Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Finding Aid for the Michelle Kholos Brooks Collection of Manazar Gamboa Papers 1939-2001
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (80.45 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Michelle Kholos Brooks Collection of Manazar Gamboa Papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1939-2001
    Collection number: 88
    Creator: Gamboa, Manazar 1934-2000
    Extent: 4.5 feet
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Chicano Studies Research Center, UCLA
    Los Angeles, California 90095-1490
    Abstract: This collection consists of Chicano poet Manazar Gamboa's manuscripts, plays, poems, writing notes, and his written experiences of growing up in Chavez Ravine.
    Physical location: Currently stored at the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center Library Archive. In the future the collection will be stored off site at the UCLA Southern Regional Library Facility.
    Language of Material: Collection materials in English , Spanish


    Collection is open for research.To view the collection or any part of it, please contact the CSRC at http://www.chicano.ucla.edu/

    Publication Rights

    All publication rights by permission only. Copyright has not been assigned to the Chicano Studies Research Center. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Archivist and/or the Librarian at the Chicano Studies Research Center Library. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Michelle Kholos Brooks Collection of Manazar Gamboa Papers, 88, Chicano Studies Research Center, UCLA, University of California, Los Angeles.

    Acquisition Information

    Collection donated to the UCLA Chicano Studies Library by Michelle Kholos Brooks. Deed on file art the Archive office


    Born in East L.A. in 1934 and raised in Chavez Ravine, Manazar Gamboa spent his youth picking crops with his family across the Central and San Fernando Valley. As one of the first Latino students to attend Nightingale Junior High in Cypress Park he rebelled against school authorities by speaking Spanish.

    He also began to sell marijuana and steal cars. In 1954 he began his first prison term and would spend 17 of the next 23 years behind bars. In the 1970's Gamboa became a heroin addict and shortly after the woman he loved overdosed and died in his arms. He then committed an armed robbery and was sent to Soledad State Prison.

    In Soledad he began to read any literature available to him taking a particular interest in poetry. Despite the derision of his fellow inmates he avidly read the work of the Romantics: Shelley, Keats, Coleridge and Blake. Gamboa was given the complete works of Shakespeare which he regarded as his greatest treasure.

    He began to write poetry and was published by a journal run by a University of Colorado professor. In 1977 Gamboa was released and joined the L.A. poetry scene by working at Beyond Baroque, a literary center in Venice and edited its magazine Obras. From 1981 to 1983 he was the Director of the L.A Latino Writers Association and editor of ChismeArte magazine.

    In the 1980's he began teaching writing workshops for substance abusers, youths in juvenile halls and prison inmates often driving over 120 miles a day to teach literacy and writing to youths across the county. In 1988 he received a Brody Arts Fund for $2500 and replaced his 1963 Dodge. In 1989 he became the Artistic Director of the Homeland Neighborhood Cultural Center. He turned his epic poem "Memories of a Bulldozed Barrio" into a stage performance and worked with the non-profit L.A Theater works for over 13 years. He died in Long Beach at age 66 on Dec. 13, 2000.

    Scope and Content

    This collection represents approxiamtley three linear feet of Manazar Gamboa's research on the Chavez Ravine struggle, his original writings on growing up in Chavez Ravine in the 1940's, unpublished manuscripts, news clippings and computer files of his work.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.


    Beyond Baroque
    Chavez Ravine
    Chicano Poetry
    Manazar Gamboa
    Soledad Prison