Folklife Festival Narrative Session: Murals & Low Riders: Border History; Chinese Presence in Baja, California


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WEBVTT

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Speaker 1: I just saw a hand go up, so why don't we --
Audience Member 1:

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I'm from southern California -- Do you know if there are any regional differences between El Paso, Texas and Southern California, for instance, in both murals and the low riding?

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Speaker 2: Pregunta ella, levanta la mano pregunta que si existen diferencias entre el movimiento del muralismo Chicano y el movimiento lowrider entre el sur de California y El Paso.

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Speaker 1: Ciudad Juarez, yeah.

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Carlos: As far as for me -- there is some differences. A lot of the execution is very similar. A lot of the subject matter is very similar, but um but the way it manifests, you know I think there is a difference and that goes all through the Southwest. Certain tendencies, certain styles tend to be dominant and also makes that area a little more distinct from the other area. So there is some differences.

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Speaker 1: Carlos, can you give me an example of what you are thinking of when you say that?

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Carlos: Oh well -- for one thing you have to understand for instance in southern California or Los Angeles - I mean that's the capital city for murals so you are gonna have a wide variety, so to try to compare it, um. El Paso tends to be a little bit more -- the only way I can describe it is basically using artistic terms like more impressionist, realist, surrealist -- whereas, uh LA has everything.

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Carlos: Uh, there's right now a big -- you see a lot of -- a lot of the the photo realism, a lot of graphics, illustrative -- we have that too, but not as much.

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Podiras hacer una compariasion entre Juarez.. por que tu nunca as hido a Los Angeles verdad porque no saben como esta la honda.

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I'm asking him if he respond to your question ….. Juarez and Boston podrias habrar sobre la diferencia entre San Francisco, Juarez, Boston,

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Pues algunos murales tienen cierta relacion si son mas o menos pero a ca Tambien hay mucha differencia porque nosotros trabajas el programa pasista era .. teniamos murales con reflection a paz y tratabanos de evitar la violencia en lal cuidad y esos se estaba viendo a travez de resultados Lo que yo e visto por el otro lado en Los Angeles es mas violencia aya hay m... en la ciudad de juarez… con el simple hecho de la vestimienta.

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I'll try to reduce it to the gist but he pointed out that you know the activities here in Cd. Juarez, actually referred to itself at some point as "brigade of piece " and that the whole range of activities, expressive and social, were dedicated to realizing that ideal, where as just as he sees it in his own terms he detects a fairly prevalent partial of violence in the...

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Speaker 1: Yeah, like this sort of thematic orientation of stuff on the northern side of the border.

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Speaker 1: Okay, I see another question. Why don't we keep things going here by trying to answer some questions rather than have us stand up here and babble.

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Speaker 2: How do people form a car club and how does an individual join a club that's already established?

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Speaker 1: How do people form a car club and how do they get into a club that is already established?

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Speaker 1: [In Spanish] [[?]]

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Speaker 3: Um, first if I can just get back to finishing the latter part of this question over here.

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Speaker 3: To, um, to be honest with you, although the movement I am part of each individual is involved with competing within his own club and with other clubs, we are a movement of unity.

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Speaker 3: And between where I live in Texas and in California, Southern California particularly, there is a brilliant exchange of wonderful ideas and wonderful innovations that make, that are beneficial to the whole movement in general.

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Speaker 3: So, as far as differences are concerned, whatever little area can contribute of their culture you know that adds to the beauty of the whole.

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Speaker 3: For instance, if there's a, what I like to refer to, a couple of murals in one area maybe somebody with a oriental origin will want maybe somebody from a Chinese mythology muraled onto their vehicle.

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Speaker 3: Where different areas they more, coming towards the East, somewhere in New Mexico somebody wants to do a little more work with hydraulics and somewhere in El Paso we'll do something with a border motif.

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Speaker 3: The American and Mexican flag and the two hands coming together showing the, you know the camaraderie and the brothership there on the border.

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Speaker 3: Little variants like that, but I like to say that things like that add to the beauty of the whole movement.

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Speaker 3: And as far as the establishment of a car club, I'll go ahead and use my car club as an example. There are variants of this, but this is usually basically what happens.

