The Nightgown

In Attire

After my grandmother’s immigration from Colombia, my grandmother brought a nightgown. It was from a store that my grandmother used to love to shop at. It was a Burgundy color, with white lace going down the neckline and cuffing the bottoms of the long sleeves. This object does not directly relate to the immigration of my grandmother, but it does represent her making a life for herself after she made it here. To my mom, this item reminds her of her mother who represents calmness and home. Now that my mother is grown up she is much more aware of how being a child of an immigrant, and also being a woman of color has affected her life in the past and still is affecting her life today. My mom hopes that by sharing my grandmother's story that it brings “awareness” and equality for all people, and when it does the nightgown will be a reminder of where she started out. My idea of American identity has been changed because of my grandmother’s story. Though she did not become a citizen right away, she was still an American the second she made it here, because she worked hard and was loyal. To me that is the perfect definition of an American because America was built off of the backs of immigrants who worked hard and loved their country.

Place(s): Colombia
Year: 1957

– Samantha Alexander

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant