Somos Primos

 August 2005 
Editor: Mimi Lozano

Dedicated to Hispanic Heritage and Diversity Issues
Society of Hispanic Historical and Ancestral Research


Content Areas
United States
. . 3 
        Legends . . 31
. . 34
Galvez Patriots 
. . 36
Orange Co,CA
. . 45
Los Angeles,CA
. . 47
. . 53
Northwestern US
. . 72
Southwestern US
. . 78
. . 84
. . 86
. . 98
. . 109
East Mississippi
. . 130
East Coast
. . 132
. . 136
. . 154
. . 156
. . 158
. . 161
. . 168
Family History
. . 168
. . 172
. . 173



Jack Cowan (aka George Washington)
Hector Diaz (aka Bernardo de Galvez)
Washington, D.C. July 4th, 2005 Parade


The Society of Hispanic Historical and Ancestral Research 
Opening Doors in Washington, D.C. 


  Letters to the Editor : 

Example of People Resources & Networking 

I received a request for assistance from Michael Carters on the De Soto and Espejo Family.  I sent along some information and then forwarded it to Johanna De Soto. 

Wow! Incredible. Thank you for these excellent suggestions and sources.  We are very interested in tracing and knowing our Hispanic ancestors.  
Is there a place to look at the 1870 and 1910 census on-line?  My Spanish is poor so I was unable to get the full benefit of several of the 
sites you suggested.  Can you recommend a professional and reliable genealogists, perhaps yourself, that I could hire to help me research
 the Spanish-language material?  
I am determined to find my people.

From: To:
Subject: Espejo Family

Dear Michael, Good luck on your research. I looked at the 1870 Federal Census, California, Los Angeles, Los Nietos Township, taken on 
11 August, 1870.
Ygnacia Espejo, age 40, born in Mexico. She was with her Children, Francisco age 14, Juan age 12, Adriana age 10, Pedro age 9, Ramon age 6, and Luis age 4. 

Then in the 1910 Federal Census, Oakland Township, in Alameda County. Ygnacia was 83 years old, born in Mexico, mother-in law of Baldomero Perez. Their is no wife, but five daughters. I will send you some web sites on 
the Espejo family.  Johanna

Don't forget to send your new email. . . .

Un millon de gracias por las revistas de Somos Primos, muy educativas y muy muy interesantes.Esta notita es solo para dejarle saber de lo agradecido que estoy  y para notificarle mi nuevo e mail.  ya no es:  valdes sbs  Ahora es
Gracias, Tito

Somos Primos July 2005  
Mimi:  have fun at the parade – you certainly deserve it.  Again, a great monthly publication.  I don’t know how you do it.  God bless you and your staff as you are doing a great good for all of us.  
Saludos, Dennis

Somos Primos July 2005 rz  
Great newsletter.........where do you get all that information??  Wow, girl you do a great job; hope everyone enjoys your hard work.
We are having our annual family reunion in Morro Bay from July 8 til 15th........we are all looking forward to our get together.
Take care, Yomar

Renteria quintuplets, extended family support
50 Number of bottles a day
60 Number of diapers changed
80 Cousins on call to help care for babies
5-10 Loads of laundry daily

OC Register, June 24, 2005


   Somos Primos Staff:   
Mimi Lozano, Editor
John P. Schmal, 
Johanna de Soto, 
Howard Shorr
Armando Montes
Michael Stevens Perez
Luke Holtzman, Photos/ Lay-out Assistance

Grisel Y. Acosta 
Mary Esther Algueseva Zahradnick 
Ruth T. Bello 
Gloria & Jerry Benavides 
Monica Billings
Luis Brandtner y Nava G.
Mercy Bautista Olvera
Jaime Cader
Rosemarie Capodicci 
Bill Carmena 
Michael Carters
Sylvia Carvajal Sutton
Yomar Cleary
Frank Xavier Contreras III
Jack Cowan 
Scott Cowan 
Samantha Cowan 
Susan Cowan 
Mary Anne Curry
Jose Luis De La Granja 

Johanna De Soto 
Leonardo de la Torre y
Hector Diaz
Dominick Vila 
Richard Duran
Edna Yolanda Elizondo 
Lorraine Frain, 
George Gause
Gloria Oliver 
Ray Gonzalez
Lila and Rick Guzman
Sergio Hernandez 
Luke Holtzman
Win Holtzman
John Inclan
Angie Jensen 
Dennis Keesee Bermudez
Larry Kirkpatrick 
Dick LaPenta
RoseMarie LaPenta 
Cindy Lobuglio 
Mario Longoria
Conchita Lucero 
Mary Beth Lyons
José Macías Arocha
Ophelia Marquez
Armando Montes
Miguel Angel Muñoz Borrego
Paul Newfield 
Rafael Ojedo
Gloria Oliver
Guillermo Padilla Origel

Hector Luis Pardo Ortiz
Jose M. Pena
Willie Perez
Andy Porras
Angel Custodio Rebollo 
Peter Reginato
Frances Rios
José León Robles de la Torre
Manuel Robles
Alfonso E. Rodriguez Ramos
Art Rodriguez
George Ryskamp
Benicio Samuel Sanchez Garcia
Susan Sanchez Lobedan 
Virginia Sanchez 
Richard G. Santos
John P. Schmal 
D.A. Sears
Sister Mary Sevilla 
Phyllis Shelton
Howard Shorr 
Rebecca Shokrian
Mira Smithwick
Corinne Staacke 
Adrienne Stefan
Laura Tellez
Janete Vargas 
Margarita Velez 
Dave Villarreal 
JD Villarreal 
Victor Villarreal
Stewart Von Rathjen
SHHAR Board:   Bea Armenta Dever, Steven Hernandez,  Mimi Lozano Holtzman, Pat Lozano, Henry Marquez, Yolanda Ochoa Hussey, Michael Perez, Crispin Rendon, Viola Rodriguez Sadler, John P. Schmal


SHHAR Opening Doors in Washington, D.C. July 4th, 2005
CHCI Announces Theme for Hispanic Heritage Month Events
Latinos In Information Sciences and Technology Association (LISTA)

P.F.C. Javier (Harvey) Contreras

Noncitizen soldiers: the quandaries of foreign-born troops
75th Anniversary of Veterans Affairs Draws Senate's praise

Strategic Alliance Spawns Practitioners Fatherhood Roundtable
Hispanic Growth Surge Fueled by Births in U.S.
Births to foreign-born mothers on the rise 
Great day to be American
Latino Power
Hispanic kids go 'home' for summer  

Chicken Soup for the Latino Soul
Philosophical Comments About Doing Time 
The King and a Bracero Sang a Duet

Minority Businesses Booming
Latinas going solo
Nonprofit shines light on women's success stories
Social Security Risk Greater for Hispanics

Rooting Out Injustice in the Forestry Industry
Marketing Disease to Latinos
Into The Mix

From left to right: Jack Cowan, Hector Diaz, Sylvia Carvajal Sutton, Mary Beth Lyons, Scott Cowan, Samantha Cowan, Susan Cowan, Dick LaPenta, Mimi Lozano, RoseMarie LaPenta and Corinne Staacke.

Texas Connection to the American Revolution
Waiting on the Washington, D.C. Mall in preparation to march in the July 4th parade

CSGA Newsletter
Published by the California State Genealogical Alliance
Volume 23, Number 3   July/August 2005

Society of Hispanic Historical and Ancestral Research 
Opening Doors in Washington, D.C. by Mimi Lozano 

Although few will record July 4th, 2005 as a breakthrough for historical understanding, hopefully some day it will be recognized as such. It took 10 years, but proudly, this year, descendents and friends of Spanish colonists participated in both the 4th of July parade and a presentation within the National Archives itself.

In 1995, I was in Washington, D.C. attending a meeting for the U.S. Senate Task Force on Hispanic Affairs. It was my first visit to the capital, but it quickly became clear that awareness of the Hispanic contributions in the development of the United States was totally missing in public displays throughout D.C.

The most glaring omission was at the Smithsonian. A prominent display case held two French colonial soldiers with a plaque underneath recognizing the important contributions of France to the American Revolution, but no mention of the more important part that Spain had played. 1 could fully understand that the general public would not be aware of that fact, but not the Smithsonian. They should be presenting a fuller, more accurate picture of our nation's history.

The Society of Hispanic Historical and Ancestral Research (SHHAR) became instrumental in attempting to make a change in public awareness. Our publication Somos Primos began to include more colonial information. Other Hispanic genealogical organizations followed suit. We collaborated with local Orange County chapters of both SAR and DAR. As a direct result, two men were inducted into the Sons of the American Revolution through their Spanish ancestors who served in the Spanish forces.

in 1998 we began to publish and distribute a series of manuals on the Spanish patriots to the American Revolution which Dr. Granville Hough and his daughter were in the process of writing. The manuals eventually numbered eight, each dedicated to a U.S. state in which Spanish forces served to support the American Revolution. Steve Hussev (husband of Board member, Yolanda Ochoa) has put the California patriot manuals (2) and Arizona manual (1) online. Go to resources at

In 2001, Michael Perez, CSGA Ethnic Chair was instrumental in giving focus to the movement to share understanding of Spanish contributions. "We need a hero," Michael said. The appropriate and natural hero was General Bernardo de Galvez, commander of the Spanish forces. His battle successes read like folktales, but in fact are correct. Grreatly outnumbered in the battlefields, Spanish forces captured five British-held forts, placing them into the control of American revolutionary forces.

In October 2003, SHHAR organized and hosted a very successful three-day celebration in Long Beach honoring Bernardo de Galvez. Press, city officials, educators, and other historical and genealogical groups participated.

This continuing attention to the contributions brought results. This year, for the first time, a newly-formed group from San Antonio, the Texas Connection to the American Revolution, TCARA marched in the July 4th parade. Being chair of a 2005 committee to promote Hispanic inclusion within the National Archives, I was in a position to open the door to TCARA'S participation.

The mission of the group is to emphasize the contribution of the Tejanos cattlemen, Spanish colonizers who supported the American Revolution through the cattle that reached the revolutionary forces. My ancestors were among these men. I am happy to say that I am on the TCARA Board.

The group is made up not only of descendants, but also members of the SAR and DAR. Jack Cowan, President of TCARA is also President of a local chapter of Sons of the American Revolution. A retired Lt. Col in the Army, with no Hispanic heritage, Jack is committed to promoting inclusion.

In Long Beach, one of our participants was a Bernardo de Galvez reenactor Hector Diaz . Hector lives in Maryland. I was able to facilitate his participation in the National Archives July 4th activities. He made a presentation at the National Archives on both days of the July 4th festivities, July 3rd and 4th plus marched with TCARA in the July 4th parade. We made history!

I am also happy to announce that a new display on the military history of the United States at the Smithsonian makes mention of the Spanish contributions in several texts of the display. HispanicLinks, one of the oldest weekly publications in DC. dedicated to Hispanic issues, carried an article on our activities. In addition, a tour that I set up with the National Council of La Raza brought us in contact with a DC. based radio station. The result is that 22 Spanish language radio stations will be carrying a one-minute interview concerning the mission of TCARA, bringing about awareness of Spanish contributions to the American Revolution to Spanish-speaking listeners.

Many related activities are underway. 1 will do my best to keep CSGA informed. For more information on SHHAR's ongoing activities please go to: or call me directly, 714-894-8161.


Washington, D.C. – Today the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI) announced their theme for the Hispanic Heritage Month events as being, Leadership for America’s Future. 

Leadership for America’s Future reflects CHCI’s mission of developing the next generation of Latino leaders.  As the fastest-growing population, it’s not enough to celebrate our arts, our culture and traditions.  It’s also important to be in a position to lead and effect change so our Hispanic issues are integrated into the larger fabric of this beloved nation.  Through CHCI’s award-winning internships and fellowships, we are doing just that -- preparing our future leaders, America’s future leaders,” said CHCI Chair and California Congresswoman Grace Napolitano .  

Each year CHCI asks young artists between the ages of 15 to 25 across the country to submit their creative and original artwork representing the CHCI’s chosen theme.  The Annual Hispanic Heritage Month Art Selection provides the winning young artist with the opportunity to attend all the week’s events in Washington, D.C.  Their chosen artwork will be displayed at all the events and receive national recognition.  

CONTACT:  Laura Tellez, (202) 543-1771

Latinos In Information Sciences and Technology Association (LISTA) celebrated its National Technology Achievers Awards Gala Dinner on June 29th, 2005 at the Jacob Javits Convention Center at C3 Expo in New York

Over six hundred Latino technology professionals, government officials, business entrepreneurs attended the Gala event to celebrate and honor the leadership and contributions distinguished Hispanic Americans are making in various technology sectors. Corporate partners were also recognized for their continual commitment to the Hispanic community.

Recipients of the National Latino Achievers Awards who have made significant, positive contributions to the Hispanic community included Tyrone Taborn – Chairman & CEO, Career Communications Group, who received the Chair Award. Susan Whiting – President & CEO, Nielsen Media Research  “Corporate Visionary of the Year”.  John Villamil EVP & CIO Aspira CIO of the Year, Magda Yrizarry – VP of Diversity for Verizon was the proud recipient of the “Corporate Citizen Award” and Felipe Alvarez, COO Con Edison Communications – “Man of the Year 2005”.

Also honored  that evening were Ray Moya Argent Associates, Rafael LeClerc New York Board of Education, Gutavo Cardenas NBC 4 & Telemundo 47, and Harold Martinez American Latino TV. 

The event was hosted by Natalia Cruz- Co-Anchor, Noticiero 47 Telemundo and Monica Morales – reporter, NBC News 4. The Gala featured distinguished keynote speakers from the Hispanic business and political communities which included Commissioner Guillermo Linares who delivered a Proclamation from the Mayor of New York Michael Bloomberg and Alfredo Placeres USHCC Region 5 Board of director who delivered a proclamation by Governor George Pataki.

Sponsoring this momentous event this year were: C3 Expo, Prudential Financial, Hispanic Engineer Magazine, Alterego, Staples, Con Edison Communications, Diversity Inc. Provident Bank of New Jersey, Applied Micro Devices (AMD), Nielsen Media Research, , NBC New 4 NY, MGM Grand, Telemundo 47, and Verizon, Dewars 12, CCG Media, ACP Consulting, Argent Associates, DTM, American Latino TV and HITN .

LISTA’s New Beginnings

Globalization of both technology and markets has driven home the conclusion that companies have greater strength through mutual partnerships and relationships. This conclusion is reflection of business realities. LISTA has initiated collaborative alliances with its corporate sponsors, which will reach across markets, geography and political boundaries to expand technology application and capitalize on business opportunities.

LISTA brings together the expertise, innovation and know-how of companies from various fields and locations to create a wide range of social and professional initiatives.  These powerful strategic alliances will provide connections, resources, & opportunities within a supportive environment to the Latino community and members of the LISTA organization. 

LISTA’s goal is to empower all Latino’s to achieve unimagined possibilities and transformations through technology, leadership and economic prosperity.  

Contact: Phyllis Shelton, Public Relations Director
Phone: 866-286-6038


U.S. Army P.F.C. Javier (Harvey) Contreras

Ceremony held September 9th 2000, on the anniversary of his death.
Killed in action on September 11th, 1944 in Italy.
Presentation of World War II Medals 

Calvary Cemetery, 4201 Whittier Blvd. Los Angeles
Presented by nephew: Frank Xavier Contreras III
Past 23rd District Commander, Veterans of Foreign Wars

We are here to honor a fellow comrade, who paid the ultimate price for his country, 56 years ago.
This person who happens to be one of our own. His name was Javier. B  Contreras. A son, brother, and uncle. He was the youngest of the Contreras family. Javier as born in Hermosillo Mexico, on March 3, 1908. to Franciso Meneses Conreras and Camen Bojorques Contreras. Our grandfather passed away 2 months before Javier's birth, so he never had the privilege of seeing his son. Our grandmother raised 5 children by her self. I remember my father telling me how hard times were. How they loved their Mother for what she had given them. The family came to the USA in the early 1900.

As a young man Javier worked at the Barbara Ann Bakery. He lived with out grandmother until her death in 1940. That was the day my father told me that it seemed their would had come to an end. After my grandmother died. Javier went to live with his brother, Carlos. He lived with Carlos for about 2 years. Until he entered the service. He was inducted into the Army in 1942. Going to camp Roberts CA for his basic training. his M.O.S. was a  baker. My cousin Rob stated that Javier fitted right in with the other recruits. He was older than the average inductee so they called him pops.

He excelled on the firing range and made marksmen. They assigned him to duty in Europe. In the infantry behind enemy lines. He was in the invasion of Sicily, the main battle for Italy on September 9, 1943. on July 11, 1944 He received the bronze star for his heroic achievement in action near Terricciola Italy. Somewhere in Italy on September 11, 1944 Javier was killed in action

I remember my father telling me about the day his brother died. My Father said on the day Javier was killed, he heard his brother cry out his name, and my father knew his little brother was gone. My father had an empty feeling in his soul. 

On September 28, 1944 our family was notified that Javier was killed in action my uncle Carlos received the Western Union. As my cousin Maria said, "A blanket of sadness came over their home, my uncle Carlos had a small one star banner that he had kept in the window until the end of the war. that banner not only said that we had we had a solder in the family, but the Contperas family was in support of the war effort. My father, uncle and Aunt all worked in the defense plants.

Our country owes their gratitude to the veterans who served and gave their lives for our country. I would also like to say thank you and welcome home to my cousin Rob who served in the Pacific during WWII.

I would also like to thank my cousins Maria and Rob for their help with the information about our uncle Javier.

Now at this time i would like to recognize the medals that were awarded to P.F.C. Javier B. Conteras U.S. Army.

1.Bronze Star Medal
2.Purple Heart Medal
3.Good Conduct Medal
4.American Campaign Medal
5.European-African-Middle Eastern Medal
6.WWII Victory Medal
7.Honorable Service Lapel WWII Button
8.Combat infantryman Badge

Mr. Carlos Contreras
1455 Easter AVE Losal

The secretary of war desires me to express his deep regret that your brother pvt first class Harvey J. Contreras was killed in action on Eleven Sept. in Italy Letter Fallows= 
J. A. Ulio the Adjutant General. 
Mr. Carlos Contreras 
1455 Eastern Avenue 
Los Angeles 33, California

Dear Mr. Contreras:

Through official channels of our Government information has been received that your brother, Harvey J. Contreras, has given his life in defense of our county.

As Chief Executive I express to you the deepest sympathy of the City of Los Angeles and its citizens in you bereavement. A greatful community will forever honor your brother for his supreme sacrifice on the alter of freedom

                                  Respectfully yours,


Noncitizen soldiers: the quandaries of foreign-born troops
By Patrik Jonsson | Correspondent of The Christian Science Monitor, July 05, 2005 

RALEIGH, N.C. – Stuck in the Iraqi desert, fighting a war for a country not yet his, US Army Sgt. Leopoldo Escartin and other troops at Camp Dogwood hung a bit of home outside their desert-tan tent: the tricolor Mexican flag. Making up about 7 percent of America's active fighting force, immigrants with green cards - Mexicans the largest group among them - are risking their lives not just for advancement within the Army, but for a leg up on the road to US citizenship. As America celebrated its 229th year of independence this weekend, immigrants offered their own breed of patriotic sacrifice, and their numbers are rising even as the Army has struggled to meet recruiting goals.

Their service is steeped in pride, but also in the paradoxes of allegiance inherent in serving under a foreign flag. "If I die over there, I'm not even dying for my own country," says Sergeant Escartin, who is based at Fort Bliss, Texas.

