Juan E. Noriega


Monica Pelayo


Bracero Oral History

Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee

Juan E. Noriega was born on February 9, 1935, in San Pedro de la Cueva, Sonora, Mexico; his parents were Jose Noriega and Luz Encinas; he had one brother and one sister; he was formally educated through the sixth grade; his last bracero contract was in 1962; his brother was also a bracero; he met his wife while working as a bracero; they had three children; at the time of the interview they had been married for forty years; in 1986, he became a United States citizen.

Summary of Interview

Mr. Juan E. Noriega was an undocumented worker but he received a letter from his boss and he was able to contract as a bracero in El Centro, California; he worked twelve hour shifts as an irrigator; after five years, in 1959, he returned to Sonora, Mexico and renewed his contracted; he was sent to Tracy, California; he goes on to detail the camp size, living conditions, provisions, treatment, and recreational activities; he worked in the tomato and onion fields for six months; he briefly discusses the dances that were held in Brawley, California; he and his brother rented a room in town because they did not want to live in the camp; he states that the foreman at Tracy, California was from Michoacán and he mistreated the braceros; the foreman from Brawley, California was Anglo and he treated them very well; he states that the braceros from southern Mexico were treated unjustly.

Date of Interview


Length of Interview

28 minutes

Tape Number

No. 1306

Transcript Number

No. 1306

Length of Transcript

19 pages

Interview Number

No. 1306

Terms of Use



Interview in Spanish.