ACU hosts photo exhibition never before showcased in the United States

Posted March 03, 2010

PanchoEvery Mexican child can recall the first time the story of Pancho Villa entered his or her young minds. A historical figure similar to Robin Hood or Davy Crockett, his name holds a special place in Hispanic folklore to this day.
Francisco Villa, a senior ACU political science major and a fourth generation descendant of the Mexican revolutionary, has teamed with ACU's multicultural organization, Hispanos Unidos, to present a photographic exhibit at Frontier Texas for the city of Abilene.
This will be the first time the collection has ever left Mexico. The Villa family has been holding onto their photo collection as a legacy of the family's ancestral past, says Villa. The exhibit contains nearly three dozen sepia-toned photos which the family says captures the real Pancho Villa, a man alleged by some to be a thief and a corrupt Mexican general.

"Pancho Villa's life serves as an example of the challenges that come with living in troubled times," says Villa. "My family and I believe he did what was right, even though he endured the scorn his own people heaped on him."
The executive director of Frontier Texas, Jeff Salmon, sees the event as a significant milestone in Abilene's rich history.

"The Mexican Revolution is very important to the residents of Abilene, and for Abilene to be the first community in the United States to host an event like this is a very proud moment," says Salmon.

Frontier Texas will hold the exhibit March 2, Texas Independence Day, through the end of May, with the formal opening and public reception to take place March 9. The photos are accompanied with quotes in English and Spanish from scholarly historians -- and from Pancho Villa himself.

Admission to the exhibit is free. For more information, visit the Frontier Texas website.