To the public, the role of immigrant soldiers is equally complicated: Even as the nation honors their exemplary service, there is ambivalence over how big a role noncitizens should play. Even the Declaration of Independence, in its litany of complaints about England, railed against the use of "foreign mercenaries." Today, the notion that America may be, in effect, hiring foreigners to do its dirty work, is an ethical quandary exaggerated by the quiet loosening of requirements - and increasing of benefits - for immigrants who will shoulder rifles for Uncle Sam.

"There are many stories ... about young men and women who signed up knowing that they would eventually gain their citizenship, who were subsequently killed," says Charles Peña, a defense-policy analyst at the libertarian Cato Institute. "The question is: Was their ultimate sacrifice worthwhile?"

Recognizing the growing importance of immigrants in an Army that has struggled to meet its recruiting goals, the government is hastening citizenship for those who serve in the Armed Forces long term. There were 28,000 immigrant soldiers five years ago; that number has climbed to 39,000 today, not counting the thousands of foreign contractors hired since 9/11. So far, 59 immigrant casualties have been granted posthumous citizenship - and a new rule allows their families to use the deceased as a sponsor for their own residency papers. Even illegal immigrants who enter the forces under false pretenses have a chance at legal residency if they see combat.

"There's very few of us [Americans] ... who really want to go out and fight, and it's a smaller number today than ever in the past," says Max Boot, a defense-policy expert at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, who has proposed a foreign "Freedom Legion" that would secure citizenship for foreign nationals fighting for the US, while helping the Armed Forces meet recruitment goals. Tapping into other cultures, he says, would "help the recruiting and it would bring some great people to the United States."

Some generals say that increasing the foreign presence in American ranks could dilute troops' sense of unity and common purpose. Yet many observers say foreign volunteers tend to be exemplary in the line of duty, and units of mostly Hispanic fighters are doing some of the heavy lifting in Iraq.

"[Foreign-born fighters] identify with the ideals of the United States and they are willing to fight and protect those ideals, even before they've secured all the liberties of citizenship," says Christopher Bentley, a senior Department of Homeland Security (DHS) spokesman.

In part, that's because the military offers a happy end to a classic immigrant story, even as an average of two soldiers a day die overseas: Work hard, sacrifice, and let faith and toil bring their own rewards. At the same time, some parents of fallen immigrant soldiers blame their children's deaths on Army recruiters.

"There's a long tradition of immigrants helping the United States ... yet all the time not knowing where to place their allegiance," says Nestor Rodriguez, director of the Center for Immigration Research in Houston. "It's hard for parents, too, because they bring these soldiers here as young children, and when the worst thing happens, they question themselves: 'Did we do the right thing in coming here?' "

OATH: Hector Bolly became a US citizen last Wednesday.

Recent naturalization ceremonies in El Paso and Atlanta included dozens of soldiers. Escartin, who emigrated from Mexico City when he was 12, became a citizen inside the El Paso convention center on Wednesday. Over 7,000 foreign-born military grunts are naturalized each year, processed through a special immigration office in Nebraska in one-fourth the time required for a regular application.

"Americans sometimes take it for granted what they've got," says Escartin. "It's all pretty much there for [American kids], and that's why we try harder, because it's not given to us."

In a country where some are skeptical of immigration, yet most are hesitant to reinstitute the draft, ethical questions abound over immigrants' role in the Army - chiefly, perhaps, the idea of dying for a flag that is not one's own, compelled by opportunities for advancement. With thousands of immigrants in Iraq and elsewhere, the US, critics say, is outsourcing its war.

Though the British still have their Nepalese Ghurkas and the French their Foreign Legion, critics say that for the US to hire more foreigners harks back to the Hessian auxiliaries who once fought American colonists on England's behalf. "It is pragmatic ... but it does reflect in the long run poorly on America to hire foreigners to do our fighting," says Charles Moskos, a sociologist at Northwestern University.

Related Stories06/01/04
Is it mercenary to join military for perks, not war?

Immigration reform would help warm Mexicans to US 'melting pot'

For immigrant soldiers, however, the ethical lines aren't always so clear, even as they fly flags other than the Stars and Stripes, and pass up burgers and apple pie for the comfort foods of their homeland. Mr. Bentley at the DHS says most immigrant soldiers have been in the US since they were young, have grown up reciting the Pledge of Allegiance in school, and have acquired the language and mannerisms of Yanks. Many already feel like Americans; citizenship only makes it official.

"I've been here for a long time, I feel like this is my home," says Spc. Hector Bolly, a Mexican national who received his citizenship in El Paso on Wednesday. "If you think about it, you'd rather be in the US than Mexico - it's a better place over here, and when you're a citizen, it's easier to become whatever you want to become."


July 21, 2005
Contact: Jeff Schrade (202)224-9093
Sent by Willie Perez 
(Washington, DC) Seventy-five years ago today, July 21, 1930, President Herbert Hoover signed an executive order which created a single federal agency to deal with veterans, combining various veterans programs into one organization. Seventy-five years later, that action has earned the praise of the U.S. Senate.

"Today, in the U.S. Senate, I have introduced a resolution honoring those who have served in, and those who have been served by, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and its predecessor agency," said U.S. Senator Larry Craig (R-Idaho). "As Chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, I am honored to offer public recognition of this auspicious anniversary and, more importantly, the fine work being done every day by over 237,000 VA employees."

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is the second largest federal employer, behind the U.S. Department of Defense. The VA provides health care to more than 5 million veterans and operates 157 hospitals and more than 850 community-based clinics, as well as 120 national cemeteries. There are more than 24 million veterans living today in the United States.

"The VA has a unique place in history having administered one of the most significant pieces of legislation ever enacted in the Nation’s history, the ‘Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944,’ better known as the GI Bill of Rights. This legislation," Craig said, "revolutionized American society after World War II by providing educational opportunity to an entire generation of Americans." 

Earlier in the day, Vice President Dick Cheney and Secretary of Veterans Affairs Jim Nicholson kicked off what they termed a year-long celebration of the VA Department’s 75th anniversary. Meeting at the historic Daughters of the American Revolution Constitution Hall in Washington, DC, the Vice President honored all veterans, and paid special tribute to 103-year-old World War I veteran Lloyd Brown who attended the event, and 107-year-old Howard Ramsey, who lives in Oregon.

"At the time this American soldier [Ramsey] was born, the flag of the United States had 45 stars, and William McKinley was President," Cheney said. 

The Vice President was serving in Congress in 1988 when Veterans Affairs was elevated to a cabinet level status. "On the day he signed the bill, President Ronald Reagan reminded the country that ‘America's debt to those who would fight for her defense doesn't end the day the uniform comes off.’" 

Secretary Nicholson, himself a Vietnam veteran, said that the nation is living up to the mandate President Reagan laid down, telling the crowd that no other country in the world approaches the United States in supporting its military veterans. "Not one." 

Jeff Schrade, Communications Director
U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs
Senator Larry Craig (R-Idaho), Chairman
412 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC  20510
Direct: 202-224-9093  Cell: 202-680-9552  Fax: 202-228-5655


PHOENIX, AZ. – 25 July 2005 – A strategic alliance between the Arizona Fathers and Families Coalition, Inc. (“AZFFC”) and BSI International, Inc. (“BSI”) has resulted in the creation of a Practitioners Fatherhood Roundtable.  BSI’s international quarterly male parenting journal – IN SEARCH OF FATHERHOOD® Forum For and About the Fathers of the World will feature the first Practitioners Fatherhood Roundtable in its “Legacy”/Summer 2005 issue which will become available for distribution beginning on 31 July 2005.

“I presented the concept of a ‘Practitioners Fatherhood Roundtable’ to the Managing Editor of BSI’s international quarterly male parenting journal in January 2005.  The Practitioners Fatherhood Roundtable is one of a number of projects that BSI and AZFFC are collaborating on.  Fathers in the Millennium throughout our global village are confronted with critical issues and challenges that are impediments to their ability to move their families forward and shape the minds and souls of their children.  If we are going to aggressively and effectively address and remove these impediments, we will need to bring everyone to the table.  That is why I feel it is necessary that Fatherhood Practitioners be brought to the table.  And it is also the reason that I selected BSI’s international quarterly male parenting journal as the vehicle to accomplish this,” explained James C. Rodriguez, M.S.W. the President and Chief Executive Officer of AZFFC.  

So, who will be featured in the Practitioners Fatherhood Roundtable?  Mr. Jeffrey P. Guillory, an Education Specialist in the Office of the Vice President for Equity and Diversity at Washington State University in Pullman, Washington; Jeffrey Leving, Esquire, a nationally acclaimed Father’s Rights lawyer based in Chicago, Illinois, a member of the National Board of Directors of Arizona Fathers and Families Coalition, Inc. and founder of the Fatherhood Educational Institute; Michael J. Lindsay, Ph.D., an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Psychology at The University of Texas at Arlington, a lecturer at the Texas Wesleyan School of Law, and adjunct faculty for the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges in Reno, Nevada; and Gary Wieser, Esquire who is the legal counsel AZFFC and provides free assistance for fathers referred by AZFFC for a one-time consultation. 

Post Office Box 3885, Philadelphia, PA  19146
D.A. Sears Managing Editor  (215) 878-0848; (215) 292-8522  

James C. Rodriguez, M.S.W.
Arizona Families and Fathers Coalition, Inc.

Hispanic Growth Surge Fueled by Births in U.S.

By D'Vera CohnWashington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, June 9, 2005; Page A01
Sent by Howard Shorr

Hispanics accounted for about half the growth in the U.S. population since 2000, according to a Census Bureau report to be released today that indicates the nation's largest minority group is increasing its presence even faster than in the previous decade.

In another contrast to the 1990s, births have overtaken immigration this decade as the largest source of Hispanic growth.

The new census figures paint a portrait of a Hispanic population dominated by the young: Half are under age 27. By comparison, half of non-Hispanic whites are over 40. That reflects a demographic divide that could have broad implications, experts say. And the speedy growth of the Hispanic population beyond the enclaves of the past could put their concerns into a more national spotlight.

"It's going to have profound effects on America. They are no longer regionally concentrated in places like California and New York," said Harry P. Pachon, president of the Tomas Rivera Policy Institute, a California think tank. "There are more Hispanics in Cook County, Chicago, than in Arizona or Colorado or New Mexico. . . . The major significance is that it's a national presence."

In July 2004, Hispanics numbered 41.3 million out of a national population of nearly 293.7 million. They have the fastest growth rate among the nation's major racial and ethnic groups. In the 1990s, they accounted for 40 percent of the country's population increase. From 2000 to 2004, that figure grew to 49 percent.

The census report does not include local details, but previous figures have shown Hispanics accounting for about a third of the Washington area's growth from 2000 to 2003 and making up 9 percent of the regional population. The Brookings Institution has dubbed Washington an area of Hispanic "hyper-growth" and noted that the District has a higher share of prosperous Hispanics than the rest of the country.

Over the past two decades, the Hispanic population has swelled largely because of immigrants. Although immigration continues at a fast pace, the mix changed this decade, and new immigrants are now outnumbered by babies born in the United States and overwhelmingly likely to remain here. One in five children under 18 is Hispanic, according to the census figures.

"It's due to the settling of immigrants having children here," said Jeffrey S. Passel of the Pew Hispanic Institute. But, he said, "over half of Hispanic adults are immigrants. It takes time for that to play itself out, but by the time today's children grow up, that will have changed."

The future of those young people has become the topic of a debate among advocates and scholars, with some noting that Hispanics already have lower average education levels than other Americans and that their children could face a future at the bottom. Others contend that Hispanics will move up the ladder just as previous generations of immigrants have, citing the example of Italians who arrived here with little education.

Beatriz Otero, founder of CentroNia, a D.C.-based organization that sponsors early childhood education, a charter school and after-school programs, said bilingual education programs were not designed for today's Hispanic children who enroll in her programs knowing some English but not having complete command of it.

"The classic is the mom who immigrates here at 25 and had a 7-year-old. That 7-year-old went through the school system, had a baby at 19 and dropped out. Grandma may not speak English, mother has a mix, and what's the baby getting?" she said. "What we were designing 15 years ago in bilingual education programs, we are beginning to realize it's got to be a different design now. I'm not sure yet what that is."

Experts have predicted the rise of the Hispanic voting bloc for years, but it has not happened. The Census Bureau recently reported that 47 percent of Hispanic citizens voted in last year's presidential election, compared with 60 percent of blacks and 67 percent of non-Hispanic whites. Part of the reason might be that Hispanics are younger and poorer than other voters, factors that are linked to lower turnout. Hispanic voting power also is lessened because millions of them are illegal immigrants.

For Hispanics who do vote, political concerns will reflect the fact that they are more likely to be married and have children than other Americans and less likely to be in older age groups anxious about the future of Social Security, said Brookings Institution demographer William H. Frey.

"They very much are going to be interested in children's issues and in schools and anything that involves the promise of a middle-class life to their children in the next generation," Frey said. "To many, what happens in their 65-plus years are very much on the back burner."

Although the Pew Hispanic Center recently reported that competition between new and established immigrants is one reason Hispanics have seen a two-year decline in wages, Rodolfo de la Garza, a political science professor at Columbia University, does not think that they will line up behind proposals to restrict new arrivals.

"Latinos may not be pro-immigration . . . but they don't want discrimination," he said.

Hispanic population growth has fed some local tensions near sites where day laborers gather and debates over whether government benefits should be available to illegal immigrants. But it has also helped spur a cultural change in which young people grow up in a more diverse world than their parents did.

"Interracial, interethnic dating isn't even a question," de la Garza said. "It's hard for people over 40 to really understand that. And people my age -- I'm 60 -- people were killed for that."

Births to foreign-born mothers on the rise, study finds 

David B. Caruso,  Associated Press July 7, 2005 
Sent by Howard Shorr 

NEW YORK -— Nearly 23 percent of all people born in the U.S. in 2002 had a foreign-born mother — the largest percentage since a wave of immigration more than 90 years ago, a study of birth records by a private nonprofit group shows.

The Center for Immigration Studies said the country has not seen as large a share of its children born to immigrants since 1910, when the number reached 22 percent as shiploads of Italians and eastern Europeans crowded America's port cities.

This time, Hispanics are the driving force, according to the study being released today. Nearly 1 in 10 births in the United States in 2002 were to women born in Mexico. Hispanics, as a whole, accounted for 59 percent of all births by immigrants.

The boom in second-generation Americans is bound to have an effect on the country that is equal, if not greater, than the sea-changes of the early 20th century, said Steven Camarota, the Center for Immigration Studies researcher who wrote the report.

He said the influx of immigrants in the early 1900s was curtailed significantly by a tightening of entry rules and two world wars, and that no such cutoff appears imminent now.

"It just tells you that we are headed into uncharted territory,'' Camarota said.

The Center for Immigration Studies, which favors restrictions on immigration, compiled the data from birth records collected by The National Center for Health Statistics. The records include both legal and illegal immigrants, but do not indicate where a child's father was born.

Children of immigrant mothers accounted for about 915,800 of the 4 million births in the United States in 2002. By comparison, 228,486 of the 3.7 million births in the U.S. in 1970 were to foreign-born mothers, or about 6 percent.

Camarota said the growing size of immigrant communities could slow their assimilation into American culture and make it more difficult "to have a cohesiveness of national vision.''

Pro-immigration groups rejected that argument.

"For 400 years, immigrants have come to our shores, worked hard, had families and built the most successful nation in history,'' said Frank Sharry, executive director of the National Immigration Forum.

"The notion that we are going to be the one group that does not become American is ridiculous,'' said Lisa Navarrete, a spokeswoman for the National Council of La Raza, a Hispanic advocacy group.

The push of immigrant communities into places that have not previously dealt with waves of newcomers, however, may create some temporary tensions, said William H. Frey, visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution.

The greatest changes in recent years have come in places like Gwinnett County, Ga., a part of metropolitan Atlanta that has seen its Hispanic population soar over the past decade. In 1990, about 9.3 percent of all children born in the county had a mother born outside the United States. By 2002, that number had jumped to 41.3 percent.

"There are some communities and state governments that will have challenges,'' Frey said, including retooling their school systems to deal with students who do not hear much English at home.

Fifteen counties in the United States reported having more than half of all births to an immigrant mom.

The leader was the borough of Queens, in New York City, with 67.7 percent. Other top homes to second-generation Americans included Los Angeles, with 56.3 percent, Miami-Dade County, with 58.9 percent, and Orange County, Calif., with 54.3 percent.

Great day to be American
By Barbara Yost
The Arizona Republic, July, 5, 2005

There were times when Fadil Beqiri didn't think he would see the day he could call himself an American.  But on Monday he and wife Suzana took an oath of allegiance to the United States, waved the Stars and Stripes and sang along to America the Beautiful.

"It's a good feeling," Beqiri (pronounced buh CHEER ee) said, ex-pressing the sentiments of 290 immigrants who became U.S. citizens in the gymnasium at South Mountain Community College before an arch of red, white and blue star-spangled balloons.

The Phoenix ceremony is known as the Fiesta of Independence. The new citizens, who swore to "renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty," represented 65 countries of origin. The greatest number, 71, came from Mexico. Vietnam had 23; Bosnia Herzegovina. 20; Yugoslavia, 12; Taiwan, 10; People's Republic of China and United Kingdom, nine each; Canada, India and Romania, eight each.

"It's a great day to be an American," said guest speaker Alfonso Aguilar, chief of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services' Office of Citizen-ship. "But I'll bet it's an even better day to be-come one."