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Speaker 3: Slow & Low founded five years ago by a family, and a couple of buddies of the family, needed a way out of the gangs, a way out of the bad elements in the streets, so they got together and took about two weeks to hammer out sort of a constitution to charter up, you know, some bylaws that the club goes by.

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Speaker 3: It was very important that the founders all were united in those, in all the uh, all the little articles that were passed so that everybody would be, no one would, there would be no exceptions.

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Speaker 3: You know, if this article said this everybody, they all agreed on it, so y'all have to follow it.

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Speaker 3: And pretty much you wanna just set down what kind of cars y'all wanna go with, there's many different custom applications, the four-by-fours, you have the rods, the speed and custom, and the low-riders.

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Speaker 3: And just, you make up your mind of which ones you're gonna represent, sit down and get, it's very important to have some sort of foundation there for you to refer to, otherwise the movement goes to chaos, your whole club just kind of falls apart.

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Speaker 3: So I'd say order. Definite chain of order, chain of, I don't wanna say chain of command because that sounds a little militaristic, but sometimes that's exactly the way it is.

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Speaker 3: Definite chain of command. We elect presidents, we elect officers of the president's board and the elections take place every half year, every six months.

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Speaker 3: Therefore, the governing body doesn't so much, it doesn't acquire so much power that it's overpowering everything else, everybody has a shot.

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Speaker 3: We require that our members be in the club at least a year before they can run for office, thereby showing us that they are committed to the club and that while in office they will work for the betterment of the club.

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Speaker 3: And we impose fines for everything from late fees, being late to the meetings, disrupting the meetings to disorderly conduct, disorderly conduct in public.

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Speaker 3: Also, there's stiff fines for drug use as well as expellment for drug use, we don't have any druggies in the club. and alcohol is also kind of kept on, under real tight control.

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Speaker 3: Keeping in mind we are an automobile club, we don't need to be driving around behind a wheel and you know, intoxicated.

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Speaker 3: In order to get into the club, my club is kind of lenient as far as that goes. We require that the individual has a vehicle and is lowered, we are a low-rider club, so no, unfortunately, no four-by-fours and no stock restorations.

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Speaker 3: I said unfortunately because again they are all other expressions of a movement that I enjoy very much, maybe in the not too distant future I will enjoy cruising around with four-by-fours.

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Speaker 3: But as for now, only low-riders in Slow & Low.

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Speaker 3: We require that the individuals stay within the club again for at least a year before we all start helping him work with his vehicle.

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Speaker 3: This again shows the commitment to the club, commitment to the movement and that was born out of the past again.

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Speaker 3: People joining the club, taking advantage of the services we provide and leaving.

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Speaker 3: Most of all, one of the prerequisites is patience. This is gonna take a lot of time and there's a lot of trouble that you know, that you need to overcome.

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Speaker 3: Whether it's with, uh, whether it's with the individuals in the club, whether it's with other organizations around you, whether it's with the city government around you.

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Speaker 3: All these things have to be dealt with and overcome.

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Speaker 3: Slow & Low at first was just like any other car club, they had their hard times with the police, not as much now because we are so extensively involved with the community.

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Speaker 3: So I'd say if you really wanted to get somewhere, to be involved with the community as much as you can, that way you have a, you lead a high profile, the police can see you involved with the community, others can see you involved with the community, and they're less likely to group you together with the gangs and with the drug dealers.

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Speaker 3: And just time, patience, a lot of time and a lot of love, takes a lot of love, the love of brothers and brothers and sisters, the love of sisters, and general just the love of the family.

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Speaker 3: Take care, because you're always gonna have problems, there's gonna be an alcoholic sometimes, there's gonna be someone who's really depressed sometimes and it's basically, if you operate like a family with the order of an organization, you'll achieve, you'll achieve a pretty strong club because that's basically how we're set up.

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Speaker 1: Well that seems like a, you know, as appropriate a place that we could possibly hope to wind up on.

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Speaker 1: I want to thank you all for joining us, and uhhh again, stop in next door you can talk with Romi some more about low-riding, and then right here on the other side are the muralists from Ciudad Juarez and El Paso and thank you very much.

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{clapping and low background chatter}

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{silence}

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Presenter 1: To the very last session of the festival, at least for us. Like many of the other sessions, this is a bilingual one, and there are two presenters.

