In 2008, U.S. Congress formed a Commission to research the possibility of building a national museum that featured American-Latino culture; this Commission submitted a 118 page report entitled “To Illuminate the American Story for All” in May, 2011 which covers every aspect from museum location to maintenance costs and potential revenue sources. The project, which will cost an estimated $600 million, will begin construction in 2016 if planning goes according to plan. The report quotes Amaris Guzman, of the Dominican American National Roundtable, who says “As a young Latina I am very proud that this museum will portray the culture and Latino life here in the United States. This museum should represent a little bit of everything-culture, music, photographs, exhibits, the people, and everyday life of the American Latino here.” This viewpoint fits perfectly with the rationale behind the creation of this museum, according to the National Museum of the American Latino Commission, who proclaim that “Latinos are part of the fabric of this nation. There is an urgency, desire, and need for a museum to highlight and preserve this great heritage for the benefit of all Americans”.
If the National Museum of the American Latino is approved and successfully completed, it will not be the first Smithsonian to share the culture of an ethnic minority in the U.S. with the rest of the country. It will join the African American History and Culture Museum, as well as the American Indian Museum in enlightening the U.S. as a whole about an ethnic minority culture in America. Interested in learning more about this proposed museum? Read the complete report that the Commission submitted here.