Love for History

Relationship: Im/migrant

I brought this book with me from Venezuela back in 1989. I used it during 4th grade there, my last full school year in the country where I was born. My parents were not with me for most of that year so I had difficult time and I cried a lot; my family was preparing to come to the United States but our family had to be apart for a while first. Eventually by the fall of 1990 we were all together here in NYC, and as I prepared for school I was nervous and scared of a new country. People did not understand my language so one thing I felt I could do was know history and geography, I can be good at those subjects in school and I can maybe survive this intimidating big city. I kept this book around me for all of these years as it reminds me of my family’s struggles and also the fears of a young boy moving to such a foreign place. The pictures, the colors of the maps and the history made me feel happy inside, and it made me feel safe because I felt like I knew something. Being new to a country as a kid can feel like you’re completely lost and making friends can be very difficult, maybe by sounding smart I thought I could overcome some of those fears. I still love history and now I even work at a history museum, I hope that one day my sons will be inspired by this book and the immigration story of our family.

Place(s): Venezuela, New York City
Year: 1989

– Pedro

Relationship:  Im/migrant Im/migrant