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Full-Text Articles in Arts and Humanities

Interview No. 1545, Rosa Martha Zarate Aug 2011

Interview No. 1545, Rosa Martha Zarate

Combined Interviews

She recalls crossing the border twice in Tijuana; she details her two distinct experiences with border agents. She details the racial discrimination she felt in the convent from priest and other nuns; her push for Spanish Catechism and more Spanish masses. She remembers meeting Cesar Chavez; details her first protest with him, her revolutionary idealistic music, and her involvement with the Agriculture Movement, as well as the role of chicano priest and nuns in creating a better connection with the people; she recalls being seen as the evangelical voice of the Latin American Church Movement. Rosa’s activism and music ...


Interview No. 1506, Francisco Escalera Jul 2011

Interview No. 1506, Francisco Escalera

Combined Interviews

Escalera recalls that his father died in 1954 and his family moved from Michoacán to Guadalajara, Mexico since it was hard to earn a living. He remembers that in this place he got a job with the city government for which he worked for 34 years and in 1959 he got opportunity to go to the U.S. and got a license from his job to be absent for three month. He describes his journey from Guadalajara going to the contract center in Empalme, Sonora, then to the border in Calexico, California from which he was hired to go to ...


Interview No. 1597, Leticia Carabajal Oct 2010

Interview No. 1597, Leticia Carabajal

Combined Interviews

Her maternal grandfather she explains fought alongside Pancho Villa and was eventually killed; she explains that her father is a bracero but she did not discover this until he began speaking about working in Utah, Colorado, and California; her father worked as a bracero in order to support the family, eventually buying a house with his earnings; she points out that her father does not have his bracero documentation; she began seeing articles about braceros in local newspaper, consequently she began recording her conversations with her dad and gave him a journal so he could write down his experiences; she ...


Interview No. 1464, Silbano Robledo Jul 2010

Interview No. 1464, Silbano Robledo

Combined Interviews

Silbano Robledo was very tired of working in his town from 6:00 am to 6:00 pm without a good salary. After he got married, he started a small business selling peanuts. Mr. Robledo traveled to Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico to get hired as a bracero; He worked in El Valle picking cotton and then traveled to La Mesa de Lobos and worked doing the same job. He worked as a bracero for three years until 1959. He worked from twelve-hour days with a salary of $ 7.00 dollars per day. Robledo lived with his co-workers and they all ...


Interview No. 1438, Sebastián Ruíz Ávila Apr 2010

Interview No. 1438, Sebastián Ruíz Ávila

Combined Interviews

Sebastian Ruíz Ávila lived there up until his late teens. He worked as baker helper in Matamores until he learned about the braceros. He worked at Lamesa, Texas. He was able to help his family back in México by working in the cotton fields everyday. His payment was based on the amount of cotton he would pick up. He worked 6 years as a bracero for the same person. Mr. Ruíz didn’t know English during his time working as a bracero. After having a family in Mexico, Mr. Ruíz stayed there working as a brick-maker. Then, he became a ...


Interview No. 1474, Jesus J. Ibarra Huerta Apr 2010

Interview No. 1474, Jesus J. Ibarra Huerta

Combined Interviews

Mr. Ibarra worked as a farmer since he was young. He traveled to Monterrey, Mexico to get hired as a bracero and then to El Paso del Aguila, Texas. Ibarra worked for the first time picking cotton in Laredo, Texas. He renewed his contract three consecutive times and worked in Bryan, Mission, McAllen and Mandy Texas. Ibarra worked in six different cities around Texas in 1957 and 1958. He renewed his contract and worked for eight months picking beetroot in Bay City, Michigan. He worked as a bracero for the last time in 1964. He got his American residency thanks ...


Interview No. 1466, Antonio Garcia Delgado Mar 2010

Interview No. 1466, Antonio Garcia Delgado

Combined Interviews

Antonio Garcia Delgado worked picking pumpkins since he was a child. He traveled to Monterey, Mexico with his father and both were hired to work as braceros. Garcia worked picking cotton in Santa Rosa, Texas. He renewed his contract and worked in Mumford, Texas. Garcia never knew how much money he earned during that time because his father collected his checks. Garcia collected around two hundred and twenty pounds of cotton per day. Garcia traveled with his wife to San Antonio, Texas and worked without documents He feels proud because he became an American Citizen.


