History is a rich, complicated topic that expands beyond textbooks. One Northwest Vista College professor is showing her students a different narrative to American history, allowing them to reflect on racism, oppression and empowerment.
Then, a San Antonio native, and a descendant of one of the founding families of the Alamo City, aims to preserve, maintain and share her family’s heritage dating back centuries.
Study Stateside: A Critical Look At History And Its Monuments
Dr. Sarah Ball, a history professor at Northwest Vista College, took a group of her students to several southern states, Alabama and Virginia, then to the east coast for a stop in Washington, D.C. as part of the college’s new Study Stateside program.
The group toured historic sites and U.S. monuments as part of an effort to show students some interpretations of public history distort the narrative, and even continue the cycle of oppression.
Danielle Salazar, an incoming sophomore at Northwest Vista College, and Melissa Cicero, a recent graduate of Northwest Vista College, said they recently returned from a stateside tour with a more encompassing perspective on American history.
Five Centuries Of Spanish-American Influence: 'Tacos, Tequila, The Alamo... They’re Still Here'
Jo Anne Gonzalez Murphy is the president and founder of the group 1718 San Antonio Founding Families and Descendents. She said she can trace her San Antonio heritage back 300 years, and her Spanish and European heritage 500 years. Her nonprofit aims to preserve and share the history of San Antonio and the Americas.
Murphy’s brother documented their family history, with dates tracing as far back as the 1400s, and he compiled the family tree into a personal book. Murphy has since maintained and expanded on the work.