Manuscripts/Mixed Material [Mrs. Juan Valdes]
Including the whole country with a wave of her hand, Juliana continued; "When my parents came here that was all bosque, or woodland. Many people left Chihuahua when they learned that they could got plenty of free land in New Mexico. My father was one of the commissioners for the Refugio Corporation. Some of the Americans called their grants "terrenas" but the correct name is Terreno. Instead of a terreno being fifty-four acres, as some of them thought, it was between thirty-six or thirty-seven acres. And a vara, by which the colonists measured the land, was not a yard of thirty-six inches, but thirty-three inches."
Juliana didn't have any more respect for the ruthless Rio Grande of the past than her neighbors, for she referred to it as: "The big fussy river. "Senora," she said; "it was never still, for there was nothing to hold it back. Sometimes it would suddenly dry up; then our crops would dry up. Then we would worry and pray for water, and bah, a flood would come and almost destroy us. Ah, senora, I know this country well. I am part of it. I have spent the beet part of my life helping to make it what it is today. Fighting the wind, turning the soil, hating and loving the river, planting the seed, watching it grow. Si, senora. I, like the rest, have suffered, but I think it is a pretty fine country."
Juliana, or Mrs. Juan Valdez, was born in La Union, New Mexico, Dona Ana County: January 9, 1878; Juan Valdez Sr. was born in Mason, Texas, Mason County: February 5, 1880, and went to La Union, New Mexico in 1900. Jesus Enriquez, who immigrated from Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico to La Union, New Mexico in 1877, was the father of Mrs. Juan Valdez Sr. Mrs. Luz Noreigo de Enriquez, wife of Jesus Enriquez, who immigrated