María Cantor


Steve Velásquez


Bracero Oral History

Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee

María Cantor was born on February 2, 1934 in Zacoalco de Torres, Jalisco, México; her parents were Francisco Mariscal Magallanes and María Preciado; her father was a farmer; she was the oldest of eleven children; she was formally educated through the fourth grade; her father joined the bracero program in 1946 at Empalme, Sonora, México; as a bracero her father labored in the fields of Washington, Ohio, Oregon, and California; her father worked for the railroad; when the bracero program ended he returned to México.

Summary of Interview

Mrs. Cantor briefly recalls her childhood and the financial difficulties her family endured; she recalls that her father decided to enlist in the bracero program in 1946; she recalls how difficult it was for her father to become a bracero; her father was contracted approximately four or five times; she mentions that he went through a processing center in Empalme, Sonora, México; as a part of the process, he was medically examined, vaccinated and deloused; she goes on to talk about his payments and his correspondence with her mother; as a bracero, her father worked for the railroad and labored in the fields picking cotton; she recalls that he also labored in the fields of San José, California picking oranges and onions; after the bracero program ended, her father returned to México where he died in 1995.

Date of Interview


Length of Interview

30 minutes

Tape Number

No. 1115

Transcript Number

No. 1115

Length of Transcript

16 pages

Interview Number

No. 1115

Terms of Use



Interview in Spanish.