Bracero Oral History
Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee
Juan E. Noriega was born on February 9, 1935, in San Pedro de la Cueva, Sonora, Mexico; his parents were Jose Noriega and Luz Encinas; he had one brother and one sister; he was formally educated through the sixth grade; his last bracero contract was in 1962; his brother was also a bracero; he met his wife while working as a bracero; they had three children; at the time of the interview they had been married for forty years; in 1986, he became a United States citizen.
Summary of Interview
Mr. Juan E. Noriega was an undocumented worker but he received a letter from his boss and he was able to contract as a bracero in El Centro, California; he worked twelve hour shifts as an irrigator; after five years, in 1959, he returned to Sonora, Mexico and renewed his contracted; he was sent to Tracy, California; he goes on to detail the camp size, living conditions, provisions, treatment, and recreational activities; he worked in the tomato and onion fields for six months; he briefly discusses the dances that were held in Brawley, California; he and his brother rented a room in town because they did not want to live in the camp; he states that the foreman at Tracy, California was from Michoacán and he mistreated the braceros; the foreman from Brawley, California was Anglo and he treated them very well; he states that the braceros from southern Mexico were treated unjustly.
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Interview with Juan E. Noriega by Monica Pelayo, 2006, "Interview no. 1306," Institute of Oral History, University of Texas at El Paso.