Bracero Oral History
Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee
Filomeno Burciaga was born on October 1, 1930, in Namiquipa, Chihuahua, México; he was the youngest of his four siblings, and he was formally educated through the fourth grade; when he was eleven years old, he began working in the fields; in 1955, he enlisted in the bracero program; he worked in Nebraska and Texas, and continued with the program until 1962; although he was ultimately able to arrange for residency in the United States, he continued working on a farm in Texas.
Summary of Interview
Mr. Burciaga briefly recalls his childhood and family; in 1955, he enlisted in the bracero program at a contracting center in Chihuahua, Chihuahua, México; at the time, he was married and had a son; from Chihuahua, he traveled to Rio Vista, a processing center in Socorro, Texas, and he chronicles the various procedures he underwent while there; as a bracero, he labored in the beet fields of Nebraska and the cotton fields of Texas; he goes on to describe living and working conditions, wages, contract amendments and extensions, provisions, recreational activities, and community interactions; Filomeno continued working with the program until 1962, at which point he was able to arrange for his legal residency; in spite of this, he chose to remain gainfully employed at a farm in Canutillo, Texas; he was later able to help his family immigrate to the United States.
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Interview with Filomeno Burciaga by Rosy Chivardi, 2005, "Interview no. 1087," Institute of Oral History, University of Texas at El Paso.