Latino Power?
By Roberto Suro in the Washington Post 
Roberto Suro is director of the Pew Hispanic Center, a nonpartisan   research organization supported by the Pew Charitable Trusts,  June 26, 2005
Politicians and the news media seem entranced by Latino voters. The chairmen of both national parties addressed the annual convention of the National Association of Latino Elected Officials, which wrapped up its annual convention in Puerto Rico yesterday. President Bush appeared before the National Hispanic Prayer Breakfast earlier this month, and much of the buzz about the next Supreme Court nomination centers on whether a name with a lot of vowels will get sent up.
 Meanwhile the Democratic National Committee has produced a 60-second radio ad in Spanish trying to mobilize Latino voters against Bush's proposed changes in Social Security. "Call your member of Congress and tell him or her not to privatize Social Security and threaten the future of Hispanic retirees and their families," the ad says. The White House, for its part, has dispatched Anna Escobedo Cabral, a Mexican American who is the treasurer of the United States, to tout the administration's Social Security ideas.
 All this public wooing, and a good deal of behind-the-scenes strategizing, stems from a simple fact: The number of Latino votes in last November's election jumped 23 percent over those cast in the 2000 balloting. That was more than twice the growth rate for non-Hispanic whites, even though the election was marked by higher-than-normal turnout in a polarized white electorate. Moreover, all the trend lines point to continued growth in the Latino population in the future.
 Normally, in an article of this sort, this would be the place to deploy the "sleeping giant" metaphor, hailing the rise of a powerful new voting bloc that's changing the American political landscape. But the Latino population isn't a cliche; it can't be so easily characterized. The rapid increase in its size has not produced a corresponding growth in its political clout -- and won't for some time to come.
 Consider these contrasting pieces of information. The census report that made headlines a few weeks ago showed that Hispanics (that's the Census Bureau's official term) accounted for half of all the population growth in the United States over the past four years. But another, less heralded, census document showed that Hispanics accounted for only one-tenth of the increase in all votes cast in 2004 compared with the 2000 election. The growth of the Latino population as a whole may be gigantic, but only one out of every four Latinos added to the U.S. population is an added voter.
 That's why in close elections, politicians will focus their ardor on traditional groups, such as unions, churches or other ethnic groups, that can more effectively bring voters to the polls. Cultivating a solid Hispanic constituency will require a lengthy courtship.
 True, Latinos have made gains in elected positions, but the advances have been relatively modest. The first two Hispanic U.S. senators were elected last year, and the number of Hispanics in the House edged up to 27.
 But the Latinos who gain national prominence still tend to be the ones who have it bestowed upon them by white political patrons, such as President Bush's Attorney General Alberto Gonzales or President Bill Clinton's cabinet officers Henry Cisneros and Bill Richardson.
 There are two reasons why Latino population growth hasn't translated directly into political clout, according to a new report by the Pew Hispanic Center, a nonpartisan research organization where I work.
 First, a lot of Latinos aren't U.S. citizens. A third of the Latino population increase between 2000 and 2004 came from an influx of adult immigrants who cannot vote here. Under current law, most never will. About two-thirds of the new arrivals have come here illegally. The rest, who are legal immigrants, are facing backlogs and processing delays that have slowed the pace of naturalizations since 9/11.
 The other big source of population increases for Latinos comes from new births. Nearly a third of the Hispanic population growth since 2000 consists of people not eligible to vote because they are under 18 years of age. The vast majority of these individuals are native-born U.S. citizens, but it will be a long time before they are old enough to vote. About 80 percent of them will still be too young in 2008.
 The impact of these two demographic factors becomes evident when you compare how black and Hispanic population numbers translate into numbers of voters. In 2004, Hispanics outnumbered blacks by nearly 5 million in the population count, but blacks had nearly 7.5 million more eligible voters. To put it another way, eligible voters made up 39 percent of the Hispanic population compared with 64 percent of blacks.
 This demographic calculus calls for some caution when assessing the Latinopopulation's impact on American politics. Last month, when Antonio Villaraigosa became the first Latino mayor of Los Angeles since 1872, commentators rushed to proclaim a new era. "Latino Power," declared the headline on Newsweek's May 30 cover story, complete with a sleeping giant metaphor. Villaraigosa was credited with generating a record turnout among Latinos, but given the low baseline, it wasn't hard. When it comes to counting people in almost any category, Latinos break their own records every day.
 Villaraigosa's victory does not signal the arrival of a new ethnic colossus striding across the political landscape. Rather, it was a measure of widespread voter dissatisfaction with the incumbent, James K. Hahn, and of Villaraigosa's ability to draw votes from a variety of non-Hispanic constituencies. Latinos produced a quarter of the vote, according to Los Angeles Times exit polling. Sure, that was a record and by taking 84 percent of those votes, Villaraigosa helped assure himself of a landslide. But, Hispanics make up half of the city's population. So, even when a popular Latino is running for office in a city where Hispanics are well organized and have elected many representatives to other posts, low numbers of voters cut Latino power in half.
 Demographics aren't the only factors diluting the Hispanic presence at the polls. Last year, even though both major political parties, unions and nonpartisan groups all targeted Latinos with voter registration drives, Hispanics failed to fulfill their potential for political participation.
 Even among eligible voters, only 58 percent of Latinos were registered last year and that was significantly fewer than either whites (75 percent) or blacks (69 percent). Actual turnout in the 2004 presidential election also was lower for Hispanics than for other groups, albeit by a lesser margin. If Latinos had registered and voted at the same rate as whites of the same age, they would have cast an additional 2.7 million ballots, increasing their tally of 7.6 million votes by 36 percent.
 So part of the reason the metaphorical Latino giant is not a bigger player in the political game is because it is still half asleep.
 That's why fears among some Americans that Latinos are about to "take over" are overblown. The Latino presence is more and more visible on our streets and in our neighborhoods, but less visible in the political process. About half of all whites, even counting kids and immigrants, cast ballots last November, meaning it took two white residents to generate one voter. But because of a combination of lack of citizenship, a big youth population and voter apathy, only one-fifth of Hispanics went to the polls in 2004. In other words, it took five Latino residents to produce one voter.
 One side effect of this is that the average Latino voter doesn't have the same profile -- or the same interests -- as the average Latino resident.
 As with all racial and ethnic groups, registration and voting rates among Hispanics increase with age, education and income. But there is another factor unique to Hispanics; a higher share of voters were born here than in the Latino population as a whole. That means Hispanic voters and non-voters do not necessarily even speak the same language. In the general Hispanic population, the share of households where only Spanish is spoken is three times higher than among Hispanic voters.
 So it should come as no surprise that when it comes to matters of policy -- on immigration, trade or bilingual education -- Latino voters have a different point of departure than non-voting Latinos.
 Two recent issues exposed this divergence. Despite intense lobbying by the governments of several nations that have contributed millions of people to the U.S. Latino immigrant population, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus voted overwhelmingly in May to oppose the Central American Free Trade Agreement. The caucus, which is made up of Hispanic Democrats, opted for party loyalty and the perceived economic interests of the largely working-class Latino voters who put them in office over ethnic bonds to other countries.
 Similarly, when Mexican President Vicente Fox made remarks widely viewed as disparaging to blacks a few weeks ago, one of the quickest condemnations came from the National Council of La Raza. The nation's largest Latino civil rights organization hewed to core principles and long-standing alliances with black groups rather than cover for the leader of a country that is by far the largest source of new immigrants.
 These are signs of Hispanic politics taking root here. Hispanic political power is growing, just not as fast as one might expect from the population numbers. Moreover, as Latinos become a more prominent political presence, what we hear from them may not be what people expect.
 Author's e-mail:

  Hispanic kids go 'home' for summer
Byline:  Deborah Lynn Blumberg Contributor to The Christian Science
Sent by Howard Shorr 

(NEW YORK)Aroni Torres, a New York City high school student and Dominican immigrant, enjoys learning English. Part of him wants to connect more to his own language and culture though, especially in school.  But even though Latinos are now the second-largest segment of the school-age population, Latino culture in school consists mostly of ethnic food festivals or dance assemblies. Some teens are even chastised for speaking their native Spanish in class, education experts say.   So to stay connected to his language and culture, every summer and Christmas break Aroni moves in with his grandmother, who lives in Santo Domingo. There, he passes afternoons speaking Spanish with his abuela and exploring the country with childhood friends.  

"Over there I feel good speaking  my language," he says. "Here, you're more embarrassed to speak in Spanish."   For many families  like the Torreses, sending children abroad for school breaks is a way to counter what some call a lack  of cultural and linguistic sensitivity in public schools. Students hold on to their heritage and perfect their Spanish by living and often working with family abroad.  While the exact number of students sent abroad is hard to know, anecdotal evidence suggests the practice is widespread, especially for Latino families. For years, upper- to middle-class Hispanics have sent children to relatives in Mexico and the Caribbean to maintain ethnic ties. Now, cheap airfares - and the fact that e-mail provides a way to stay in touch - allow more parents to ship children abroad.   

Latinos in their 20s and 30s say going back helped them form a strong sense of self.   "When I got to college I met so many Latinos trying to 'find their roots,' " says Cesar Chavez, a New York litigation analyst who  grew up in East Los Angeles and spent every school vacation with family in  Mexico until he was 15. "I never understood the need for that. My confidence and assuredness about my ethnicity is a direct  result of having stayed there so much. I never needed to 'learn' what it is to be Mexican; it was just a natural part of me. 

Recent immigrants and second- and third-generation youths who engage in this kind of visit also nurture relationships that might be lost otherwise, says researcher and education specialist Angela Valenzuela of the University of Texas at Austin. "This is one strategy parents pursue in the absence of a multicultural or multilingual experience in school," she says. "[Children] solidify those relationships that are so crucial and break down when language becomes a barrier in one's own family."  

Latino students are the immigrant group most likely to preserve their parents' linguistic legacy, but less than half of them are bilingual in today's schools. They are also the majority of ESL students. In 2001, almost 3 million US students were enrolled in programs for English language learners; almost 75 percent hailed from Spanish-speaking nations.  

"Public education systems are not doing a very effective job in dealing with and accommodating this very significant demographic change," says Charles Kamasaki, senior vice president of Raza, a leading Hispanic advocacy group. Schools with big Latino populations could better serve them by adding books popular in the Spanish-speaking world, such as "Don Quixote," to reading lists, Mr. Kamasaki says.  

But such accommodations are few, so families have taken matters into their own hands. More than a quarter of the families served by ASPIRA, a national nonprofit that serves Latino youths, send children abroad during school breaks, says Hilda Crespo, ASPIRA's vice president for public policy, and more would if they could afford to. "They do it not just for the cultural aspect," she says, "but for the language as well."  

In a study of immigrant children in Florida and southern California, researchers Alejandro Portes and Ruben Rumbaut found that children who were fluent bilinguals early in high school had much higher educational aspirations and self-esteem three years later. Bilingualism may also improve communication between immigrant youths and their parents and so reduce intergenerational conflict.  

Bilingual education has largely been eliminated in California. Proposition 227, a 1998 ballot initiative, replaced bilingual programs with English-only instruction. Under 227, parents can sign waivers to keep children in bilingual classes; in some schools, 100 percent of parens signed. Proponents tout the proposition's benefits: "The results have been very positive," says Ron Unz, author of Prop. 227 and head of One Nation/One California, an organization that supports English-only instruction. "Latino students have doubled their academic performance."  Mr. Unz, who has spearheaded campaigns to dismantle bilingual programs in Arizona, Colorado, and Massachusetts, calls bilingual education a break with the past; until recently, he says, immigrants were  taught only in English. "That seemed to work out pretty well," he says.  Unz wouldn't be surprised if, after two or three generations, most Latino youths speak English only, he says. 

Recent young immigrants struggle to read and write in Spanish as they mature, even though they still speak the language.  "A lot of Italians in this country don't speak much Italian," he points out, "and maybe they say, 'Oh, I wish I knew more,' but they don't seem to be that upset about it. Most immigrant Latino families come from homes where everyone watches Spanish TV and listens to Spanish radio." 

Many Latino students nationwide report feeling disconnected from their language and culture, though. Carlos Mantinez, a Dominican classmate of Torres's says he looks forward to school breaks in the Dominican Republic - it's a treat to spend time in a place he feels comfortableconversing in Spanish, he says. "Here in school, I speak mainly English," he says. "When I'm in my country, I'm speaking Spanish and I'm happy."     

Inspiring, heartwarming, intelligent, and humorous, this special story collection celebrates Latino life and community across the country. Whether your roots are in Mexico, Central or South America, the Caribbean or the Iberian Peninsula, the stories in this volume will remind you of the pride, hope and joy of being part of the Latino community in America. With stories that explore culture and identity, and that celebrate families, spirituality, living in two languages, crossing borders and overcoming life’s challenges, each chapter focuses on the uniqueness of Latino experiences and traditions.   

Sent by Margarita Velez, whose story is included.

Available at all major bookstores and online retail outlets. To order direct, 800-441-5569  $12.95  Contact:
Susan Sánchez-Casal at



For the most part we are creatures of habit. We fall into lethargy evoked by idle thoughts, wishful thinking, and capricious flight of the imagination. We shun the discipline of constructive thought, hold in contempt the doctrines of restraint, hence we become automations, mechanical things. Finally it becomes a conditioned reflex, or process, a fixation of habit to which we have fallen prey. It is at this juncture we lose our identity as worthwhile human beings. Here lies the fatal turning point of disintegration. We lamentably isregard that great dowry bequeathed to us, the element of time. The present is the meeting ground, the breathing spell between rounds. When I am free I will want to forget this experience, but God deliver me from ever forgetting completely. For some it is so hard to remember, for me may it be so hard to forget! May the white heat of this hour brand itself within my very soul so that I will remember always. You know, sometimes I look at all these guys around me and wonder what it’s all about. So many of them are lost, and the ironic tragedy is, they don’t know it. They’ve fooled themselves so long that it’s hard for them to accept reality. Who is to blame for it all? Maybe them, and maybe not. Some one Failed somewhere, that’s certain. I never thought I’d  share a portion of my life with them, but I have, and it has given me a more tolerant philosophy toward my fellow man. I have learned that we humans condemn and judge too quickly. Life is like a painting. You can’t judge it until it is completed, and all the colors, light and dark have been mixed. Tomorrow, maybe, we will change those colors to blend with the rainbow. It’s a worthwhile dream, it’s the dream that keeps me going.

Dave Villarreal    


The King and a Bracero Sang a Duet
Andy Porras

Column No. 4074 HISPANIC LINK 05/22/05 Column 2 
Length: 725 words For entertainment section 
Hollywood missed a great opportunity to capture part of the lucrative Hispanic market when it recently aired a TV movie based on the life and times of Elvis Presley.

Or maybe it just didn’t know.

You see, once upon a time, in 1956 in Lubbock, Texas, The King and young bracero Pedro Gómez teamed up for a duet of “Love Me Tender.” The latest flurry of interest in Elvis no doubt brought back memories to the former bracero, if the publicity has reached central Mexico, where Gómez now resides.

Some of the Gómez offspring, who live in Woodland, Calif., were surprised last fall when a bilingual newspaper, CAlifas, published a story based on the unique encounter between Gómez and Presley.

According to Carlos Marentes, of the El Paso-based project Proyecto Bracero, Gómez was on his second contracted year as a contract farm laborer. About 21 years old, he worked alongside his father, Pedro Gómez Domínguez, on a ranch in Levelland, Texas.

At that time Pedro knew some English. His girlfriend, Manuela Rivera, was teaching him little by little, according to Marentes, and she had written down the English lyrics to Elvis’ "Love Me Tender" for Pedro to memorize. By Marentes’ account, Pedro learned and delivered the song just as good as The King himself.

Pedro accompanied his father and other braceros to Lubbock, where they would periodically buy food, visit a barber, and of course, send money back to Mexico. Some of them would attend a movie. The more temerarious would seek a tavern that allowed Mexicans and would drink a few beers before heading back to their labor camps.

“It turned out that the main movie house in Lubbock was showing the film ‘Love Me Tender’ and as a special attraction Elvis would be there live,” said Marentes. “Pedro immediately sought his father's permission to go and see Elvis in person.”

The senior Pedro did not think it was too good of an idea, but still gave his permission, counseling his son to “stay out of trouble” while visiting the West Texas town where Buddy Holly was born.

“The theater was packed and young ladies went hysterical every time they heard Elvis’ name or his voice,” recounted Marentes. “It’s safe to assume that Pedro was probably the only Mexican in attendance, and certainly the only bracero there.” Festive and noisy, the ambiance betrayed the true feeling of a conservative town in the Texas panhandle.

“When Elvis came out from behind the curtain to perform at intermission, a collective roar shook the entire theater and when he greeted the crowd, everyone stood,” Marentes recounted. The applause and the shouting was deafening as the young ladies in the front row were screaming and extending their arms towards their hero, trying to touch him.” Some cried. Several fainted.

Then Elvis called for silence. He asked the crowd if anyone would like to come up and join him in singing the theme song from the film, Marentes continues the story. Pedro waved his arms franticly and screamed, "Yes, I do, I do!" 

The very energy of the crowd forced Pedro onto the stage. Elvis greeted him and asked if he spoke English. The boy nervously answered, ”Little bit!” 

“The young bracero was star-struck. It all seemed like a dream,” said Marentes. ”Elvis asked him a few more questions and when Pedro told him he was a Mexican bracero, some in the crowd began screaming, “Viva Mexico” until finally the entire audience applauded.”

Elvis and Pedro did the song, and what may have been the most bizarre duet in rock and roll history came to pass. The crowd went even wilder as the duo finished their number.

It was total euphoria, Marentes went on. As sheriff’s deputies struggled to rescue Elvis from his admirers, “Pedro was spinning, and he escaped as best he could.”

The young man’s father, waiting across the street from the theater, immediately asked his son, "Is it true you got up on stage to sing?” 

Pedro nodded politely. And like the good son he was, he assured his father he was not violating his bracero contract.

Andy Porras, a native Texan now residing in Sacramento, Calif., is editor and publisher of the bilingual news magazine “CAlifas,” a family enterprise. He may be contacted by e-mail at

Article appeared in Hispanic Link:
Go to Anti-Spanish Legends for more by Andy Porras.

Minority Businesses Booming

According to 2002 Census figures released yesterday, Hispanics continued to own the most companies among minorities: 1.6 million, a 31% increase from 1997.  You may unsubscribe at

Hispanic Business Inc.
425 Pine Ave
Santa Barbara, CA 93117


Latinas going solo
Hispanic women outpacing other groups 
in starting businesses,  
in part because of inequities at work.
By Regan Morris, The New York Times, via Orange County Register 11-19-04

Hispanic women are opening businesses at a rate far higher than the national average, a new study shows.


To entrepreneur Tina Cordova, the reason is obvious: economic desperation. While white women in the work force make about 77 cents to every dollar earned by white men, according to data from the 2000 census, Hispanic women are paid 53 cents.

With numbers like those, Cordova, the president, majority shareholder and chief executive of Queston Construction in Albuquerque, N.M., said it was no wonder that so many Hispanic and other minority women plunge into entrepreneurship.

Steward had owned a construction company, but it failed because it lacked a good administrator, Cordova said. With Cordova's administrative skills and Steward's project-rnanagement experience, the couple decided they had the ingredients for a new company. To learn the ropes, Cordova worked as a laborer on construction sites with Steward and her two carpenters, at first lugging wood and tools but eventually becoming one of the first women in New Mexico to earn a contractor's license. Another challenge was raising money.

She did not know any bankers and was repeatedly turned down for loans. She could not even get a $5,000 loan for a used truck, and instead bought an older one with $1,200 from her savings.

The decision to buy a small fooling company turned their venture around. Cordova started selling new roofs along with the remodeling jobs, and the added profit enabled her to employ Steward full time and buy a property, an office trailer and work space.

Even then, to her great frustration, the bankers would not loosen their purse strings.

Steward helped Cordova master the roofing business, but some people were not convinced that a woman could succeed in construction. She said one potential client told her he would never buy a roof from a woman.

When another customer-asked why the company hadn't sent a man to give an estimate, Cordova told him that she owned the business, was the most educated person in the company and knew just as much about roofing as the men who worked for her. "And it was really bizarre ;because he bought the roof ! from me that day, which rarely ; happens," she said. Even without outside capital, the company flourished and today employs 28 full-time I workers.

Queston still does residential work but now gets most of its business from government contracts - a result of her direct, aggressive marketing. Cordova, who missed just five days of work while battling thyroid cancer six years ago, said her talent lay in turning what appeared to be disadvantages into advantages.

"If I had listened to every-body who told me we wouldn't make it, of course, we wouldn't be here today," she said.

She said entrepreneurs need to be stubborn but should not stick rigidly to business plans.

"I wish I could say I had this business plan, we followed it and everything just fell into place," she said. "That is not true. Because it's more often than not being in the right place at, the right time. I started a business at the right time."

The Orange County Register 11-12-04

Nonprofit shines light on women's success stories

Who: The Center for Women's Business Research is a nonprofit research group based in Washington, D.C. It has provided data on women's business to policy-makers since 1989. 
Some of its recent research:

• Businesses owned by women drive economic health in top metropolitan areas.
• Female business owners are willing to take financial risks. 'Women of color' report:
• Underwritten by Bank of America.
• In California, the number of companies owned by minority women increased by 44 per-cent, to 317,309. Their combined revenue climbed by more than 72 percent, to $42 billion.
• The number of privately held companies that are 51 percent or more owned by minority women rose by 54.6 percent, compared with a 9 percent in-crease in the number of all privately held companies in the United States.
• About 1.4 million companies are owned by minority women in the United States, generating nearly $147 billion in sales. Hispanics accounted for 39 percent of that number, while blacks accounted for 29 per-cent. Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders, who were grouped together, accounted for 29 percent. American Indians and native Alaskans made up about 6 percent, the study said. (The numbers add up to more than 100 percent be-cause some business owners were classified in more than one category.)