Interview No. 1471, José Tello Mar 2010

Interview No. 1471, José Tello

Combined Interviews

Mr. Tello briefly recalls his childhood and how it was growing up in the ranch he lived in; while working in the ranch he heard about the Bracero Program and traveled to the city of Monterrey, Nuevo León, México, where the processing center was; he explains that the process was fairly easy for him and that there weren’t many requirements or medical examinations; he recalls crossing the border at Laredo, Texas; as a bracero he completed several contracts picking cotton and radish in the states of Texas, California, and Arkansas; he briefly describes the living and working conditions at ...


Interview No. 1467, Ramón Gil Mar 2010

Interview No. 1467, Ramón Gil

Combined Interviews

Ramón Gil worked as a bracero at Salt Pacific in Sacramento, California. Gil organized the material for the railroad for six months, then he moved to Tampico, Mexico. In Tamaulipas, he worked in the Mexican oil business and later he moved to Buffalo, New York, where he got married and started a family. As a bracero, he was paid every 15 days; his wage was $8.16 per hour. Gil had only one bad experience as a bracero, they were supposed to have a savings account at Wells Fargo, but he has never seen a penny of that money.


Interview No. 1468, Rafael Gonzalez M. Mar 2010

Interview No. 1468, Rafael Gonzalez M.

Combined Interviews

Mr. González talks about his childhood and growing up working in the mines since a young age; in 1950 he moves to the city of Nava in México, close to the border, where he finds out about the Bracero Program; he enlists and goes through the hiring process; furthermore, he mentions the hiring center, the requisites, and the medical examinations they went through; upon crossing he worked in the cotton fields, as well as in chard, lettuce, and beet root fields, in different ranches of the state of Texas; besides of the working conditions, he describes the living conditions, the ...


Interview No. 1470, Cipriano Romero Mar 2010

Interview No. 1470, Cipriano Romero

Combined Interviews

Cipriano Romero worked picking cotton since he was ten years old. He traveled to Monterrey, Nuevo León, México to get hired in the bracero program. In 1956, Romero started working picking cotton in Helena, Arkansas. He renewed his contract and worked in Stockton, California. Romero had his first child at 22 years old in Arkansas. The salary was between $1.55 and $2.550 per hundred pounds of cotton. He worked as many hours as he could five days a week. Romero never had problems with the food or the housing provided in the different places where he worked. Romero ...


Interview No. 1465, Asención Flores Mar 2010

Interview No. 1465, Asención Flores

Combined Interviews

Asención Flores Saldaña started working when he was ten years old. He heard about the Bracero Program when he was in Jalisco. Flores was hired as a bracero in Empalme, Sonora. In 1926, he worked as a bracero for three months in California. In 1929, he was hired again as a bracero and worked picking cotton in Pecos. Flores only worked three days in Pecos because the weather was very bad. Flores renewed his contract and worked in Soledad picking tomatoes. He worked six days per week and sometimes all week. The salary was $12.00 per day, but he ...


Interview No. 1469, Jose Mata Alvarez Mar 2010

Interview No. 1469, Jose Mata Alvarez

Combined Interviews

Jose Mata Alvarez started working at a very young age. He traveled to Tamaulipas, Mexico to get hired as a bracero for the first time. In 1960 he worked in Texas and in 1961 he moved to California. Mata worked picking beetroot and cleaning beans. He renewed his contract and worked for the last time as a bracero in 1964 in Denver, Colorado. He also worked picking grapes and lemon. Sometime, he worked six days a week and more than eight hours per day. The salary was based on the quantity not on the hours worked per day. He was ...


Interview No. 1462, Fabian Landaverde S. Mar 2010

Interview No. 1462, Fabian Landaverde S.

Combined Interviews

Mr. Landaverde briefly remembers his childhood talking about his hometown, and about playing and working in the lands along with his father; before he was a bracero, he entered the United States in 1951 to work in the railroad tracks in Colorado; in 1955, Mr. Landaverde, who was already married, went through the hiring process to become a bracero; he recalls going through the centers in Monterrey and El Paso, Texas; in addition, he explains that, because of his little knowledge in English, he helped as a translator in one of the centers; he also describes the hiring process where ...


