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Crossing the border at El Paso, Texas in the 1920's

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By gloriad648 - Posted on 15 June 2006

I'll be posting some photos from a souvenir booklet sold on the Southern Pacific Railroad in the 1920's. Those of us whose ancestors crossed to el norte through El Paso saw some of these same stations along the way. My father, Luis Calvillo Zaragoza, was 10 years old when his family travelled from Guadalajara to San Francisco, California, on this same train route, in 1922. His mother, Jesus Zaragoza Castillo, a widow with five children and very little money, nevertheless paid the grand sum of $1.50 so that Luis would remember the journey. The booklet remained one of my father's treasured possessions until he died.

The first photo is captioned: "El Paso, the largest of Cities on our southern frontier, is the door into Mexico. The old name of the city was El Paso del Norte, 'the pass of the north.' Though in a comparatively thinly settled region, this is a most important business center, since it is five hundred miles in any direction to a city of like size. El Paso handles a large portion of our Mexican trade; three fourths of the cattle imported in the United States come through this gateway. The city is wideawake and progressive, with many handsome public buildings." Note the American doughboys with their rifles, the women in long dresses, the horse-drawn wagons and the adobe buildings across the river.

The photos are in Albums - Misc Records and Others.


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