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Map_Central America

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Central Americans are part of our nation's history. Let's write our American story together and tell the whole story!

Nelson Grande


Nelson and his wife, Fanny Veliz Grande, are the co-founders of Avenida Productions in Los Angeles. Their company serves the US Latino market and other underrepresented communities, helping raise millions for filmmakers. Nelson is of Salvadoran and Mexican descent, born and raised in Highland Park, California. He shares with CAHAAS his Central American experience growing up and working in Hollywood; neither were idyllic, but they were the building blocks of his life now. Listen as he covers topics on identity, ethnicity, racism, immigration, and gender.


In 1923, a young man immigrated with his sisters from Sonsonate, El Salvador to San Francisco. He trained as a dancer and began a career with the Corps de Ballet, which eventually became the San Francisco Ballet Company, a cultural institution that is now the oldest professional ballet company in the United States.

Medical Medium

In the late 19th century, the city of Jutiapa—Náhuatl for river of flowers—in Guatemala became the birthplace of a spiritual healer, Francisco José García. Like the Mayan ah-men, Mr. García helped his community overcome illnesses.

How to: Ancestry Research

How to search for ancestors in El Salvador's Diario Oficial newspaper using Google Search and Cached pages.

Dora Olivia Magaña


She fled her war-torn country of El Salvador to the US after being captured and tortured at the age of 19. She became a nurse practitioner and is considered one of the founding staff members at Clinica Romero when the Central American population in Los Angeles grew exponentially with little to no medical resources available to them.

Ancestry TV Commercial

This is Tía Amalia, a Salvadoran-born WWII nurse who lived and worked in San Francisco in the 1940s caring for soldiers returning home from the war. She was part of a group of minority nurses allowed to join the U.S. labor force to alleviate the nurse shortage during WWII. 

Luis Dominguez


Luis is a member of the NASA team at Pasadena's Jet Propulsion Laboratory that made history in 2020 with the launch of the Perseverance rover to Mars.

Dewey McLaughlin

Born in La Ceiba, Honduras, Dewey McLaughlin, a hotel porter living in Miami Beach, Florida, bravely contested his arrest in 1962. 

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