Pura Belpre became New York City’s first Latina librarian back in 1921. She noticed that there were no books for Latino kids on the shelves, so she decided to write them herself based on the Puerto Rican folktales she had heard as a child. Belpre made such an impact that the American Library Association named the highest honor for young adult writers and illustrators of Latino descent after her – the Pura Belpre Medal.
Reporter Alexandra Starr visited La Casa Azul, or The Blue House, the bookstore in East Harlem where Aurora Cerda, the bookstore’s founder, held a tribute to Belpre’s life.
Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images
One thought on “Remembering Pura Belpre: New York’s First Latina Librarian”
I wish I knew about Pura Belpre before! I grew up in the island and continued my university education in San Juan and never, ever heard anyone, not even educators talked about Pura Belpre. I think it is a great opportunity for information professionals and educators in the island to teach children about her and the wonderful legacy she left for all of us!