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Gonzalez (Pedro J.) Papers
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A telegraph operator for Pancho Villa during the Mexican Revolution; a radio personality and popular recording artist in Los Angeles; an immigration activist framed for political purposes and sent to San Quentin prison; and finally, a man fighting for the rights of his fellow veterans of the Division Del Norte in Mexico for plots of land (ejidos) that they could call their own. Pedro Gonzalez played all these roles and this collection consists of his papers, correspondence, music, serialized fiction about him, and many photographs and photo montages documenting his interests and those who participated in his active life.
Pedro Jose Gonzalez Ramos was born on April 28, 1895 in Carrizal, Chihuahua, Mexico. In his youth, his schoolteacher mother emphasized the importance of education and sent him to school in Ciudad Juarez and El Paso, Texas. In 1909, at the age of 14, Pedro became a telegraph operator with the Ferrocarriles Nacionales de Mexico (Mexican National Railroads). One year later, the Mexican Revolution erupted, but Pedro continued his work with the railroads until 1914 when he was drafted into Francisco Pancho Villa's Division del Norte (the Northern Division). Pedro served as Villa's telegraph operator under the command of Raul Madero (brother of former Mexican president Francisco Madero). In 1916 the United States recognized Venustiano Carranza instead of Pancho Villa as the legitimate leader of Mexico. Villa and his troops fell out of favor in both the U.S. and Mexico. Pedro found work loading mail at the train station in El Paso, Texas and later across the border as a telegraph operator in Ciudad Juarez. In 1921 he returned to work as a telegraph operator with the Ferrocariles Nacionales de Mexico in Tampico, Taumalipas, Mexico, and then in Chico, Chihuahua, Mexico.
15 linear feet
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Open for research.