Braceros, industrial Agriculture, Union Organizing, 1959-1966
Harvey Richards’ California Farm Worker videos were made as he roamed the central valleys of California with still and motion picture cameras documenting the conditions of farm workers, the expansion of industrial agriculture and union organizing in the fields and packing houses of that era. All are now available on Amazon Prime.
California Farm Worker Videos
Harvey Richards first photographic works in the late 1950’s and 1960’s centered on California farm workers. His films were made from the worker’s and union’s point of view, designed to help the organizing drives of the United Packing House Workers Union (Factory Farms), the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee, AFL-CIO (The Harvesters, Uno Veintecinco) and the United Farm Workers (The Land Is Rich). He was not officially sponsored by the unions, doing all of the filming, editing and producing independently. Once complete, the films were given to organizers for their use.
While filming, he also shot still black and white and color photos of California agriculture. The Harvey Richards Media Archive contains ten photo image galleries of Richards’ photography in the fields of California.