Women's Committee Luncheon: A Place at the Nayarit: How a Mexican Restaurant Nourished a Community

Solicited by the OAH Committee on the Status of Women in the Historical Profession

Friday, March 31, 2023, 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Type: Luncheon

Tags: Gender and Sexuality; Immigration and Internal Migration; Urban and Suburban

Abstract

In 1951, Doña Natalia Barraza opened the Nayarit, a Mexican restaurant in LA’s Echo Park. Granddaughter/historian Natalia Molina explores how Doña Natalia created an urban anchor for ethnic Mexicans and various Latinx neighbors, nourishing themselves and one another. Doña Natalia immigrated alone from Mexico to L.A., adopted two children, ran a successful business, and sponsored, housed, and employed dozens of immigrants. Despite anti-Latinx racism, Doña Natalia and her Nayarit family claimed not just the restaurant space, but the whole of Los Angeles, in the process helping all to become insiders.

Session Participants

Chair: Mary Ann Irwin, Editor, _California_History_
Chair, Committee on the Status of Women in the Historical Profession

Presenter: Natalia Molina, University of Southern California
Distinguished Professor of American Studies & Ethnicity, University of Southern California