Art & History

Hispanic Americans in Congress

  Henry González of TexasJesse Trevino, 1997, Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives

In 1822, Florida made history when it elected Joseph Marion Hernández as its Territorial Delegate, marking the first time a Hispanic American would serve in Congress. Since then, more than 100 Hispanic Americans have served as U.S. Representatives, Senators, Delegates, and Resident Commissioners.

However, like other minority groups, Hispanic Americans faced many obstacles on Capitol Hill. They were seen by some as outsiders and as representatives of “foreign” peoples, which diminished their political standing. Over the years, Hispanic-American Members—such as Representative Henry B. González, Senator Dennis Chavez, and many others—worked tirelessly to change this perception and raise up Hispanic Americans.

Today, Hispanic Americans represent an important and growing population in Congress. Use this interactive map to learn more about Hispanic Americans in Congress.

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