Bracero Oral History
Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee
Gregorio Trejo was born on May 9, 1925, in Sánchez Román, Zacatecas, México; he began working with his father in the fields at a very young age and consequently never received any formal schooling; later in 1947, he became a bracero and worked in the corn, potato, and cotton fields of Illinois, Nebraska, and New Mexico.
Summary of Interview
Mr. Trejo very briefly recalls his childhood; when he was nine years old, he and his family moved to Plateros, Zacatecas, México; from there they moved to Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, before returning to Zacatecas; because one of the recruiting and contracting centers was in Zacatecas, Zacatecas, he was aware of the Bracero Program; he recalls that the governor of Zacatecas did not want workers from the cities of Fresnillo or Plateros to be hired as braceros because there was plenty of work for them to stay and do in the mines; in spite of this, he managed to have his name put on the county’s list of workers in Zacatecas; he and other braceros were transported from Zacatecas to Irapuato, Guanajuato, for medical exams and vaccinations; while being transported to Illinois by train, they had to stop because the railroad workers were on strike; he also mentions that he and other braceros had a very good insurance plan; in addition, he goes on to describe how one of his coworkers passed away while working in the cornfields of Illinois, and how the ranchers behaved both during and after the tragic accident.
Date of Interview
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Length of Transcript
Interview with Gregorio Trejo by Myrna Parra-Mantilla, 2003, "Interview no. 1142," Institute of Oral History, University of Texas at El Paso.