Azada de Mango Corto

Description
A short Handled hoe, 1936 hoe. Original owner Librado Hernandez Chavez, (father of Ceser Estrada Chavez). The hoe has a metal blade welded to a metal neck and a wooden handle. The two are attached by a slot screw. The top edge of the blade is similar to the two curves at the top of a valentine hear. Blade recently sharpened.
The short-handled hoe brings back memories of back-breaking labor for generations of Mexican and Mexican American migrant workers who sustained California's booming agricultural economy. Since the late 1800s, its expansive fields of produce have relied on a cheap, mobile, and temporary workforce. The short-handled hoe required workers to bend painfully close to the ground to weed and thin crops. The state abolished the short-handled hoe in 1975, ruling it an occupational hazard after a seven-year legal battle. During this period of political mobilization, the predicament of the migrant farm worker became emblematic of the limited opportunities and the cycle of poverty that trapped many Mexican Americans. In 1966, when Mexican and Filipino American farm workers were brought together under the banner of the United Farm Workers of America, the struggle for labor rights was understood by its supporters as part of the much larger civil rights movement. It was not just important for Mexican Americans but also other low-paid workers. The hoe pictured here belonged to Librado Hernandez Chavez, father of civil rights leader and farm worker organizer, Cesar Estrada Chavez.
Location
Currently not on view
Object Name
hoe
Date made
1936
user
Chavez, Librado Hernandes
Chavez, Cesar Estrada
Physical Description
brown (overall color)
metal (blade material)
wood (handle material)
Measurements
overall: 16 in x 5 in; 40.64 cm x 12.7 cm
Place Made
United States: California, San Jose
ID Number
1998.0197.01
accession number
1998.0197
catalog number
1998.0197.01
subject
Labor Unions
Agriculture
Farmers and Ranchers
Migrant Workers
Latino
Mexican America
Government, Politics, and Reform
See more items in
Political History: Political History, Labor History Collection
Mexican America
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Title
Short Handled Hoe

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