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Presenter 1: Mrs. Gonzalez will present along with me, I'm doing it in English and she'll do it in Spanish. And --

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Luis De La Garza: Luis De La Garza --

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Presenter 1: Mr. La Garza will translate into English.

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Unidentified: And our guest is --

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Presenter 1: I'm going to leave the introductions to you and I will say a little bit about Mr. Warrior and then they will speak,

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Presenter 1: and I'd like to leave a little time at the end if y'all have questions, and I know you will have questions.

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Presenter 1: The theme of this session is border history.

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Presenter 1: Mr. William Warrior is probably the leading representative of the Black Seminole population, which is mainly situated now in Brackettville, Texas.

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Presenter 1: But has arrived there via a very circuitous historical route.

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Presenter 1: Starting um, well we can take it all the way back to Africa if we want to but the Seminoles, the Black Seminoles, came from Florida,

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Presenter 1: and I need to say very briefly for those of you who haven't visited our booth here a little bit about what the Black Seminoles are doing in Texas and Mexico, it's a long way from Florida,

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Presenter 1: We're, Seminole means fugitive, its from Spanish, semarron,

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Presenter 1: and there were Indian fugitives from slavery and there were African fugitives from slavery, and they went into Spanish Florida and remained two distinct populations,

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Presenter 1: but the African Seminoles, or Black Seminoles, left about 150 years ago

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Presenter 1: for a number of reasons but mainly because of slave raids into Florida,

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Presenter 1: leaving the Indian Seminoles still there. This is why you associate Florida with Indians, Seminole Indians in Florida and not with the Black population.

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Presenter 1: That's because they moved West. Some went to the Bahamas as well and they'll be here next year at the Folk Life Festival,

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Presenter 1: there'll be a Bohemian presentation and the Seminoles will be here from the Bahamas these are people we've never met.

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Presenter 1: Anyway they went to Oklahoma and then following that, they went to Mexico in 1870

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Presenter 1: they came up to serve as scouts in Texas and this is the reason why the population is scattered and that very hurriedly is a little history of the Black Seminole community,

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Presenter 1: and Mr. Warrior is from Brackettville, lives in Del Rio, and he'll be telling you more about himself in due course

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Presenter 1: and now I will turn the mic over to you and you can introduce our other speaker.

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[SPANISH] Bueno, muy buenas tardes. El propopsito de presenter en esta ocacion a Jose Luis Liz Sandoval es principalmente con la finalidad de darles a conocer a todos ustedes la importancia que tiene la comunidad China en Baja, California. Los chinos en baja California eh, han participado en diferentes actividades de su tradicion cultural en esta region.

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[ENGLISH] Good afternoon,my purpose this is her speaking okay, my purpose here, this afternoon is to introduce Mr. Luis Sandoval in trying to convey the experience of the Chinese experience or Chinese presence in the state of Baja, California in Mexico.

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[SPANISH] La presencia de los chinos en la costa de Baja ,California se originaron a partir de 1860 con la aperetura del Puerto de San Diego, ellos se dedicaban principalmente a la pesqueria en la Abalonia el pescado rojo en las costas de Baja, California.

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[ENGLISH] The presence of the Chinese immigrants in Baja, California, came about the 1860's with the industry of fishing along the coast of Baja, California namely Abalonia.

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[SPANISH] Pero la presencia mas importante empieza a ocurrir a partir de 1882-1890 cuando se empiezan a hacer los primeros establecimientos de la poblacion china en la region, principalmente provocados por la legislacion de anti-China en 1882 en los Estados Unidoos.

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[ENGLISH] But more importantly, it is about the 1800's, 1885 to be specific that the population surges in the area of Baja, California in its coast due to the anti-Asian sentiment and the laws that came to rise in the US.

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[SPANISH] De hecho en 1903 los chinos fundaron la ciudad de Mexicali en, Baja California.

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[ENGLISH] As a result, in 19 --

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Speaker 2: In 1903, umm it was mainly the Chinese in the presence in Mexico that gave rise to--

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Speaker 1: ¿Fundaron?

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Speaker 2: Fundaron.

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Speaker 1: Founded the city of Mexicali in um Mexico.

