Concepción “Concha” Sanchez pulled this apron over her head when she went to work supporting her family.

The Sanchez family migrated to the United States from Guanajuato, Mexico in 1906. The family worked to support themselves in a variety of ways, first as railroad track workers in Kansas and Texas, by working in the citrus industry in Riverside, California, and finally opening a grocery store in Fillmore. However, during the Great Depression, the grocery store failed, and the Sanchez family looked for another source of income: masa and tortillas.

With the help of her family, Concepcion Sanchez sold masa and tortillas out of her home to her neighbors and local grocery stores in Ventura County. Sanchez was in her 80s when she stopped. Her story is featured in Smithsonian American Women: Remarkable Objects and Stories of Strength, Ingenuity, and Vision From the National Collection.

Learn more about Sanchez’s story here:

Continue the conversation by using the links below.

Check out our connections page for more