Interview No. 1461, Marcelino Gonzalez D. Mar 2010

Interview No. 1461, Marcelino Gonzalez D.

Combined Interviews

Mr. Gonzalez talks about his hometown and how, despite the economic difficulties, he enjoyed his childhood; he describes his schooling and that when he was studying he wanted to come to the united States to work; around the year of 1954, Mr. Gonzalez went through the hiring process to become a bracero; he mentions going through the hiring center of Monterrey, Nuevo León, México; he describes the embarrassment of going through physical medical exams, where they were stripped and examined; as a bracero, Mr. Gonzalez remembers mainly working in the cotton, onion, and lettuce fields of El Paso, Plainview and ...


Interview No. 1459, Jesus T. Castilleda Mar 2010

Interview No. 1459, Jesus T. Castilleda

Combined Interviews

Mr. Castilleda briefly recalls his childhood and working in agriculture with his family; he crossed the border to work illegally in the cotton fields with his father when he was ten or twelve years old; he remembers that his uncles came as braceros and as soon as he turned eighteen he enlisted in the city of Monterrey; after enlisting, he went through contracting centers in Piedras Negras and Hidalgo, Texas; he remembers the medical exams they were put through; he worked in places like La Mesa and Big Springs, Texas, as well as in Tennessee and Arkansas, mainly on cotton ...


Interview No. 1460, Ramon García Mar 2010

Interview No. 1460, Ramon García

Combined Interviews

Mr. García mentions his childhood and how difficult it was when his parents separated; he and his siblings had to work to support their family when they were only children; he crossed illegally at the age of fifteen to work in the U.S.; when he was eighteen he decided to enlist in the bracero program and went to the contracting center in Monterrey, Nuevo León; he remembers the entire process, including the waiting times, the amount of people, and the harsh conditions; he recalls the medical exams he went through; after being hired he was sent to Arkansas to ...


Interview No. 1388, Maria Zarate Dec 2008

Interview No. 1388, Maria Zarate

Combined Interviews

Maria Zarate was born in Paracho, Michoacán, México. Her father worked as a bracero in the United States. At a young age her father pasted away, for this reason she started working with her brothers caring for animal and planting seeds. At an age of twenty, she married for the first time. One year later, her husband passed away. Eight years later she married a second time only to take care of her second husband’s daughters. Her second husband, Federico worked as a bracero in the United States in 1954. Ms. Zarate lasted long periods of time without her ...


Interview No. 1424, Feliciano Zarupe Nov 2008

Interview No. 1424, Feliciano Zarupe

Combined Interviews

Feliciano never went to school and from a very young age he began working, collecting resin from pine trees so it could be processed for various needs. Feliciano entered the Bracero Program in 1960 and the first part of the recruitment process, the physical examination, took place in Empalme. Then they were sent to Calexico where they were dusted against lice. Feliciano first went to Oxnard in Parque del Sol when he arrived in the United States and then was sent to Lompoc in Santa Maria county, California where he worked harvested lettuce for 45 days. A typical day began ...


Interview No. 1598, Felipe Pavon Munoz Nov 2008

Interview No. 1598, Felipe Pavon Munoz

Combined Interviews

In 1942 he saw a newspaper announcing the hiring of Mexican men, he explains in detail the negotiations that occurred between the United States and Mexico; he recalls braceros arriving to the national stadium in Mexico City; in 1944 he registered as a bracero; he details his physical examination, explaining that it consisted of a rectal exam, lice check, fumigation, a shower, blood work, and a detail inspection of their entire naked body; he remembers that once in the United States braceros were lined up and distributed out without knowledge of where they were going; he describes living in a ...


Interview No. 1589, Bill Stone Sep 2008

Interview No. 1589, Bill Stone

Combined Interviews

Discusses using Mexican labor from 1954 to 1959 to pick cotton. Difficulties with Labor Department inspectors prompts family to discontinue using Mexican labor and to purchase cotton picker. Discusses sending money home for the Mexicans.


