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An Arizona Tale « Ted's Polish-Mexican Page

An Arizona Tale

Categories: Rumination
Comments: 1 Comment
Published on: July 16, 2014

My mom can come back later and correct me on the details, but well over a century ago, there was a fellow named Esteban Rivera who lived out in Cochise County. He was my grandfather’s godfather, and family referred to him as “Tata Rivera.” Those of you that grew up Hispanic know that that basically made him part of the family.

Rivera was born in Sonora in an era when Mexico still had the institution of debt peonage. This meant that he and his family were living as near slaves.

When he was very young, the hacendado Esteban’s family worked for was putting together a shipment of supplies to a business partner in Arizona. An uncle looked at this as an opportunity to get Esteban out of bondage and hid him in the wagon that was heading north. He made it up, and ended up working at a Chinese restaurant in Tombstone.

Funny thing, Arizona welcomed him.

Hasta la proxima. Do zobaczenia.

1 Comment
  1. Kenneth Bertschy says:

    I’m guessing here, but it sounds like your grandfather’s godfather was already a resident when Arizona became a state. So, Arizona didn’t welcome him, he welcomed Arizona.

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