Category Archives: People

Basque Fact of the Week: My Uncle Tio Joe

We spent the next day, the day after seeing Bilbo, with family. In the morning, we met my dad’s sister Begoña and her family in Gernika. The rest of the family slowly found us throughout the morning and early afternoon as we wandered the city, stopping by the Tree of Gernika and a statue of […]

Bringing Ely, Nevada to London

Vince Juaristi, who amongst many other activities has written extensively about his Basque experience, just wrote to me about Daniel Gamboa Camou, a young Basque-American who is an actor, producer, and theatre-maker and who’s debut production, Now Entering Ely, Nevada, is going to have multiple performances in London. They are looking for some help to […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Pedro Etxenike, Physicist

As a scientist of Basque heritage, it is truly inspirational to see the success of people like Professor Pedro Etxenike. Not only is he a world class scientist, but over his career he has advocated for the role of science in society, helping the Basque government form educational and scientific policy as well as advocating […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Gaspar de Jauregui, the Shepherd

The military conflicts that surrounded the Basque Country in the early 1800s changed the fortunes of many. Comrades in one war fought against each other in the next. Heroes were exiled only to be called upon again when the politics of Spain shifted. Gaspar de Jauregui saw it all. Starting as a guerrilla fighter, he […]

Basque Fact of the Week: José Francisco Tellería Uribe, the Quack of Gipuzkoa

There are times when someone does something so singular that their name becomes associated with the act, that their name becomes an eponym. In the United States, we sign our John Hancock. A Benedict Arnold is a traitor. And McCarthyism has taken on meaning beyond McCarthy’s original campaign against communists. Eponyms exist in other languages […]

Telling the Stories that Need to be Told: An Interview with Richard Etulain

Ever since Robert Laxalt’s Sweet Promised Land told the story of his Basque immigrant father, there has been a growing recognition that the lives and stories of these men and women are not only worth telling, but comprise an integral part of our collective history and experience. Professor Richard Etulain has made it his life’s […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Tomas Zumalakarregi, Carlist Leader and Inventor of Tortilla

When people one or two hundred years from now look back, what will they remember us for? Out of all of our achievements and accomplishments, which will stand out? Tomas Zumalakarregi is remembered for being a preeminent Carlist general. At the same time, he is thought to be the inventor of Spanish tortilla (though there […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Ignacio Berriochoa, Stonemason of Shoshone, Idaho

The Basque men and women who came to the American West typically came because of the sheepherding industry. However, they often had other, even greater, impact on their local communities. One example is Ignacio Berriochoa who settled in southern Idaho. He was of course a sheepherder, and a farmer, but his more lasting contributions (besides […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Monica Bertagnolli, Granddaughter of Basque Immigrants, Nominated to Lead NIH

On May 15, 2023, President Joe Biden nominated Dr. Monica Bertagnolli to head the United States National Institutes of Health (NIH), the largest public funder of biomedical research in the world. Dr. Bertagnolli’s nomination is notable because, if confirmed, she would be only the second woman to lead the NIH. Dr. Bertagnolli is the granddaughter […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Maritxu Anatol Arístegui of the Comet Line

The Basque Country, straddling the border of France and Spain, played a key role during World War II, serving as a conduit for Allied prisoners and Jewish refugees to escape the horrors of the war. Numerous Basques played an important part in helping those people cross the border. In the past, I’ve highlighted Florentino Goikoetxea, […]