El Paso Video Histories
Video interviews with notable El Pasoans (or those with ties to the region)
1st woman mayor:
article & video
article & video
article & video
Border Studies at EPCC
NW Library and EPCC Links
Other Local Libraries
We do NOT have the resources to assist with genealogical research.
For GENEALOGICAL RESEARCH please contact:
*El Paso Genealogical Society
From the Editors Volume 29
Article first published in Vol. 29, 2011.
Borderlands readers, this year we offer you longer articles than in previous issues. Some stories lent themselves to repeated interviews, as in the case of Korean War POW, Jerry Sperbeck, who offered EPCC materials from his service as well as recollections of a war whose veterans were not always treated well when they returned to their country amid a mad hunt for communists.
In the case of the article on Lee and Beulah Moor, it was impossible to do their story justice without trying to discover the motives behind their great desire to save children in poorly functioning homes. For 50 years the home they created has been helping children who bear the brunt of their parents’ difficulties. The Moors’ story is fascinating, optimistic, inspirational.
Growing up in New Mexico, I remembered that we sang the state song, “O Fair New Mexico,” by Elizabeth Garrett in elementary school. I had heard legends of the outlaw Billy the Kid (his mother is buried in Silver City) and Pat Garrett, the sheriff who killed him. But it was a long time before I realized that Elizabeth was the sheriff’s daughter. This research gave me a different perspective on him and his daughter, members of a family far ahead of their time.
I heard about Ingeborg Heuser, director of Ballet El Paso, when I first came here to teach at UTEP. After seeing my first Heuser “Nutcracker,” I attended as many as possible of her purely magical productions. I brought my mother all the way from Central, NM (a few miles from Silver City), one Christmas season to see her first “Nutcracker,” something she never forgot. It was snowing as we left Magoffin Auditorium after the ballet – how perfect was that? Thank you, Ms. Heuser, for that unforgettable Christmas memory!
Other stories just kept getting longer and longer even after repeated editings because there was so much to be said, exactly what happens in class sometimes when students want to tell me everything they discover. I love that enthusiasm in English 1302 classes where students learn to conduct research and write college level papers, the basis for these articles.
Students realize that research is an essential part of their education, regardless of the subject. And they learn that all their research cannot be conducted on the computer. They must get out of their comfort zone and discover their community. They must conduct field research, interview people. Students are always amazed that local authors, experts and celebrities are happy to talk to them. As their confidence rises, students might email or call the author of a book or article they are using, and then, they are on their way. Once they get excited about a subject, it becomes meaningful and active education takes place.
My students, editors Kim Wilson and Heather Coons and I hope you will enjoy these articles. Heather has been a joy to work with for three years – thank you, Heather! Kim, a North Carolina native, is learning about our Southwestern history and doing a great job researching it.
Thanks to Joe Old, our faculty editor from EPCC’s journalism and history disciplines, who edits each article just because he has a big heart and loves history and the written word. Thanks also to Monica Wong and her entire library staff, who work with my students and me to make this project a joy! Most of all, thanks to Richard Rhodes, outgoing president of EPCC, who has always supported Borderlands. We will miss you, Dr. Rhodes.
Ruth Vise, Faculty Advisor & Editor
History is where we have been. History helps explain how we got to where we are today. History helps to shape the future. Borderlands tries to preserve the stories that make up the history of our community. As a student in Ms. Vise’s 1302 English class, I came to realize that there is a lot more to history than what we read in textbooks. The everyday stories of our lives make up the fabric of who we are. Many of those new to the area have never heard the stories of the people who have shaped our community. We hope that even those native to the area will find something that they did not know in this issue.
Borderlands is truly a labor of love. It is a collaborative effort on the part of many supportive people. First, I thank Ms. Vise for her guidance and support. I truly appreciate the opportunity to work with this publication. Tremendous thanks go to the students for their hard work and effort on their research papers, as well as to the librarians who assisted them. We also appreciate the individuals and families who graciously shared their stories, time and resources.
I thank my family, Pat, Daniel and Katelyn, for their understanding and support which mean so much to me.
Special appreciation also goes to Laura Hollingsed at UTEP Special Collections for her tremendous assistance, along with Ruth Brown, Border Heritage Librarian at the El Paso Public Library, Pat Worthington at the El Paso County Historical Society and the librarians and staff at the Northwest Library.
We hope that you will enjoy the stories of those who have given so much to the community we call home. Enjoy!
Kim Wilson, Editor
It’s time for Borderlands again, and although my writing contributions for this issue are few, it has been a great joy and privilege to see our local history come to life in print.
As always, Borderlands would not be possible without the hard work and contributions of many. I would like to thank our featured trailblazers and their families for their contributions to history, as well as their willingness to assist students with interviews and photographs.
I would also like to thank the students for their manuscripts, which are the basis of the articles written herein. Kim Wilson should be praised for her wonderful work on this issue, as well as Ms. Vise, for her dedication to teaching students the joy of the written word and in seeing that Borderlands makes it into El Paso homes year after year.
I would personally like to thank Ms. Ingeborg Heuser for inviting me into her home and being so very gracious and kind, and Renee Tanner for taking the time from her busy day to talk with me and give me a tour of the Lee & Beulah Moor Children’s Home.
My biggest thanks goes to Mr. Jerry Sperbeck. Your experiences were humbling and your stories fascinating. Thank you so much for sharing them with me. It has been an absolute honor, Sir, to be the one to tell your story, and I sincerely hope that you like it.
This issue is bittersweet for me because it is the last time I will be contributing to Borderlands. Kim, I hope that you enjoy working on this project as much as I have; I look forward to seeing you in print next year. Ms. Vise, it has been an absolute pleasure. For the last time, El Paso, happy reading!
Heather Coons, Assistant Editor
View pdf article: From the Editors Volume 29
Volume 29 articles