Summary of Interview
Maria Guadalupe Gomez describes her upbringing living El Paso and also her constant visits to her parents’ hometown of Ojo Frío, Chihuahua. Ms. Gomez was born in El Paso on 1969; She remembers her visits to Ojo Frío, which she describes as a very small ranching town in the desert with no more than a few hundred people. Her parents both worked as manufacturing workers but her father later worked for a grocery store and her mother worked for a restaurant. Ms. Gomez lived alongside her five other siblings. She completed her freshman year of high school and later attained her G.E.D. Her first job was working as a store cashier and later attended computer training courses and was hired as a secretary. She also completed three years of public education at Casas Grandes, Mexico, where she described education as more strict, rigorous, and patriotic in comparison to U.S. schools. When reflecting on how Mexico was different in comparison to her experience in the United States, Ms. Gomez believes Mexico women are more conservative. Moreover, she observed that the Mexican government did not provide support programs for the poor in comparison to the United States. In her previous marriages, she recalls that she mostly did housework but decided to work during her second marriage; she gave birth to two children when she married. When she was fifteen, she recalled her parents throwing her a large party at Ojo Frío because she could not afford to organize a quinceñera for her. Nevertheless, she remembers this party as an exciting and fun occasion attended by the entire community. When reflecting as to whether she considered herself Mexican or American, she answers that she considers herself Mexican because she was both raised in Mexico and speaks better Spanish in comparison to Chicanos.
Date of Interview
Length of Interview
Interview with Maria G. Gomez by Daniel Mascorrow, 1998, "Interview no. 1705," Institute of Oral History, University of Texas at El Paso.