Manuel Salamanca

Interview in Spanish.

Summary of Interview

Mr. Manuel Salamanca recalls the humble beginnings of his childhood and how he and his siblings suffered; he discusses the advice his eldest brother gave him and his reasons for moving to the United States; Mr. Salamanca discusses the harsh treatment he endured at the hands of his sister-in-law; he went without food for several days because she did not want to raise him; in 1942, at the age of eighteen, he heard about a call for braceros; he traveled to the processing center in Mexicali, Mexico; he briefly discusses the processing center; as part of the process, he was medically examined, vaccinated, and deloused; his first contract took him to fields of Texas; it was a forty-five day contract; after the contract ended, he returned to Mexico; in 1943 he renewed his contract and worked in Tucson, Arizona; in 1953-54 he worked in the grape fields of Delano, California; he met and married his wife in 1956; his wife would visit him at the camp; he briefly details the camp size, living conditions, duties, remittances and correspondence; after the bracero program ended, he returned to Mexico but continued crossing into the United States illegally until he was able to gain legal status; Mr. Salamanca concludes that his overall experiences as a bracero were positive.