Day of the Dead/Día de los Muertos Virtual Exhibit

The Day of the Dead, or Día de los Muertos, is based on ancient Aztec traditions. Originally celebrated at the beginning of August, this tradition was later adopted by the Catholic Church and became el Día de los Muertos. The Day of the Dead is primarily celebrated in Mexico, Central America, and in the South West of the United States. Ever more frequently, it is celebrated in cities of the United States that have large Mexican and Central American populations. The Day of the Dead is celebrated on November 1st and 2nd. These days are also known as Día de los Angelitos (All Saints Day) and Día de los Difuntos (All Souls Day) in the Catholic tradition.

Families gather together for this festive holiday to honor and remember family members and friends who are no longer with them. Some of the holiday’s traditions include creating altars celebrating the deceased called ofrendas and visiting the graveyard at night on November 1st where families sing and eat around the tombs of their loved ones. For several years families have been coming together at the Library to craft altars, share their memories of their loved-ones, and eat traditional treats such as pan de muertos. In the past, we have exhibited these altars in the Trove during the month of November. This year, we have gathered together the photo submissions into a virtual exhibit of the beautiful altars families have created to honor and remember their deceased loved ones. We are grateful to those families for the opportunity to share their altars with the Westchester community.


El Día de los Muertos, o Day of the Dead, está basado en tradiciones aztecas antiguas. Originalmente se celebraba a principios de agosto, lo cual cambió al ser esta tradición adoptada por la iglesia católica, convirtiéndose así en el Día de los Muertos. Este día se celebra principalmente en México, América Central y el suroeste de los Estados Unidos. Esta celebración es más frecuente ahora en las ciudades de Estados Unidos donde existen comunidades significativas de mexicanos y centroamericanos. El Día de los Muertos se celebra el 1 y 2 de noviembre. Estos días también se conocen como el Día de los Angelitos (All Saints Day) y el Día de los Difuntos (All Souls Day) en la tradición católica.

Las familias se unen este día para honrar y recordar a familiares y amigos ya fallecidos. Una de las tradiciones de esta celebración es crear altares celebrando a los difuntos, “ofrendas”, otra tradición es visitar los cementerios la noche del primero de noviembre, donde las familias cantan y comen alrededor de las tumbas de sus seres queridos. Por varios años, familias de nuestra comunidad se han reunido en la Biblioteca para crear altares, compartir recuerdos de sus seres queridos y comer delicias tradicionales como el “pan de muertos”. Generalmente, el Trove exhibe los altares durante el mes de noviembre. Sin embargo, este año vamos a reunir todas las fotos de los altares que las familias han creado honrando a sus seres queridos y crear una exhibición virtual. Agradecemos a todas esas familias por la oportunidad de compartir sus altares con la comunidad de Westchester.

Photo Credit Name: Luz Villanueva
Who created the altar? Fam. Ochoa
Who is being honored? Abuelo Francisco
Honoree info: He was a great businessman, he loved music and he had 9 children! His favorite treat was raisins covered with chocolate.

Photo Credit Name: Mercedes Gomez
Who created the altar? Mercedes Gomez
Who is being honored? Mom Pilar
Honoree info: My mom was a great mom. She passed away when I was 26 and I still miss her so much. She was spaniard but raised in Mexico, in a city called Puebla. She has 9 children and was a great cook, also she was very liberal and free given the times that she lived. I love her so much.

Photo Credit Name: Maria Teresa Maldonado
Who created the altar? Fam. Maldonado
Who is being honored? Uncle José
Honoree info: Uncle José was an engineer, he loved math and music, but most of all: to be with his family. He was the youngest of 3 siblings, he was very smart and we will miss him a lot.

Photo Credit Name: Karla Jimenez
Who created the altar? Karla and Arturo
Who is being honored? Mr.Arturo
Honoree info
: He was the best dad ever. We chose my son's name because of him. He loved food, wine and tortillas.

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