cortijo is a Puerto Rican artist who created an art form, weaving dolls and other artifacts, such as handbags, baskets and even vests from disposable plastic bags. The collection consists of biographical information, a photograph, and a woven vest. The collection dates to 2003, when Centro exhibited Cortijo’s work in its gallery. The exhibit was curated by José Vidal. [Topics: Arts]

2002        0.12        6        Inventory


Costa, Marithelma [Audio Index]
Medieval Spanish and Modern Latin America Literature Professor at Hunter College, CUNY. This collection is comprised of 10 audiocassettes with interviews with the poets Clemente Soto Vélez and Carmen Valle, scholar and essayist Nilita Vientos Gastón and the visual artist and essayist Antonio Martorell. [Topics: Culture; Literature]


1985-1986        0.10        1        Inventory


Cruz, Pura
Pura Cruz arrived in New York as an infant and grew up in East Harlem (El Barrio), New York. She studied studio art at SUNY Stonybrook and went on to become a visual artist, sculptor and curator. Her style is expressionist, somewhat abstract, large-scale, and employs mixed media. Her works often deal with such themes as ethnic identity and memory. The collection consists of 40 slides of artwork, clippings and exhibit program facsimiles donated by the artist. [Topics: Arts]

1983-1992        0.25        6        Inventory


Cuatro Project
The Cuatro Project is a cultural organization that focuses on the history of the cuatro, a traditional Puerto Rican stringed musical instrument, and its relationship to Puerto Ricans. Group dedicated to discovering the history of the cuatro and its links to Puerto Rican identity. [Topics: Arts and Culture; Music]

1991-1998        0.12        7        Description


Cultural Foundations of Puerto Rican Orlando/Ciminetos Culturales del Orlando Puertorriqueño
An oral history project documenting the stories about two cultural organizations (the Asociación Borinqueña and Casa de Puerto Rico) and the growth of the Puerto Rican community in Central Florida. It consists of 36 interviews, conducted in English or Spanish, and digital images. [Topics: Migration and Settlement; Organizations and Leaders]

2012        0.1        1        Inventory


CUNY Association of Caribbean Studies
The CUNY Association of Caribbean Studies (CUNYACS) was founded in 1984 among Caribbeanists within the CUNY system and beyond to promote the field of Caribbean Studies and develop a mutual support network. The collection consists of documents, including correspondence, bulletins, newsletters, reports, meeting minutes, memoranda and conference programs. [Topics: Culture; Education]

1985-1986        0.25        5        Inventory