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César Chávez

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  • Born March 31, 1927 in Yuma Arizona
  • He was one of six siblings
  • Grew up in a small Adobe home
  • His family owned a grocery store but was lost in the Great Depression
  • César and his family moved to California as farm workers
  • Cesar quit school in seventh grade to help work as a migrant worker
  • In 1946 he joined the United States Navy and served for two years
Photo by Franco Folini


Workers’ rights: In 1962 Chávez co-founded the NFWA (National Farm Workers Association) with Dolores Huerta. Also Chávez supported the grape strike on September 8, 1965. Six months later the NFWA led a protest in Sacramento. This strike lasted five years and eventually led a pay raise to grape pickers.

Legislative campaigns: On June 4, 1975, Governor Brown signed into law the California Agricultural Labor Relations Act, which established collective bargaining for farmworkers and migrant workers.

Personal life: In 1948 César returned home from the military which he said was the, “worst two years of my life.” And he married his high school sweet hart, Helen Fabela. They moved to San Jose, California were they had eight children. He also was a vegan because he believed in animal rights and also because of health purposes.


Chavez died on April 23, 1993, of old age. His passing was located in San Luis, Arizona. Helen Chavez, donated his black nylon union jacket to the National Museum of American History and it is still there today. March 31 is known as César Chávez day which is his birthday, and his a holiday in Texas, Colorado, and California.

Thank you! I hope you learned something about the great César Chávez.