Methodology for 'women of color' report: Estimates derived from the Census Bureau's most recent published data in the "1997 Survey of Minority-Owned Business Enterprises" as well as supplemental unpublished census data. The estimates are projections based on a linear model ex-tending 1992-1997 growth into 2004.  Web site: http://www.womensbusinessresearch.orq


Social Security Risk Greater for Hispanics
Source:  San Antonio Express-News June 30, 2005 
Sent by Rafael Ojedo 

Lisa Marie Gomez
Latinos disproportionately benefit from Social Security because they tend to earn less money over their lifetimes, live longer, have larger families and are more likely to suffer a disability than any other racial or ethnic group, according to a study released Tuesday. 

That's why any proposal to reform Social Security that cuts benefits, or replaces it with private investment accounts, has the potential to hit the Latino community hardest, according to the findings of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities in Washington. 

The report, titled "Hispanics and Social Security: The Implications of Reform Proposals," examined various proposals to revamp the current system, which has been in place for more than 70 years. 

Saying that the system's long-range viability is in jeopardy, President Bush has called for allowing younger workers to shift some of their payroll taxes into private investment accounts. Many Democrats oppose such a plan because they believe it would be a first step toward privatizing Social Security. 

"We hope from this report that we will point out in an objective manner why Social Security is so crucial as the safety net for the Latino community as a whole and as a retirement plan for older Latinos," said Fernando Torres-Gil, a co-author of the report and director of the UCLA Center for Policy Research on Aging. 

He also hopes that over coming months and years, Latinos make it a point to understand the proposed changes to Social Security and their potential impact. 

Places with large Hispanic populations such as Los Angeles, Miami, the Rio Grande Valley and San Antonio, which has a Latino population of almost 60 percent, should pay close attention to the various proposals to reform Social Security, the Center found. 

If Social Security doesn't continue to provide a basic safety net for Latinos, the responsibility will fall on others. 

"Those municipalities have to be concerned as to the extent that their elderly Latinos find that their reliance on Social Security becomes tenuous, then those communities will be forced to pick up the slack," Torres-Gil said. 

Andy Hernandez, director of the 21st Century Leadership Center at St. Mary's University, said the kind of changes being proposed to reform Social Security would have a direct impact on the economy of San Antonio. 

"This study is more evidence that we should go slow," said Hernandez, an expert on Latino political affairs. "People really need to study the question (of whether Social Security should be changed) because sometimes changes aren't for the better."  It's harder for Latinos to invest in a 401(k) or other pension plan because they often have jobs lacking such benefits. 

"Latinos are very entrepreneurial," Torres-Gil said. "This is a population that is more likely to have a small business, to work in service industries, or agriculture where they're less likely to have a defined benefit plan and/or opportunities for a defined contribution plan." 

Not to mention undocumented workers, who get Social Security money taken out of their paychecks, but never see that money again, he said. 


Rooting Out Injustice in the Forestry Industry
Sent by Howard Shorr 

June 27, 2005 -- A lawsuit filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center's Immigrant Justice Project seeks to change how the forestry industry treats migrant laborers like Escolastico De Leon Granados. By Carrie Kilman | Staff Writer, 

In his native Guatemala, Escolastico De Leon Granados worked odd jobs: as a day laborer at a coffee plant, as a handyman around town. 

"There is no other way to earn money there," he says. He owns land but struggled to earn enough money to feed his family.  In 1997, Escolastico gave more than $1,000 and the deed to his land to a recruiter for Eller and Sons, a Georgia-based forestry contractor, in exchange for a temporary work visa and a plane ticket to the United States. 

Each year since, he leaves his wife and four children and travels to the United States for eight-month stints to plant pine and oak trees in Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee. He comes, he says, "to earn money so our family can live better."  But it hasn't quite worked out that way. 

Bordering on slavery 
Earlier this month, Escolastico became the lead plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit, filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center's Immigrant Justice Project, against Eller and Sons, the largest forestry contractor in the nation. It's the third such lawsuit filed by the Immigrant Justice Project this year. 

Escolastico is one of an estimated 40,000 to 50,000 migrant tree planters working in the southeastern United States — more workers than any other crop in the region.  Coming from places like Guatemala, Mexico and Honduras, the workers — typically poor and male — are lured here by the promise of wages better than what they could earn in their home countries. 

And they come here legally, on H-2B visas allowing U.S. companies to import temporary labor when they can't find workers in the United States. Migrant forestry workers typically work up to 12 hours a day, six or seven days a week. They earn about $25 for every 1,000 trees planted and usually plant between 1,500 and 3,000 trees a day. 

It is arduous labor, requiring workers to dig a hole, plant a seedling, pack down the dirt, and move eight feet to the next planting site an average of once every 10 seconds. 

The law guarantees H-2B tree-planters overtime pay, reimbursement for travel expenses and visa fees, and an hourly "prevailing wage," usually $8 to $10 an hour, depending on the state. 

Yet H-2B forestry workers usually earn between $200 and $300 a week, roughly equivalent to $3 to $5 an hour for a 60-hour work week. 

This is because forestry contractors almost never comply with the law, say immigration advocates. And, because the contractors control the visas and often require deeds in exchange for jobs, workers almost never complain. 

"People don't have freedom of movement because of the huge power the employer has over them," says Greg Schell, a lawyer with the Florida Migrant Farmworker Justice Project who's worked with migrant laborers for more than 20 years. "Forestry workers are probably the single most neglected group of migrant workers in the country." It's a system, Schell says, that "borders on slavery." 

Fighting for our families 
Escolastico wears a faded plaid shirt and a "Korean Veteran" baseball cap over curly dark-brown hair. He is 34 years old, the father of two boys and two girls, ages 4 to 11. He speaks almost no English, although he says he hopes someday to learn. 

Like other forestry workers, Escolastico receives an H-2B visa to plant trees from November to July. Then he returns home for four months, before returning to Georgia to repeat the cycle. 

Through an interpreter, he says he came to the United States "to watch out for my family. ... They told me the work would be hard. My people work in the fields and it's always hard — we expect it and can handle it. But it was much worse than we thought it would be." 

During the planting season, Escolastico's crew of 15 to 25 men travels from site to site across the Southeast, living in motels with four to six men to a room. 

"We leave the motel at 5 or 6 (a.m.)," he says. "We go to the cooler to pick up the saplings to plant that day. Sometimes we would have to drive two or three hours to get to the field. Then we plant all day, as long as it's light outside." 

Eller and Sons provides the tools, but deducts the cost from workers' paychecks. Workers are required to return the tools at the end of the planting season and buy them back when they return each November. 

Escolastico plants more than 1,000 trees a day and makes roughly $240 a week. At the end of each growing season, he's able to send about $500 home. When he's in the U.S., Escolastico calls home once a week. 

"It's hard for the kids, because their fathers aren't at home with them," he says. "The majority of men in my town are here, working to make things better for their families, fighting for the lives of our children." 

No free passes 
The lawsuit against Eller and Sons claims the company has systematically denied its workers millions of dollars in wages, overtime pay and reimbursed travel expenses. The company has until July 5 to respond. 

Mary Bauer, director of the SPLC's Immigrant Justice Project, said the forestry industry was targeted "because it's so universally bad. There are a lot of industries where immigrant workers get treated badly, but forestry really stands out because violations of the law are really the norm." 

Part of the problem, Bauer says, is the competitive bidding process forcing forestry contractors to cut costs in order to win contracts with large timber companies like International Paper and Weyerhaeuser. 

Adds Schell: "You cannot pay your workers properly and stay in business. It's impossible. If all the timber contractors got together and said, 'No we're going to insist on a price that will allow us to follow the law and pay our workers,' then things would change." 

That's exactly what Bauer hopes will happen. In addition to the suit against Eller and Sons, the Immigrant Justice Project recently filed two others, against Arkansas-based Express Forestry and Idaho-based Alpha Services. 

"We want to use these lawsuits to reform the forestry industry, to pressure companies to change," she says. "We're saying that you don't get a free pass because you choose to hire immigrants. You don't get to exploit people and treat them this way." 

Knowing their rights 
Escolastico decided to participate in the lawsuit, he says, "so that others will see our struggle." 

Yet he knows his participation comes with a risk. 

"I don't think they will give us a visa again," he says. "But I already decided that if that happens, I will go (back to Guatemala) and work there and do good things for my country." 

Through the lawsuit, Escolastico says he hopes tree planters will win back the money they deserve. But more than that, he says he hopes it will teach other migrant workers that they can organize for equal rights. 

"I want to win something of what we're fighting for," he says. "If we don't, some of our co-workers will say, 'That didn't really do anything for us.' But if we win, the community will want to fight for our rights." 

Escolastico learned about the lawsuit when outreach workers from the Immigrant Justice Project visited the motel where he and his crew were staying. 

"I learned I had a right to be paid fairly," he says. "I didn't know I had the right to receive money for travel expenses. I didn't know I was supposed to be getting paid per hour. I felt a support from them (the outreach workers) that was reassuring — I felt more motivated to do something about the injustice."

Into The Mix
By James B. Kelleher
The Orange County Register, July 10, 2005

According to the U.S. Census, minorities are starting businesses in the country at a rate three times faster than whites.  …And growing power

The average Hispanic household makes about 29 percent less than the national average of $58,000 but that's changing. Here's a projection of Hispanics' growing market clot, billions of dollars: 

Growing income… Total income of Hispanic households in the United States is projected to grow from about $470 billion in 2002 to about $670 billion five years form now, with families of Mexican origin accounting for the biggest share.


Hispanic Link Weekly Report
July, 4, 2005 Vol. 23 No.26

Ad money up in Latino media
Advertising spending is growing faster in Hispanic Medias than in the mainstream media, according to a study by TNS Media Intelligence. Spending in Hispanic media is expected to increase by 10.5 percent from last year, while advertising dollars spent in the mainstream English-language press is expected to grow by only 3.4 percent. 



Building Blocks of the Anti-Spanish Legends

La China Poblana and Spanish Bandidos                   Ophelia Marquez
Californiano wants to set the records straight        Susan Sanchez
Making more people aware of our real history         Andy Porras
Unless we write our own history we'll get left out   Sergio Hernandez

La China Poblana

It was very early in my research that it became obvious that there was a general anti-Spanish sentiment running throughout most of the English language history books, whether the books were written by non-Hispanics, or Hispanics. The Spanish were the bad guys. The English were the good guys. Since the educated Latino was reading the history written by American historians, it is no wonder that educated Mexican Americans authors became prejudice against their own Spanish heritage. 

Current media greatly reflects that prejudice. Since documentaries have their base in researching those early history books, the anti-Spanish/Hispanic sentiments remain. The most damaging aspect is the matter of fact manner in which very negative statements about the colonizing Spanish are made, as if they are historical fact. 

I have frequently shared evidence and incidents of the general anti-Spanish sentiment with Ophelia Marquez one of the founders of SHHAR,  sometimes with tears of frustration. 

Below is a perfect example of how a supposedly historical fact is heavily embedded with anti-Spanish sentiment. The writer takes the liberty of offering a general all-inclusive statement that the motivation of the Spanish was greed and a desire to be engaged in destruction. Further summarizing that the character of the Spanish was that of a bandido. 

Extract from: La China Poblana by Louise A. Stinetorf
Sent by Ophelia Marquez
"The Merchant from Puebla did not travel rapidly or alone. The way to Acapulco was only a trail, often tortuous and difficult, which crossed steep, rugged mountains as well as broad, fertile plains. No one could predict if, or when, or where bandidos - - for the most part Spanish gentry and their descendants who had failed to amass a fortune in the golden New World - might attack a caravan. Indians, even half-breeds, were never members of these roving bands, for the rigid caste system of the day excluded the indigene of the New World from even this doubtful profession.

The Virrey appointed a captain of his own guard and a band of soldiers to accompany and protect de Sosa. The captain was a professional adventurer who had bought his post from the Virrey because of the opportunities it offered for rapine* and plunder*.  Difference between his background and way of life and methods of operation, and that of the bandidos were largely theoretical."   page 155

To assume that men
in 1500-1700s would leave home and family,  knowing that many might not return, to sail in treacherous, monster-filled waters (belief at the time) to reach shores populated by crazed savages (belief at that time) and strange animals,  in order to rapine* and plunder* is absurd. 

* rapine  devastation, depredation, destruction, pillage, spoliation
* plunder rob, loot, pillage, raid, ransack

Yet that is the theme, sentiment,  message that I've read many, many times in books authored by both Hispanic and non-Hispanic writers.  Our young people deserve to have a historical understanding of their ancestors, not shaped by anti-Spanish sentiment.     

La China Poblana was published by the BOBBS-MERRILL Company, Inc., a subsidiary of Howard W. Same & Co, Inc. Indianapolis, New York.  Although this book was written in 1960 , current examples are all around us. This was the author's 7th book.  

I invite everyone to send examples gleaned from books, magazines, newspapers, documentaries, movies, etc.  Hopefully, the exercise of questioning how information is presented about our ancestors will sensitize us. As the character of our ancestors is vilified, our history is demeaned.  Please help to find and expose text and media that continues to build the black legend.  

I received the following from Susan (Sanchez-Morales-Soto-Avila-DeHaro) Lobedan, a member of Los Californianos.  Susan sent her extract  to set the record straight:  

Thanks for your work. I am a member of Los Californianos, tracing my ancestory to 4 members of the De Anza expedition which traveled on foot, to colonize Yerba Buena (San Francisco) 1775-76. I don’t think most Americans realize the history of California. They assume that it was inhabited by Native Americans until it became part of the United States. 

If they know anything at all about the Spanish, Mexican history, it is probably that ‘we were good at fighting Indians’, ‘our favorite pastime was to watch gory bear & bull fights’ and that our female ancestors, even at their weddings,"wore low-cut dresses"

Source Online: California Historical Society. California Online. Text Only. Section 5. Mexican California: The Heyday of the Ranchos.

My great-great-great grandfather, Francisco DeHaro, served as private Secretary to Governor Arguelo of California accompanying him on explorations of the North Fork of the Columbia River in 1831, and was elected to serve as the first Alcalde (Mayor) of Yerba Buena in 1834. Under his direction, the first survey of the Port of San Francisco was made. He was the owner of Rancho Laguna de la Merced, comprising 2219 acres; part of present-day San Francisco and San Mateo counties. Although the DeHaro family was the ‘patented’ land owner of Rancho Laguna de la Merced, squatters successfully took over the Rancho land in anticipation of the Homestead Act. This, too, was the "Heyday of the (Mexican) Ranchos". Please continue your valuable work to set the record straight. 

Susan (Sanchez-Morales-Soto-Avila-DeHaro) Lobedan

Thank you Susan . . .    Big Hug . . .    Mimi


New reader, Andy Porras, CAlifas editor wants to opens awareness  . . . .  Welcome on board!!

Wow! !Ijole!

What a terrific job you'all are doing in recovering our early hidden Hispanic history! Yo soy Andy Porras,  former teacher, activist, speaker and writer. Currently, I am  publisher and editor of CAlifas, a bilingual monthly up here in the Sacramento area. For more of my stuff, you can Google-up my name and you can read some of my  pieces, provided you have the time! Pero -  the reason I'm contacting  SHHAR through you, Ms. Lozano, is to make you aware of what I do and how it mimics some of your efforts. I just submitted a column entitled "Did George Washington Have a Compadre?" It has to do with the work of Juan de Miralles during the War of Independence. I haven't been told if it'll be used or not, so I can't tell you where to look for it. I am a columnist for  Hispanic Link and they work through the L.A. Times Syndicate. 

I have done several columns praising Galvez and his tremendous contributions to this nation and Mexico as well. Back in the 70s I came across a book called, "Bernardo de Galvez" by Jose Rodolfo Boeta and it opened my eyes as to our antepasados' early contributions to this country. When I lecture at area colleges or youth conferences I tell the kids about such things. I'd love to visit with your group some day and compare notes! Also,  I'd like to volunteer for anything you may do in the future up here in Northern Califas. I have access to meeting places, the local media, etc. Thank you for your time and  again I  salute you and your group for making more people aware of our real history. Gracias.  

Andy Porras

Hi Mimi we just got back from Austin and San Antonio where I spent a week at the Coronado Studio in Austin creating a Serigraph print. Anyway we  went to San Antonio and visited the Alamo.. too late to go inside but we walked around the building.. and picked up the literature they provide for tourist.....not one Mexicano was mentioned as a defender of the Alamo and there were many...Seguin was one of the more famous...not once is he mentioned. That is why efforts like your are so important. Unless we write our own history we'll get left out!........

.Serg Hernandez 




SURNAME: Argüello/Argüelles



Este linaje precede de la antigua hermandad de Argüelles, cuyo nombre tomó, formada por los concejos de Val de Logueros, Mediana de Argüello y la Tercia del Camino, enclavados en lo más aspero de las montañas de León, confinante con el norte con la provincia de Oviedo,. lugares pertenecientes hoy al partido judicial de La Vecilla.

También se establecieron los Argüello en Asturias, debido a la proximidad geografica de su casa solar, por lo que es opinion de autorizados tratadistas, que al asentarse en aquella region cambiaron su apellido por el de Argüelles, version que esta avalada por la similitud de armas que tienen ambos linajes.

Don Inigo de Argüello, natural de los Carrion de los Conde, Palencia, rue el primero que paso a Extremadura con don Gabriel Manrique, su deudo, primer Conde de Osomo,
s defender a Galisteo y su tierra. Era hijo de don Hemando de Argüello Hebia, poderoso Caballero de Carrion y de dona Juana de Arguello, de su mismo linaje, su mujer, hermanade Fray Arguello, religioso de San Francisco, Confesor del Infante don Femando, Rey de Aragon; Obispo de Palencia y Siguenza y Arzobispo de Zaragoza y Canciller del Rey don Alonso V de Aragon, el que murio el ano 1429; nieto de don Inigo de Argüello y de su esposa dona Leonor de Hebia; bisnieto de don Hemando de Argüello, descendiente de los Seiiores de las villas de Pobladura de Argüello, La Mediana, Rudiyermo, San Martin y otros lugares y vasallos de la dicha casa solariega, que lo me de Ricoshombres, en las Montanas de Leon, en el concejo de la tercia del camino de Argüello, y de su consorte dona Aldonsa Hemandez Manrique, de los Condes de Osomo.

Murio el referido don Inigo de Argüello, el primero que paso a tierras extranas, en Galisteo, Caceres, el 8 de junio de 1479, como parece en su testamento, otorgado ante don Pedro de Montoya, escribano publico de aquel lugar. Caso con dona Catalina de Carvajal, de la que tuvo a don Hemando de Argüello y Carvajal, el primero de esta casa que hizo su asiento en la villa de Brozas, tambien en Caceres, desposandose con dona Maria Bravo, siendo uno de sus hijos don Inigo de Argüello Carvajal, nacido en la expresada poblacion, el 17 de junio de 1496, Rector de la Universidad de Salamanca en el ano 1526, Caballero de la Orden de Santiago en 1555, del Consejo Real de Ordenes, que murio en Madrid el 22 de agosto de 1566. Su hermano don Juan, que vistio el mismo habito, fundo el convento de las Descalzas, en Zamora.

El Rector don Inigo de Argüello, contrajo matrimonio con dona Catalina de Ubirrichaga; tuvieron por hijo a don Inigo de Argüello Carvajal, bautizado en la parroquiade Santa Maria del Castillo en la villa de Vildosola, provincia de Vizcaya, el ano 1537, que sirvio al Rey don Felipe II en el Peru, en la provincia de Charcas, siendo luego Regidor perpetuo de Brozas, donde testo el 8 de agosto de 1599.

