Embracing All Voices: Hidden History Talks at State Historic Park

Old Town San Diego State Historic Park is a time capsule preserving the rich tapestry of California’s past. Amidst the bustling streets and quaint architecture, a remarkable initiative known as Hidden History Talks brings to light the lesser-known stories and voices that have woven the diverse fabric of the region’s history. Led by passionate State Park Interpreters, these succinct yet impactful talks serve as a window into the lives and experiences of underrepresented communities, including African-American, indigenous, women, and LGBTQIA+ individuals.

For visitors seeking more than just the surface-level historical experience, Hidden History Talks offer an unparalleled opportunity. Over 15 minutes these talks transport participants through time, immersing them in stories that have often remained obscured by mainstream narratives. Set against the backdrop of the Colorado House’s steps, the talks create an ambiance that invites exploration and introspection. As attendees listen to the interpreters’ narratives, they find themselves stepping into the shoes of those who have been marginalized by history’s selective memory.

California’s history is as diverse as its landscapes, and Hidden History Talks reflect this rich diversity. Each week, the talks shine a spotlight on a different facet of underrepresented history, bringing forth the stories of individuals and communities who have played pivotal roles in shaping the region. From the struggles and triumphs of African-Americans who defied the odds to contribute to the state’s development, to the resilience of indigenous communities in the face of colonialism, every talk is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit.

While these Hidden History Talks delve into the past, they are far from being confined by it. The stories told during these talks resonate with contemporary issues and struggles, making them relevant and thought-provoking for today’s visitors. By acknowledging and understanding the stories of those who came before us, visitors gain a more holistic perspective on the challenges and progress that have led to the present day.

The essence of the Hidden History program lies in its pursuit of completeness. History, when told in its entirety, becomes a powerful tool for fostering empathy and understanding among individuals from all walks of life. By showcasing the contributions of women, LGBTQIA+ individuals, and other often-marginalized communities, the program dismantles the narrow narrative that has dominated historical discourse for far too long.

In a world where the importance of diverse voices and narratives is increasingly recognized, Hidden History Talks stand as a shining example of how historical sites can adapt to honor the past while embracing the future. By joining these talks, attendees take a step towards a more inclusive and enlightened understanding of the world around them—a world shaped not by a single narrative, but by the multitude of stories that weave together to form our shared history.

Upcoming Talks 

  • August 31, 1pm
  • September 1, 1pm
  • September 2, 2pm
  • September 7, 2pm
  • September 14, 1pm
  • September 15, 1pm
  • September 22, 1pm
  • September 28, 1pm
  • September 29, 1pm

Phone – (619) 220-5422

Address – 2733 San Diego Ave, San Diego, CA 92110

Website www.parks.ca.gov/oldtownsandiego