Garcia, Tomas 1988-11-2

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Tomas Garcia talks about his life from Mexico to the United States, from his childhood to the present. He mentions his knowledge in history and his involvement in World War II.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: Tomas Garcia

Additional Parties Recorded:

Date: November 12, 1988

Location: Spur, Texas

Interviewer: Ruben Ramirez

Length: 1 hour, 45 minutes


Tape 1, Side 1: Background information on family and parents; father's jobs; the revolution and the loss of his brother; Generals Francisco Villa, Victoriano Huerta and Venustiano Carranza; president Francisco I. Madero; mentions places like Chihuahua, Durango, Coahuila, and Zacatecas; older brother and two of his father’s cousins participated in the Mexican revolution on the side of Pancho Villa; father knew guerrilla women like Pepa Herrera and María García de la Cadena from Torreón, Coahuila; his elementary education in Mexico; the bad situation in Mexico makes his family migrate to Texas; his dad had already traveled to New Mexico, before migrating, seeking for a job in order to take money to his family in Mexico; he explains detailed information about this topic; the migration journey by train; the family’s first jobs in agriculture in the United States; the role of women in the workplace; families and ethnicity in the workplace; lack of education because of work, even when there were teachers who would be teaching; the importance of religion in his family and the lack of churches; the costumes when someone would pass away; work routine; From breakfast to dinner time; different types of entertainment like, record players, singers, dances and parties; the relation between parents and children; his life in west Texas since 1927; the counties he lived in; names of people he worked for; how he met his wife and the life they made together; the abandonment of his wife; how his wife made another family with somebody else after the abandonment; his wife coming back with children and how he raised them after all; his migratory job; the communication with him (Tomas) when he would leave to work; how his wife met him when he had just finished his army service; the Depression; the Reconstruction by the Democratic Party; the NRA program; politics in Mexico; voting; political participation on the part of Mexicans living in Texas; the ignorance of other social groups regarding the intelligence of Mexicans; Mexicans living in different states of the United States; traveling to different states of the country looking for jobs; his participation in the army during World War II; the age of 36 for 85 days; World War II; the high commemoration that several Mexicans received after their participation in the war; how his kidneys disease made him quit the army during the war; his personal experience of racism in daily life; his job after coming back from the war and about his life in Spur, Texas since 1943; the death of his brother’s wife (sister-in-law); his children; the growth of Mexican population in west Texas; where his three sons and three daughters are living.

Range Dates:

Bulk Dates:

Access Information

Original Recording Format: audio cassette

Recording Format Notes: digitized; CD available in Reading Room

Transcript: drafts of Spanish and English transcripts available in Reading Room

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