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Speaker 2: La presencia de una compania norte Americana en la region motivo de algun modo la presencia de la comunidad china a partir de la asociacion

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Speaker 2: del capital norte americano con el capital chino en ba-California. Ellos trajeros Chinos enganchados desde California a baja California.

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Speaker 1: It was by means of the presence of an American corporation that this Chinese presence became even more prolific in the area by means of

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{SPEAKER name="Speaker 1”} the American corporation bringing the Chinese labor in terms of indergent servants to the area.

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Speaker 2: En la actualidad la comunidad china representa una poblacion de 20,000-25,000 habitantes de origen Chino, es por eso que es importante en

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Speaker 2: este caso retomar un poco la experiencia de Jose Luis Liz en el marco del trabajo al interior de la comunidad china.

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Speaker 1: Presently there is approximately anywhere between twenty and twenty five thousand Chinese descendants perdon. Chinese descendants in baja

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Speaker 1: California.

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Speaker 2: Que la, en este caso Jose Luis Live el esta mostrando su trabajo de, del trabajo madera especialmente. El este mostrando unos de sus

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Speaker 2: trabajos de Buddhas. Algunos es trabajo de pagodas, lámparas con diseño de pagodas especialmente para el festival de Smithsonian

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Speaker 1: Okay. Which is why it is important to relate the story of Mr.Lee in the context of the festival. He has been able to show here at the

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Speaker 1: festival some of his woodcarvings with motifs of pagoda motifs and Buddha motifs on his work.

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Speaker 2: Él a trabajado durante varios años para la comunidad China y comunidad Mexicano en Baja California y es importante mencionar que en

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Speaker 2: Mexicali existen aproximadamente 120 restaurantes Chinos y en Tijuana una cantidad similar. Él se ha abocado al trabajo del diseño, de los

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Speaker 2: diseños en madera tallado para estos restaurantes de la comunidad China.

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Speaker 1: Also, Mr.Lee is responsible for many of the woodwork and design of the many restaurants that are visible nowadays, so presently within

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Speaker 1: Mexicali, which number anywhere around 120. And one can find the same number of Chinese restaurants in or within the Tijuana area in

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Speaker 1: Mexico.

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Speaker 1: So this man is responsible for mostly the design and the production of some of the craftsmanship of wood within these restaurants.

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Speaker 1: Well um, I think then Mr. Lee, Mr. uh, can, can uh give us his account and if you'd be kind enough to translate as we go. Could you explain, ask him to speak in short sentence and then wait for you to say it in English before he continues? {{indistinct muttering in background}}

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Speaker 1: Oh absolutely. Perfect, perfect, yes, if you want to interview him --

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[SILENCE] [indistinct muttering in background]

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Speaker 2: [Spanish] A mi me gustaria que Jose Luis Lee les platicara algo cerca de el-el, las formas en que el se inicio en el trabajo de la madera.

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Speaker 1: Okay um.. Miss Gonzales is asking Mr. Lee for him to express how this development of his craft and work happened.

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Mr.Lee: [Spanish] Bueno, yo empecé a trabajar la madera como una especie de hobby, no, pero pero miré que todo me empezó a salir bien, e pues ahí empecé a - a vivir ya de eso. pero, [[?]] yo no tenía mucha experiencia en este tipo de trabajo y [[?]] en aquel tiempo, cuando yo empezaba a ver unos carpinteros cuando tenía mucho prestigio.

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Speaker 1: Umm, at first I began, umm, I had no formal training in terms of woodworking. What started as, as basically, my success now, was basically as a hobby. And then I noticed that I was having a lot of success in terms of the responses that I was getting from people.

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Speaker 1: And that is when I began learning from some of the experienced wood workers in the area.

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Speaker 1: Bueno y este como no tenia mucha experiencia en el trabajo les llegue a pedir cierta información de cómo se hacen ciertas osas. Y de una manera negativa pues me ocultaron esa...ese tipo de conocimiento que yo negaba no tenerlo. Y para mí fue muy difícil aprender esto de esta manera que últimamente lo he estado desarrollando.

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Speaker 2: Um, when I did begin seeking help from the more experienced wood workers, I was received with much negativity, in other words, they weren't as helpful as I would've liked for them to have been.

