Hilda Velarde Salas

Hilda Velarde Salas was born in the 1920s in Albuquerque, NM.  As she says in our new interview (see below), she grew up in a time and family in which girls were not allowed to wear pants or run around and play.  In 1939, despite her father’s misgivings, Hilda got a job at the Alvarado Hotel as a Harvey Girl.  After World War II, she and her husband used the money she had saved to make a downpayment on a house in Los Angeles.  As their family expanded, Hilda and her husband would pile their five kids into the family station wagon every August and make the long and hot drive from Los Angeles to Albuquerque on Route 66, which in those days was a dangerous two-lane highway.  As Hilda recalls, there were many crosses dotting the road where other travelers had met an unfortunate end. Thankfully, the Salas family always made it to their destination, and Hilda enjoyed driving up to her father’s house in pants to show him that times had changed and women, including his daughter, could do many things. 



Related Projects