Laureano Martínez


Bracero Oral History

Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee

Ignacio Pérez was born in 1924, in Rodeo, Durango, México; he was the oldest of four brothers; an orphan at the age of seven, he grew up with his maternal grandmother; he worked as a shepherd when he was a boy; in 1949, he crossed the México-United States border to work as an undocumented laborer; after a week, he was hired as a bracero; he worked in Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas picking cotton and harvesting sugar beets.

Summary of Interview

Mr. Pérez recalls crossing the México-United States border in 1949; later, he was hired as a bracero in Rio Vista, a processing center in Socorro, Texas; he worked in Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas; additionally, he describes the farming activities of braceros, their work hours, the housing provided for them, and the food they prepared; he recalls the wages he was paid, the different contracts he had, and how he sent money to his family in México; furthermore, he relates what braceros did during the weekends, and how U.S. citizens in town treated them; he expresses his feelings about the program and the benefits of having worked in the United States.

Date of Interview


Length of Interview

45 minutes

Tape Number

No. 1015

Transcript Number

No. 1015

Length of Transcript

39 pages

Interview Number

No. 1015

Terms of Use



Interview in Spanish.