Don Hemando de Argüello y Carvajal, hijo de los ya citados don Hemando de Argüello y dona Maria Bravo, me sucesor en el mayorazgo de su casa; sirvio al Emperador en las guerras de Alemania, quien Ie hizo merced del diezmo del lugar de Santiago, aldea de Valencia de Alcantara, por dos vidas, segundo Senor de Aldonza; fue marido de dona Mencia de la Rocha y Ulloa, en la que procreo a don Juan de Avia Carvajal, Regidor perpetuo de Zamora y Procurador en Cortes por la misma en las de Madrid de 1583.

A esta misma estirpe, pertenecieron don Antonio de Argüello, natural de Rioseco, y don Bartolome de Argiiello y Villalpando, de Villalon, Valladolid, ingresaron en la Orden de Santiago los anos 1668 y 1644, respectivamente. Don Inigo de Argiiello Carvajal y Alvarado Tovar, file admitido en la de Calatrava.

Ante la Sala de los Hijosdalgo de la Real Chancilleria de Valladolid, acudieron a litigar su nobleza numerosos miembros de esta familia, entre los anos 1519 y 1773.

Don Inigo de Argiiello Carvajal, fue Oidor de la Real Audiencia de Mexico, en 1628, ycomisario de la media annata, en 1634; don Francisco de Argüello, arcediano de la catedral de Durango en la Nueva Vizcaya, en 1719; don Juan Antonio de Argüello, Alcalde Mayor de Santisima Trinidad de Sonsonate, en 1776, y don Jose Dario de Argüello, Capitan del presidio de San Francisco de California, en 1798.

A principles del siglo XVII, estuvo asentada en Guanajuato una rama del linaje restudiado, que emparento con los Sardaneta que mas tarde llevaron el titulo de Marques de [San Juan deRayas.


El Emperador don Carlos V, por privilegio dado por Valladolid el 20 de julio de 1538, concedio escudo de armas a don Juan de Argüello, vecino y Regidor de la ciudad de Popoyan, en Nueva Granada, organizado asi:  en campo de plata, un aguila de sable; partidos de gules, con una pena de la que sale una lanza con una bandera de sinople orlada de oro y cargada una cruz de oro; bordura de azur con ocho estrellas de oro. 

Entre los diversos genealogistas que escriben sobre esta casa, descuellan Miguel de Salazar,  Diego de Soto y Aguilar, Salazar y Castro, Frias de Albomoz, Argote de Molina, Banos|de Velasco y el Conde de Canilleros.

Extract from BLASONES Y APELLIDOS, 828-page book by Fernando Muñoz Altea
In its second edition, the book can be ordered from or at
P.O. Box 11232, El Paso, Texas 79995 or by contacting Armando Montes


Galvez Patriots

"Give your heart to God and your hand to man."   
Bernardo de Galvez 

Lorenzo's Secret Mission
Texas Connection to the American Revolution 
Wills of a Father and Son and A Contribution to the American Revolution 

One of the joys of being editor of Somos Primos is contact that I've made with wonderful people, readers that share the same desire to promote a true representation of our Spanish ancestor's presence in the United States.  Most recent are the authors of a series of books targeting a young adult audience, Lila and Rick Guzmán.  

Lila writes of the beginning of this creative adventure: 

"For several years. Rick and I talked about writing a book together, but we never could find a subject we both liked. Then one night, about 2:00 in the morning. Rick shook me awake with a burning question. "Did you ever hear about the Spanish contribution to the American Revolution?"

Not being at my brightest at that time of night, I squinted up at him and said, "What?"

"I found something on the Internet. I'll bookmark it. Look at it tomorrow."

The next day, after he left for work and the children headed to school, I went on the Internet and read the one-paragraph blurb that told about a secret flatboat mission in 1776 delivering Spanish supplies to George Washington. I called my husband at work. "I have a Ph.D. in Spanish," I said, "but I never heard about this."

"That's the subject for our book," he replied.

A little later, he went to the University of Texas and checked out books on the American Revolution. He spread them out on the dining room table and found a line here and there. When I looked at what he had done, I realized that he had outlined a series of books on the American Revolution outside the original thirteen colonies. Lorenzo's Secret Mission was the first book in the series.

At present, we are working on the next book. It begins in 1779 with a hurricane that rips through New Orleans, leveling the city and leaving the people vulnerable to a British attack.

Rick and I write historical novels because there are scads of stories that need to be told. Our research often uncovers startling, little-known facts. A good example is "355," George Washington's female spy. Rick and I have a long list of subjects we want to write about.

We like to hear from our readers and enjoy talking to them. Contact us by email at Please visit   for more information."

The back cover of LORENZO'S SECRET MISSION reads:

Armed with a long knife, flintlock musket, and his father's medical bag, fifteen-year-old Lorenzo Bannister sets off to fulfill his father's deathbed wish. Lorenzo joins a secret flatboat operation delivering much-needed medicine and gunpowder to George Washington's army, leading their readers on a romping ride from the docks of New Orleans to the Battlefields of the American Revolution. Trained as a medic by his fattier, Lorenzo makes his way up the Mississippi and the ditto Rivers»; witnessing me horrors of slavery and political warfare. During his adventures, Lorenzo meets some of the important figures of the time, Such as George Washington and Bernardo de Galvez, the Spanish governor of Louisiana who helped the American rebels,

This action-packed historical novel dramatizes in vivid detail the Hispanic contribution to the American Revolution. Filled with the desire for freedom that characterized the creation of the American Republic, the novel captures Lorenzo's zeal for life and his crusade for a better future not only for himself, but also for me people that he loves.

I just finished reading Lorenzo's Secret Mission and enjoyed every minute of the noble spirit of Lorenzo and his heroism in the face of a series of challenges.   Thoroughly researched, historical facts and cultural attitudes are smoothly blended in a novel which made me proud to know that I had colonial period Spanish soldiers fighting for the American Revolution (read the letter below from Mary Ann Curry).  I highly recommend this book to be on every library shelf, and in the hands of everyone's child and grandchild. 

Lila Guzmán is the author of Green Slime and Jam (Eakin Press, 2001), a middle-grade fantasy novel, and the recipient of several awards for her writing, including Honorable Mention in Fiction, Dorothy Daniels Honorary Writing Award from the National League of American Pen Women. Rick Guzmán was born in Galveston, Texas, and practices law in Austin. A former army officer, he graduated from Rice University and the University of Houston Law Center. They live in the Hill Country area of Texas, just outside of Austin.

 Piñata Books


An Imprint of Arte Público Press
University of Houston
452 Cullen Performance Hall 
TX 77204-2004 
Order by phone: 800.633.ARTE

Lila sends more information about her very active schedule of writing projects . . . . .

Authors of Young Adult historical novels:  LORENZO'S SECRET MISSION, LORENZO'S REVOLUTIONARY QUEST, LORENZO'S TURNCOAT (due out in 2006).  Presently working on LORENZO'S PIRATE.  Published by Arte Publico Press, Univ. of Houston.
LORENZO'S SECRET MISSION was a finalist for Book of the Year, ForeWord Magazine (2001) and won an Arizona Authors Book Award (2003).
LORENZO'S REVOLUTIONARY QUEST won an Arizona Authors Book Award (2004).
Non-fiction books for Enslow Publishing (2nd-3rd grade level):  GEORGE LOPEZ, ROBERTO CLEMENTE, ELLEN OCHOA, DIEGO RIVERA, FRIDA KAHLO, and CESAR CHAVEZ.  (Due out in 2006).
We have permission from Governor Bill Richards to write a non-fiction biography about him.
In addition, I have published GREEN SLIME AND JAM (Eakin Press) with Lazarillo de Tormes as the main character.  KICHI IN JUNGLE JEOPARDY (Blooming Tree Press) is due out in 2006.  (Kichi is a chihuahua in ancient Mayan times who braves the dangers of the jungle to find a kidnapped slave boy.)  These books are for 4th-5th graders.  Other publications include translations of two Perez Galdos novels:  THE CAMPAIGN OF THE MAESTRAZGO and A ROYALIST VOLUNTEER.
Rick is a criminal defense attorney in private practice.  He was born in Galveston and served in the U.S. Army as an officer, assembling nuclear bombs.  He is a graduate of Rice (BA, History) and the Univ. of Houston (JD).
I hold a Ph.D. in Spanish literature (specialty:  Modern Peninsular) and was an officer in the Navy.  My assignment at the Defense Language Institute was to teach native speakers how to teach their language to Army/Navy/Air Force/Marine personnel.  
We have three children, two girls and a boy, and are approaching our 23rd wedding anniversary.


Texas Connection to the American. Revolution  

Hi Mimi,

I read with keen interest about you and the members of TCARA participating the the 4th of July parade.  What a great accomplishment!!

For the record, I hope you remember that you are illegible for membership.  I am a member of DAR in order to honor two of my Hispanic ancestors by making them patriots:  Francisco Manual Salinas and Leonor Delgado.  I could have included Leonor Delgado's deceased husband, Juan Jose Flores de Abrego y Valdes but I decided to honor Leonor so that she would be the first Hispanic woman to receive the status of patriot.     Another interesting and unfortunate side-note:  The registrar insisted in recording her as Leonor Flores, not Leonor Delgado.  I tried to  convince her that, that was her legal name, to no avail.

Francisco Manual Salinas and his brother Pedro Xavier Salinas served in the Spanish Royal Armies (1776-1789).  Francisco and his brother roundup cattle from their ranches and along with unbranded cattle from the pastures of the ranchos of Las Mulas and San Bartolmeto, gave this 
herd to General Bernardo de Galvez for the Colonies.  Francisco also went on scouting expeditions for the cause.

Leonor , a cattle breeder widowed in Jan 1779, donated cattle, horse, mules, sheep, and goats to General Bernardo de Galvez for the Colonies. She operated Rancho de San Jose de los Alamos.   Her husband had been a cattle breeder as well as a member of the Spanish Royal Army.  
Incidentally, his cattle brand is the first registered in what is now the state of Texas (pp. 66 and 171, Los Mestenos.)

Have a wonderful experience.  You must be very proud.  I am.
Fondly,  Mary Anne Curray
P.S.  Would love to see some pictures in the next Somos Primos.  You do  an outstanding job.

Wills of a Father and Son and A Contribution to the American Revolution

By Virginia Sanchez


The soldiers of the Santa Fe Presidio were located in Spain's most northern area and therefore could not participate in active duty on behalf of the American Revolution. However, they honored the request of the King of Spain and gave money to the cause, even though they were sometimes not paid in full or paid in pesos de la tierra (e.g., crops) as opposed to pesos firma (cash).

On January 9, 1765, a soldier lay ill at the Royal Presidio in the Villa Capital of Santa Fe and asks his teniente (lieutenant) to document his last will and testimony. In this will, Cristobal Madrid affirmed his faith in God, his guardian angel, and the saints. He requested of his named executors, his wife Francisca Herrera and son Juan Antonio Madrid, to be buried in the San Miguel parish church in Santa Fe and that his body be shrouded in the habit of Saint Francis. Most notably, he listed among his possessions six horses and his complete military equipment with which he "served the King."l

On January 4, 1768, Cristobal's son, Antonio Xavier Madrid, enlisted in the Spanish military "in place of his father," and in all probability, used his father's military equipment. This recruit signed by the mark of a cross to signify his understanding of his responsibilities as a soldier. Antonio Xavier, age 25 and described as having a swarthy complexion with black hair, eyebrows, and eyes, was assigned to the Tropa de Cuera, the Leather Jacket troop, at the Presidio of Santa Fe.234

Antonio Xavier Madrid served in the Spanish military in colonial New Mexico when Spain actively supported the revolution of the American Colonies. During this time, Spain's northern territory included almost all of the United States west of the Mississippi, Louisiana, and Mexico. Spain and its colonies in America played a significant role in the American Revolution by providing military support, loans, and gifts of cash—historical facts of which most United States citizens are still unaware.

When the American colonies waged a war for independence against England, King Carlos III of Spain sought opportunity to regain land Spain lost to England in 1773. Spain agreed to join France as an ally and covertly shipped arms, munitions, cattle, uniforms, medicine, blankets, and money to the American colonies using France as the go between. Visitor-General Jose de Galvez, Spanish secretary of the Indies and his nephew. Count Bemardo de Galvez, provided secret aid to the American cause by allowing guns, ammunition, and tons of supplies to be shipped up the Mississippi to patriot forces in the north. By 1777, Spain had sent a large shipment of the following from a French port by way of Bermuda to Boston: 215 bronze canons, 4,000 field tents, 12,826 grenades, 30,000 muskets, 30,000 bayonets, 30,000 uniforms, 51,314 musket balls, and 300,000 pounds of gunpowder.5 Money and supplies were funneled through the French and handled by a third party—appearing as open business transactions.6

Spain's support for the American colonists remained secret until June 21, 1779, when Spain officially entered into war with England. Thomas Jefferson wrote to Bemardo de Galvez on November 8, 1779 and expressed his thanks for Spain's assistance to the revolutionary cause.7 History books in United States schools relate the aid France gave to the American Colonists and mention very little about the aid given by Spain.

As stated by Thomas E. Chavez, ".. .United States history is a story of a country born out of English colonies, the role of Spain has not been genuinely recognized. Nor.. .have the sacrifices of Spain's colonies been acknowledged. Eighteenth-century Spanish subjects, who lived in areas that make up the present states of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California, answered Carlos Ill's call for a special [donation] to help with the war and, in the end, secure American independence." In March of 1780, Carlos III decreed that to sustain the war "his vassals in America" were to contribute a one-time donativo (donation) of one pew (approximately $30 by today's standard) per Indian and other castes and two pesos per Spaniard and noble. Collectors went to towns and pueblos in the New World and collected one peso per Indian over 18 years old and other castes, and two pesos from each Spaniard. Donatives were collected from soldiers and citizens throughout Cuba and Spain's hard-pressed North American colonies, including the provinces of California, New Mexico, and Texas.9

New Mexico Governor Juan Bautista de Anza was officially notified of the decree in a letter dated August 17, 1780 from Teodoro de Croix.10 With regard to donativos made by the Indians of the Province, Anza obtained permission to exempt the Indians of the Zuni and Hopi pueblos. (In the Province of California, Fray Junipero Serra used church funds to pay the [donations] for mission Indians.)

By 1783 a total of 3,677 pesos (approximately $110,300) had been collected from soldiers and citizens in the Province of New Mexico; 247 pesos came from soldiers of the Santa Fe Presidio.12 The donativos were shipped to "Mexico then shipped to Havana and transferred to the American colonies, sometimes via French carriers."13

Supplies and aid to the American cause came from almost every part of the Spanish empire and currently, historians and genealogists throughout Spain, Mexico, and the United States are reviewing historical documents in an effort to rightfully give Spain and its Colonial Patriots credit for their aid.

The Sons of the American Revolution and the Daughters of the American Revolution are two national lineage societies that are interested in Spain's involvement in the American Revolution and they are reaching out to descendants of all Spanish soldiers to research their lineage and apply for society membership. By submitting their genealogy, these Colonial Patriots can be catalogued in the SAR and DAR national repositories of genealogical and historical information, and thereby become a part of America's history.

Some activities recognized by the SAR and the DAR include service in the Spanish military, service in the militia, service as Indian auxiliaries, making voluntary contributions to defray expenses of the War, Spanish cowboys (in Texas) who drove cattle to feed the American colonial troops, and mission priests who lead public prayers on behalf of Spain's support of the American Revolution. Because many priests did not leave descendants, the SAR's interest is in locating and marking their graves as patriots. For example, California's Franciscan mission priest. Fray Junfpero Serra, led a prayer for the success of the American colonists "because we believe their cause is just and that the Great Redeemer is on their side."14

Antonio Xavier Madrid's military possessions listed in his will dated January 3, 1813 include two rifles (muskets); a Spanish military uniform consisting of a hat, an old blue wool cape, and a heavy woolen waistcoat; an ardaga (shield); a pair of boots and spurs; and miscellaneous garments. Also listed among his possessions are a mule, a horse, a donkey, and an additional musket. According to the Reglamento of 1729, a presidial soldier's uniform should conform in some measure or common standard and each soldier was required to have six horses and a mule.15 Even though maintaining any uniformity in military dress was difficult in New Mexico due to short supply and minimal replacements, Antonio Xavier's uniform and arms on the most part met the day's requirements.

To his son, Juan Nepomuceno Madrid, he left a musket from the armament; a cartridge belt without cartridges; and his hat, old blue cape, aged waistcoat, and miscellaneous garments. To another son, Jose Antonio Madrid, he left a musket, a pair of boots and spurs, and his blue uniform, and shield. His daughter, Maria Josefa, was married to Josef Manuel Sena, armorer of the Presidio and one of the executors named in his will. In addition, Antonio Xavier entrusted his son-in-law to "guard" 22 pesos. Josef Manuel Sena and two other named executors, brothers-in-law Juan Nepomuceno Madrid and Miguel Rodriguez, were asked to "collect the horse owed" Antonio Xavier by his brother, Juan Antonio Madrid. (For detailed information on the Madrid family genealogy, refer to the following article by Henrietta Christmas.)

Based on the time Spain was at war with England and the Spanish military service records of New Mexico Colonial Patriot Antonio Xavier Madrid, we know he donated two pesos ($60) toward the cause of the American colonies. At this time, the Province of New Mexico was rather poor and sparsely populated. His sacrifice to the cause of the American Revolution came at a time when cash was hard to come by and soldiers were sometimes not paid in full or paid in pesos de la tierra (e.g., crops) as opposed to pesos firma (cash).

Antonio Xavier Madrid's father, Cristobal Madrid, listed as possessions in his will dated 1765 six horses and his complete military equipment with which he 'served the King'. In Antonio Xavier's will dated 48 years later, all that remained as symbols of honor and service were some muskets, a cartridge belt; a shield, various articles of military attire, a mule, and two horses. Like his father, Antonio Xavier affirmed his belief in God and the saints and asked that his body be shrouded in the habit of Saint Francis.

From their wills and from research, we can piece together only a portion of their lives. From their contributions we can document an important part of history that recognizes significant contributions to the American cause by the eastern as well as the southwestern parts of these United States. Only years later would many learn of the significant roles Spain and its colonies played in the American Revolution.

For a Patriot to be recognized by the SAR and the DAR, descendants of Patriots must research and document their lineage and apply for membership. One source of vital information is the Spanish enlistment papers, which provide service dates, physical descriptions, and occasionally name of a soldier's parents. The list of Spanish enlistments for the Province of New Mexico, as excerpted from Hough and Hough, Spain's New Mexico Patriots During Its 1779-1783 War with England, is available on NMHS Vice President Jose Esquibel's website at; and in Virginia Langham Olmsted's, "Spanish Enlistment Papers of New Mexico, 1732-1820," published in the December 1979 issue of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly. The SAR accepts male applicants, 18 years or older, who can prove lineage back to a Patriot ancestor who contributed to the American cause between the 1779-1783 timeframe, the time Spain officially was at war with England.

The DAR's criterion for descendants of New Mexico Colonial Patriots is slightly different. Female applicants, who are descendants of New Mexico Colonial Patriots, must be able to prove that the Patriot soldier was at the Presidio of Santa Fe between April 3, 1782 and November 18, 1782, and that he was discharged after November 1782. April 3, 1782 is the date Governor Anza authorized collection of the donativos within the Province of New Mexico. November 18, 1782 represents the date of Anza's letter to Croix informing him that all but three donativos were collected. The list of New Mexico Patriots and Alcalde Mayores who qualify for DAR patriot status is available on the New Mexico Genealogical Society's website at and from the author's website at

As stated by Robert H. Thonhoff "An important door of recognition has been opened for many thousands ofHispanics if they but do their genealogical homework."17 Consider the number of descendants of Spanish Colonial Patriots who served under the Spanish flag (including Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico) who, as a result of Spain's aid, can say their ancestors aided in the American Revolution and can now be officially recognized through societies such as the SAR and the DAR. Thomas Chavez adds, "Hispanic families in the United States range from recent arrivals to people whose ancestors settled in what is today the United States before Jamestown or the Puritans and Pilgrims."18 Members of these families can now be included in stating that their ancestors aided the American cause. There is no better way to "open that door of recognition" than to document the contributions of our Colonial Patriots and get their information officially recognized, microfilmed, and catalogued in historical documents.

