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UNR student to present research on Basque immigration



Dangberg Home Ranch Historic Park in Minden has been named a “Nevada Treasure” for the Reno-Tahoe Territory in the Discover Your Nevada contest.
MINDEN, Nev.-Iker Saitua, a doctoral student at the University of Nevada, Reno, will present his research on Basque immigration this Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Dangberg Home Ranch Historic Park at 10 a.m. The lecture is free and open to the public.

In “Come Back to the Flocks: When John Dangberg Battled to Bring Basque Sheepherders to the Great Basin, 1939-1945,” Saitua, who is a native of the Basque country, will consider the role of Carson Valley’s John Dangberg in promoting Basque immigration. Dangberg was one of the main defenders of the recruitment of Basque labor to the Great Basin, and allied with Nevada’s Senator Patrick McCarran to bring Basques to supply the labor needs of the Dangberg Land & Live Stock Co. and other ranches.

Throughout the twentieth century, the sheep industry was integral in the development of the Nevada, with the Basques playing a key role in the industry’s labor force. Although not all Basque immigrants in the United States were employed in the livestock industry, from the 1880s to the 1920s a significant number of them came to the United States, with the West as their primarily destination.

Saitua will discuss how the World War II labor shortage motivated Dangberg and other ranchers to organize and bring additional Basque laborers to watch their flocks.

Seating and shade are provided for this event, and visitors are welcome to bring their own comfortable lawn chair. The park is located at 1450 Hwy 88, ¾ mile south of the Carson Valley Swim Center. Additional information is available at www.dangberghomeranch.org, or at 775-783-9417.

The Dangberg Home Ranch Historic Park is the 2012 and 2013 Reno-Tahoe Territory winner of the Nevada Commission on Tourism’s “Discover Your Nevada” contest. The site preserves the home of Heinrich F. Dangberg and his descendants. The Dangbergs were a prominent ranching family in Carson Valley history and founded Minden in 1905. The site includes eight historic structures built between 1857 and 1917, along with a collection of 39,000 artifacts, documents and photographs acquired and used by the Dangberg family. Programs include tours, exhibits and other public events. The park is operated by Friends of Dangberg Home Ranch, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, in cooperation with Douglas County.


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