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Rio Grande City commemorates 1966 Farm Worker’s strike

On Jan 31, 2020,  Texas Historical Commission installed a marker in Rio Grande City, Texas recognizing the untold history of the 1966 Starr County farm worker melon strike and march to Austin to raise worker wages and tell about the abuse suffered at the hands of Los Rinches, law enforcement, the growers, and the powers-that-be in that county. The strike by these unassuming workers was the spark that began the Chicano movement in Texas. In this photo from L to R are: Daria Vera, Sec-Trea of Local 2, St Rep Ryan Guillen, Arturo S. Rodriguez, 2d Pres of UFW, Rio Grande City Mayor Villarreal, and in the wheel chair, Librado de la Cruz, arrested 7 times during that strike by local law enforcement.

Via Rebecca Flores

Radio Bilingüe: Historic March to Austin

Via Radio Bilingüe

PROGRAM # 7875 12:00 PM PT

“In 1966, fruit workers went on strike in the melon fields of Starr County, in Southern Texas, and, to dramatize their quest for a livable wage, the strikers marched 400 miles from Rio Grande City to the state Capitol in Austin. This labor strike and long march, supported by the UFW, is credited with helping galvanize the Chicano Movement. On the 50th anniversary of this epic event, veterans of the march share their memories.”



KUT: Capitol March Commemorates 50th Anniversary of Historic Strike

Via KUT Austin

Fifty years ago this month, a small group of farmworkers and their supporters arrived in Austin after marching nearly 500 miles from the Rio Grande Valley to Austin. That event 1966 has come to mean different things to different people, and a march on Sunday reflected on the half-century anniversary.

Link to listen and continue reading:

Texas Observer: Hundreds Gather to Remember the 1966 Texas Farmworkers’ March

Via the Texas Observer

The 491-mile walk led to the first statewide minimum wage and effectively launched the farmworkers’ movement in Texas.

The September 2016, 1966 cover of the Observer, featuring labor marchers at the state Capitol.

The September 2016, 1966 cover of the Observer, featuring labor marchers at the state Capitol.

Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in Austin Sunday to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1966 farmworkers’ march from the Rio Grande Valley to the Capitol — an event that led to the first statewide minimum wage and effectively launched the farmworkers’ movement in Texas.

“It was the spark that initiated the Chicano movement here in the state of Texas,” said Rebecca Flores, former director of Texas United Farm Workers, “and I don’t want it forgotten.”

Read more here:

Statesman: Remembering farmworkers march 50 years later

The civil rights movement included many significant events, but here’s one that changed Texas history.

“In the summer of 1966, 13-year-old Herminia Treviño Ramirez learned that her father was embarking on a journey that had the potential to change lives. He’d be joining other Texas agricultural laborers on a march from the Rio Grande Valley to Austin to demand better wages, her parents explained.

“I’m going, too!” Treviño Ramirez announced. “I’m going to do it for you, for us, and for my kids,” she said. Her words sounded like something her father often told them in Spanish — seeking justice, he’d say, was not only for them but for future generations.”


Statesman: Marcharon por mejores condiciones para trabajadores agrícolas

“En el verano de 1966, Herminia Treviño Ramírez se enteró de que su padre se involucraría en un viaje con el potencial de cambiar muchas vidas. Se reuniría con otros trabajadores agrícolas de Texas en una marcha desde el valle del Río Grande hasta Austin para exigir mejores salarios, le explicaron a ella sus padres.

“¡Yo también quiero ir!”, anunció Treviño Ramírez. “Lo voy a hacer por ustedes, por nosotros y por mis hijos”, dijo ella. Sus palabras sonaron como un dicho que su padre les decía a menudo. La búsqueda de la justicia, decía, no era sólo para ellos sino también para las generaciones futuras.”