Urcaregui, Gabriel

Daniel Chertudi
Interview Location: 
Emmett, ID
Interview Date: 

Gabriel was born on 24 March 1927 in Ispaster, Bizkaia, to Francisco Urcaregui and Nikolasa Careaga.  Times were tough as he was growing up in the baserri, and he had to trade school for work at an early age to help support his family.  His father was incarcerated for a while, making life even more difficult.  Gabriel began making coal for a living, which he continued to do until he was drafted into the Spanish military.

After his military service, and ten more years as the head of his own charcoal operation, Gabriel decided to come to the United States to make a better living.  He herded sheep in Wyoming for a few years, but soon moved to Idaho to be closer to his brother.  Gabriel worked as a camp tender for 8 years before securing a job at a mill in Emmett, from which he retired after 19 years in 1989.

Even though Gabriel never married, he spends a lot of time with his relatives in Idaho.  He has made several trips back to the Basque Country, but feels very happy in America, and would not consider retiring elsewhere.  Today, Gabriel still strongly identifies with the Basque culture.

Audio Recording: 
Making charcoal
A father in jail
Sheep life
Other Images: