Activities of the History Committee
Report to Delegates: Reno, July 2009
collaboration of Koldo San Sebastian in the Basque Country, we are
currently working on a project called the “California Basque Heritage
Project.” We are creating a biographical index of Basques that
immigrated to California from 1850 onward.
California Basque Heritage Project, once completed, will help many
people in the US and in the Basque Country with their genealogical
research while at the same time providing us with a better understanding
of the immigration process as a whole. At the end, we will have a pretty
good idea of how many Basques immigrated to California, what valleys
they departed from, what were the networks involved, what was the
men/women ratio, while at the same time capturing the diverse situations
Basque immigrants experienced in the new country.
It is a
project that the Center for Basque Studies in Reno thinks strongly
about, and the idea is to extend the research to other states in the
western US such as Nevada and Idaho in the near future.
We are looking at different sources: Censuses, military drafts, lists of
emigration agents, parish records, among others. And it is our opinion
that the project could benefit from collaborating with the local clubs.
The collaboration could be of different kind:
By asking your membership and/or Board if they would agree to make their
membership lists available to us.
By helping us locate your festival booklets (that often time include
valuable information on Basques in a given area).
By informing your membership about the California Basque Heritage
Project (which will be extended –we hope- to the “Western Basque
Heritage Project” in the near future) and inviting local Basque families
to share their history with us.
Argitxu Camus Etchecopar