Design & Materials
In designing and selecting materials for these Memorial Gardens, the National Chavez Center sought to help people gain greater appreciation for Cesar Chavez. They didn't want anything grandiose or ostentatious. So the gardens are rustic, suggest the land Cesar knew and reflect the determination and perseverance that were hallmarks of his life and work. They also are full of life and hope.
Faith was such an important part of Cesar's life. It sustained him during the hardest times. Although there were as many setbacks as victories during his career, he never paused or considered giving up the struggle.
Cesar and Helen Chavez spent their honeymoon in 1948 visiting California's Spanish-era missions established by the Franciscan Order. When there were tough decisions to make, Cesar and the United Farm Workers leadership would sometimes withdraw to one of the missions to plan and contemplate next steps. The Memorial Gardens are reminiscent of the courtyards of the California missions he loved.