Bracero Oral History
Biographical Synopsis of Interviewee
Selerina Landeros was born on ranch in Guanajuato, México, on February 13, 1921; she is the youngest of her twelve siblings; her parents were agriculturalists, and her father was a caretaker for several large ranches; she was formally educated for a year; later, in 1937, she married Dionisio Landeros; he enlisted in the bracero program in 1943; as a bracero, he labored in the fields of California picking almonds and oranges until 1945; during that time, they had four children; in 1957, the family immigrated to the United States, and they had four more children, eight in total.
Summary of Interview
Mrs. Landeros briefly mentions her family; she describes meeting and marrying her husband, Dionisio Landeros, in 1937; in addition, she talks about the agrarian reform that led to the land distribution in which her father, brothers and husband obtained land; later, in 1943, Dionisio decided to enlist in the bracero program; he initially signed up for the program in León, Guanajuato, México before traveling to Guanajuato, Guanajuato, México to begin the contracting process; as a bracero, he labored in the fields of California picking almonds and oranges until 1945; his first contract took him to Sacramento, California to pick almonds for two and a half years; rather than return to México, he continued to renew his contracts in California; during his second contract, he worked in San Bernardino, California; he wrote letters to Selerina and told her to send their eldest son to school; when she did, her father-in-law kept getting angry and taking him back home; Dionisio even sent him money, but he never gave any to Selerina; in order to survive, she sold goods at a small grocery store on a ranch; she also explains that their land was contracted out by her in-laws when Dionisio was gone; during that time, they had four children, and their eldest was often hit by her father-in-law; in order to avoid problems, Dionisio sent for her, and in 1957, the family immigrated to the United States; they lived in Chicago, Illinois for a time, before finally settling in Arizona; she goes on to describe their life after the program; they went on to have four more children, eight in total.
Date of Interview
Length of Interview
Length of Transcript
Interview with Selerina Landeros by Alejandra Díaz, 2008, "Interview no. 1350," Institute of Oral History, University of Texas at El Paso.