“Americans All: The Bracero Program in Washington County” Exhibit
Opening November 17, 2012
After the bombing of Pearl Harbor the United States enlisted huge numbers of citizens to join the war effort. So many people left for the war and war industries that a national labor shortage of farm workers threatened the agricultural production in United States. Through a formal agreement with the Mexican government, the Bracero program was created to supply US agriculture with Mexican and Latin American labor during World War II. Described as a temporary labor program, the Bracero agreement brought in over 215,000 workers to the United States in the first five years. Mexico declared war and joined the Allies in 1942, one of only two Latin American countries to fight the Axis.
Fast forward to modern day. Washington County has the largest Latino population north of Sacramento, California. This exhibition explores the first recorded influx of Mexican and Latino immigrants into Washington County, made possible through the Bracero program. The Museum hopes to broaden knowledge in the county about the Braceros and the achievements of Americans and Mexicans working together toward a common goal. Today, agriculture is still a major piece of the county’s economy.