Hazel Lenora Spradling


As Interviewed by Emerson S., March 16, 2012
"There was a water fountain and water fountain there. One said 'white' and the other said 'colored.' Thatís when I noticed it, but I didnít understand it."
Hazel Lenora Spradling

Introductory Profile: About Hazel Lenora Spradling

In this interview with Hazel Lenora Spradling, we covered multiple topics including how were poor migrant families treated differently than the wealthier families. Also, we talked about how minorities were treated when she worked with them as a migrant worker. A part of the interview that really stood out to me was that they got up when the sun was rising and then worked all day until sunset. Additionally, I think it is interesting that minorities and poor white migrant workers worked together because they were both so poor. She noted that on the farm, all the workers were treated pretty much the same, but when she went to town, she saw the segregated treatment blacks were given.

Hazel Lenora Spradling is a very nice and kind white woman in her late 80s and is average height for a woman. She lives in Luling, Texas. She has white hair now but used to have dark brown hair. She has brown eyes.

When she was young she worked as a migrant worker with her family. She traveled throughout Texas but stayed mainly around Cameron, Texas. Hazel Lenora Spradling was born in Leesville, Texas and grew up in a family of thirteen. As a migrant worker she attended several schools. The school year would start later in the fall than other students because she had to wait until the picking season was over. When she moved to Austin, Texas, she attended high school at Austin High. She liked school and also played sports. After she got married she had a job at the Kress department store on Congress Avenue and worked there until she had kids and became a housewife.

The mood of the interview was mainly a normal chat but you could tell when she was talking about something serious as her voice and expression changed. Also, when she talked about happy things, like her family, she seemed happier. One part of the interview became emotional when she described a time when there was little work and the family had to go on welfare. She became very sad when talking about this time.

Overall, the interview went great. She answered my questions fully and the interview helped me learn about that time period in Texas. Although the family was poor and had to work hard for long periods of time, she didnít seem to mind the way she grew up. She saw people with money and the special things they got to do and got to have but it didnít seem to get her down. When she saw segregation, she didnít understand why it was that way and she didnít think it was right.