Eugenia Rodríguez is the mother of José “Cha-Cha” Jiménez. She is the youngest of 13 children and was born in San Lorenzo, Puerto Rico to Juan Rodríguez and Victoria Flores. They then moved to the Morena section of the barrio of San Salvador, Caguas, Puerto Rico. When she was just a child her mother became sick and so Ms. Rodríguez was sent to be raised by her older sister, Toribia. But Toribia also had her own family to raise, so Ms. Rodríguez’s father decided to send her to live in a Catholic orphanage until she was 15-years-old. She never attended formal school but did learn how to read and write. When Ms. Rodríguez left the orphanage, she returned to live with Toribia. There she met Antonio Jiménez, the younger brother of Toribia’s husband, who would become her husband. In 1949, Ms. Rodríguez traveled to New York and then to Boston. In early 1951 the family moved to La Clark in Chicago.
Grand Valley State University. University Libraries. Special Collections & University Archives