Adios Amor: The Search for Maria Moreno is MiHistoria’s sister project, and the two are often paired through community screenings, storytelling workshops, and leadership training programs. In Adios Amor, the discovery of lost photographs sparks the search for a hero that history forgot—Maria Moreno, a migrant mother driven to speak out by her twelve children’s hunger. Years before Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta launched the United Farm Workers, Maria picked up the only weapon she had—her voice—and became an outspoken leader in an era when women were relegated to the background. The first farm worker woman in the U.S. to be hired as a union organizer, Maria’s story was silenced and her legacy buried—until now.
Adios Amor had its national broadcast on PBS VOCES in 2019 and 2020. The film is now available for classroom, library and community screenings through Good Docs.
A Message from the filmmaker Laurie Coyle
The seed for Adios Amor was planted years ago when I was lead researcher for the public television documentary The Fight in the Fields-Cesar Chavez and the Farmworkers’ Struggle. Searching for pictures of Cesar Chavez, I came across hundreds of photographs of a remarkable Latina activist. Her name was Maria Moreno, but nobody seemed to know anything about her. With the photographs in hand, I set out to find her. The search lead me through archives, attics, and orchards, California’s great Central Valley, the Arizona desert, and beyond the US-Mexico border. I uncovered a treasure trove of photographs, audiotapes, home movies and memorabilia. I met farm labor organizers and friends and family members, as well as the maverick photographers and journalists who captured Maria’s story and kept her memory alive. The search for Maria Moreno changed me. I hope Adios Amor will inspire you to launch your own journeys of discovery, and to share what you learn with all of us.