Antonio Xavier Madrid was but one of many Spanish soldiers and citizens who contributed to the American cause. For generations, descendants of New Mexico Colonial Patriots have made significant contributions by proudly serving in defense of their countries. During the period when New Mexico was under Mexican rule, Jose Antonio Sena, Antonio Xavier Madrid's grandson, was recognized for valor in recognition of his service against the aventureros tejanos (adventurous Texans) in 1841. Manuel Armijo, commanding officer and Governor of New Mexico, recommended Sena for an escudo de honor, the Mexican equivalent of the Medal of Honor. This honor was granted to Sena by the President of the Republic of Mexico, along with a promotion to Cap

Continuing in this tradition, descendants of New Mexico Colonial Patriots as United States citizens have continued to proudly serve their country. As stated by the Eugene A. Obregon / Congressional Medal of Honor Campaign, "unquestioned service to the country is part of the ethos of the Latino community.... Out of a total of 3,427 medals granted by the U.S. Congress, 38 have been given to citizens of Latino ancestry, making Latinos the largest single ethnic group, in proportion to the number who served, to earn this prestigious award."

To date, only about ten New Mexico Colonial Patriots have been recognized by the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Sons of the American Revolution; and joining these types of societies isn't everyone's "cup of tea." However, there is no better way to honor our Patriot ancestors than by working to ensure that future generations will be aware of the contributions of Spanish Colonial Patriots to the American cause. If you take the number of New Mexico Colonial Patriots, add to that number all their descendants, we would have an impressive number of newly found daughters and sons who can impact and change what traditionally was taught about American colonial history. Through the actions and support of our Spanish Colonial Patriot ancestors, we, as their descendant daughters and sons, solidify our right and privilege to be called Americans.

About the Author:

Virginia S-nchez is an author, historian and genealogist. She has published articles in cultural and genealogical journals, and family histories she has written are cataloged in libraries in Colorado, New Mexico, and Wyoming. She worked for a Fortune 500 telecommunications company for 20 years as a senior writer and has been researching her family genealogy for 15 years. She received her Bachelor's degree in Music from the University of Wyoming and received a Master's degree in Technical Communication from the University of Colorado at Denver. She is a member of several genealogical and historical societies and she regularly presents her findings at their annual conferences. She serves as webmaster for the Colorado Society of Hispanic Genealogy. Her application to the DAR, which honors her eighth greatgrandfather, New Mexico Colonial Patriot, Soldado de Cuera Antonio Xavier Madrid, was approved July 3, 2002.

Additional Information:

Any interested male descendant of a New Mexico Patriot can contact any of the following for additional information about the SAR: Charles Martinez y Vigil at, the New Mexico Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, Box 525, Placitas, NM 87043;

your local SAR chapter; or visit Any interested female descendant of a New Mexico Patriot can contact Virginia Sanchez at; New Mexico DAR State Regent Mary Ann Thomton at; your local DAR chapter; or visit Application and membership fees apply. Chapter membership is optional.


' Ralph E. Twitchell, Spanish Archives of New Mexico, Series 1, Roll III, Frame 116.

2 Virginia Langham Olmsted, Spanish Enlistment Papers of New Mexico, 1732-1820, (National Genealogical Society Quarterly), December 1979, Vol. 67, (297).

3 Ralph E. Twitchell, Spanish Archives of New Mexico, Number 611, Frame 1552.

4 Ibid. Roll 11, March 1781, Frame 217.

5 The Vital Contributions of Spain in the Winning of the American Revolution: An Essay on a Forgotten Chapter in the History of the American Revolution, Robert H. Thonhoff, 2000, (2), self published, 617 N. Esplanade St., Kames City, TX, 78118-2522, (830) 780-3582.

6 Edward F. Butler, Sr., "Spain's Involvement in the American Revolutionary War, Part 1,

7 Ibid. Part 2.

8 Thomas E. Chavez, Spain and the Independence of the United States, (213-214).

9 Robert H. Thonhoff, The Vital Contributions of Spain in the Winning of the American Revolution: An Essay on a Forgotten Chapter in the History of the American Revolution, 2000, (2), self published, 617 N. Esplanade St., Kames City, TX, 78118-2522, (830) 780-3582 (

10 Thomas E. Chavez, Spain and the Independence of the United States, (214, Note 9) and Ralph E. Twitchell,

Spanish Archives of New Mexico, 2, translated extract.

" Thomas E. Chavez, Spain and the Independence of the United States, (214).

12 Ibid. (Note 11).

13 Ibid. (214).

14 Ibid (Note 14).

15 Max L. Moorhead, "The Soldado de Cuera: Stalwart of the Spanish Borderlands," Journal of the West, 1969 (46) and Viceroy Marques de Casafuerte, Reglamento para todos los presidios de las Provincias Internas de esta Governacion (Mexico, 1729).

16 Electronic correspondence from Harriet McCallum, Regent of the Santa Fe DAR Chapter in Santa Fe, to Donna Santistevan, DAR Spanish Task Force, April 17, 2002.

17 Robert H. Thonhoff, The Vital Contributions of Spain in the Winning of the American Revolution: An Essay on a Forgotten Chapter in the History of the American Revolution, addendum dated March 18, 2002 (self-published, 61' N. Esplanade St., Kames City, TX 78118 (

18 Thomas Chavez, "Spanish Sacrifice," The Santa Fe New Mexican, Section F, July 4, 1999 (Fl).

19 Robert J. Torrez, La Cronica de Nuevo Mexico, Historical Society of New Mexico, March 2002.

20 Obregon/CMH Foundation, Eugene A. Obregon / Congressional Medal of Honor Campaign, May 21, 2002, latino/



Somos Primos is based in Orange County, California
Save the date, September 11  El Dia de la Familia, Sigler Park
Save the date, September 15  Eddie Martinez, Cal State Univ, Fullerton

Somos Primos has a legacy of helping to  promote individualized family history research.  Just received is this kind letter from Manuel Robles.  For those living in Orange County, you may want to look at previous issues of Somos Primos at the Orange County Family History Center, located at 674 S. Yorba in the city of Orange,  5 blocks south of Chapman.  The FHC faces the parking lot in the back of the building, west side.    Telephone number for hours, 714-997-7710.

Somos Primos Thank You  

31 July 2005

Dear Mimi,

One never ceases to find good information in past issues of Somos Primos. In an effort to cover all bases in my genealogical search, I perused the back issues of Somos Primos in the notebooks at the Orange Family History Center and found a Pedigree Chart for the "Ortiz de Parada and Ulloa" families submitted by Jaime Holcombe and published in the Somos Primos Issue of Winter 1994. 

It so happened that it contained my ancestors Nicolas de Ulloa and Maria Ruiz de Esparza. I already had Lope Ruiz de Esparza and Francisca de Gabadi, however, I did not have the Ulloa ascendency. 

With this information I was able to add a few more generations to my database.

Additionally, with the information that one of the relatives, Francisco Mathias de Busto, had been inscribed into the Military Order of Calatrava, I was able to trace back one more generation of Muñoz Jerez and Lopez de la Madriz than is shown on the chart. Thank you Jaime Holcombe, and 

Thank you Mimi,

Manuel Robles

On a more current use of Somos Primos, a letter from Frances Rios.

Hi Mimi.....Thank for the info for July 29 Somos Primos.  Yesterday (July 25th), I went to the "Yorba Family Reunion" at the Yorba Regional Park in Yorba Linda.  I had never been able to attend.  It was great. 

I met 'new cousins'!  I met Ann Nepsa(with the group: Cemetery Angels) that does the restoration of the Yorba Cemetery.  She invited me to go to the Yorba Cemetery next Saturday for a tour.

Have fun in Washington D.C.!



Look for complete information in the September issue of Somos Primos
Save the date, September 11  El Dia de la Familia, Sigler Park
Save the date, September 15  Eddie Martinez, Cal State Univ, Fullerton



How The 'Mother of Olvera St.' Got Her Moniker
From the 19th Century, a Look at City's Past Latino Mayors
A monument stirs immigration debate
Boyle Heights Seeks Balance Amid Change
Save date: Oct 8th: Monterey Park Hispanic Family History Conference


El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument

How The 'Mother of Olvera St.' Got Her Moniker

In 1930, a woman with vision turned a filthy, crime-ridden alley into Mexican-theme market that attracts more than 2 million visitors a year
By Cecilia Rasmussen
Staff Writer, Abstract Los Angeles Times April 17, 2005

Sent By Sister Mary Sevilla, CSJ
Assistant Provincial of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, Los Angeles Province. 

Seventy-five years ago, Christine Sterling saved El Pueblo de Los Angeles and became known as the "Mother of Olvera Street." She turned the area into a tourist attraction and something of an ethnic centerpiece.

In its two-century-plus history, Olvera Street has been a civic center, a slum, a nightspot and, by 1939, a quaint retail area where First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt did "a little bit of Christmas shopping."

When Sterling discovered the site in 1926, she saw it as "forsaken and forgotten," she wrote in her diary. Appalled by "filth everywhere," she set out to recruit movers and shakers to help recast the street as a Mexican-theme marketplace.

On Easter Sunday, April 19, 1930, Olvera Street opened in its current incarnation. It includes more than 70 market stalls and eateries today.

"Its fantasy-like theme isn't a bad thing," said Bill Estrada, a curator at El Pueblo. "But its 560-foot walkway roots go a lot deeper", than tourism. Estrada's book, "Los Angeles Plaza: Sacred and Contested Space," is due out next year.

Since the city's founding in 1781, El Pueblo has been multi-ethnic. The original 44 settlers were Spaniards, African Americans, Indians and mestizos. Several floods prompted them to re-locate the plaza farther from the Los Angeles River, finally settling at the present site in 1818.

In the 19th century. El Pueblo was home to Chinese, Mexicans, Indians, French, Italians and Anglos. In 1823, an Italian immigrant opened a shop and built a home where the plaza firehouse now stands. Soon Italian winemaking enterprises so dominated the mud-covered lane that it became known as Wine or Vine Street — the same street now lined with shops.

In 1877, it was officially re-named Olvera Street, after Agustin Olvera, the county's first Superior Court judge, who fought the Yankees in the Mexican American War.

By the early 1900s, the street had fallen into disrepair. City leaders ignored it for 20 more years — until Sterling happened along.

She was born Chastina Rix in Oakland in 1881, Estrada said. Her grandfather, Alfred Rix, was a San Francisco judge and leading member of the vigilante committee. Her father, Edward Austin Rix, was a scientist.

For a brief time, Christine, as she called herself, studied art and design at Mills College in Oakland. Just as briefly, she married, before divorcing,

With her second husband, Jerome Hough, she had two children. By 1920 the family was living on Bonnie Brae Street near downtown Los Angeles. Hough abandoned the family and soon died, leaving Christine a widow without means. By 1928, she had changed her name to Sterling.

Strolling Olvera Street in 1926, she saw neglect and decay. Although she had never visited Mexico — and never would —- she envisioned what the street should be. She believed that the 1818 Avila Adobe, which was the U.S. military headquarters during the Mexican American War, and the alley in front of it were the perfect setting for a tourist attraction.

First, she won over Los Angeles Times Publisher Harry Chandler, who assigned columnist John Steven McGroarty to report on her plans.

"Chandler was impressed with her and her ideas," Estrada said.

But two years of publicity got her nowhere. "Miles of conversation, but no definite, tangible results," she wrote in her diary in 1928.

That November, the city posted a "Condemned" sign in front of the Avila Adobe. Sterling put up a much bigger sign below:

"Why Should This Be Condemned?" At the bottom, she added the history of the house, the oldest adobe in the city, where Navy Commodore Robert F. Stockton, Maj. John C. Fremont and Kit Carson had quartered.

"Appealing to an Anglo audience, she conjured up the Anglo heroes [in the fashion of] ... 'George Washington slept here' — not the fact that Francisco Avila built this adobe and was a rancher and onetime mayor of the city," said Estrada, giving voice to later Latino critics.

In her dramatic campaign to save the remnants of "old Los Angeles," she held a barbecue on the Avila Adobe patio. Despite Prohibition, tequila flowed freely. After a few sips, Police Chief James "Two-Gun" Davis reportedly volunteered jail inmates for the hard labor. Blue Diamond Cement and Simons Brick Co. offered material and workers. Chandler and five other prominent Angelenos agreed to donate $5,000 each.

Property owners whose back-doors opened onto the street bitterly resisted the plan. They complained all the way to the state Supreme Court that closing the road would interfere with

their businesses: a winery, tin-smith shop, cornice factory, hotel and restaurant, among others. But in September 1929, the street was closed to vehicles; re-construction soon began.

"Work started this morning on Olvera Street," says a November 1929 entry in Sterling's diary. "With my two children, 25 prisoners, 50% protest from the property owners and a lawsuit thrown in for good measure, we put the first picks and shovels into the old street. The prisoners were good workers, one escaped, but we managed to keep the others."

In April 1930, the mercado was unveiled with "great festivities," newspapers reported.

Two years later, David Alfaro Siqueiros was commissioned to create a mural for Olvera Street. This was during the Depression, when the government was de-porting people to Mexico.

The artist finished his work in October 1932, and its unveiling provided an opportunity for more festivities. But when he uncovered his 80-by-16-foot "Tropical America," the crowd gasped. He had depicted a Mexican Indian in a loincloth, hanging from a cross, with a predatory American eagle overhead.

Embarrassed city officials, and Sterling, ordered the mural whitewashed. It is now, however, being restored as a "treasured survivor of the modem Mexican muralist movement."

As managing director of Olvera Street, Sterling personally approved tenants. In 1935, Mexican native Carmen Garcia had to parade with her four children be-

fore Sterling — who allowed her to open a variety shop that she operated for 56 years.

Artist and children's author Leo Politi gained a foothold with his sketches of Olvera Street children and a mural depicting the blessing of the animals.

Sterling then turned her hand to a romanticized Chinese-theme tourist center called China City. But the Chinese thought vendors' booths and rickshaws were absurd and in-authentic.

Sterling countered, "What do they want? An Oriental West-wood Village? Let them build [New Chinatown] if they think they can get away with it, but I think it will fail." She was wrong; it endures today.

Her "Celestial Empire" of China City, which opened in 1938, was destroyed by arson 11 years later and never rebuilt, said Suellen Cheng, a curator at El Pueblo.

Eventually, Sterling's interest in preservation became personal. She had lived in the Mexican American enclave of Chavez Ravine since 1938. On May 9, 1959, the city moved to evict residents to make way for Dodger Stadium. Unable to save her home from the wrecking ball, she moved into the Avila Adobe, where she died in 1963, at age 82.

This weekend, a photo exhibit commemorating the Mexican marketplace opens at Picb House on North Main Street. "Celebrating 75 Years of Culture, Pride and Promise" captures the multicultural and turbulent beginnings of the quaint walkway, and Sterling's story.


From the 19th Century, a Look at City's Past Latino Mayors
One had residents gather to vote on city matters. Another took the job for 13 days.
By Cecilia Rasmussen, Time Staff Writer, The Los Angles Times May 18, 2005
Sent By Sister Mary Sevilla, Ph.D.CSJ, Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, Los Angeles Province. 

A stalwart in civic service and in support of fellow Latinos, Coronel was 35 when he was elected to a one-year term. He established the Department of Public Works and encouraged residents to gather in the public plaza at the sound of a gong and vote on city matters by a show of hands.

He tirelessly promoted civic beautification and supported the pueblo's horticultural and historical societies, a museum and the restoration of the missions. He and his wife, Mariana, helped Helen Hunt Jackson write the romantic novel "Ramona," which alerted the nation to the plight of Native Americans. She acknowledged Coronel's help and advice in making the book possible.

Coronel was respected for his courtly manners. Coronel next served 12 years as a city councilman, and was state treasurer for four years. During his political career, he held other elected posts, including county assessor.

By 1873, Coronel had built a home surrounded by vineyards and orange groves on the banks of the Los Angeles River near 7th and Alameda streets. At the home. El Recreo, the Mexican American community gathered for civic celebrations and for Coronel's funeral in 1894, when he died at the age of 77.

Manuel Requena 1856 (Sept. 22-Oct. 4)
A former county supervisor and city councilman, Requena does not appear on some listings of Los Angeles mayors because he served only 13 days — by appointment after Mayor Stephen Clark Foster briefly resigned to join a lynch mob.Requena, then in his 50s, was a talented horticulturist and man of great influence. He lived on the east side of Los Angeles Street, where he owned a vine-yard and fruit orchard.

When Chinese miners and la-borers brought pomelos to California during the Gold Rush, Requena began growing them in 1858. Proud of his California fruit and wine, he had a friend hand-deliver his prized products to President James Buchanan.  Requena died in 1876 at the age of 74.

Cristobal Aguilar

Aguilar, a former county supervisor and city councilman, was born in Los Angeles in the early 1820s and watched the construction of the city's first municipal water system, which included a 40-foot waterwheel that lifted water from the main ditch to a storage tank in the plaza.

Elaborate improvements, including wooden and iron pipes, were made. But after a flood in 1868 wiped out most of those improvements, a frustrated City Council offered the rights to the water system to the highest bidder. Aguilar defied the council and vetoed the sale. His move would eventually lead to creation of the city's Department of Water and Power.

His action made him a hero to voters. But he knew that the most important public office in Los Angeles was not the mayor.

He wanted the prestige of being the zanjero, the water czar, who had power and a salary 50% higher than the mayor's. So, for several months after his second one-year term ended, he was hired as zanjero, watching for water thieves who would cut into the ditch at night and seal it up before dawn.

He was again elected mayor in 1870, this time for a two-year term, at a time when Latino voter registration was about 22%.

The blot on Aguilar's years as mayor was the notorious Chinese Massacre. In October 1871, as violence broke out in the town's Chinese quarter, Aguilar rode up quietly on his horse, surveyed the turbulent scene of murder and looting, and just as quietly departed.

The rioting that raged through the town left at least 18 Chinese immigrants dead and led East Coast newspapers to label the city a "bloodstained Eden."

When Aguilar ran in 1872 for a fourth term as mayor, he lost. But two years later, he was back in government, again as water czar. He died in 1886.


Abstract: A monument stirs immigration debate
Byline:  Sara B. Miller Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor, 06/29/2005
Sent by Howard Shorr

(BALDWIN PARK, CALIF.)For a dozen years, a 20-foot monument has stood  quietly at
the rail stop in this predominantly Latino city. Ray Leyba had never  bothered to read it - even though he lives next door. It wasn't until the monument became the focus of a group raging against illegal immigration that he walked across the street and looked at one inscription:

"This land was Mexican once, was Indian always and is, and will be again."

Mr. Leyba was surprised, but his response pales in comparison to the recent fury launched at the slab of concrete by Save Our State (SOS). Though not based in Baldwin Park, the group has spearheaded two recent protests, calling those words seditious and likening the town to
"occupied territory," according to SOS founder Joseph Turner.

To many others, the artwork and the city itself have become pawns in a larger nationwide debate about immigration - from "minutemen" patrolling the US-Mexican border to protests in cities against
day-labor sites and driver licenses for undocumented immigrants.

The tension in this normally quiet town nestled in the San Gabriel Valley is one more indication of how polarizing the immigration issue in America has become. And, as is often the case in these fights that symbolize deeper divisions in society, it has caught local officials by surprise.

