Our Neighborhood / Nuestro Barrio

Click on a photo to view the caption and photo numbers.
All historic images courtesy of the Arizona Historical Society/Tucson

Our Neighborhood / Nuestro Barrio

The permanent photo display Our Neighborhood / Nuestro Barrio is the culmination of efforts at the Pima County Public Library and The Arizona Historical Society to participate in Arizona's Centennial on February 14, 2012 in a way that would be meaningful to Tucsonans.

The topic of the barrios and specifically those barrios impacted by urban renewal plans and the building of the Tucson Community Center (now called the Tucson Convention Center) in the late 1960s grew out of conversations about Dr. Lydia Otero's book La Calle, recent Rio Nuevo initiatives, and other downtown developments. Dr. Otero's book details the development, since the early 1930s, of organizations focused on urban renewal and change in Tucson and the evolution over time of various downtown renovation plans, largely without input from persons living in the affected areas.

The 18 photos in the display were selected by former barrio residents, their families, and other concerned citizens in a two-part process. Former barrio residents were encouraged to vote for their favorites of over 90 photos at a public showing at Santa Rosa Branch Library on December 11, 2011. A committee of nine barrio residents or former residents and two library staff persons guided by criteria that discouraged all of the final photos being too similar in content or form or location finalized the selection of the 18 photos that are now the permanent collection presented here and on display at the Joel D. Valdez Main Library.

The Main Library deeply appreciates the Arizona Historical Society for its help in making this exhibit possible. Pima County Public Library is also very grateful to the Arizona Historical Advisory Commission for its official designation of this exhibit as an official Arizona Centennial Legacy Project.

Pima County Website