I am now busy researching and writing the sequel to Evangelina Takes Flight. One part of history I am learning more about is the frequent and sometimes state-sanctioned barbarism and murder perpetrated against Mexicans and Mexican-Americans between 1910-1920. This article from the Associated Press characterizes the massacre in Porvenir, Texas in 1918 and many other instances of torture, lynching and terror.
For more information, please go to Refusing to Forget. From their homepage:
Between 1910 and 1920 ethnic Mexicans living on the Texas-Mexico border were targets of state-sanctioned violence. Although historians estimate that several thousand Mexican nationals and American citizens were killed, this period of violence has received little public attention.
Refusing to Forget, an educational non-profit, hopes that in bringing public awareness to this often forgotten period, we can also raise the profile of a struggle for justice and civil rights that continues to influence social relationships today.
And, speaking of the sequel, it will more definitively be young adult than middle grade. The massacre of Mexicans and Mexican-Americans will be part of the story’s political backdrop. From chapter 1:
It’s been almost four years since we arrived in Seneca, hopeful but scared. Scared for my older sister, brother-in-law and grandfather whom we left behind, scared about what life in America would hold for us, scared about how the Anglos would treat us.
I loved my stable, predictable life in Mariposa and would have lived there forever, if it had not been so dangerous to stay.
But, if we hadn’t come here, I never would have met Doctor Taylor or Selim.
And, I wouldn’t be in the Haller County Jail accused of murder.