The Federico and Bertha Claveria Collection is made up of administrative records, subject files, correspondence, clippings,
photographs and negatives, ephemera and other miscellaneous memorabilia documenting activities of the life of Federico Claveria,
his family, and La Tolteca Tortilla Factory and restaurant. It Includes photographs taken by Claveria himself during his time
as a Marine photographer.
Federico Antonio Maldonado Claveria was born on June 13, 1908 in Mexico City to Santurino Claveria and Maria Maldonado Claveria.
His father emigrated to Mexico from the Basque Country, his mother was a native to Mexico City; the two had a total of three
sons. The Claverias moved to San Antonio, Texas from Mexico City in 1912, during the Mexican Revolution. A little thereafter,
the family moved to Los Angeles, where they would eventually become American citizens. At the time of the Pearl Harbor attack
on December 7, 1941, Federico Claveria was 33 years of age and strongly desired to join the war effort of the U.S. Marines.
Unfortunately, the status of his citizenship delayed his enlistment. Upon obtaining American citizenship, Claveria again met
another speed bump when he failed his military physical due to his color blindness. The zealous Claveria did not take no for
an answer. With his past experience in the Hollywood film industry as a commercial artist for RKO and Warner Bros. Studios,
Federico Claveria became Private Federico “Freddie” Claveria, photographer and filmer of the U.S. Marines. He was placed in
the Fifth Amphibious Corps, under Major General Holland M. Smith, who led them in the invasions of Saipan and Tinnian on the
Pacific front of WWII. On July 16, 1946 Claveria was discharged as Technical Sergeant Claveria of the Marine Corps, returning
home to his long-time girlfriend, Bertha Ciriza.