Mexicans in Phoenix, a History

by Frank Barrios

by Frank Barrios

As is usual with Arcadia Publishing books, local historian Frank Barrios tells the history of Mexicans in Phoenix primarily through photographs. His book is fascinating, with some tales of yore I didn’t know. For instance, Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church at 909 East Washington Street was built in 1928 as a result of segregation at another nearby church.  Father Novatus Benzig, pastor of St. Mary’s at 400 East Monroe Street, decided to move the Spanish speaking Mass to the basement, with the English speaking service upstairs in the main church. This angered the Mexican community and the local bishop gave them permission – and a little money – to start their own church.

Does anyone remember the Calderon Ballroom, a prominent dance hall?Famous folks that entertained there included Fats Domino, and Tina Turner.

Author Frank Barrios is the son of Dolores Gold, part of the historically prominent Gold family of Phoenix. His book is a very good read for history buffs!

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Published in: on July 2, 2009 at 6:45 am  Leave a Comment  

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