After a fake trial, they marched her through the streets and lynched her.
Over 2,000 men gathered to watch, shouting racial slurs.
Some light-skinned Mexican-Americans attempted to pass themselves off as Spanish, not Mexican, in an attempt to evade enforcement.
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As one victim of “repatriation” told Raymond Rodriguez, who wrote a history of the period, , “They might as well have sent us to Mars.” Others, like Rodriguez’s father, did not wait for raids or enforcement and returned to Mexico independently to escape discrimination and the fear of removal.
His wife refused to accompany him and the family never saw him again.
Though no formal decree was ever issued by immigration authorities, INS officials deported about 82,000 people during the period.
The impact on Spanish-speaking communities was devastating.
At the time, white miners begrudged former Mexicans a share of the wealth yielded by Californian mines—and sometimes enacted vigilante justice.