Wednesday, December 01, 2021

HISTORY SAN JOSÉ HAS A NEW AFFILIATE AT HISTORY PARK: LA RAZA HISTORICAL SOCIETY OF SANTA CLARA VALLEY

Casa Chiechi (Built in 1876).

La Raza Historical Society Of Santa Clara Valley (LRHS) and History San José (HSJ) announced their new affiliation and The Society’s Campaign to upgrade The Historic Chiechi House as its new office.

Margie Chiechi and her cousin Mike Chiechi (100 years old). The family donated the house to the City of San Jose for the History Park and Fernando Zazueta, Pres. LRHS.

A Media/News Conference was held in front of the Chiechi House on Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. inside San Jose History Park at 635 Phelan Avenue, San José, CA 95112.

Members of the Board of Directors of LRHSSCV, members of the Núñez Family and friends.

Fernando Zazueta, LRHS President, and Alida Bray, HSJ President & CEO, announced their new affiliation and their collaborative effort to collect, disseminate and increase the understanding of La Raza community history in the Santa Clara Valley.

The Chiechi House, a Victorian-era home built in 1876 by Jane and John Campbell was purchased in 1913 by Michael Chiechi, an Italian immigrant. It was his family home until his descendants donated it to San Jose’s History Park in 1973. LRHS will lease this historic building as its office.

Bob Núñez, candidato a la Alcaldía de Milpitas.

Mr. Bob Nunez of the Nunez Family Foundation has made a multi-year commitment to contribute funds to lease the building. There will be a campaign to raise funds to preserve, upgrade and improve the house later this year. Nunez said, “Our Foundation is proud to provide the first major support to secure this office and we are seeking more donors and supporters as the Society works to increase knowledge about the contributions of La Raza in this Valley while also promoting a better understanding between all ethnic groups in our area.”

Chief of the San Jose Police Department Eddie García and Fernando Zazueta, President LRHS.

Dr. Ramon Martinez, LRHS Secretary and long-time advocate of these efforts, said “We will collect and digitize articles, photographs, taped videos and oral histories of individuals and families who have long contributed to the prosperity of our region. This information will be available on-line to academic researchers and others interested in knowing more about our Raza community. The internet will provide data about our community heroes, many of whom have never received civic recognition for their efforts in making Santa Clara Valley what it is today.”

Bob Núñez y Dennis Grilli.

LRHS President Zazueta explained, “We call ourselves La Raza because in Spanish the term Raza incorporates all those identified in English as Hispanics. It includes Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans and the many others from Latin and South America, regardless of race, who have long worked hard to build the wealth of our Valley. We will tell their stories of struggle and triumph.”

Zazueta and Bray said their boards voted unanimously to provide increased and more diverse activities in the Park’s exhibit galleries, meeting rooms, conference facilities and outside areas.

Corina Cihuachimali Herrera-Loera y Gerardo Loera from the Calpulli Tonalehqueh Group.

Bray added, “This is not about a single house effort, it is about adding our area’s largest ethnic group as a major component to our family of history affiliates in the Park: the Black, Portuguese, Chinese and Viet Namese communities who are saving the treasures and preserving ancestral traditions of our grandparents, parents, and us for our posterity.”

For more information, please contact: Fernando Zazueta, Pres. La Raza Historical Society, Tel: 408.705.7530 fzazueta1@gmail.com

Alida J. Bray, Pres./CEO, History San José, Tel: 408.918.1041 abray@historysanjose.org

Photos: The Chiechi House, Fernando Zazueta, Alida Bray, La Raza Historical group pictures and by Juan Raúl.