This U.S observance was established in 1968 by President Lyndon Johnson as a weeklong celebration and it was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988.
While it may seem a bit odd that National Hispanic Heritage Month is split between September and October, these dates were chosen because many Latin American Countries celebrate the anniversary of their independence within this period.
For instance, during just the first two days, Sept. 15 and 16, six countries celebrate their independence. Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala and Nicaragua celebrate it Sept. 15, while Mexico and Chile celebrate theirs the next day, Sept. 16. Also, El Día de la Raza, which is Oct. 12 and marks the start of Hispanic heritage in Latin America, falls within this 30-day period.