Immediate Release: September 23, 2009
Dedication of the Monumento a la Familia Puertorriqueña
(Monument to the Puerto Rican Family)
Hartford – This morning members of Hartford’s Puerto Rican Community dedicated “El Monumento a la Familia Puertorriqueña”, (Monument to the Puerto Rican Family). The ceremony recognizes and celebrates the contributions of Puerto Rico’s migrant families to the United States of America. The event at the Learning Corridor in Hartford, where the monument now stands, at the corner of Vernon and Washington Streets comes at a significant time during Hispanic Heritage Month when a series of Latino anniversaries depicting liberty and independence occur including “El Grito De Lares” of 1868. This Puerto Rican event, similar to America’s Boston Tea Party, was a cry for freedom from oppression from Spain.
The initial idea of the monument was brought to SINA and today the monument was given to people of the city of Hartford and the state of Connecticut by the internationally renowned Puerto Rican sculptor José Buscaglia-Guillermety. The monument depicts the migration of Puerto Rican families to the United States of America. Mayor Eddie Perez, the sculptor, and students from nearby Betances and Sanchez elementary schools and members of the community together dedicated the new monument which sits on land dedicated to learning and the advancement of the people of Hartford.
CT Lieutenant Governor Michael Fedele read a Governor’s proclamation and the Mayor himself provided one from the City. At the dedication Luis C. Cabán, Executive Director, SINA recognized the visionary who came up with the idea for the monument, Mildred Torres Soto. “We will be eternally thankful for her leadership”.
The front of the monument carries the following inscription: HONORING THE CONTRIBUTION OF THE PUERTO RICAN FAMILIES TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. The back of the monument shows the Puerto Rican flag in full color and, underneath, the names of all the towns of the island. The monument itself shows four heroic-size figures that dominate the central area of the composition. Husband and wife stand together and in front of them, their daughter and son carrying the Lamb of God, the heraldic and official symbol of Puerto Rico. The family group is placed within its historical and psychological context through eight main thematic areas that surround the central portion of the relief.
José Buscaglia-Guillermety is known for his famous sculptures of people like Roberto Clemente, Robert Frost, John F. Kennedy and Susan B. Anthony.
Credits for the realization of Monumento a la Familia Puertorriqueña:
- Mayor, City Of Hartford
- The Court of Common Council
- Greater Hartford Arts Council