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Speaker 1: Bueno pero esa cuestión fue para mí fue la base de lograr lo que he logrado porque eso me dio motivo a superarme porque ellos en su negativo por cierto racismo que hay. Este fue la manera más adecuada para seguir adelante.

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Speaker 2: Um, and it is through this rejection that I received from these other individuals that basically I gave myself, of my own, myself some courage to just continue and develop myself as best as I could within the area.

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Speaker 1: Y de esa manera me propuse a tratar de ser mejor que ellos y creo que ya en parte pues he, ya he sobresalido de ahi simplemente, no, no mas de Tecate. Que ya he salido, ya no más he dominado la area de Tecate, sino he dominado también las areas de Tijuana, Mexicali, y Rosarito.

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Speaker 2: Okay, una ciudad.

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Speaker 2: Not only was I very successful within the City of Tecate but as well as Mexicali and Tijuana and Rosarito which is all around the same area in Baja, California. So the man became very successful and very prolific within these areas.

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Speaker 1: [In Spanish]

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Speaker 2: He goes it's very ironic that even though there's like a real popular saying in Mexico, that usually the student surpasses the teacher, you know it's very ironic in his case because he had no teacher basically he just surpassed the whole field.

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[Background Noise]

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Speaker 3: [In Spanish]

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[Background Noise]

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Speaker 2: Uh, Ms. Gonzalez Felix is asking Mr. Lee what is, what is the legend behind, uh, the, uh, deriving the color red which is found mostly in Chinese art?

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Speaker 1: [In Spanish]

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Speaker 2: Uh, the legend begins with a Chinese emperor that was very akin or uh, liked furniture a whole lot.

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Speaker 1: [In Spanish]

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[Background Noise]

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Speaker 2: This emperor was very, a very powerful man and not only did he want, he wanted to put like his influence on this furniture in China, but he wanted one uniform red color in the whole country of China.

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Speaker 1: [In Spanish]

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Speaker 2: So, he, to get that special red color he contracted all the best painters in China that were around there at that time.

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Speaker 1: [In Spanish]

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Speaker 2: That whoever was, whoever brought him the winning color of his liking that is the right, correct color or the right shade of red that that artist or that painter could have anything in the kingdom except his throne.

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Speaker 1: [In Spanish]

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Speaker 1: Ya sea el emperador si no les conseguía el gusto, los iba a matar al…al?

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Speaker 2: Si, o sea, pues tenían dos opciones

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Speaker 2: Oh, ok. So if he wasn't able to fulfill their wish, that is the painter's wish, because he was such an all powerful ruler that the only

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Speaker 2: other choice was he put him to death if he wasn't able to fulfill the wish. So, you either get your wish fulfilled or you're put out of

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Speaker 2: commission there.

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Speaker 1: Bueno y así fue sucediendo y sí inclusivo creo que llego a matar a varios, no

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Speaker 2: Well, he was, he proceed, there was a, let's say that there was a, he was, he, he killed a lot of the artists evidently.

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Speaker 1: Y bueno llego uno, pues ya se iba acabando los pintores [Laughter].

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Speaker 2: Well then there was one cause because uh, one showing up and then there was due to a lack of painters you know this one guy shows up right.

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Speaker 1: Hasta que ya encontró uno que era el…a este señor les daba cierta cantidad de muestras que les dieran. Y si no cumplían con cierta cantidad

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Speaker 1: pues o sea ya los mataba. Pero este señor ya tenia…iba sobre su última muestra y al día siguiente la tenía que entregar.

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Speaker 2: Ok, so each of the painters that went for an audience before the emperor, not only did they bring like one example of the color red, but

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Speaker 2: they had to present various examples of various, uh, various examples and this one artist in particular he was down to his last example

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Speaker 2: that he was bringing before the emperor.

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Speaker 1: Entonces este señor estaba preparando sus tintas porque en aquel entonces se molían, tenían molinos para moler. Lo revolvían junto con

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Speaker 1: tierra, con esencias de arboles, y esas cuestiones, no? Y este señor cayó accidentalmente ahí donde molían la pintura y ahí…o sea ahí murió

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Speaker 1: él. El pintor cayó y al día siguiente, en la mañana llegan los trabajadores, los pintores y aplican esa tinta.

