Bracero Oral History
Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee
Alfredo Fuentes was born on January 30, 1936, in La Constancia, Durango, México; when he was five years old, he began helping his father by working in the fields; the financial hardships he and his family endured throughout his childhood and adolescence led him to enroll in the Bracero Program in 1956; as a bracero, he worked picking cotton in New Mexico and Texas; he continued working in the program until 1964.
Summary of Interview
Mr. Fuentes briefly recalls his family, childhood, and adolescence; his family’s financial difficulties led him to enroll in the Bracero Program in 1956; he narrates the entire contracting process as well the medical exams he underwent beginning in Durango, Durango, México, and continuing through to Chihuahua; in addition, he describes how he was transported on a cargo train from the contracting center in Chihuahua to Rio Vista, a processing center in Socorro, Texas; while there, he had to go through disinfecting procedures; in addition, he goes on to explain what daily life was like on the farm, including the work, wages, payments, housing, and food; furthermore, he comments that he was treated well by his American employers; he also tells what his return trip to México in 1964 was like, and he concludes that he is very proud to have worked as a bracero.
Date of Interview
Length of Interview
Length of Transcript
Interview with Alfredo Fuentes Soto by Laureano Martínez, 2003, "Interview no. 1001," Institute of Oral History, University of Texas at El Paso.