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To Hon. Alonzo S. Perales, From George Reid, Sociedad Mutualista Mexicana, Feb. 16, 1941.



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To Hon. Alonzo S. Perales, From George Reid, Sociedad Mutualista Mexicana, Feb. 16, 1941.


PERALES, Alonso S., 1898-1960
MINING camps--West (U.S.)
DISCRIMINATION in Medical Care - Race discrimination in Medical Care
HOSPITALS--Prospective payment--Corrupt practices--United States


Letter to Alonso Perales from George Reid, an American Baptist preacher from Fort Worth Texas. He begins the letter regarding the situations taking place at the mining camp in Malakoff Texas. Doctors were charging high prices and ordering unnecessary procedures to take care of the Mexicans who were sick. These Mexican individuals and families were forced to pay or “risk death of their sick”. He would like to begin the process of organizing a “chain of hospitals and clinics all over Texas in the way of cooperative medicine”. The Baptist Hospital in Fort Worth, Texas is available with all equipment for $50,000. Mr. Reid mentions ways to raise money by way of donations. Mr. Reid writes that “the movement out to start from the initiative of the Mexicans themselves”, and that “it should be run by Mexicans for Mexicans”.


Reid, George





Content compilation of The Latino/Hispanic American Experience Leaders, Writers and Thinkers copyright 2012 by Arte Publico Historical Collections. All rights reserved.










FORT Worth (Tex.)



Estimable Hon. Perales;
Due to a system of help herein the mining camp at Malakoff, Texas whereby the Mexicans pooled their money to take care of the sickness in the camp; it seems that the American doctors, upon whom they called, took advantage of a large amount of money in the fund and ordered unnecessary operations and at prices whichcontinually kept the funds depleted and which seemed to be much higher than others had to pay on the average. Being Mexicans, there was no way they could help it, except pay the demands rather than risk the death of their sick.

Now the work has almost stopped here, because the company which had used the fuel has switched to gas, and almost all the Mexicans are gone. However, there are some still here, and we have talked a little about starting, or seeing about starting, a state-wide movement for medical insurance among the Mexicans and set up Mexican institutions to care for their sick.

As we have never had any experience in any such a movement we need some advice; and knowing by your articles in “La Prensa” that you are fighting for justice for your people, we felts sure that you would be glad to advise us free of charge. Also, we felt that if you should find such a movement possible, you might lend us the support of your influence and leadership in getting it established on a sound basis.

Here are some facts which may help you in considering the possibility of the movement: The Baptist Hospital in Fort Worth, Texas, with all its equipment is for sale for $50,000. It has been vacant for a period of two years, though its equipment was up-to-date- the last time it was in use. Of course, we understand that in an unorganized and uninformed state there is no possibility in raising the money. We thought we could organize and inform the people by means of letters including enough money to correspond with others. They in turn could be asked to enclose money so that in a little while many centers could be informed with the minimum of expense upon the shoulders of any one person.

You see that unless there are other complications which we do not now see, a little money could be collected from a fraction of the Mexican population of Texas, and it would be enough to seing the deal for the hospital and set it in operation.

If you want to learn more about this particular hospital, you may write Dr. Scarborough. I have already talked to the business manager of the Baptist Seminary there who also takes care of the hospital and he wanted me to see Dr. Scarborough, but we think
Perhaps you could handle the situation in a way more satisfactory to all. As this is no attempt to sell the Baptist Hospital, any other approach could be made by any other means which may see advisable.

I suppose by now you are wondering who is the author of this letter. I am an American Baptist preacher who comes from the Seminary at Fort Worth every week end to preach to the people here. It struck me as deplorable that the Mexicans can not get a square deal when it comes to medical aid particularly. I believe the only way they can ever get a square deal is to organize a chain of hospitals and clinics all over Texas in the way of cooperative medicine. You are, perhaps, well acquainted with the English system of cooperative medicine before this war started. I believe that, roughly, [that???? To be – handwritten] something of the nature of the movement here.

I, too, as well as you, have the interest of racial understanding at heart; and I do not wish to try to stir up any more strife. I just think that if the Mexicans could be organized thus in a quiet way to care for their own sick, itcould be an avenue of influence by which they could gain the respect of American citizens in all walks of life.

My business is to preach the Gospel, and I do not feel that I ought, in the first place, to spend my time in purely social efforts, although I realize that my work ought to be thoroughly filled with the Christian social emphasis. In the second place, I think that the movement ought to start from the initiative of the Mexicans themselves, so that it would have their confidence at the outset. I believe that all the organization should be run by Mexicans and for Mexicans. I am quite confident that they are fully competent to do everything necessary.

If I have not properly represented the Mexican interests, and it is entirely possible that such is the case, you may write to Jesus Garcia, Malakoff, Texas. He is the Secretary of the Society mentioned on tis stationery. In case you would like to know more about what I have in mind than I have been able to tell here, you may write me at 4713 Stanley Street, Fort Worth, Texas.

With best wishes for you and your high ideals for all the American peoples, I am
Very Sincerely yours,
George Reid.

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Reid, George, “To Hon. Alonzo S. Perales, From George Reid, Sociedad Mutualista Mexicana, Feb. 16, 1941.,” Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage Digital Collections, accessed May 28, 2024,