|Cesar Chavez Study Guide Test Date_____________________
Cesar Chavez was born in 1927 near Yuma, Arizona. His grandfather was a runaway slave from Mexico who wanted a better life for his family. He worked hard and bought a farm. Cesar’s father owned a general store and was elected postmaster. Cesar’s whole family worked on the farm.
During the Great Depression, there were droughts in the southwest. A drought is a long period of time without rainfall. Because of the drought his family moved to California to find work. His family became migrant farm workers. They followed crops to find work. They traveled to pick the fruit or vegetable in season for farm owners.
Migrant children attended many schools because they often moved. Cesar attended 65 schools. He worked all day in the fields after completing the 8th grade. The farm owners took advantage of the workers. He traveled California asking farm workers to stand up for their rights.
Cesar taught Mexican workers how to speak and read English so they could become citizens.
Cesar founded the National farm Workers Association and the United Farm workers (UFW). When farm workers ignored their requests for more pay and safe working conditions they went on strike (to stop working in order to get better pay or better working conditions). The UFW held a grape boycott which caused farmers to lose millions of dollars. Boycott means to join with others and refuse to buy or sell something or to deal with someone. The laws were changed and working conditions improved. He was awarded the U. S. Medal of Freedom by President Bill Clinton for his work fighting for justice for all Americans.
One of Cesar’s positive character traits is diligence. Diligence means working hard and steady. Cesar worked very hard as a migrant farm worker. He worked very hard and steady to help other farm workers.