Aizpitarte, Miguel Angel

Daniel Chertudi
Interview Location: 
Boise, ID
Interview Date: 

Miguel Aizpitarte was born on 9 October 1947, in Markina, Bizkaia, to Felix Aizpitarte and Euleteria Jayo.  He spent most of his childhood in a baserri, and describes the chores that kept him busy.  Even though he was a very bright student, unpleasant teachers kept him from enjoying his school days.  Life was not all work and school for Miguel, however; he enjoyed sports, dances and socializing with his friends.  Hard times eventually pushed him to work in a factory at a young age.

When he was 19, Miguel decided to seek a better life in the US.  His uncle there had written to him about all the opportunities, and helped to arrange the voyage.  He flew to Idaho in the winter of 1966 to work for the Highland Sheep Company.  Being alone in the hills was hard for Miguel at the beginning, and he describes the experience.  As soon as he got his green card, he moved to Emmett to work in the mill there.  He met his wife Janice in 1975, and the couple wed in 1979.

Miguel has two children, Mikel and Daniel, who have been very involved in the Basque culture.  Even though his original plan was always to make money in America, then return to the Basque Country, time changed his priorities.  Miguel is very happy in America, and is a US citizen.  He still feels a strong attachment to the Basque culture, though, and likes to travel to his homeland every few years.

Audio Recording: 
Cold Christmas dinner
Happy in America
School days
Other Images: