Bracero Oral History
Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee
Pedro Carmona was born on May 24, 1924, in Tepatitlán, Jalisco, México; he is the middle child of eight siblings, four boys and four girls; he began working at an early age, and, as a result, he did not attend school for long; in 1948, he joined the bracero program; he worked in Arizona and California picking dates, grapefruits, grapes, lemons, and limes until 1960.
Summary of Interview
Mr. Carmona remembers growing up in Tepatitlán, Jalisco, México the middle child of eight siblings; he states that his parents worked in agriculture; additionally, he recalls working from an early age, and not being able to attend school because of the need to earn a wage; he discusses how he heard about the bracero program in 1945, and his decision to join the program in 1948; furthermore, he explains how he had to pay a mordida or bribe to get on the list of workers for the program; he does not go into detail about the process of being contracted itself, but he does talk about his life once he became a bracero; from 1948 to 1960 he worked in Arizona and California picking dates, grapes, grapefruits, lemons, and limes; he describes the difficulty of the work he did, the pay he received, and how dangerous certain jobs were; specifically, he discusses accidents that occurred while picking dates and how a friend of his died doing this work.
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Interview with Pedro Carmona by Mireya Loza, 2006, "Interview no. 1211," Institute of Oral History, University of Texas at El Paso.