3 Replies Latest reply on Oct 21, 2020 1:53 PM by Jason Atkinson

    Seeking use of photograph of Mexican laborers

    Kristina Jarosik Newbie

      I am curious about this photograph - https://www.docsteach.org/documents/document/mexican-laborers, October 13, 2020

      National Archives Identifier: 596405 The Full Citation: Photograph 16-N-6166; Photograph of Mexican Laborers; 1944; Photographs from the Central Photographic Office of the Department of Agriculture, 1939 - 1964; Records of the Office of the Secretary of Agriculture, Record Group 16; National Archives at College Park, College Park, MD

       

      Why was the Department of Agriculture taking photographs of Mexican Laborers? How were the photographs used? Were the photographs used in a report, used to document a program, used in a newsletter? Are they referenced in any memos or letters sent? The citation information can provide approximate clues, but I'm curious if anyone has discovered their use in other Records of the Office of the Secretary of Agriculture? Thanks!

        • Re: Seeking use of photograph of Mexican laborers
          Rachael Salyer Scout

          Dear Ms. Jarosik,

           

          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!

           

          We searched the National Archives Catalog and located the series Photographs from the Central Photographic Office of the Department of Agriculture, 1939 - 1964 in the Records of the Office of the Secretary of Agriculture (Record Group 16) that included the Photograph of Mexican Laborers which was used posted on the DocsTeach website. We also located the series Caption Information to Photographs from the Central Photographic Office of the Department of Agriculture, 1939-1975 in Record Group 16 that may contain helpful information about the photograph you are interested in. Both of these series were created by the Department of Agriculture’s Office of Information. In addition, we located 33 total series by the Office of Information in Record Group 16 that may be useful for your research. Some of these records have been digitized and may be viewed using the Catalog, but many have not been digitized. For information about the series Publications and Atlases, 1925-1948, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Cartographic (RDSC) at carto@nara.gov. For additional information about or access to the remaining non-digitized series, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Still Pictures (RDSS) at stillpix@nara.gov.

           

          According to the DocsTeach website, the photographed laborers were part of the Bracero Program. We located  4 series of Administrative Files in the Records of the Farm Service Agency (Record Group 145) that contain information about the Bracero Program. These records have not been digitized. Please contact the National Archives at Riverside (RW-RS) at riverside.archives@nara.gov with questions about these records.

           

          Next, we located the series Records Relating to the Mexican Labor ("Bracero") Program, 1950-1964 in the General Records of the Department of Labor (Record Group 174) that may be of interest to you. Please contact the National Archives at San Francisco (RW-SB) at sanbruno.archives@nara.gov for more information about these records.

           

          More information about the Bracero Program may be located in the series  Central Files, 1942-1945 in the Records of the War Manpower Commission (Record Group 211). Please contact the National Archives at Chicago (RM-CH) at chicago.archives@nara.gov for assistance with this series.

           

          Further details about the Bracero Program are available in the series Records Relating to Presidential Visits and Inaugurations, 1958-1967 in the General Records of the Department of State (Record Group 59). Finally, we located the series General Correspondence, 1906-1975 in Record Group 16 that includes 14 file units related to laborers and 13 file units related to migratory labor which may be relevant to your research. These records have not been digitized. For access to and information about these records, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) via email at archives2reference@nara.gov.

           

          Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDSC, RDSS, RW-RS, RW-SB, RM-CH, and RDT2. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.

           

          We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your research!

           

          1 person found this helpful
            • Re: Seeking use of photograph of Mexican laborers
              Kristina Jarosik Newbie

              Thank you for taking the time to share all the different records related to the Bracero program. The information is quite useful for a researcher, which I am at times. When I asked the question I was thinking of my current work. I am a middle school history teacher who was interested in using the photograph with my students. They are an inquisitive group, like good historians and will always ask why.  I was hopeful that someone at NARA may have worked specifically with these records (especially the first two you shared) and have an idea about this image's use. Is there any means to ask the archivists or archives techs if they are familiar?

                • Re: Seeking use of photograph of Mexican laborers
                  Jason Atkinson Pioneer

                  Dear Ms. Jarosik,

                   

                  Thank you for posting your follow-up request on History Hub!

                  The photographs in the record series Photographs from the Central Photographic Office of the Department of Agriculture, 1939 - 1964 were taken to document the programs and activities of the Department of Agriculture in general. If there is any additional information about individual photographs, it would be in the record series Caption Information to Photographs from the Central Photographic Office of the Department of Agriculture, 1939 - 1975.  The caption information consists of two notebooks and two folders of electrostatic caption lists describing negatives in Record Group 16, Series N. The electrostatic copies of the pages provide the following information, reading left to right: negative number, bureau or service for which the photograph was taken, a brief caption, photographer's name, and date. As we mentioned in our previous reply, these records are in the custody of the National Archives at College Park - Still Pictures (RDSS). We contacted RDSS and they informed us that they do not have information on how or if the individual photos were used in specific reports, memos or other documents. If you would like to contact RDSS and request that they provide you with the Caption Information for this photograph, please email them at stillpix@nara.gov.  We suggest that your email include the link to the Photograph of Mexican Laborers in the Catalog.

                   

                  Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDSS. We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.

                   

                  We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your research!

                  1 person found this helpful