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Sociedad Protección Mutua de Trabajadores Unidos Records

Identifier: MSS-696-BC

Scope and Content

The S.P.M.D.T.U. records consists of typed and handwritten manuscripts of annual statements, organizational meeting minutes and proceedings, and business correspondence. Also included are numerous membership forms, receipt books, ledgers, journals, bank records, receipts, certificates, and photographs. Published materials in the S.P.M.D.T.U. records consist of forms and information booklets regarding tax filing, forms and correspondence outlining legal stipulations pertaining to state insurance, and booklets discussing organizational regulations and ritualistic codes. The records contain a small assortment of miscellaneous papers and memorabilia as well. These historic documents trace the S.P.M.D.T.U.'s social, fraternal, and financial activities throughout much of the twentieth century, and offer insight into its development and operation as a life insurance provider. Additionally, they chronicle the organization's correspondence with state insurance and IRS officials, proceedings during meetings, enlistment of new members, and record keeping of life insurance policies and premiums. The S.P.M.D.T.U. records primarily contain the business manuscripts and correspondence of the supreme council in Antonito as well as numerous documents from certain individual chapters, especially those in Capulín, Colorado, and Arroyo Seco, New Mexico.

The collection was originally divided into three series: Correspondence and Organizational Records, Receipt Books for the Concilio Superior, and Ledgers and Journals. In March 2023, a fourth series--Concilio #3, Mogote, Colorado--was created with the addition of a box of seven journals spanning the Concilio's activities from 1904-1948.


  • 1922-2017
  • Majority of material found in 1950-1990


Language of Materials

English Spanish

Access Restrictions

Access to Box 3 (Membership Applications) is restricted. Prior permission from the Director of the Center for Southwest Research is required to use Box 3.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication of CSWR materials allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for compliance with all copyright, privacy, and libel laws. Permission is required for publication or distribution.

Institutional History

La Sociedad Protección Mutua de Trabajadores Unidos (The Society for the Protection of United Workers) was founded in 1900 by Celedonio Mondragón in Antonito, Colorado. The S.P.M.D.T.U. is the oldest active Hispanic mutual aid (mutualista) society and fraternal insurance provider with its concilio superior or supreme council (headquarters) in Antonito, and numerous local concilios or councils (chapters) scattered throughout Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah. The S.P.M.D.T.U. was formed to address the needs of Hispano workers in Colorado's San Luis Valley, provide life insurance for its members, as well as conduct fraternal and social functions in the localities of the chapters. The organization was established under the insurance laws of the State of Colorado, and assists the Spanish-speaking Hispanic population of the Southwest. The membership of the S.P.M.D.T.U. has been, and continues to be, predominantly male, but includes women as well. Members were offered life insurance or 20-year Payment Life Policies. Additionally, members in good standing normally make recommendations for prospective new members, and they and their families qualify for $1,000 to $5,000 worth of life insurance at premiums available exclusively to those in the group. Biannual conventions of the S.P.M.D.T.U. have been held in various locations throughout the Southwest since 1980, and local chapters continue to conduct their own meetings on a regular basis.


48 boxes


This collection contains the financial, membership and business records of the S.P.M.D.T.U., one of the U.S. Southwest's largest Hispanic-based mutual aid societies (mutualistas) of the twentieth century.

Related Archival Material

Center for Regional Studies and the Center for Southwest Research Fellows presentation, James B. Barrera

José A. Rivera Papers Center for Southwest Research, University of New Mexico.

Processing Information

Historic preservation materials (Box 1, Folders 32 and 33) were added to the collection in August 2003; Nambe "Libros de Certificados de Juramento" added in September 2010. In August 2003, a folder containing state and national historic register nomination materials and a structure assessment and preservation plan for the Concilio Superior were added to the collection. Additional materials related to Concilio 19 (Alamosa, CO) and Concilio Superior added July 2016.
Finding Aid of the Sociedad Protección Mutua de Trabajadores Unidos Records, 1922-2017
Processed by B. James Barrera
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • June 28, 2004: PUBLIC "-//University of New Mexico::Center for Southwest Research//TEXT (US::NmU::MSS 696 BC::Sociedad Proteccion Mutua de Trabajadores Unidos Records)//EN" "nmu1mss696bc.sgml" converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the UNM Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections Repository

University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections
University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque NM 87131