Chris Sánchez

Chris Sánchez

Chris Sánchez speaking on stage during the march to Sacramento, 1966. Photo by John Kouns.

El Malcriado and the Farm Worker Press were set up by César Chávez in the winter of 1964 and 1965 to be formally independent of the National Farm Workers Association (NFWA). Chávez recruited Bill Esher to edit the publication, which served as “The Voice of the Farm Worker” and as an organizing tool. Chris Sánchez, whose full name was Cristóbal Manuel Laguna Sánchez, received a tiny monthly check for disability as Supplemental Security Income (SSI), which went to his mom, but had no other income except the $5 per week from the NFWA.

Before he came to Delano he lived in East LA. According to Richard Street, he learned photography from photographers John Kouns and Jon Lewis while tending Porta-Johns on La Perenigración. Sánchez’s photographs of the farmworkers’ struggle spanned from 1967 to 1974. He traveled across the country during the grape boycott with Dolores Huerta, Fred Ross, and 200 strikers and their families. “Sánchez,” according to Richard Street, “produced what is probably the only extended photo essay on the larger consumer boycott in America.”

Chris Sánchez and Marcia Brooks working at El Malcriado, Delano, ca. 1966. Photo by Emmon Clarke.


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