Crossing the Rio Grande
An Immigrant's Life in the 1880s
Publication Year: 2006
Published by: Texas A&M University Press
Series: Gulf Coast Books Series
Title Page, Copyright
MIS MEMORIAS came to my attention at a 1991 meeting of the Spanish American Genealogical Association (SAGA) in Corpus Christi when Guadalupe Valdez Jr. gave a formal presentation on the book. Luis Gómez was Valdez’s grandfather, and as Valdez’s commentary details, the two had a special relationship. At that SAGA meeting, Valdez showed the audience one of approximately five known...
The international border between Mexico and the United States has always been a permeable one. Ever since the boundary was established during the nineteenth century, people from Mexico have come north to live and work, and Texas has been a principal destination. While most scholars and other observers of Mexican migration to the Lone Star State have understandably focused on post-1900 immigrants...
Memories of My Grandfather,Luis G. Gómez
After so many years, it is impossible for me to remember how my first encounter with Luis G. Gómez, my grandfather, occurred. As I recall, it was around 1923, when I was six years of age, and I met him on the farm he worked near the little South Texas community of Ricardo, near Kingsville. Because I was his first grandchild and the eldest child...
This humble book, which I present for the consideration of the public who loves to read, has been composed with the sole idea of serving as a means of entertainment. There is no doubt that these readings, if read with patience, will be of great help to the young. They will find in Mis Memorias beautiful examples of filial obedience, which, if imitated, would make parents striving to attain their children’s good fortune very happy....
Chapter 1 My Pilgrimage in Texas: Where the Reader May See the Ability of a Swindler and Other Actions That Are Worthwhile Reading
Having to immigrate into the United States somewhere around 1884, I left my country, México, and crossed the Rio Grande in a ferryboat, the only means of transportation available in those days to the beautiful, florescent state of Texas. This crossing took place on June 14, 1884, with only one goal in mind: to work and accumulate a fortune if at all possible. I had determined beforehand to go to Corpus Christi...
Chapter 2 My Arrival in Houston: Where My Check-Times Were Paid with Pure Solid Gold
As soon as I was well situated in that luxurious special train, I meditated on all that had happened to me. It all seemed like a dream or something that I had read in the story of A Thousand and One Nights. I remembered that it was only a few hours ago that I was forced to get off that freight train by that cruel African brakeman, and now I was walking very peacefully and happily toward the place of my golden...
Chapter 3 The Negro Brakeman!: Where You Will See the Effect Caused to Him by Seeing Me When He Least Expected
Before we ventured through the streets of that crowded city, my friend Pérez and I made sure we would have a decent place to stay. After we did that, we went out to visit a family, friends of ours, who lived there in Houston and whom we had previously visited. This family lived on the other side of the bridge not too far from the paying car where I had collected
Chapter 4 An Opíparo Breakfast: An Incident Where Sometimes the Poor Can Also Enjoy Magnificent Meals like the Rich
We went to visit the family that I spoke of in the previous chapter. There [at their home] we met young Agustín, who invited us for a ride in a skiff on the bayou between Houston and Galveston. We accepted the invitation, rented the skiff, and boarded it. We went for about ten miles to where there was a very big camp of laborers who were clearing land with axes. This land was to be used for planting...
Chapter 5 The Company “Tamez-Gómez, Contractors” Signs Very Lucrative New Contracts
As soon as our people arrived at the new camp, they began work cutting wood. I had already begun the project with ten men who were added to the twenty that Tamez had brought along, giving us a total of thirty men who made nine hundred cords of wood within fifteen days for a total...
Chapter 6 The Phantom!: A Comical Historical Incident That Sounds Like a Tall Tale
As soon as Mrs. Stafford mentioned that she would begin to share her history the following day, I interrupted her by saying, “If you wish to stay awake for a while, I will share with you an interesting anecdote, and although it is a true story, it may sound like a tall tale. I am sure you are going to have a good laugh.”...
Chapter 7 Where We Will Hear the True Story of That Mysterious Petite Woman
The following evening at 7, Mrs. Stafford started to share with us her story in the following manner. “My parents were very poor, and, to make matters worse, my loving mother passed away when Elena, my older sister, was 7 years old and I was only 5. My father was very young when mother passed away, for he was barely 31 years of age. Mr....
Page Count: 124
Illustrations: 7 b&w photos. Map.
Publication Year: 2006
Series Title: Gulf Coast Books Series
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