Interviewer

Adriana Sandoval

Project

Bracero Oral History

Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee

Elsa Murillo Rodríguez was born September 10, 1954, in Zacatecas, México; she had six siblings, four of whom are still living; her father was a bracero until the early 1960s; he labored in the fields of Texas picking apples and oranges; several of her other family members were also braceros; while her father was gone, her oldest brother was killed; by the time she was seven years old, her father passed away; roughly two years later, her mother also died; Elsa and her siblings were raised by their aunt; by the time she was twelve, she was already working; she eventually immigrated to the United States to leave her abusive husband and find work to support her four children.

Summary of Interview

Ms. Murillo describes her childhood as very sad without her father; he was a bracero until the early 1960s; he labored in the fields of Texas picking apples and oranges; several of her other family members were also braceros; there were times while her father was away that they did not have enough money for food, and their grandparents helped care for them; while he was gone, her oldest brother was killed; they did not have enough money to bury him, but her father was able to return home quickly and help them; her father returned home roughly every two years; it was a hard adjustment for everyone; she was very shy at first, and he was hard on her as well; over time they gained more confidence with each other, and they began to get along very well; after his time with the program, he stayed in México; Elsa’s mother became pregnant again, and he was able to stay for the birth of his last daughter, unlike the rest of his children; by the time Elsa was seven years old, her father passed away; her mother took it so hard that she essentially stopped living; roughly two years later, she also died; Elsa and her siblings were kicked out of their home by their uncles and faced great difficulties; they were eventually raised by their aunt, and by the time Elsa was twelve, she was already working; she eventually immigrated to the United States to leave her abusive husband and find work to support her four children.

Date of Interview

5-25-2006

Length of Interview

31 minutes

Listen to the Interview

 
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Tape Number

No. 1077

Transcript Number

No. 1077

Length of Transcript

11 pages

Interview Number

No. 1077

Terms of Use

Unrestricted

Comments

Interview in Spanish.

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