Interview No. 1602, Fred Bourland Sep 2008

Interview No. 1602, Fred Bourland

Combined Interviews

He remembers working on his father’s farmland; he picked cotton, soy beans, and wheat alongside Mexican workers; buses would bring in black men who worked as choppers, while white migrant workers, worked as pickers; Mexican workers were brought in when extra labor was needed, they would be subcontracted out to smaller farms; he remembers seeing 50 to 100 men working alongside one another; the Mexican workers were housed in barracks and slept in army cots; he recalls the Farm Bureau and Extension Agents in the fields, inspecting the conditions of the workers; he states that Mexican men were hard ...


Interview No. 1588, Wonda Lou Wonicar, Norma Emison Sep 2008

Interview No. 1588, Wonda Lou Wonicar, Norma Emison

Combined Interviews

Born Caraway ARK Oct 10 1939. Many family farms. Parents farmed. Went to school in Caroway grades 1-4-5-12. During school year had to chop and pick cotton. Split school term. Father employed Mexicans during 50's. Formed an association and one man would go to the border and bring large number back on Murphy farm approx. 25. Would fix up houses accommodation for them. Farm owner would do this. Mexicans were a great help on the farm. Doesn't remember other than Mexicans being contracted to the farm. Norma worked at a store in Caraway. Mexicans would buy good such ...


Interview No. 1582, Sam Mcneill Sep 2008

Interview No. 1582, Sam Mcneill

Combined Interviews

Farmer in England, Arkansas, who employed Bracero in late 1950’s. Employed 90 Mexicans. Housed in old school. Dispute over wages settled by Mexican Consulate. He learned well digging techniques. Worker purchased gun and accidently shot himself in leg.


Interview No. 1599, Dolores Atkins Sep 2008

Interview No. 1599, Dolores Atkins

Combined Interviews

She recalls that Parkin was a farm community and everyone worked in the fields; her parents encouraged her and her six siblings to get an education, but states that no one went to school during picking season; she explains that on Saturday families would take their children to pick cotton and would get to keep what they earned; she details the segregation in town, explaining how they ordered food from a service window marked blacks; she remembers that everyone stuck with their own race; consequently, Mexicans only came into town for liquor and food, then returned to their barracks; she ...


Interview No. 1581, Harrison Locke Sep 2008

Interview No. 1581, Harrison Locke

Combined Interviews

African-American farmer. No braceros on his farm but he remember them in tour on plantations. Machines just beginning to come in. became a principal of school, taught for a years. Taught 56- 62. Remember 1st cotton picker. Describe conditions in farm. Discussing segregation. What’s not picking as much cotton. Mercanization people out of the area to Midwestern cities. Rice area. Also stopped Mexican migrant worker. Discusses the importance of training. College as UA-PB. Workeron the farm as a kid. Father Abb Locke, mother Rubby Locke; 3 younger brothers. Late 1940's, early 1950’s no machines. They had houses ...


Interview No. 1591, Jonathan Abbot Sep 2008

Interview No. 1591, Jonathan Abbot

Combined Interviews

Describes the vivid colors of the crew leaders trades. He comments on the laborers purchasing trade singer sewing machines to take back to Mexico. Discusses housing and social interaction at the Mexican barracks on the Stallings farm at Yarbro, AR.


Interview No. 1592, Marion Haynes Sep 2008

Interview No. 1592, Marion Haynes

Combined Interviews

Discusses interaction with Mexican laborers. The Mexican Barracks on the Stallings farm and the ‘frame time’. Activities of the laborers


Interview No. 1590, Don Stallings Sep 2008

Interview No. 1590, Don Stallings

Combined Interviews

Father farmer 2000 acres of cotton and owned/operated a gin at Yarrow, AR. From 1963, his father contracted for 300 bracero laborers. Constructional and maintains the Mexican barrotes on his farm. Contracted with a Texas Mexican Jesus Salinas to provide andmanage all of the laborers. Length of


Interview No. 1579, Sam Ashworth Sep 2008

Interview No. 1579, Sam Ashworth

Combined Interviews

Mexican just bought what was a needed canned goods. Mechanization station, late 1950’s into 1960’s. Asked about a good incident and a bad incident. Would go into Blade Club’s. Black women would make money. Mexicans married black women. Length