Cache Valley, Utah:
Latino/Latina Voices & History
Eduardo Ortiz, Ph.D.
Maria Spicer-Escalante, Ph.D.
Randy Wiliams
Utah State University
“As a member of this community, and as a direct
contributor to the [Latino/a Voices]Project’s fulfillment, I
cannot think of a better way to bring the Latino
community to light, with its qualities and strength of
character that have helped us forge a present and a
future in a western corner of a great nation. The Latino
Voices Project is making justice as it enhances the
quality of education, promotes further research, and
connects generations through the years. Elisaida
Méndez, Assistant Director Latino/a Voices Project
(2007).”
The Latino/a
Voices Project
. . . is a diverse collection of oral
histories from Cache Valley’s
Latino/a citizens collected in
2007.
. . . works to better represent
Latino/a communities in USU
Special Collections.
. . . as of November 2012
includes the voices of
Mountain Crest High School
students.
. . . is online!
http://digital.lib.usu.edu/cdm/l
andingpage/collection/Latino
Randy Williams: Project
Director
Collection Content
46 interviews from 2007 effort
Demographics & culture
Family
Education
Life in Cache Valley
Reflections…
Youth
Perspectives:
Mountain Crest High School
students
In 2012 the collection
was enhanced by
adding youth
perspectives to the
collection.
•1 Focus group
interview with nine
students
•7 individual interviews
conducted by Randy
Williams (5), Eduardo
Ortiz (1) and Maria
Luisa Spicer-Escalante
(1)
Latino Demographics in Cache Valley
Census 1970
Persons of Spanish origin Cache County: 151 persons
(0.8% total pop.)
Census 1980
Persons of Spanish origin Cache County: 708 persons
(1.2% total pop.)
Census 1990
Persons of Hispanic origin Cache County: 1,656
(2.4% total pop.)
Latino Demographics in Cache Valley
Census 2000
Hispanic or Latino in Cache County:
5,786 (6.3% total pop.)
Mexican origin: 4,047
Central American: 439
South American: 234
Latino Demographics in
Cache Valley
Census 2010
Total population Cache Valley: 112,656
Hispanic or Latino:
11,216 (10%)
Mexican Population:
Central American:
South American:
8,193(7.3%)
1,145(1%)
560 (0.5%)
Latino Demographics in
Cache Valley: Education
Hispanic/Latino Population living in Cache Valley, Utah
Educational Attainment
Cache Valley
Year
Percentage having any
Hispanic/Latino’s over 25 years
college education
1970
1980
1990
2000
119
158
588
2303
2012
5175
42%
52%
43%
20% total (12.6% male
& 7.6% female)
51% total (25% male &
26% female)
Latino Demographics in
Cache Valley: Gender Trends
Census 1970
Hispanic Latinos Males: 57%
Hispanic Latinos Females: 43%
Census 2010
Hispanic Latinos Males: 52%
Hispanic Latinas Females: 48%
Latino Demographics in
Cache Valley
Census 2010
Median age
US White population:
Utah White population:
Cache Valley White pop:
Cache Valley Latino pop:
40.3 years
30.2 years
26 years
21 years
Latino Demographics in Cache Valley:
Age Distribution
Census 2010 – Cache Valley
% under 15 years White Population: 26%
% under 15 years Latino:
37%
% over 55 years White Population:
% over 60 years Latino:
16%
5%
Latino Demographics in Cache Valley:
Poverty & Employment
ACS 2006 – 2010 (5 years estimates)
Unemployment (16 years and over)
White population:
5%
Hispanic or Latino:
7%
Poverty
White population:
Hispanic or Latino:
14%
26%
Why Cache Valley
“Bueno, por supuesto tienen la paz de aquí, la seguridad, aquí sales a la calle
y no tienes miedo que alguien te va a asaltar, que alguien te va a robar,
que alguien te va a matar, sino que la paz y la seguridad… probablemente
comida nunca falta, allá nosotras a veces no teníamos que comer
entonces te conformabas con lo que había… en las escuelas aquí todo se
facilita pero nosotras allá teníamos que estudiar duro y para mantenerte
tenías que de verdad esforzarte. Entonces yo veo que aquí es todo más
fácil.”
“Well, of course there is peace and safety here. You go out and you are not
afraid of getting assaulted, robbed, and killed; (here) there is peace and
safety… there is not lack of food (here), sometimes we had nothing to eat
(there), then you got what you had… here everything is easy at the
schools, but there (her country) we had to study hard to hang in there, you
had to make truly efforts. Then, I think everything here is easier.”
Place Comparisons
“Aquí uno tiene muchas cosas que no tiene allá. Por
ejemplo, allá nunca tuvimos carro, siempre andábamos
en busetas, en buses, que llama uno. Pero normal… En
la niñez tuve que trabajar, porque yo nací cuando mi
papá tenía 53 o 54 años y tuve que empezar a trabajar
temprano para poder ayudar a la familia.”
“Here we have many things we didn’t have there. For
example, we never had a car and we always used buses.
