Argoitia, Virginia

Daniel Chertudi
Interview Location: 
Basque Museum and Cultural Center, Boise, Idaho
Interview Date: 

Virginia Argoitia was born in Mountain Home on 24 April 1924, to Jose Luis Argoitia Unamunzaga and Tomasa Anacabe Ugalde.  She paints a vivid picture of her parents' immigrations to America and their efforts to make a living and raise a family during the lean Depression years.  Through savvy business dealings and sheer perseverance, the Argoitias always came out on top.

As a girl, Virginia recalls helping her mother and extended family run a hotel, but this work was not for her.  After graduating from high school, Virginia attended some college, and also worked off and on at several Nevada clubs.  She moved to San Francisco in 1950, where she studied to become a beautician, eventually attaining the position of manager at a popular salon.

Marriage brought Virginia to Oregon, where she almost single-handedly operated a paint store in Bend.  Never one to let her mind rest, she also studied interior design.  Upon her retirement in 1978, Virginia returned to Nevada, where she immediately involved herself in the abundance of Basque cultural activities.  Today, she supports Boise's Basque Museum and the University of Nevada's Basque dance group, and enjoys researching her roots on the Internet.  Virginia has always been immensely proud of her Basque heritage.

Audio Recording: 
Stock Market Crash
Boarding House Life
Proud Basque
Other Images: