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Visit Hispanic Society of America

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The Hispanic Society of America was founded by Archer Milton Huntington in New York City on May 18, 1904, as a “free public library, museum and educational institution, containing objects of artistic, historic, and literary interest,” for the purposes of the “advancement of the study of the Spanish and Portuguese languages, literature, and history, and advancement of the study of the countries wherein Spanish and Portuguese are or have been spoken languages.”

This statement of purpose has guided the Hispanic Society through its first century.

The Board of Trustees of The Hispanic Society of America reaffirmed this statement of purpose and supplemented it with the following statement of mission on January 23, 2008.

The mission of The Hispanic Society of America is to collect, preserve, study, exhibit, stimulate appreciation for, and advance knowledge of, works directly related to the arts, literature, and history of the countries wherein Spanish and Portuguese are or have been predominant spoken languages, all in the service of the public and in accordance with the highest professional standards.

The Museum is first and foremost a repository for works of art that originate from, or are directly related to, the countries wherein Spanish and Portuguese are or have been predominant spoken languages. The Library is first and foremost a repository for manuscripts and publications that are directly related to the art, language, literature, and culture of the countries wherein Spanish and Portuguese are or have been predominant spoken languages. The mission of The Hispanic Society of America centers on and emanates from the works in its Museum and Library collections.

The term “Hispanic,” within the context of The Hispanic Society of America and its mission, encompasses the countries wherein Spanish and Portuguese are or have been spoken languages, i.e. Spain, Portugal, Latin America, the Southwest United States, the Philippines, Portuguese India, etc.