Now is the time of year dedicated to reflecting on our Hispanic heritage even as we are living here in the States. It would seem that everyone has their own way of celebrating Hispanic Heritage month which is the beauty of it all: everyone makes it their own. So this is how I celebrate as a writer; by bringing you some Hispanic Heritage month fun facts. Let’s get things started at the beginning.
Hispanic Heritage Month Fun Facts
The Reason for the Date
The countries of Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Costa Rica and Guatemala all have something in common: they all share the same independence anniversary date. What date might that be? You guessed it, September 15th the day that Hispanic Heritage month kicks off here in the States.
The Origins of the Hispanic Term
There has been a decent amount of web space dedicated to attempting to clarify the whole Hispanic vs. Latino debate but what many people don’t know are the deep down roots of the word ‘Hispanic.’ Originally (going back further than even the P.C. police were concerned) the term Hispania was used to refer to people from Portugal and Spain only.
Everybody thinks of Plymouth Rock as the birthplace of American colonization but few people know that there are a couple cities in the United States that were founded way before the pilgrims landed on the East Coast. Santa Fe, New Mexico and St. Augustine, Florida were both founded, Hispanic cities before Plymouth, Massachusetts was settled. Here you can test a bit of your Hispanic history knowledge.
The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
You have probably heard of the Mexican-American war of the 1800’s and you have probably even heard of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo that resulted from the conflict but do you know how much the States agreed to pay for California, Texas and New Mexico for? Approximately 15 million dollars. What a deal!
The Unsolved Death of Oscar Zeta Acosta
Oscar Zeta Acosta was a lawyer, novelist and prominent figure in the Chicano movement of the 70’s but there is still mystery surrounding his disappearance and death. His body was never found but he is believed to have been assassinated at some time during a trip to Mazatlán, Mexico.
Type O blood is the blood type that is most sought out by hospitals and guess which ethnic group has the most of it? That’s right, Hispanics. It is estimated that type O blood runs through the veins of 60% of the Hispanic population.
Did you know that Spanish is the 2nd most commonly spoken language in the world? There are over 300 million native Spanish speakers in the world and that is just ahead of English speakers but Chinese still dominates in terms of how many people speak it as their native language.
While there is some speculation it is generally accepted that Spaniards have been established in Europe in some form or another longer than any other European ethnic group.
I sincerely hope you enjoyed these Hispanic Heritage month fun facts and as you engage in various kinds of Hispanic culture traditions in the coming weeks, take some time to observe our rich history and learn something you never knew about us. Hopefully this was a good start.