Mexican tapestery pattern

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Funded in part by a grant from TexTreasures and by the UT Arlington Library.

Francisco Medrano


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(152 pages)

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Biography:

Born October 2, 1920, in Dallas, Texas. Francisco F. Medrano, known as Pancho Medrano, was an official for the United Auto Workers. He was active in local politics in Dallas, Texas, and supported the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee efforts in Texas and California. He was also well-known as a Mexican heavyweight boxing champion.

Interview Summary:

Mr. Medrano talks about his family history and genealogy. He tells about incidences of race discrimination practices in restaurants, theaters, and public parks. He describes poor living conditions that his family endured during the time he was growing up and he talks about the difficulties with lifting his family out of poverty just to get basic housing necessities. He talks about his employment with North American Aviation in Grand Prairie, and how he got involved in boxing and eventually became a professional. He explains that he became interested in union work after North American Aviation fired him for becoming a professional boxer. Mr. Medrano details his lifetime activities as a union organizer helping Mexican Americans and other minorities organize at various levels to establish their civil rights. He also tells about his involvement with major civil rights protests during the 1960's and 1970's. He tells about his role in helping to organize LULAC, the Raza Unida Party, and the American G.I. Forum. Mr. Medrano gives details on the abuse of Mexican American prisoners' civil rights by law enforcement in Texas, and he describes the atrocious jail conditions these prisoners endured. He tells about serious physical abuse dealt to Mexican Americans by the Texas Rangers, and he gives details about his personal lawsuit against Ranger Captain Y. A. Allee in which Allee was convicted of perjury. Mr. Medrano states that the most important issue for Mexican Americans is to register and vote.

Locations of residence or activity:

Dallas/Grand Prairie

Interview Date:

7/16/1997