This is about a different Camp Wilder, the one near Wilder, Idaho. Wilder is just west of Caldwell, if you didn’t know.
Camp Wilder was a migratory labor camp during WWII. Unless you’re thinking of the Camp Wilder that was a POW camp for some of those years. Both provided labor for area farmers.
Camp Wilder started as a project of the Farm Security Administration, housing U.S. residents who were in need of work. As the war began pulling young men away from the fields, the U.S. started the Bracero program in 1942. Bracero means “manual laborer” in Spanish. The program invited laborers from Mexico north to work crops. Camp Wilder soon began focusing on this new labor force.
The Idaho Statesman reported in a short article in the December 19, 1945 issue that the Braceros had gone home for the year and that 213 of them had been housed at Camp Wilder that season.
The Bracero program continued in some form until 1964, nationally, but the program was halted in Idaho in 1947 when the Mexican Consul complained that the workers were being treated poorly.
The photos below are courtesy of the Library of Congress and were taken at Camp Wilder circa 1941.