Marivel J. Medel

I grew up in Bayard, occasionally attending gatherings at the Union Hall during the summer. I’ve spent time in the neighborhood admiring the mural while playing on the street at friends’ houses. I have it on good authority that the mural is some of the best art in Grant County. Not only does the union…

Jo Lutz

I moved to Silver City in 2016 and now work at the Silver City Museum, where I am in close contact with much of our local history and people who care about it. One famous episode involved the Empire Zinc miners’ strike dramatized in the movie Salt of the Earth, which we sell in the…

Aimee Ryan

My grandfather Roger Silva Sr. worked at the mine for about 30 years and was apart of the Local 890 Union. From my understanding, he was apart of the union to protest against the conditions him and other workers were facing. He was a big supporter of keeping the union in place.   The union…

Bart Roselli

I have been working in museums my entire career, which is a lot of years, close to 40. One of my favorite museums that I have worked at is the American Labor Museum in Haledon, New Jersey, just outside of New York City.   We used to show the film The Salt of the Earth…

AT Cole

My exposure to the salt of the earth story is purely vicarious. I moved from Arizona where I practiced law for 32 years. I moved to Southern New Mexico in 2005. I attended the 50 year anniversary celebration of the salt of the earth and it was very interesting. There were a number of Bayard…

James Genera

In 1946 my dad helped organize a strike in Tyrone. Right after the strike in Tyrone we moved to Hannover. He worked at Empire Zinc. He was there in the mine. But when the strike broke out, the big shots came and got him a job in Silver City as a police officer, August of…

Steve Ray Aguirre

In 1952, I worked with Juan Chacon, Chano Merino, Arturo Florez, and all of them. I remember them. I got to meet all of them. I became their sheriff in 1965 with very big support from the union — almost a thousand percent. I got to know a lot of the people from the Empire…

Eric Ockerhausen

I live here in Silver City, just up the street, and my wife has shown the Salt of the Earth movie in her classes when she taught women’s studies. I have seen the movie, and I am a union member. I think all of what happened is important.   What I know about the strike…

John J. Chacon

I’m the third Juan Chacon. We are four generations from Grant County. My family is originally from the San Andreas Chihuahua region of Mexico. My extended family used to come visit when I was young, but after my parents died their visits from Mexico were no longer as frequent. My parents were Virginia and Juan…

Rachel Juarez Valencia

I was fourteen-years-old living in Santa Rita with my parents. My sister’s husband and other workers went on strike at the Empire Zinc company. The men were hit with Taft Harley Injunction on their strike and so the women asked the men at a union meeting if they could do the picketing since they weren’t…

Roger Duarte

I moved here to Bayard in 1979 working construction as iron-worker and carpenter. I was 29 years old. I first learned about the film and strike while I was living in Fullerton, CA from Tuddie Chacon, cousin of Juan Chacon Jr.. I live in Santa Clara now but have lived in various parts of Central…

Felix Jaramillo

During my younger years, I was employed at the mine and belonged to another union–not the local 890. Most of my family, friends, and neighbors during my childhood worked as miners at various mining sites in Grant County. Labor strikers were common. I first learned about the Empire Zinc labor strike when I was older…

Antonio Macias and Lucy Segovia

Antonio The Empire Strike was very close to me. I was young. My grandfather and my father worked in Empire Zinc as miners. My father retired from the Empire Zinc as a miner. And upon graduation from high school, I worked one summer in Empire Zinc. All the men on my side were in the…

Florene Andazola

I was born in Santa Rita, 1947. I saw the film when I was in my 50s, Mi Ranchito sold it. My dad’s, brother-in-law’s mother was in the strike. And my husband was in the strike, he was 5 or 6 years old. My parents never talked to me about it. I only found out…

Terry Humble

I lived at Shingle Canyon and had to go through the picket lines to get to town where we would buy groceries and supplies for the mine. My father, Patrick Humble, leased a mine from the USSR & M company at Shingle Canyon. I was about 10-years-old. My father told me what was happening. As…

Mary Lou Castillo Chavez

  When the strike was going on, I was about 8 or 9, and I didn’t really understand what was going on. I would really like to go see where they were striking now because we would take them food, and my grandfather was one of the main strikers. My father worked at the Kerney…

Willie Andazola

You can call me Willie, everyone will know who you are talking about. I was in both the strike and the film. And it’s been in my mind my whole life. My mother took me and my brother to the strike from Santa Rita. I was about 5 years-old, and I rode in the same…

Denise Nava

One of my first memories involving the mines and the union is of my father. My father started working in the mines in Silver City right out of high school. Every time we would pass the building driving out of town, he would mention how the union was one of the best times of his…

Kyle Fiore

I first saw “Salt of the Earth” back in the 1970’s. For a number of us active in Civil Rights work and the Women’s Movement. “Salt of the Earth” became our touchstone. Thirty or 40 of us would gather in the basement of Mesa Vista Hall at UNM, or in different community sites, to watch…

Art Flores

Elvira Carrizal-Dukes interviews Mr. Arturo (“Art”) Flores who is currently 99 years old, and was involved in the Empire Zine Strike. His experience has been written about in many books dealing with the Strike. Check out a radio interview with him with his niece, Emily Guerra of KRWG in Las Cruces, NM. See the interview with…

Isaiah Soliz

Before I was like 13, I never heard anything about the strike. But when I got to 7th grade, my Spanish teacher was really involved with the strike. She was really passionate about it, even though it wasn’t really about the class. She showed us the movie Salt of the Earth. I asked her, “this…

Hallee Nguyen

My story in connection with the Union 890 strikes begins with my friend Denise Nava. Denise and I met in the UNM Master’s in Public Administration program in 2012. We both wanted to pursue a career in nonprofit management after graduation. Although we had different paths to get there, we both serendipitously ended up at…

Chuck Paine

My story is mostly the story of holes or lacunae. I’ve been to Silver City twice, once as a tenth grader for the NM State Senior League Baseball Tournament (we won and went to Arizona, where got killed by Colorado and Utah), the other time a few years ago at a retreat owned Friends of…