The Mexican Repatriation was a mass deportation of Mexicans and Mexican-Americans from the United States between 1929 and 1936. Estimates of how many were repatriated range from 400,000 to 2,000,000. An estimated sixty percent of those deported were birthright citizens of the United States. Because the forced movement was based on race, and ignored citizenship, the process meets modern legal definitions of ethnic cleansing.
Widely blamed for exacerbating the overall economic downturn of the Great Depression, Mexicans were further targeted because of “the proximity of the Mexican border, the physical distinctiveness of mestizos, and easily identifiable barrios.” While supported by the federal government, actual deportations were largely organized and carried out by city and state governments, often with support from local private entities.