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Speaker 2: Ok, so in the process of grinding the elements to make the paint, to make the certain color red this painter, because in those times you

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Speaker 2: had to get these essences like from barks of trees and other natural elements, and in the grinding process this artist falls within the

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Speaker 2: grinder and he himself becomes part of the paint, so in the morning when the workers come in they start applying this color red and, of

00:32:00.000 --> 00:32:05.000
Speaker 2: course, with the painter in it because he fell into the grinder.

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Speaker 1: Y como aplicaron este la pintura entonces dice el emperador “eh tráiganme a el que preparo esta tinta.” Dice yo creo que no le vas a poder

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Speaker 1: hacer nada porque ya se fue, ellos no sabían que se había caído.

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Speaker 2: So the emperor says, "Yes, this is the one I wanted, this is the color I wanted. Bring me the painter!" And the workers say, "Well, I don't

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Speaker 2: think you can touch him anymore because he's already gone."

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Speaker 1: Entonces le dice no lo quiero para matarlo, lo quiere para premiarlo porque el es el que se ha ganado y esa es la tinta que yo quiero.

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Speaker 2: He goes, "No, no. I don't wanna kill him, I wanna give him the prize, whatever he wants, because that is the color that I want."

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Speaker 1: Entonces ya lo mandaron buscando que entonces de los demás dijeron bueno si se fue también se llevó la fórmula de la pintura.

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Speaker 2: Ok, no one really knew that he was within the paint so everyone thought that he had gone away right. So, everyone was seeking him and they

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Speaker 2: go, "Well, if he's gone then he took the formula for the color red."

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Speaker 1: Entonces se dieron cuenta que el había muerto ahí adentro.

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Speaker 2: Then they found out that he was within the paint, that he was dead and he was part of the paint.

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Speaker 1: Entonces de eso de ahí para adelante entonces ellos ya usaron bueyes para dar ese tipo de tinta, ese tipo de rojo especial que se le llama

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Speaker 1: ahora como en mente de China se la llama “Sangre de Buey.”

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Speaker 2: Then, from then on, they realized that it was the man that was inside the paint and from that point on they started using--

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is which is which is cattle in Okay, which is which is cattles blood a cow's blood a bull ox blood ox blood and from then on the this color red is is produced by by infusing the ox blood and within the color so is it time? Yes. Okay. And it's Mr. Brown Tondo K. See savvy cuando is no masala yanda is those who say the Oh, it's sumela yen like authentically and he never he says that it's just the legend. Yes, she knows. That's a good LTS here. real or not? Good way to say. No, say ways that might be true might not. Yeah, thank you very much. I know. There's gonna be some more questions. I got a couple of questions myself. Let's turn now and listen to Mr. Warrior. And he's full of story. Some of you heard him already. And I don't know what he's going to talk about today. But we'll find out right now.

