Historical State Marker dedicated in Lubbock - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

4/23/09

Historical State Marker dedicated in Lubbock

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LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - The Lubbock community can now see a State Historical Marker acknowledging the contributions of migrant workers to Lubbock County.

On Thursday, the Lubbock County Historical Commission lead the dedication of the official Texas Historical Commission Historic Marker for the Migrant Labor Camps of Lubbock County, authored by Christy Martinez-Garcia.

This state marker is the first to recognize migrant workers and Braceros on the South plains area and Texas.

"This State Marker will honor the contributions by individuals who labored Lubbock cotton farms and increased cotton production over all the state," said Martinez-Garcia.

She explained that two factors, railroad and cotton, began the influx of Mexican Americans to Lubbock. While on the migration circuit in Lubbock County, Mexican Americans lived in large labor camps located throughout the country. There was a camp on almost every major highway into Lubbock. The Lubbock County farms attracted great numbers of these cotton pickers. Cotton production in this county was over 17,000 bales in 1920 - double the state's average production for single counties.

"Their labor helped lead Lubbock to earn the title of King Cotton," she added.

The marker is located in Aztlan Park, which sits on top of a former migrant labor camp that in 1948 was one of the largest camps adjacent to the barrio. It had been used when the city council accepted the proposal of citizens led by Preston Smith to construct a building of corrugated iron on that site to serve as a recruiting center.

In the future, a corresponding text marker will be translated into Spanish.

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