Kansas City Public Library Honors Irene H. Ruiz Legacy After Her Death At 102

A local legend passes . . . Here's part of her story and how many Kansas City book lovers might remember her . . .

"Following the branch each time it relocated – to a retail area at 902 Southwest Boulevard in 1988, then to 525 Southwest Boulevard in 1995 – she was instrumental in creating a bilingual collection to better serve the West Side neighborhood. Its Spanish-language literature collection became one of the best in the city. Ruiz also served as a de facto archivist for the Mexican American community, conducting 60 oral history interviews with longtime residents and first-generation immigrants, many of whom had lost family records in the flood of 1951."

Read more via www.TonysKansasCity.com link . . .

Remembering the Namesake of the Irene H. Ruiz Biblioteca de las Americas

Ruiz died Saturday, September 3, 2023. She was 102 and leaves a legacy of devotion and service evidenced by far more than her name on a modest sign outside the Ruiz Branch. It extends to the cultural richness of the collections inside the library, to dozens of invaluable oral histories that Ruiz gathered from early West Side settlers, to the enrichment over decades of an entire community.