00:35:03.000 --> 00:40:11.700
Hello, I hope I don't be too boring. But what I like to talk about is the area where I came from. I'm from Del Rio, Texas is down on the border 150 miles west of San Antonio highway 90. On your way to El Paso. I'm 426 miles south of El Paso. And so if you ever get down that away, you'll come through a little town by the name of Brackettville, Texas. That's where I'm originally from and that's where my forefathers came in 1870 from Mexico, nacimiento, Delos Negros, Mexico, a little town that was given to the Seminoles. [They must go ghosts?] and the Seminole Indians in 1854, by a Mexican president by the name of [profolio?]. So I am going to talk a little bit about both sides of the border. I was listening to him about the Chinese segment of Mexicali, which was very interesting. along the borders, we have a mixture of cultures and a mixture of societies and a mixture of many breeds of people along the border there Hispanics naturalness, there is Indians, different types of Indians. I guess we have at least about maybe 10 to 12 different types of Indians. And on the on this side, we have the Cherokees, we have the Apaches rapa hos and course I represent the Seminole black Indians, from nacimiento. And there's a lot of others in different sections of the border. What we're representing here. The board of people is the range of about 2000 miles. It right it starts from California, Baja Mexicali, San Diego, California, all the way down to Brownsville, Texas, which is an area it's around the Rio Grande, he goes from the Rio Grande to the Pacific Ocean. And so basically, all the people on the border have something in common, course things will vary. But basically, it's all Mexican. I was in a session day before yesterday with a group of people. And we have some of the same customs course. Like I said, it's basically the same but in time it has changed and variations of the way it's converted, converted. Now, the Mexican people talk about the [deal that loves welters?] and this is the day of the day and now I didn't Discuss ours, the way we celebrate it. But these other two interpreters, they, they discussed their ways. One guy said that what they do they have the food, they start the first of May, three days of it. And some of the customs are that the people prepare the food. They prepare a lot of food, everybody brings food, one segment, they take it, and they put plates of it on the graves to be consumed by the dead and this to let them know that you love them. Okay, now the next day they go back, well, if the animals don't eat the food, well, then they throw it out. Okay, then, another segment said, we have the food, said we prepare the food the night before. We have a large table of food. What we do is we we have our churches first. And then we go back and we warm the food and we eat the food. He said but the other people, they throw it away, they waste a lot of food. But we eat ours. Okay, we do the same thing. But what we do we have a celebration. Ours is only two days, we're going to have ours the third week in September. And we have something like a festival, small festival. People come from all over our relatives and a lot of strange people. We have a barbecue, we drink beer, and we have sort of a reunion grand time. And we do this all day. Maybe we dance that Saturday night. But that Sunday morning, or that Sunday afternoon, we all get together. And we go to the cemetery. We have services out there. And we take flowers. And we place them on the graves. And then as people that goes and they kneel to the graves and talk to the dead and my wife is pretty good at this. She speaks to her mother and her father and them and she says well I'm back to visit you one more time. So we have it's very festive. We laugh, we cry. We rejuvenate everything. But after all in all in all, we have a pretty nice time. It's a reunion time. And also we honor the dead.

00:40:26.000 --> 00:40:27.000
Speaker 1: Okay, I'll continue with some of the other stuff that we're doing.

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I wear western clothes, so I- I did ride horses and I still have a horse and, uh, this is what happened to our forefathers after the Indian wars

00:40:39.000 --> 00:40:44.000
and, well after the Indian war some of the men went into the Calvary,

00:40:44.000 --> 00:40:52.000
which was eventually known as the Buffalo Soldiers; 10th and 9th Calvary, uh which fought Indians in the West.

00:40:52.000 --> 00:41:02.000
Well some people ask me what about the Scouts? Well primarily we came over from Mexico to become scouts in 1870 for the US government

00:41:02.000 --> 00:41:07.000
to help fight the maurading Indians. I have another thing that they ask me about, they said well,

00:41:07.000 --> 00:41:12.000
if you guys were with the Indians and part Indian, why did you go and help fight the Indians?

00:41:12.000 --> 00:41:16.000
Well I like to let you know that the Indians didn't get along with each other.

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So, they would kill each other just as much as they would anybody else, and moreso because they were maurading tribes against each other, so this was a way of making a living,

00:41:29.000 --> 00:41:38.000
and the Indians were robbing us the same way they did everyone else, so it was a job. So, they say well how come the Indians turned against each other?

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And you might hear this sometime but there's a number of tribes, and I can't name two, that ever got along.

00:41:45.000 --> 00:41:56.000
A guy told a story today, he said that up in the mines in Colorado, they had the Cherokee Indians and I think it was,

00:41:56.000 --> 00:42:01.000
it wasn't the Seminoles, it was another tribe, Papigoes I believe or one of the other tribes,

00:42:01.000 --> 00:42:10.000
and they wanted them to work in the mines, they said they wasn't gonna go into the mines so they chained them to the ore cars and sent them into the mine,

00:42:10.000 --> 00:42:15.000
so they let them work in there two days they thought and when they went in there they were all dead.

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And they had killed each other fighting, so, it just go to show you that I don't care what the circumstances are they didn't get along.

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But, it's not so today, and we're all here from the border and we're learning each other's customs. Like I said basics are basics,

00:42:32.000 --> 00:42:40.000
but during the times the transitions has changed but we all the same people we speak the same language but I tell you something else too.

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On the border, and down in interior Mexico, you can understand a person but the language will change some, the words are different, it's just like the North and the South, it is different.

