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UFW Arizona State Office Records

Identifier: LR000221_ASO

Scope and Content

The UFWOC records reflect the daily operations of the Tolleson, Arizona office. The beginnings of the National Farm Workers Service Center and the functions of the Robert F. Kennedy Medical Plan for migrant workers are revealed through personal legal cases, medical claims, immigration assistance and other personal service needs to Members. Hiring Hall records, Ranch Commission correspondence, and bargaining agreements illustrate the day to day operations of the Union. Negotiations with growers and legislative battles were major daily issues, besides the boycotts.

Important subjects covered in the collection are: Arizona Grape Strike, 1968-70 Illegal I.N.S. Activity Arizona H.B. 2134, 1972 Lettuce Boycott, 1972-1973 California Prop. 22, 1972 Talisman Sugar Strike, 1972 Delano Grape Strike/Boycott, 1965-73 White River Farms Strike, 1972

Common abbreviations used are: Community Action Program (CAP) Maricopa County Organizing Project (M-COP) Migrant Opportunity Program (MOP) Robert F. Kennedy Medical Plan (RFK) United Farm Workers Organizing Committee (UFWOC)

Among the important correspondents are: UFWOC: Rudy Ahumada -Organizer Leroy Chatfield -Treasurer, RFK Medical Plan Cesar Chavez -Director Avelina Vasquez Coriell Joyce Fettner -Arizona Boycott Coordinator Gustavo Gutierrez -Director of Arizona Office Dolores Huerta -Secretary, UFWOC Mel Huey -Organizor Jack Levine - Attorney, Maricopa County Legal Aid Society Vicente Mier -Hiring Hall President Jimmy Carter Etta Mae Hutcheson (Arizona House of Reps) Renz D. Jennings (Arizona House of Reps) Peter Nash (Chief Council for National Labor Relations Board)

Series Description: Series I, Arizona State Bar Exam, 1976-77: Handwritten notes, class handouts on various law topics.

Series II, Collective Bargaining, 1968-1973: Bargaining agreements, in English and Spanish, for various growers. Some drafts and related correspondence. Grievances, injunctions, civil complaints and suits.

Series III, Legislation, State 1971-72: Legislation, correspondence, fliers. Also prison depositions on treatment of Mexican inmates.

Series IV, Boycotts, 1968-1973: Song sheets, leaflets, pamphlets, newsletters, fliers, newspaper articles,newspapers, strike expense records.

Series V, Grape strike/boycott 1965-73: Dissertation, fliers, expense records.

Series VI, Hiring Hall Records, 1970-1973 (various bulk dates): Lay-off lists, seniority lists, dispatch lists, hours worked for dues and medical plan deductions, leaves of absence requests.

Series VII, Administration, 1969-1973 (bulk 1971-72): Correspondence, budgets, expenses, donation records, forms, information on topics such as immigration, Mexican history.

Series VIII, Ranch Commission 1970-73, 1976: Correspondence on two growers, Centennial Farms and El Dorado.

Series IX, National Farm Workers Service Center, 1970-72: Correspondence, reports and individual case files.


  • 1965 - 1973
  • Majority of material found within 1970 - 1972


Language of Materials

Majority of materials in English, some in Spanish.


Collection is open for research.


Refer to the Walter P. Reuther Library Rules for Use of Archival Materials. Restrictions: Researchers may encounter records of a sensitive nature – personnel files, case records and those involving investigations, legal and other private matters. Privacy laws and restrictions imposed by the Library prohibit the use of names and other personal information which might identify an individual, except with written permission from the Director and/or the donor.


The United Farm Workers movement began in 1962 with the organization of farm laborers in Delano, California by Cesar Chavez. In 1965, the Filipino local of the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee, AFL-CIO, headed by Larry Itliong struck the Delano grape growers over wage disputes. Chavez joined his National Farm Workers Association (NFWA) to their strike effort, and the two organizations merged in August 1966 to form the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee, AFL-CIO. During 1968 to 1970 the UFWOC conducted strikes against Arizona grape growers in every major city of the United States. When the boycott came to an end in July 1970, the Farm Workers sought Union recognition from the lettuce growers. On August 24, 1970 a massive labor strike began in Salinas and Santa Maria. The lettuce, table grape and Gallo Wine boycotts continued through 1973.

The struggle over H.B. 2134 in the State Legislature of 1972 marked the turning point in minority political representation of Arizona. A recall campaign against Governor Jack Williams was waged and lost, but the victory came in the number of Indians and Spanish-speaking minorities registered to vote as a result of the UFWOC action, and the future election of minority politicians to State Office.


7 Linear Feet (12 MB, 2 OS)


Subjects include: strikes - grapes, lettuce, sugar


Arranged in 9 series – Series 1 (Box 1), Series 2 (Boxes 2-3), Series 3 (Box 3) Series 4 (Box 4), Series 5 (Box 4), Series 6 (Box 5-9), Series 7 (Boxes 9-11), Series 8 (Box 11), Series 9 (Box 12). Folders are arranged alphabetically, or chronologically, depending upon the series.


The records of the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee (UFWOC), Arizona State Office, were placed in the Archives of Labor History and Urban Affairs in February, 1970.

Related Materials

UFW collections

Processing History

Processed and finding aid written by Walter P. Reuther Library in April 1990.


Guide to the UFW Arizona State Office Records
Processed by Walter P. Reuther Library.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Walter P. Reuther Library Repository

5401 Cass Avenue
Detroit MI 48202 USA