Bracero Oral History
Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee
Fabian Landaverde was born on January 6th, 1929, in the community Sabino Grande, Querétaro, México; he had seven siblings, four brothers and three sisters; he attended school, even though he reports that he did not learn much; when he was younger he began helping his father working in the land and taking care of the animals; before working as a bracero he came to the United States to work in the railroads; he heard about the Bracero Program and he enlisted in 1955; as a bracero he labored in the fields of cotton , lettuce, cucumber, melon and watermelon, in various states around the country; after his last contract he returned to México and later he immigrated to the United States.
Summary of Interview
Mr. Landaverde briefly remembers his childhood talking about his hometown, and about playing and working in the lands along with his father; before he was a bracero, he entered the United States in 1951 to work in the railroad tracks in Colorado; in 1955, Mr. Landaverde, who was already married, went through the hiring process to become a bracero; he recalls going through the centers in Monterrey and El Paso, Texas; in addition, he explains that, because of his little knowledge in English, he helped as a translator in one of the centers; he also describes the hiring process where medical examinations where performed to the braceros; upon being hired he worked in the fields of cotton in Texas, cucumber in Michigan, lettuce in California, as well and melon and water melon fields in Arizona; he remembers the living conditions of the camps, especially in La Mesa, Texas, where he made good friendships; after the program he returned to México, where he continued to work in the fields; he later immigrated to the United States, but because of the citizenship exam, he is still not an American citizen; overall, Mr. Landaverde remembers the program as a positive memory that helped his family economically.
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Interview with Fabian Landaverde S. by Cesar Villarreal, 2010, "Interview no. 1462," Institute of Oral History, University of Texas at El Paso.