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Pleas and Petitions 

Forgotten Cucharenos


Virginia Sanchez 

Virginia has lived in Denver for 45 years. She enjoys researching the history of the southwestern U.S. and genealogy. Her first published book, Forgotten Cucharenos of the Lower Valley, now in its second printing, received the 2011 Miles History Award from History Colorado. Her recent book, Pleas and Petitions: Hispano Culture and Legislative Conflict in Territorial Colorado - published in March by the University of Colorado Press, sheds new light on the political obstacles, cultural conflicts, and institutional racism experienced by Hispano legislators in the establishment of the Territory of Colorado. Her co-authored scholarly article, “Displaced in Place: Nuevomexicanos on the Northern Side of the Colorado-New Mexico Border, 1850-1875,” won the 2018 Gilberto Espinosa award for Best Article in the New Mexico Historical Review. She was a contributing author to a 2019 book from the University of New Mexico Press, Nación Genízara: Ethnogenenesis: Place, and Identity in New Mexico. It was selected 2020 CPRC Heritage Publication Award by the New Mexico State Historic Preservation Office. Her chapter, “Survival of Captivity: Hybrid Identities, Gender, and Culture in Territorial Colorado,” discusses indigenous identity in southern Colorado as researched from historical documents. This October she will present at the Western History Conference about this topic. 

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