Items tagged Braceros (17 total)

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This handout describes the themes and formulas of corridos, Mexican and Mexican-American folk songs.

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Item Type: Article/Essay
Date: 2010

Braceros traveled to a country where they did not know the language or the customs. In order to help them understand their new surroundings, local committees prepared Spanish-English phrasebooks such as the one pictured below. This handbook instructs braceros to walk on the left side of the street, not to stand in the back of the trucks, and to…

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Item Type: Pamphlet/Petition
Date: Circa 1953

Between 1942 and 1964, 4.6 million Mexicans came to the United States to perform the much needed but incredibly difficult "stoop work" of planting, tending, and harvesting crops. These men, called braceros, were initially invited by the United States government during World War II, when higher-paying industrial factory jobs lured away existing…

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Item Type: Music/Song
Date: 1942

The majority of braceros who came to the United States performed the most difficult types of agricultural labor: planting, tending, and harvesting crops. This type of work was called "stoop work" because it required laborers to spend all day bent over. Even during the worst years of the Great Depression, growers had a hard time finding people…

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Item Type: Photograph
Date: 1943

Aaron Castañeda Gamez and thousands of other Mexican workers had to pass a series of examinations to enter the bracero program. Recruits reported to centers in Mexico where they were inspected for lice and disease. Braceros' hands were inspected to see if they had calluses, indicating they were familiar with manual labor. They were told to…

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Item Type: Artifact
Date: 1944

In this activity students write original corridos (a type of Mexican folk song) based on the oral histories of braceros. Before writing their own corridos, students learn about the formulas and themes of corridos and analyze a World War II-era corrido. This lesson works best if students have basic background information on the bracero program.

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Item Type: Teaching Activity
Date: 2010

The scale of the United States' war production effort during World War II touched every corner of the nation and millions of people. When traditional farm workers left for military service or higher paying jobs in war industries, the U.S. government looked south to Mexico. Several thousands braceros were invited to work in the United States,…

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Item Type: Photograph
Date: 1943

Braceros who worked close to the Mexican border were sometimes able to go back and forth to see family or enjoy the food and culture of their homeland. Carlos Sánchez Montoya describes such travel from New Mexico, as well as making tortillas for his fellow workers. He also recalls one time when a boss tried to cheat him out of the money he…

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Item Type: Oral History
Date: 2003

Between 1942 and 1964, millions of Mexican agricultural workers entered the U.S. to work as surplus farm laborers during the government-sponsored Bracero Program. Working for lower wages than domestic farm workers, the Braceros were often victims of discrimination. While most were repatriated, many stayed in the United States where they remain the…

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Item Type: Artifact
Date: 1955

A brief overview of the Bracero program that allowed Mexican agricultural workers to enter the U.S. legally to work as farm laborers.

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Item Type: Article/Essay
Date: 2008