So much of New York's history has been lived, sung and reported in Spanish. With the great migration of the 1950s, what had long been a relatively small Latino community in New York became a thriving center of Puerto Rican life and culture. But in the past half century, the community has grown and diversified. Today, Mexicans, Dominicans, Ecuadoreans, Colombians, Peruvians and Cubans have joined Puerto Ricans and comprise about 30 percent of the city's population.
Columbia students and faculty, and others interested in the lives of New York's Latinos, have a new resource to learn about that community. El Diario La Prensa, the nation's oldest continuously publishing Spanish-language newspaper, has given the University some 5,000 photographs documenting the lives of New York's Latinos, their struggles and their contributions to the city and its culture.