Antonio López grew up in the Logan Square Neighborhood of Chicago and heard about the Young Lords early in life, as his parents are activists. Mr. López is also active in various projects and community organizations. He is of Mexican descent and Logan Square is currently a prime real estate target for developers, who continue to prey on Latinos and the poor, and are supported by city hall and their housing Master Plan. In fact it is not hard to locate many of these developers who readily finance machine loyalists and who have sat and still sit on the many city boards. Mr. López ‘s parents were connected to the land grant struggles in New Mexico that were being led by Reis López Tijerina. Mr. Tijerina was born on September 21, 1926 near Falls City, Texas. He is preacher who founded the Alianza Federal de Pueblos Libres (Federal Alliance of Land Grants) in New Mexico. He is widely credited as launching the early Chicano Civil Rights Movement, although Mr. Tijerina prefers the term “Indo Hispano Movement” because the word “Chicano” can also divide Mexicans. At the time of this oral history, Mr. López was completing his doctoral studies in the Department of History at the University of Texas, El Paso. His doctoral dissertation focuses on the Rainbow Coalition, which originally began with Chairman Fred Hampton and included the Young Patriots and Young Lords. Mr. López has voluntarily assisted the Young Lords on various projects beyond his dissertation.
Grand Valley State University. University Libraries. Special Collections & University Archives