00:42:51.000 --> 00:42:57.000
So some places they say some words I don't know what they saying I might say some slang words or something and they don't know,

00:42:57.000 --> 00:43:07.000
but this is a good melting pot and I really appreciate the Smithsonian for inviting us because I have been invited into the homes of so many of the people along the border,

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some of them didn't know about us and I didn't know about them and we only live a short distance apart,

00:43:13.000 --> 00:43:20.290
but these are my family here and we're all from la misma casa, the same house, thank you.

00:43:24.000 --> 00:43:35.000
Announcer: Thank you both very much. Well, we have ten minutes left for your questions, and there's some more discussion, so if anybody has a question they'd like to ask either of the presenters, please let's hear from you.

00:43:35.000 --> 00:43:42.000
[SILENCE]

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Audience Member #1: Approximately, what is the geographical area that the Seminoles are spread out in? Could you elaborate on that a little bit?
[SILENCE]

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Presenter #1: Well, I'll tell you, I'm only familiar with the area that I'm in. Now, I understand there's some in, still in Florida.

00:44:06.000 --> 00:44:19.000
Ok, the Oklahoma bunch it's quite a few of them and, like, some of them are here and everwheres but they have the largest group that I know of of Black Seminoles there.

00:44:19.000 --> 00:44:32.000
We have only about 200 mixed breeds in Nacimento Mexico and they almost all bred out they almost all pure Mexicans a lot of them.

00:44:32.000 --> 00:44:52.000
And then in Brackerville area we have a few and a very few in Del Rio so I say in the Brackerville and Del Rio area, there's only around 60 to 75 but when we have a ceremony or celebration of such we have sometimes three or four hundred people that come in.

00:44:52.000 --> 00:45:01.000
Presenter #2: Yeah, I did mention that one group went, instead of going west went east to the Bahamas. and they'll be here.

00:45:01.000 --> 00:45:16.000
Another group even went to Cuba, when they were leaving Florida, but we have no information whatsoever about that group.
[SILENCE]

00:45:16.000 --> 00:45:19.000
Audience Member #2: What about the music that you have in your community where you come from?

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Presenter #1: Well basically it's English, but we have Hispanic music too.

00:45:25.000 --> 00:45:30.000
So we dance a lot of Hispanic music, so we dance both kinds.

00:45:30.000 --> 00:45:36.210
My wife hears this up here and she says it's my heritage, it sounds good, let's dance.

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Speaker 1: Customs, Seminole Customs? No, unh uh, no, we don't have any of that. It's all turned into the years since the last part of it, people ask me well what is your customs now? It's all gone to English and Mexican.

00:45:56.000 --> 00:46:13.000
Speaker 2: Although you'll find some remnants of the Seminole I don't know if it's dancing exactly, but in the church service, and stomps and that sort of thing, but that's not social-- that's not entertainment. Yeah, yeah..

00:46:13.000 --> 00:47:11.000
Speaker 1: That goes along with uh, ceremonies. We used to do it a lot, but like you know, uh, all of the holidays and customs has dwindled. It's coming back now because they're teaching the heritage in the schools now has been rejuvenated... okay like, uh, we used to have a lot of people celebrate Cinco de Mayo, Day of the Saints. Those are Mexican holidays. Now, about twenty years ago, it had faltered some. But now, it's picking back up. Everybody celebrates 4th of July. What had happened in the last 35 years, uh like, all the cowboys, my people were cowboys, they worked on the ranches. They'd stay out there six months a year, and they'd come into town for the nineteenth of June to celebrate. They'd go back stay another six months, come in for the Christmas, for holidays. Well, the ranches would all know that they gonna let them go. If they don't let them go, they'd quit their jobs-- they'd go in to celebrate.

00:47:11.000 --> 00:47:41.760
Speaker 1: Okay, the same thing was Cinco de Mayo and Day of the Saints, it got so commercial until the uh, population of people were not giving you the day off to celebrate. So, it kinda dwindled down. "I have to have a job, so the holidays can go," but now, for heritage's sake, they're all being rejuvenated again, coming back. Cause, everybody got the 4th of July, everybody celebrates 4th of July, but different groups are going back to their heritage and starting it back up so it does not be a lost thing.

00:47:44.000 --> 00:47:53.000
Speaker 1: Okay, the nineteenth of June was supposedly was uh, when uh, the slaves were emancipated, but--

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[SILENCE]