Historiography

Members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, 2004/tiles/non-collection/i/intro_14_chc_2004_hp.xml Image courtesy of the U.S. House of Representatives Photography Office Members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus pose on the East Front steps of the U.S. Capitol in 2004. The organization of the caucus in late 1976 marked the increasing power of Hispanics in electoral politics and their efforts to shape the legislative agenda in Congress.
The first edition of Hispanic Americans in Congress was published in 1995. Researched and written by the Library of Congress’s Hispanic Division, it followed the same format that was used by the Office of the House Historian for the second editions of Women in Congress (1991) and Black Americans in Congress (1989). As with the third editions of the books on women and African Americans in Congress, this edition of Hispanic Americans in Congress features major changes, including expanded profiles of former Members, contextual essays that introduce the profiles chronologically and group them into generations, and appendices.

All the former Members who were included in the first edition of Hispanic Americans in Congress, 1822–1995, are also included in this publication. To compile the roster of Members elected after 1995, we used the official list of Hispanic Members of Congress of the Library of Congress’s Hispanic Division. Another litmus test for self-identification was membership in the Congressional Hispanic Caucus or the Congressional Hispanic Conference.

Filipino Resident Commissioners, most of whom retained Spanish surnames, are not included in this publication because they identified themselves as Asian Pacific Islanders. Scholars in the Asian and Hispanic Divisions of the Library of Congress advised the Office of the Historian to include these Members in the forthcoming Asian/Pacific Islander Americans volume of the Minorities in Congress series.12

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Footnotes

12Memorandum, Georgette Dorn (chief, Hispanic Division, Library of Congress) to Matthew Wasniewski (deputy chief/historian, Office of History and Preservation, U.S. House of Representatives), 13 October 2010.