Congressman Tony Gonzales Visits Blackwell School
On Saturday I visited the Blackwell School in Marfa with the National Parks Conservation Association and members of the Blackwell School Alliance. In December, the U.S. House of Representatives passed my bill to establish the Blackwell School as a National Historic Site (NHS) under the National Park Service.
“It was great to join folks from the National Park Conservation Association and the Blackwell School Alliance for a visit to the site, especially with the recent House passage of the Blackwell School National Historic Site Act,” I said. “I am thrilled to see it become a national landmark and witness the impact that will have on Marfa. Preserving the Blackwell School will be crucial to ensuring that future generations learn its rich, complicated history. This is also a huge accomplishment for the Blackwell alumni who have been working hard to make sure that history never forgets their stories.”
“Our national parks must tell the full story of American history,” said Cary Dupuy, Texas Regional Director for the National Parks Conservation Association. “Latino people have contributed enormously to our history and culture yet remain underrepresented in our National Parks System. Establishing the Blackwell National Historic Site would be a monumental step towards acknowledging our past and honoring the resilience these young Mexican American students showed in the face of outright discrimination. The National Parks Conservation Association is honored to be a part of this historic, bipartisan reckoning for the Texas borderlands and for our country.”
- Congressmen Filemón Vela (TX-24) and I introduced the Blackwell School National Historic Site Act (H.R. 4706) in July.
- The Blackwell School operated from 1909 – 1965 and served as a school for children of Mexican descent. The building is a tangible reminder of a time in American history where “separate but equal” dominated our culture.
- A companion bill in the U.S. Senate was introduced by Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Alex Padilla (D-CA)