"We have never had this type of environment ever fostered in our community," says Manuel Lozano, the mayor of Baldwin Park, which has had to hire a press consultant to field calls and spent $30,000 in overtime for its police force for a protest this weekend that drew more than 500 counter protesters. "It has awoken us to ... see that racism is still alive and thriving."

. . . . for Leyba, who came to the US from Mexico some 20 years ago. He thinks the piece is educational and doesn't want it taken down. But he has concerns about some of the words "that might be offensive. The white people might have a point."

Abstract: Boyle Heights Seeks Balance Amid Change
Redevelopment plans include upscale condos, but activists don't want poor residents and small-business owners to be forced out.
By Lisa Richardson, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer, July 24, 2005
Sent by Howard Shorr

Boyle Heights, a densely populated neighborhood east of downtown Los Angeles, is changing; developments are going up and millions of dollars in government subsidies are poised to pour in.

Among plans for the area, a Santa Monica-based developer is finalizing drawings for a $300-million project of upscale condominiums and retail outlets at the landmark Sears building. If the project comes to fruition, affluence will gain a toehold in a community where the median household
income is $24,821 and unemployment is 14%.

A coalition of community groups, made up of the East L.A. Community Corp., Union de Vecinos and Homeboy Industries, has galvanized a contingent of low-income residents - gardeners, maids, nannies, housewives and some small-business owners - urging them to speak up for affordable housing before it's too late.  Their plea is part of a citywide movement for zoning that would require
developers to set aside units affordable to a family making below the  area's median income.

The Boyle Heights area has experienced a net loss of affordable housing over the last five years from a series of publicly funded redevelopment projects, among them the proposed new Hollenbeck police station and the destruction and redevelopment of the Aliso Village, Pico Gardens and Pico-Aliso housing projects, according to Union de Vecinos.

Officially, about 89,000 people live in the community's 6.6 square miles, according to the Los Angeles Planning Department. But many residents say that number does not include thousands of uncounted immigrants.
Save the date: Oct 8th: Monterey Park Hispanic Family History Conference
Complete information will be in the September issue of Somos Primos



East Side Dreams
Vaca, Peña, and Berryessa Californio families
Ramirez Family Album Two:  Donaciano Garcia Conde
Edna Kimbro, Expert on Adobe Building Dies 
How to search for an obituary in Southern California
San Bernardino County Museum 
The Portuguese of Sacramento's West End
The Portuguese of Placer County 
Redistricting in California (1960-1984) by John P. Schmal

East Side Dreams:  (young adult book)  Travel with Art Rodriguez as he dreams of his past.

He experiences an unpleasant childhood full of difficult obstacles that could have profoundly impaired his chance for a normal life. Life appears hopeless during those young years as he struggles to discover who he really is and at the same time contends with his dictorial father. Travel with him as he takes you through the California Youth Authority, the prison system for young offenders. Although he grows up under such trying circumstances, he still finds enjoyment and excitement growing up in San Jose's east side. Experience with him his childhood as he reflects back on both pleasant and unhappy times. In this story that brings laughter and tears, both young and old can find comfort knowing that when life appears bleak and there seems to be no hope, events in life can change. There is a way out of a desperate situation. See how a bad relationship between a father and a son can change from resentful to an affectionate one. 

Author information:

Orale, I am Art Rodriguez and I want to thank you for having my books on your web site all this time. Your help and actions are as if you were my primos. I do not know if you have my new book, Those Oldies but Goodies but it is out now. 

Take care and keep up the good work, Art


On Sunday, May 29, there was a reunion for the descendants of the Vaca, Peña, and Berryessa Californio families in the outskirts of Vacaville in Northern California.

Reunion Report 
by Jaime Cader

Anthony Ray 
being interviewed at the Peña Adobe. 

The event was held at the Peña Adobe, a historical building and park area. I am grateful to local historian and author Jerry Bowen for letting me know about that reunion ahead of time. Bowen is an active member of the Vacaville Heritage Council, an organization that preserves documents and photographs concerning the city of Vacaville.

Also present at the reunion was Fran Hicks, a Californio descendant from Oakland, California whom I met a few years ago at an anniversary celebration of San Francisco's Presidio. Although Hicks is not a descendant of the families that gathered at the Peña
Adobe, she said that someone in her family had married into at least one of the families represented.

It was a pleasure to meet 13 year old Anthony Ray at the Peña Adobe. Despite his young age, he is knowledgeable and interested in his Californio ancestors. He said that is related to the early Californios Juan Felipe Peña, Jesus Peña, Prudencio Peña, and Andres A. Peña.

At the Peña Adobe, I also had the chance to meet genealogist Alexander V. King who had come up from Los Angeles. He has written a book about the Vaca (also known as Baca) family which at the time of the reunion had not yet been published. King also printed out family genealogical information for those individuals that wanted it. As I got interested that day in the New Mexican origin of some of the Californio families, I acquired a print out on the New Mexican-Californio Peña family (some known with the Armijo surname).

The Vaca, Peña, and Berryessa reunion at the Peña Adobe was a pleasant learning and social experience. It was my first encounter with the information that some early California Hispanic families had a New Mexican origin. And to top things off, the weather was perfect at the beautiful park grounds of the Peña Adobe.

Thanks again to Jerry Bowen of the Vacaville Heritage Council for having sent me an announcement about that reunion. And to Anthony Ray: You are an inspiration to today's youth. Continue to learn and to be the good person that you are. 


Ramirez Family Album Two

File: Ramirez Family Album Two 001.jpg (2235555 bytes) DL Time (37333 bps): < 17 minutes

Hi! I have been trying to find information on my Great Great Grandfather Donaciano Garcia 
Conde, I will attach a photo, he was a Comandante of the police. My Great Great Grandmother 
was Jovita Soto, I don't know when they got married. They had several children one of which was my Great Grandmother Luz Garcia Conde she was born in Durango, Durango, Mexico in 
3/26/1897, she had a the following brothers and sisters... Rosa, Guadalupe, Samual, Luciano, 
Feleciano, Jesus, and Renalda. Please let me know if you have any ideas on how to find info on him, I would really appreciate it. 

Thank you,  Monica Billings
(760) 564-5451

Edna Kimbro, Expert on Adobe Building Dies 
by Betty Barnacle, Mercury News
Edna Kimbro, one of the nation's leading experts on the construction and restoration of historic adobe buildings, has died, Saturday, June 25th. She was 57.

Mrs. Kimbro died early Sunday at her Watsonville home after celebrating her 57th birthday the night before, said friend and colleague Julianne Burton-Carvajal. She had been battling cancer that returned this year after a long remission, said another colleague, Charlene Duval.

Mrs. Kimbro's fierce campaigns on behalf of historic properties resulted in the creation of the Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park in the 1980s and the Castro Adobe State Historic Park in 2002.  She also consulted on behalf of the state parks system to help preserve dozens of adobe structures in central California and often worked with local officials for free.

'"We really relied on her to find ways to make preservation happen," said Mrs. Kimbro's longtime friend and fellow Santa Cruz County historian, Ross Gibson.  "Edna worked magic."

Burton-Carvajal said Mrs. Kimbro was a "walking encyclopedia" who recently completed a book for the Getty Conservation Institute on California's missions.  She also led an international study for the same institute on seismic retrofitting for adobes.

Mrs. Kimbro grew up in a Victorian-style house in Monterey, but her real love was California's Hispanic adobes, said James Bryant, a preservationist who lived in the 1950s-era Casa de La Torre, which Mrs. Kimbro helped restore.

In 1988, Mrs. Kimbro and her husband, Joseph, moved into the Castro Adobe in Watsonville, a rare two-story hacienda built in the 1840s by Jose Joaquin Castro.

The house was damaged in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, and Mrs. Kimbro lobbied to get the building restored while the couple lived in trailers and then a house they built next door: Now, the adobe and the acre it sits on is a National Historic Site and a State Historic Landmark.  It is scheduled to undergo seismic restoration this summer."
Lorraine Frain,

How to search for an obituary in Southern California.

Sent by Adrienne Stefanik, Obituary Researcher

These pages are designed to teach you *how* to conduct a comprehensive search for an obituary in Southern California. It gives you places to look and provides lists of newspapers so you can prepare your search using the Internet.  

We do not have obituaries themselves, nor do we have any obituary indexes. We do have links to several online and offline obituary index sites, as well as many places where you can look to see if an obituary has been posted for a relative. 

As volunteers who perform obit lookups, we've struggled and, through trial and error, found solutions to some of these challenges. We designed this website to share the knowledge that we've gained. The process is presented, step by step, on the following pages. 

In addition to outlining our research methods, we also wanted to share the information sources we've compiled. These include lists of newspaper collections that can be accessed by the public. The list includes information about circulation areas, dates, and format (hard copy or microform).

We have compiled a list of libraries, genealogical societies, historical societies, and other repositories throughout Southern California. When the project is completed, you will find contact information on some 600 organizations complete with contact information, notations on whether they do lookups, other genealogical materials in their holdings and links to each repository's website.  This is a work in progress, so check back often to see what's new.

While our focus is definitely Southern Californian, we've included tips and hints that everyone can use, regardless of location.  Check out the strike-out page for some new ideas for obituary sources.

Paula Hinkel, Director
Adrienne Stefanik, Obituary Researcher


San Bernardino County Museum 

2024 Orange Tree Lane, Redlands, CA 92374 • (909) 307-2669 • Fax (909) 307-0539 •

Date: June 15, 2005
Contact: Jennifer Reynolds, media specialist • (909) 307-2669 ext. 278  or Michele Nielsen, curator of history • (909) 307-2669 ext. 240
Day Trip in South Redlands Published by Museum Association

"Historic Redlands: Neighborhoods in South Redlands" has been published by the San Bernardino County Museum Association. The book, written by Museum Curator of History/Archives Michele Nielsen, offers a guided day trip through historic Redlands neighborhoods. It is fully illustrated with vintage photographs from the museum's history division archives.

"This book grew out of a 'day trip' that the Museum Association put together earlier this year," said Nielsen. "The tour was organized to take a close look at the built environment along a route that was laid out on the basis of historical photographs. Every building that's pictured in the book still stands in the city - some are much as they were when they were constructed; others have changed through time."

"Neighborhoods in South Redlands" is 80 pages long and bound with continuous-coil wire to allow it to lay flat. "We encourage people to get out and walk along these historic blocks," said Nielsen, "but we designed the book so it would stay open in a car for those who prefer to explore behind the wheel."

"Historic Redlands: Neighborhoods in South Redlands" is available for purchase at the Museum Store at the San Bernardino County Museum, and at Gerrard's Market, Treasures, and other select retail establishments. The book can also be ordered by telephone or by mail from the Museum Store, (909) 307-2669 ext. 228.

The San Bernardino County Museum is at 2024 Orange Tree Lane in Redlands; take the California Street exit from Interstate 10. For more information, visit or call (909) 307-2669. The Museum Store is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m.


O, Progresso
Vol. 19, #2 June 2000
Source: Rosemarie Capodicci

The Portuguese of Sacramento's West End

A hundred years ago there were fewer than 200 people of Portuguese descent living in what was then the City of Sacramento — the streets from C to Y and Front to 21st, and most were concentrated in the west end of town. Today, in the same area, a hundred years later, the number is not known, but the U.S. Census of 1990 tallied around 10,000 with ties to Portugal in the entire City of Sacramento.

It was undoubtedly the concentration of Portuguese in the west end of the city that brought to the area so many commercial establishments at the turn of the century and before — groceries, bars, barbershops, and other enterprises.

They are listed the Appendix of Portuguese Pioneers of the Sacramento Area: 

Some established before 1900 were Enos and Sons, proprietors of the Crescent City Hotel on J Street between 6th and 7th; Frank Kosta's restaurant on Front Street between J and K; Manuel B. Lagos cigar stand, comer of Front and J;

Manuel Enos coffee stand at 323 L; Manuel Gomes, groceries, hay & grain, at 500 0 St.; Bittencourt Grocery at 4th and M; Silva Grocery at 331 N; Frank Enos Grocery and Bar at 400 L; and Williams Grocery at 1630 11th Street. Several barbershops are listed for the pre-1900 period:

Joe Enos, on Front Street, between J and K, and D. R. Silva, in the same block; Joseph X. Dias at 1027 Second St, and his son of the same name at 200 Q St.; Jose and Lois Rodrigues at 1023 2nd; Joaquim Silva at 1203 E St.; Manuel Silva, 1025 2nd St.; Antone S. Silveira, 1006 3rd St.; and Silveira & Souza barbershop at 911 K St.

A few years later other food businesses were established:

Belveder Meat Market at 4th and S in 1907, by proprietors Manuel Almeida and Tony Silva; Manuel Cabral's Del Mar Market at 1831 6th St.; Dutra & Goulard Grocers at 231 N;

Enos Grocery Store at 5th and T in 1906; Charles Silva's Fulton Meat Market at 4th and M in 1905; Lamb's Grocery Store at 2000 3rd St. in 1915; Lial and Miller Grocery at 630 Q in 1911;

Lisbon Bakery ai 1914 4th St. in 1917; Machado's Southside Grocery at 500 T in 1911, later moved to its present 601 T location; Manuel Mattos Market at 2030 3rd St. in 1915; Silva & Costa Grocery at 1500 Q 1915, Souza's Cash Store at 2030 3rd St. in 1919.

Continental Grocery Store (pictured above) opened at 20313rd St. in 1906, aptly named for the predominantly Continental Portuguese who settled in the West End. It was originally owned by John and Theresa Morais, and then purchased around 1928 by John and Lucy Madeira.

In later years the Portuguese businesses spread out eastward throughout the city, and there were many more of them. But this article is about the West End, and the people who lived there.

The 1900 U.S. Census for the West End streets of Front, 2nd, 3rd and 4th. and the connecting alphabetical streets inthat area, lists 40 addresses occupied by immigrants from Portugal. That's not counting the three who lived aboard Sacramento River

Continental Grocery at 3rd and U, in 1930. Shown are, from left, John Madeira, daughter Diolinda (now Gavica), and Lucinda. Madeira, John's wife.

Some arrived on the steamer Richland (John Silva, P. Moniero and wife Maria), and the two (A. Gomez and E. Parrott) aboard the steamer Apache. When you add up their often sizeable families they total more than 175 individuals.

On 3rd Street alone there. were 20 families: Colombo, Prates, Simmons, Peters, DaRosa, Marshall, Pine, Gonsalves, Jesse, Patrice, Lewis, Francis, Dias, Mattos, Smith, Lamb, and four named Silva.

Some of the larger 3rd Street families:  Joseph Peters, at No. 1414, who worked at the railroad roundhouse. He immigrated in 1875, his wife Mary in 1880, along with son Arthur, a railroad engineer and widower with three children at age 29. Other children, bom here, were Joseph, Willie, and Carrie. Living with them was a lodger, Charles Moreno.

Joaquim L. daRoza, a wood merchant; wife Amelia, and children King, Mary, Joseph, Amelia, and Carrie. Young King drove a wood wagon.

Antone Silva, at No. 2015, who immigrated in 1870. and was shown, at age 52, as retired. He and wife Mary were parents of Joseph, Fred, Moses, Tony, Frank and Maggie. Joseph and Fred were born in Portugal, the others in California.

Tony Pine, at No. 2015-1/2, a railroad laborer who immigrated in 1870; wife Mary; children Manuel, twins Tony and Joe, Frank, and Lena.

John Silva, railroad laborer; wife Mary: children John, Emily, Manuel, Andre, and Frank.

Manuel Patrice, at No. 1924, a laborer who immigrated in 1878 with wife Mary. Children: Emily, Rosie, Patrice, Manuel, and Sarah.

Joseph Smith, hod carrier, immigrated 1880 with wife Mary. Children Manuel and Delano were born in Hawaii; David, Mary, Julia and Fred in California.

Today there are only eight houses on 3rd Street, all on the east side of the street, numbers 2023 and 2025 between T and U (the now vacant building at the comer of 3rd and U is where the Continental Grocery was housed.) Joseph Dias, grocer, an 1880 immigrant. Wife Annie; children Willie, Goldie, and Lillie.

Between U and V are five houses, numbers 2101 to 2131 at the comer of 3rd and W. One that used to be there was No. 2130, the Viegas residence, shown below from a rear view. It .vas moved during World War II to 15th and V, according to Mary Viegas Madeira.

The 1936 Sacramento City Directory shows that Manuel Mattos lived at 2101 3rd; A. Chaquica at 2117; Joseph Pen-era at 2123; J.M. Munso at 2131. The 1900 Census shows Manuel Gonsalves living at 2125 3rd, but the 1936 City Directory lists Adriano Lourenco. He and wife Palmira, shown below in front of their home, were the parents of PHCS member Katie Grayson.


O' Progesso 
Vol. 18, # 4 Dec 1999
Source: Rosemarie Capodicci

The Portuguese of Placer County 
by Aileen Alves Gage

Many Portuguese immigrated to Placer County and settled around Loomis, Newcastle, Lincoln and Auburn. They started coming in the 1850s to the gold fields. Some made money and returned to their native land. Others stayed, worked on the railroads, and later became successful fruit orchards.

Joseph K. Correa Sr. was one of the earliest Portuguese settlers, immigrating from Sao Jorge, Azores, in the 1850s. He mined at Yankee Jim's, Long Valley and Dutch Ravine, where he built a magnificent home He was a successful fruit grower, and sold his crop to W.J. Wilson in Newcastle.

He married Mary Amelia Nunes of Flores, the Azores, on August 15, 1865, and became a naturalized citizen the following October, in Auburn. They had seven children Joseph Jr., Frank, Mary E., Manuel, Amelia, William and Minnie. Correa lived to age 90, dying in 1921.

Many of the Azorean families had eight or ten children. As they reached their early teens, they realized there was no future for them in their homeland, there not being enough land to support all of them. So they left in hopes of finding a better life.

Several became whalers, as there weren't many other jobs. It was a hard and dangerous life, and many jumped ship when they arrived in California, and headed for the gold fields.

Placer County naturalization records show there were 98 Portuguese naturalized between 1856 and 1900, and 130 between 1901 and 1959; 81 were from the Azores, two from Cabo Verde, a few from Madeira, and some from the Continent.

The early immigrants worked in the gold mines and on the railroads in the 1870s, and some planted fruit orchards. Many of the farmers worked between harvesting and pruning in the 1930s for the Portland Cement Co. Mountain Quarry in American River Canyon, out of Auburn. They also worked for the Cladding, McBean Co. pottery plant in Lincoln.

They came from Flores, Pico, Faial, a few from Sao Jorge and Tercera, a few from Madeira and the Continent. The majority came between 1850 and 1900; a significant number between 1901 and 1920, and another group between 1921 and 1930. Most were farmers, and many of their sons later were successful in business.

The Portuguese settled in the same area, usually within five or ten miles of each other on fruit farms, or in small towns. They usually immigrated one at a time: first a head of family, sometimes followed by the rest of the family. A brother or sister would follow, and eventually two or three or more of the same family would settle near each other, sometimes living together until they could establish themselves.

Many were laborers, tenant fruit farmers, and others were able 10 buy their own fruit farms. Some bought uncleared land, cleared it, and planted their orchards.

Many of the Portuguese women and some of the men worked in the fruit houses. Those with larger families who could do the work with one or two 1'amilv members, would send a daughter, son or wife to work in the fruit shed, sorting and packing fruit, dumping fruit for the packers, loading the box cars with packed fruit for the Eastern markets, and unloading the farmers' truck loads of fruit from the ranches. The industry also provided jobs for the teenagers, so between working on the fruit ranches and in the fruit houses, they didn't have time to get in trouble.

They went to grammar schools within walking distance of their homes; attended St.Theresa's Catholic Church, and then St. Joseph's in Auburn, and St. Josephs' Church in Lincoln; and joined the Portuguese fraternal lodges.

