La Casa de la Herencia Cultural Puertorriqueña, Inc., also known as “La Casa” is a not-for-profit, historic cultural organization, originally developed in 1980, and officially incorporated in 1983 by Puerto Rican pioneers, as a Heritage Library and Resource Center, to promote, enrich, and preserve the culture, literature and the arts of the Puerto Rican Diaspora. La Casa celebrates the contributions pioneered by the Puerto Rican community of New York City, and beyond.
Puerto Rico is a unique island in the Caribbean Sea. Actually, it is a group of islands, or archipelago, which includes Vieques, Culebra, and Mona, as well as smaller islands. However, what makes this place so special is not its incredibly diverse topography, or its insanely gorgeous beaches. Puerto Rico is an unusually bright mark in the universe because of her people, their culture and contribution to the human race — stemming from the islands, stretching across the diaspora, and reaching beyond the heavens.
A Puerto Rican once sang, “Que Bonita Bandera”, while orbiting the planet at 17,150 miles per hour. It is a privilege and honor for us to explore the history of the Puerto Rican nation, and connect indigenous Taíno, African slaves, and Spanish conquerers with NASA astronaut Joseph M. Acaba. The Puerto Rican timeline is epic in scope. But there’s a map that clearly and beautifully connects all these stories. That map is our culture, and the undying spirit and soul of the Puerto Rican nation, generation after generation, era after era, from one colonial government to another.
No matter how small the islands appear on the map, the universe is brighter, and uniquely lit because of her people. Puerto Rico’s history is distinct in style, voice, and passion — from the days the Spaniards invaded and colonized the Taínos, to the US invasion and colonization, to the Summer Revolt of 2019 that ousted the insular governor. Culture and national affirmation is what connects the dots in the Puerto Rican constellation.
Culture is part of the human journey, spiraling around the Galaxy, and expanding across the stars. Thankfully, the Puerto Rican story is still ongoing, still developing. But while her people are far from the endangered species list, the Puerto Rico enterprise continues to bare the pressure of its political status and economic wellbeing. And that affects everything. As with all nations around the world, politics is in our culture, the arts, and in the blood of the people — as it should be. The stories we see through history and the arts contain never-ending struggle as a recurring theme; “la lucha”. That constant battle for survival is not always healthy, and does not always inspire growth. Once in a while, the thriving and expansion of a person, or a nation, is marked by a change in spirit, or a major shift in policy.
From Luisa Capetillo to Jennifer Lopez, from Ramón Emeterio Betances to Bruno Mars, Puerto Rican history and culture trails behind them all like a comet across the skies. La Casa is proud to serve as a lighthouse in this vast and beautiful universe.
We hope you enjoy our events, programs, and workshops, and join in the conversation on Facebook. As a non-profit, we appreciate any tax-deductible contribution you can make to further our mission. Thank you.
Some of our recent and upcoming events: