Laureano Martínez


Bracero Oral History

Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee

Anacleto Morales was born on July 13, 1934, in Durango, Durango, México; he grew up in Morcillo, Durango, México; he was the oldest of four brothers; at the age of eight, he started working in the fields to help his family; when he was seventeen years old, he loaded trucks during the construction of a dam; he worked as a bracero from 1955 to 1964 in California, Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas; his jobs included gathering cantaloupes, cotton, cucumbers, grapefruits, lettuce, onions, oranges, and tomatoes.

Summary of Interview

Mr. Morales worked as a bracero from 1955 to 1964 in California, Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas; he recalls how he got his first bracero contract in Chihuahua, Chihuahua, México, and what the hiring process was like; furthermore, he states how much braceros had to pay to get a good spot in line outside of the contracting center, what it was like to go through the center, and the medical tests he was given; he describes his trip via cargo train to the border and his time at Rio Vista, a processing center in Socorro, Texas; additionally, he discusses the different jobs he performed, the wages of those jobs, and how braceros were treated by foremen; he details the varying lengths of his contracts, his pay, and how he sent money to México; moreover, he remembers the places where they lived, the food they cooked, and what they did in the weekends; he also recounts a time when he got sick and was hospitalized in El Paso, Texas for twelve days; towards the end of the interview, he expresses his pride in having been a bracero and his opinion that the Bracero Program should be established again.

Date of Interview


Length of Interview

92 minutes

Tape Number

No. 1014

Transcript Number

No. 1014

Length of Transcript

66 pages

Interview Number

No. 1014

Terms of Use



Interview in Spanish.