Cesar E Chavez National Monument

San Joaquin Valley

This newly designated national monument, Nuestra Señora Reina de la Paz, is the national headquarters of the United Farmworkers of America and was the home of civil rights leader César Chávez from 1971 until his death in 1993. On view are exhibits on Chávez's work, his office and grave. Keene is 27 miles southeast of Bakersfield down Hwy 58.

Chávez was born near Yuma, AZ, in 1927, and was 11 when his family lost their farm and became migrant farm workers in California. At 14, he left school to labor in the fields. Eventually, he became a champion of nonviolent social change, negotiating for better wages and access to water and bathrooms in the fields. His work resulted in numerous precedents, including the first union contracts requiring safe use of pesticides and the abolition of short-handled tools that had crippled generations of farm workers.

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