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Valley Migrant League photographs
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Valley Migrant League photographs

  • Org. Lot 74
  • Collection
  • 1965 - 1968

Collection consists of photographs used by the Valley Migrant League (VML) for its program newspaper, "Opportunity News." Most of the photographs were taken by VML staff. Many of the individuals and places depicted in the prints and negatives in this collection were identified by Oregon Historical Society archivists from the corresponding articles in "Opportunity News."
Subjects depicted in the photographs include VML-sponsored adult education and vocational training programs, including photographs of classrooms, workshops, and businesses hosting work-training programs as well as portraits of program graduates and teachers. Also depicted are VML’s children’s daycare programs including photographs of children in the daycare centers and on educational field trips as well as community events, sports, and cultural celebrations including the Woodburn Fiesta Mexicana, May Day, and Christmas. Photographs in this collection also document living and working conditions for Migrant laborers including depictions of laborers in fields, operating agricultural equipment, and in labor camps, as well as rural healthcare and mobile medical clinics. Also represented in the collections is VML involvement in labor and community organizing, including meeting with political leaders and local picket lines in support of the Delano Grape Strike. The photographs in the collection also include portraits of many individuals associated with VML and the agricultural labor movement of the 1960s.

Valley Migrant League

Boy on Seal Beach near Newport, Oregon

A teenage boy smiles as he stands on Seal Beach near Newport, Oregon. He is on a trip organized by the Knights Club, a club for teens based in Jefferson, Oregon. The club raises money for field trips. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on May 12, 1967.

Letha Wakeman, Reverend Eliceo Rodriguez and his wife stand in Gleanor's Chapel in Eola Village, Oregon

Letha Wakeman (left), Reverend Eliceo Rodriguez (center) and his wife (right) stand inside Gleanor's Chapel in the Eola Village community near Dayton, Oregon. Wakeman, who owns the chapel, invited Reverend Rodriguez, a Cuban American pastor, to conduct services there for the Spanish speaking community. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on August 18, 1967.

Students take mechanics class, Woodburn, Oregon

A teacher demonstrates how a motor works in a mechanics class run by the Valley Migrant League in Woodburn, Oregon. Pictured left to right are students Raul López, Benito López, Francisco Leon, Rudolph Medina, Mike Ruiz, Máximo López and teacher Jack Babbitt. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on July 30, 1965.

Joe Rodriguez Jr. in Long Binh, Vietnam

Joe Rodriguez Jr., soldier in the U.S. Army, stands shirtless in Long Binh, Vietnam. He is a former migrant laborer who traveled from Texas to Oregon every year for work before he joined the Army. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on May 26, 1967, accompanying a letter he wrote to the newspaper, thanking them for their work.

Valley Migrant League Board Chairman receives Valley Forge Freedoms Foundation Award

Frank E. Brawner, Regional Vice-President of the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge, presents an award to Reverend Kent Lawrence, Board Chairman of the Valley Migrant League. The Valley Migrant League is being recognized for the services it provides to migrant farm laborers. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on August 4, 1967. Photograph taken on July 26, 1967.

Welder holding tools

Welder Manuel Ruiz holds a welding tool at a construction site. Ruiz is a former agricultural laborer who earned a certificate in welding. This photograph was likely taken at the Albina Ship Metal Works in Portland, Oregon, where Ruiz was employed. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on September 17, 1965.

Louis Armstrong meets Jo Martinez outside the Lloyd Center, Portland, Oregon

Louis Armstrong smiles as he meets Jo Martinez. Martinez is one of 76 teenagers who traveled from Eola Village to Portland, Oregon to see Armstrong play a concert at the Lloyd Center. The outing was co-organized by the Valley Migrant League and the University of Oregon Labor Project. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on August 6, 1965. Handwritten note on the back of a print of this same photograph credits Julie Behar of the Dayton Tribune.

Behar, Julie

Woman smiles as she picks beans

Mrs. C.D. Priddy looks at the camera and smiles as she picks beans on the farm of Ed Gilbert in the Willamette Valley, Oregon. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on August 6, 1965.

Family poses in bean field

Carl Holstine and his family pose in a bean field near West Stayton, Oregon. They are migrant farm workers. Each summer, the Holstine family travels from Oklahoma to Oregon to work picking beans. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on August 6, 1965.

Festival princesses ride on hood of car at Fiesta Days in Woodburn, Oregon

Maggie Saldana (left) and Lydia Padilla (right), wear dresses and tiaras and ride on the front hood of a car during Fiesta Days, known today as the Woodburn Fiesta Mexicana, in Woodburn, Oregon. They are the festival princesses. The festival queen, Elvira Carbajal, is visible in the back seat of the car. Photographs from this series were published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on September 2, 1966.

Staged fight during a parade at Fiesta Days in Woodburn, Oregon

Men stage a fight during a parade at Fiesta Days, known today as the Woodburn Fiesta Mexicana, in Woodburn, Oregon. Three men lie on the ground while a fourth remains standing and brandishes a whip. Spectators watch from a nearby sidewalk. An article published in the Opportunity News about this event states that some people dressed up as bandits for the parade. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on September 2, 1966.

Little boy rides on hood of car at Fiesta Days in Woodburn, Oregon

A little boy wearing traditional Mexican clothing rides on the hood of a car during a parade at Fiesta Days, known today as the Woodburn Fiesta Mexicana, in Woodburn, Oregon. He holds both hands up in the air. A ribbon in his right hand reads, "1966 Woodburn Fiesta Days Participant." This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on September 2, 1966.

Child watches staged fight during a parade at Fiesta Days in Woodburn, Oregon

A child watches as men stage a fight during a parade at Fiesta Days, known today as the Woodburn Fiesta Mexicana, in Woodburn, Oregon. Several people lie on the ground, playing dead, while a man brandishing a whip remains standing. An article published in the Opportunity News about this event states that some people dressed up as bandits for the parade. Photographs from this series were published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on September 2, 1966.

Fiesta Days queen Elvira Carbajal

Elvira Carbajal wears a crown and rides on the back of a car during a parade. She is queen of Fiesta Days, known today as the Woodburn Fiesta Mexicana, in Woodburn, Oregon. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on September 2, 1966.

Festival princesses ride on hood of car at Fiesta Days in Woodburn, Oregon

Maggie Saldana (left) and Lydia Padilla (right), wear dresses and tiaras and ride on the front hood of a car during Fiesta Days, known today as the Woodburn Fiesta Mexicana, in Woodburn, Oregon. They are the festival princesses. The festival queen, Elvira Carbajal, is visible in the back seat of the car. This image was published in the Valley Migrant League's Opportunity News on September 2, 1966.

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