It was common… In my childhood I had to work, because
I was born when my dad was 53 or 54 years old and I
had to start working early to help my family”
Community Interactions
Perceptions
“Porque normalmente cuando tu ves a gente de color, se
cree que esa persona no ha tenido ninguna educación, es
un estereotipo… y la gente piensa que supuestamente
como eres Latino eres ilegal y tu le dices a una persona
que tú eres ingeniero y estás terminando tu maestría, ya
la gente te ve desde otro punto de vista”
“If you see people of color, you think that person does not
have education, it is an stereotype… people think about
Latinos they are illegal but if you say I am an engineer or
you are finishing a master then they see you from a
different perspective”
Community Interactions
Perceptions
“When I arrived in Utah”… remembered “my first class was a fun
biology workshop” where the class looked at stereotypes. The
class assignment paired two students together; each was
given a slip of paper and in 30 seconds they were to write
down their first impressions of their partner. The only Latino
(there), recalled that “this quiet, quiet gal unfolded the paper;”
I told her, “You got a Mexican Latino.” Inviting her to tell him
what she had written and that he would not “get upset;”
unfortunately, the words she had written did sting. “She told
me” Baquero recalled “that we are ‘poor, lazy and
uneducated.’” You “cannot block that and that is truly what is
in your head as a stereotype.”
Community Interactions:
Venues/settings
“no hay mucha vida social acá. Digamos es un vecindario que nadie se
mete contigo ni tu con ellos, no tienes cabida para desenvolverte ni
para hablar ni conocer porque como son familias, entonces cada
familia tiene su espacio, y se hace difícil interrumpir. La amistad se
hace difícil porque las familias quieren estar entre ellos.”
“There is not much social life here. Let’s say, within a neighborhood
nobody approaches to you and you don’t approach to them, you
don’t have much opportunities to interact neither to get them know
because they are families that wants their (own) space and it is
difficult to interrupt. Friendship is difficult because families want to
stay with themselves.”
Community Interactions:
Venues/settings
“Con mis vecinos vamos a la iglesia, con la gente con la
que trabajo son miembros de la iglesia, y entonces
podes hablar de la iglesia, podes hablar de lo que haces
en la iglesia, de tus llamamientos y entienden de lo que
estás hablando.”
“We go with our neighbors to Church. The people I work
with are members of the (same) Church. So we can talk
about church, we can talk about what we do in Church,
we can talk about our callings and they understand what
I am talking about.”
Community Interactions
Acculturation
“Trato de visualizar lo que tenemos en común… por ejemplo, tengo un
vecino que es mi amigo y le gusta jugar videojuegos entonces yo
trato de jugar con él de vez en cuando y es una manera de
socializar. En cuanto a diferencias religiosas y creencias y
costumbres nuestras vidas son totalmente diferentes pero creo que
siempre hay una manera de encontrar algo en común para poder
socializar”
“I try to visualize common interests… for example I have a neighbor
who is my friend and he likes to play videogames, so I try to play with
him once in a while. This is a way to socialize. In relation to (cultural)
differences like religion, beliefs, and traditions, our lives (we) are very
different but I think always there is a way to find something in
common to socialize.”
Community Interactions
Integration
“… la relación con los vecinos, yo voy a su garaje, cojo una
herramienta y les digo “llevo tal cosa” o ellos vienen aquí, hablan
conmigo… Sí, pasamos gritando de uno a otro lado del
vecindario (risas). El 4 de Julio y no recuerdo que otras fechas
solemos hacer picnics en algunos de los solares de las casas y
todo el mundo llega y llevamos nuestras comidas o alguien pone
la comida. Y nos conocemos…”
“…(about) the relations with our neighbors I go to their garage and
take a tool and then I tell them “I’m taking something” or they
come here to talk with me… We keep shouting (friendly) from one
side of the neighborhood to another (laughing) On July 4th and
other times I don’t remember we have picnics in some backyards
and everyone comes, we prepare our food or someone bring
food… and we get know each other…”
Youth Voices
Emotional and Social Challenges
“Well when my brother got deported, inside I was
sad and scared for my brother, worrying about
him; but outside, I didn’t want anybody to know I
was sad, so I just had a fake smile on my face
everyday. So like I made soccer team, and it
was kind of hard because I was thinking about
my brother at the same time, and I had to focus
on soccer; it was kind of hard.”
“… At first I was nervous for high school – just
feeling different, because I was a different color,
I thought they would treat me different (like the
teachers); but some do, some don’t.”
Because they’re just saying like, “Oh, you’re
brown. You’re catholic, you’re useless.” I’m like,
“Whatever.”
Responsibility
She was 10 years old and she had to take care of her little
brother because her mom had to work.
Family
And when I was younger, my parents used to work a
lot… And I used to love being with my grandma. . .
And well, [getting choked up] she was always in the
kitchen, so I wanted to be with her, so I just started
helping her out. . . . Well, she used to babysit us,
and my cousins used to be either watching the TV,
or else out playing soccer – and I wasn’t really
much of a sports guy, and I don’t really like sitting
down just to watch TV. So I asked, “Grandma,
what can I help you with?” Like just getting
ingredients, or cleaning up, or setting things
up. And just like, I started helping her; and my
favorite thing helping her with was making tamales
Conclusions
Challenges
Better understanding
Cultural (traditions, food, music, values, skills, etc.), Social, Emotional,
Psychological, Academic, Socioeconomic
Effective help
Opportunities
Maximize potential
Hope
Future of our community
Future of America
Diversity in harmony is a powerful outcome to pursue
Questions?
cuestionar
question
indagar
ask
preguntar
pregunta
examinar
analizar
poner en duda
wonder
The Latino/a Voices Project received a
2008 Utah Humanities Council
Human Ties Award
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Cache Valley