Burns'eko etxekoandreak: Basque women boarding house keepers of Burns, Oregon
The migration of the Basques to the Pacific Northwest at the turn of the century was due to a number of factors including economic, cultural and political. The Basques constitute a distinct ethnic group from northern Spain and southern France, whose origins have not yet been determined by historical, linguistic, or archaeological studies. From ancient times, the Basques have fought to maintain their cultural identity and political freedom against invaders, developing in this struggle a strong
... struggle a strong sense of racial group solidarity. The lack of opportunity for ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS When first beginning the research for this study, I would return home from libraries frustrated and disappointed that there were so few references about Basque women. It seemed as if the historical existence of Basque women had either been entirely ignored or forgotten. Since these same women had played such an important role in my life, I decided to write about them and their experiences. Through interviews with Basque women, both in the Basque Country (Euzkadi) and in the Pacific Northwest, and with their children and acquaintances, this study began to take on a second topical focus, the Basque boarding houses ( Ostatuak). Using this New World institution as a backdrop, I have attempted to capture the important role of the Basque female head-of-household ( etxekoandrea) who has too often been left out of the historical record. There are numerous people who have helped me through this process, especially my mother, Margarita Osa Garatea, whose love, inspiration and reassurance never falters. To my son, Jonas Marcel, who has spent many hours patiently waiting for his busy mother to complete this project, I am so grateful. My father, Henry Garatea who passed away in 1988, was always willing to lend a helping hand and was mainly responsible for my opportunity to live and conduct research in the Basque Country. The generosity and kindness of my cousins in Euzkadi allowed iv my son and I to live very comfortably during our stay and they will never be forgotten.