The lodges provided a burial fund and an opportunity to get together and socialize. They joined the Placer County Holy Ghost Association, and held their religious festival each year in Lincoln. Some of them joined the California State Grange.

Some had a rough time during the Depression, a few losing their ranches. Those on the farms always had plenty to eat; they had a cow, chickens, a pig or two, fruits, and always a large vegetable garden. Many baked bread, and they made dresses from the hundred-pound sacks. If you were really lucky, you might see a Roy Rogers movie at the Saturday matinee. Life was simple and uncomplicated. You listened to your Majestic radio or visited the neighbors.

The Portuguese continued their traditions, customs and religious festivals. The Placer County Holy Ghost Association was formed in 1923, the first president being Frank Ludovina. The first queen to reign in the Lincoln celebration in 1924was Adeline Sousa Ludovina.

On January 30,1917, Manuel Land Mary Z. Perry, brother and sister, deeded a 60xl0-8-foot lot to the three Portuguese fraternal lodges of Newcastle to be used for a meeting hall. The there lodges: I.D.E.S. ^42, U.P.E.C. ^58, and S.P.R.S.I. ff26. Work on the foundation for the hall began in February 1917, and was completed in 1918. Head carpenter was Tony Perry.

Following extensive research and documentation, the hall was declared a "Point of Historical Interest" by the State Historical Resources Commision on November 14. 1981, and placed on the list of the National Register of Historic Places on March 25. 1982.




By John P. Schmal


The Chicano Population in 1960

In 1960, the Census Bureau reported that California had a total population of 15,717,204 persons. This new figure increased California’s representation in the U.S. Congress from 30 seats in 1950 to 38 seats. Roughly 1.5 million Hispanics made up more than 9% of the California population, but 20% of these Hispanics were foreign-born, many of whom were not naturalized and, as a result, were not eligible to vote. In Los Angeles, Latinos made up 9.6% of the population in 1960, slightly above the African-American population of 7.6%.

But, as the new decade commenced, there were still no Chicanos in the State Senate, the Assembly or in the California Congressional delegation, primarily because of political fracturing. "Fracturing" is the practice of drawing district lines so that a minority population is broken up. Through fracturing, the voting members of a minority are spread among as many districts as possible, keeping them a minority in all the districts.

The 1961 Reapportionment
In 1961, with the 1960 census statistics as a guide, the California Legislature reapportioned the Senate and Assembly pursuant to section 6 of article IV of the California Constitution. Testifying before the Reapportionment and Elections Committees of the Senate and Assembly, Los Angeles City Councilperson Edward Roybal, complained about the fragmentation of the Chicano communities in L.A. He stressed the importance of creating Hispanic districts.

Aside from the testimony of Councilperson Roybal, there was minimal Chicano participation in the 1961 redistricting process. The longtime Chicano political activist, Nell Soto, stated that this lack of Chicano participation was due "to several factors, including Chicanos’ lack of awareness of the reapportionment process; the focusing of Chicano interest on local rather than statewide issues; the absence of Chicanos in the Legislature who might have informed the Chicano community about the importance of redistricting; and more concern on the part of Chicano activist to register Chicanos to vote than to create Chicano districts."

And so it was that the East Los Angeles Barrio, with its large population of Hispanics, was split up into six different Assembly districts, seven State Senate districts, and six different Congressional Districts. After the 1961 reapportionment was completed, Mexican Americans represented significant populations in the following Assembly Districts: the 40th, 45th, 48th, 50th and 51st Eastside Assembly Districts. All of these districts fragmented the Chicano community and were combined with neighboring Anglo communities so that Hispanic voters rarely made up more than 20% of any one district's population.

The Chicano political researchers, Gilbert Lopez and Richard Martinez, observed that the 1961 redistricting "seemed to have severed Chicano communities and as a result rendered them incapable of forming viable voting blocks by attaching them to areas that would prove to make their vote meaningless."

The California Supreme Court later ruled that California's thirty-eight congressional districts, as drawn in 1961, were unconstitutional. Similarly, the Supreme Court also ruled that both California’s Assembly and Senate would have to reapportion their districts.

In his study of the 1961 reapportionment, elections consultant T. Anthony Quinn, Ph.D., wrote:

"Despite the state’s large Mexican-American population, Mexican-Americans were not a political force at all. In 1960, not a single federal or state office in California was held by a Mexican-American. Spanish-speaking neighborhoods regularly returned huge Democratic majorities, but they exerted no political power of their own. Jesse Unruh and Robert Crown (the two Assemblymen chiefly responsible for the 1961 plan) saw such Hispanic neighborhoods as putty, to be shaped as necessary to maximize Democratic opportunities. The huge East Los Angeles barrio would be divided among six Assembly Districts."

Although the redistricting of 1961 resulted in the continued gerrymandering of the Latino community in the Los Angeles, one congressional district was created that would pave a way for Councilperson Ed Roybal to run for Congress.

The 1962 Elections
In the June 5, 1962 California Primary Election, thirteen Chicano candidates ran for office. City Councilman Edward Roybal had announced that he would run for the 30th Congressional District. Around the same time, Henry Mendoza, a Republican, announced that he would run for the 21st District.

In addition, eleven Chicanos were on the ballot for the 40th, 45th, 48th, 50th, 51st and 77th California Assembly districts elections. In East L.A.’s 48th District, Frank Lopez and Frank Paz had run against each other in the primaries. Political analysts believed that Frank Paz might have won that election if he had not faced another Latino in the primary.

Of the thirteen Chicano candidates in California, only three men would take office following the November 6, 1962 General Election. In the primaries, John Moreno had faced three other Chicano Democratic candidates in the contest for East Los Angeles’ 51st Assembly District seat.

A native of Los Angeles, Moreno had attended USC and served in the U.S. Navy from 1945 to 1947. Before running for his Assembly seat, John Moreno served as the Mayor of the City of Santa Fe Springs. Once elected, Assemblyperson Moreno would serve as the representative of the 51st District for only two years: 1963 and 1964.

Philip Soto, a Democrat from La Puente, was a veteran of the U.S. Air Force and was a member of the La Puente City Council prior to his service in Sacramento. He became the state representative for the 50th Assembly District.

With their November 6 elections, Philip Soto and John Moreno became the first two Latinos from Los Angeles County to be elected to the California State Legislature in the Twentieth Century. They were also the first Latinos to be elected to serve in the State Assembly since the election of Miguel Estudillo of Riverside County in 1907. The election of these two men set a precedent for a long line of Latino legislators committed to the service of their communities.

While Soto and Moreno celebrated their Assembly districts, Ed Roybal also savored his own victory. On November 6, 1962, after defeating Loyola University Professor William Fitzgerald, the City Councilman became the first Hispanic from California to be elected to Congress since the 1879 election of Romualdo Pacheco.

Edward Roybal took his seat in the House of Representatives on January 3, 1963 at the start of the 88th U.S. Congress. He would serve for twenty years from the 88th Congress to the 102nd Congress, retiring on January 3, 1993. At the start of his Congressional career, Representative Roybal represented the 30th District from 1963 to 1975. From 1975 to 1993, he served in the 25th District.

As Ed Roybal prepared to run for Representative of the 30th Congressional District, he resigned from his City Council seat on July 31, 1962. An African-American, Gilbert W. Lindsay, was appointed to replace him on January 28, 1963, even though the 9th District had a large concentration of Latinos. Lindsay would serve in this capacity to Dec. 28, 1990, when he died in office. In three years, African Americans went from having no representation on the Los Angeles City Council in 1960 to having three representatives in 1963. At the same time, Latino representation went from two council members to zero.

The City Council apportionment of 1962 split East Los Angeles among seven councilmanic districts. Because of this fragmentation, Chicanos could not be a majority in any one of the city’s fifteen districts, even though they represented a large portion of seven of the council’s fifteen districts.

The 1964 Elections
In the June 2, 1964 California Primary Election, Ed Roybal received 49,151 votes in the 30th Congressional District, easily winning reelection to his Congressional seat. According to the California Statement of Vote for 1964, Roybal’s closest opponents received only 15,153 and 13,228 votes.

In the elections for the California Assembly, many Chicano candidates stepped forward to seek a mandate for representing their communities. A total of eleven Chicanos ran for the 10th, 38th, 40th, 45th, 48th, 50th 51st, and 75th Assembly District seats. However, by the time the elections had ended, only one Hispanic Assemblyperson would take office.

In the 50th Assembly District, Philip Soto won reelection by 2,178 votes in the general election. Two years later in 1966, however, facing the same opponent in 1966, Soto would lose his seat by 4,309 votes, apparently because of boundary changes to his district after the 1966 reapportionment.

When Assemblyman Moreno tried to get reelected to his 51st District seat, he found himself up against another Chicano candidate, Dionisio Morales. This contest split the Chicano vote and led to victory in the Democratic Primary by Jack Fenton. Jack Fenton received 16,278 votes to John Moreno’s 12,850 votes.

As 1965 began, only two Chicanos (Roybal and Soto) represented California in Sacramento and Washington. The reality of Mexican-American representation in the Golden State was still far from complete.

The 1965 Reapportionment

Because the California Supreme Court ordered the California Legislature to reapportion itself in 1965, Governor Edmund "Pat" Brown called a special session of the Legislature to consider a revised reapportionment, and, in October, the California Legislature passed Assembly Bill No. 1, which fashioned new Assembly and Senate districts.

However, the 1967 California State Assembly and Senate reapportionment continued the fracturing and dilution of the East Los Angeles Chicano community, which was now split between ten Assembly districts and seven Senate districts. Five Assembly Districts – the 40th, 45th, 48th, 50th, and 51st – all dipped into East Los Angeles for 20-30 percent of their registered voters, while five other Assembly Districts – the 52nd, 53rd, 56th, 65th and 66th – all dipped in for smaller percentages.

Chicano analysts have studied the reapportionment of the mid-1960s and speculated that the gerrymandering of East Los Angeles was designed to benefit the Democratic incumbents in the Assembly. Democratic Assemblymen were anxious to have portions of the heavily Democratic Latino communities in their own voting districts. While incumbents were pleased with this setup, most up and coming Chicano challengers were unable to mobilize any serious threats to the men in power.

The 1966 Elections

In the 1966 California Primary Election on June 7, 1966, four Hispanics ran for the 14th, 19th, and 29th Congressional Districts, and all of them lost. Fifteen Chicanos also ran for positions on the Assembly. All of these candidates, some of whom opposed one another in the primaries, lost their elections. The one Latino incumbent, Philip Soto, lost by 4,309 votes.

In addition, nine Latinos also ran for State Senate seats, the 9th, 10th, 27th and 28th and 30th. Richard Calderón received the CDC and MAPA endorsements for his bid for the 27th Senatorial District but lost by 311 votes. Cecilia Pedroza and Raúl Morín had splintered the Mexican-American vote, preventing Calderón from winning.

In his reelection bid for the 30th Congressional District, Ed Roybal received 48,117 votes against the 22,347 votes of his Republican opponent, Henry O’Bryant, Jr. This represented the only bright spot for the cause of Chicano representation in the 1966 election year.

Julian Nava’s Election (1967)

The election of Julian Nava in 1967 to the Los Angeles Unified School District Board was significant in many respects. He was the first Latino elected to the school board and he was able to defeat an incumbent in an at-large election. His vote total, over two million, was actually the largest ever received by a victorious Latino candidate in the United States up to that time.

In an interview with the author, Julian stated that his election "lit fires in many places" and "inspired the famous ‘Walk Outs’ of the Los Angeles high schools in February of 1968, just seven months after I took office." Julian explains that these walkouts took place because "the students (and their leaders) believed that for the first time their demands for reform might be met with one of their own on the school board."

But Julian Nava’s surprise victory was one of the few events that gave representation to Latinos during this period. The author, Richard Santillan, in Chicano Politics: La Raza Unida explains that:

"After 1968, the Mexican-American… looked at the American political system and found that the Mexican-American after almost 120 years of being an American citizen did not have any real political voice. The Mexican-American tried to work in the two-party system, but the system failed him. In 1968, the California Legislature did not have one Mexican-American in the Assembly nor the Senate."

The 1968 Elections

By 1968, the California Legislature was once again without Latino representatives. In the June 4, 1968 primary elections, 13 Latinos ran for Assembly seats. Philip L. Soto once again ran for the 50th Assembly seat again but lost one more time. By the time the elections had ended, only one Chicano was given a ticket to enter the Assembly.

In the primary election for the 40th Assembly District, the Democratic candidate Alex Garcia had faced twelve other candidates in the primary election, including four Hispanics. Assemblyman Garcia was a veteran of the U.S. Army and a graduate of UCLA and the Southern California Business School. Before his election to the State Legislature, Garcia was a field Representative for Congressman Ed Roybal for five years.

A New Decade (the 1970s)

The 1970s represented new opportunities for Chicano candidates. The beginning of true Hispanic representation would be established during these years. Assemblyman García was the lone Latino in the California Legislature at the beginning of 1970. However, in the June 2, 1970 primary election, three Republican Latinos ran for Congressional seats in the 9th, 16th and 22nd Congressional Districts. In addition, fourteen Chicanos also ran for Assembly seats in the primaries, but only two men won.

In the primaries, Alex P. Garcia won reelection to the 40th Assembly District by a wide margin, getting 15,151 votes out a total of 22,953. The Democrat Peter Chacón was elected as the representative for the 69th Assembly District in San Diego County. After receiving a bachelor’s degree, teaching credential and M.A. from San Diego State University, Mr. Chacon worked as an educator and administrator for the San Diego Unified School District.

The 1971 Reapportionment

In the 1970 census, the Chicano population of California was tallied at 2,369,292. Although Latinos now made up 10.8% of the state’s total population, their voting power was dramatically reduced by the presence of 490,892 foreign-born Hispanics, who represented 22.9% of the total Hispanic population. Many of these people were not citizens and were therefore ineligible for American voting privileges. This represented a significant stumbling block in electing Chicanos to public office.

On January 21 and 22, 1971, the California State Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights held hearings in Sacramento on the low level of political participation of Mexican Americans in California’s political scene. Forty-two witnesses appeared before the Committee to answer questions about the topic of Chicano political participation.

The Committee later reported that, out of 15,650 elected and appointed officials at the municipal, county, state, and federal levels, only 310 (1.98%) were Chicanos. It was also reported that none of the top forty state officials were Chicano, nor were any of the Governor’s twenty-eight staff members. Furthermore, none of the 132 top state court positions were held by Mexican Americans.

The Elections of 1972

The Elections of 1972 represented another step forward for the political development of the Hispanic community of California. Richard Alatorre and Joseph Montoya were elected from their respective districts in Los Angeles to the California Assembly, while Ray Gonzales was elected to represent his Bakersfield District.

Ray Gonzales, a Democrat, won a stunning victory against a veteran Republic legislator in a bid for the 33rd Assembly District, which took up most of Kern County, including Bakersfield, one of the most conservative areas of the state. Gonzáles had graduated from Mount San Antonio College and UCLA, and spent four years in the U.S. Air Force. His career in elective politics began at the age of 28 with a one-vote victory to the La Puente City Council in 1968. He later served as Mayor of La Puente before his election to the State Legislature.

Richard Alatorre, a Democrat from Los Angeles, was elected to serve as the representative of the 55th District to the California Assembly. A native of East Los Angles, Alatorre was destined for a long and tumultuous career in politics, sometimes breaking new ground for Chicano lawmakers.

The Special Masters Plan

In 1972, the California Legislature had once again failed to draft valid statutes to reapportion new legislative and congressional districts in a fair and equitable manner. As a result, on August 31, 1973, a Special Masters Panel recommended its own reapportionment plan to the California State Supreme Court. It was believed that this plan would give Chicanos the opportunity to win two Senate seats and four Assembly seats, all of them located in Los Angeles County.

On November 28, the California Supreme Court ordered the Special Masters plan for the apportionment of California’s Assembly, Senate and congressional districts. Before the passing of the Masters Plan, there were five Assemblymen, one Congressman and no Senators who were Chicanos. Seven years later, in 1980, there would be only a slight increase to four Assemblymen, one Congressman, and three state Senators. In an article entitled "Racial Politics and Representation: Chicanos and Redistricting," Jay Rosenlieb analyzed the plan:

"The Special Masters’ plan managed to pack the bulk of the Mexican-American population in Los Angeles County into just two Assembly districts and to distribute the remainder of the county’s Mexican-American population among 19 outlying districts. The court-drawn plan thus effectively thwarted any hope for an increase in the number of Mexican-American representatives in the state legislature. In the 1973 Special Masters’ plan for California, only two Los Angeles County Assembly districts – the 55th and 56th – contained Chicano populations of more than 45 percent, while 25 of the 30 Los Angeles County Assembly Districts contained Chicano populations of less than 22 percent."

Chicano Legislative Caucus

In order to work for further political progress, the five Latinos now serving in the State Legislature officially formed the Chicano Legislative Caucus. The establishment of the Caucus marked a significant turning point in the political empowerment of the Latino community. For the first time in California's legislative history, an agenda was established and legislative priorities were put forward to protect and preserve the rights of Latinos throughout California.

Although four districts continued to be represented by Hispanic delegates after the 1974 elections, one Chicano legislator lost his seat. In the November 5, 1974 General Election, Ray Gonzales, the Democratic Incumbent of Assembly District 33, was defeated by his Republican opponent, Bill Thomas, by 38,611 to 33,094 votes.

In January 1975, Chicano representation in Sacramento amounted to four members in the Assembly and two in the Senate: Senator Ruben S. Ayala represented the 32nd District, while Alex P. García served in the 24th District. In the Assembly, the four representatives were Richard Alatorre (55th District), Art Torres (56th District), Joseph Montoya (60th District), and Peter Chacón (69th District). Two years earlier, the Chicano Legislative Caucus had been founded in the hopes of promoting the political empowerment of the Latino communities of California.

Councilperson Snyder and East Los Angeles

In the Los Angeles City Council, Councilman Art Snyder continued to represent East Los Angeles’ largely Latino Fourteenth District. Serving since July 7, 1967, Arthur K. Snyder had held onto his position by winning 11,514 votes (57.84%), while his opponents, David López Lee and Edward Avila, won only 3,958 and 2,860 votes, respectively. Although Snyder’s district was largely Hispanic, he held the support of many Chicanos and maintained his base of power. As a result, no Latinos had served on the Los Angeles City Council since Edward Roybal’s departure in 1962.

During the 1972 reapportionment, Chicano political activists had lobbied for the creation of two Hispanic Councilmanic districts, in the hopes of giving that community a new voice in the Los Angeles City Council. No Latinos had served on the Council since Edward Roybal’s departure in 1962, this in spite of the fact that by 1970, Hispanics had come to represent 18.3% of the total population of the City of Los Angeles.

The pleas of Chicano activists were ignored by the Council, and Councilperson Snyder was given representation of an Eastside district that was 64% Hispanic. Snyder made the best of this situation by learning Spanish and hiring an effective Latino staff to help him serve his constituency. Although Snyder’s district was dominantly Latino, he held the support of many Chicanos and maintained his base of power, winning regular elections and surviving two recall votes until his retirement in 1985.

Councilperson Snyder’s 14th District included the communities of Boyle Heights, Lincoln Heights, El Sereno and Highland Part, where significant numbers of Latinos lived. However, Snyder also enjoyed the backing of a powerful block of conservative Anglo voters in the Eagle Rock neighborhood. At election time, the support of Snyder’s Eagle Rock constituency considerably outweighed the voting influence of the other districts, which had larger numbers of non-voting immigrant residents.

The 1978 Elections

In the 1978 Primary Election, Alex P. García won 32,377 votes (71.9%) against four other Democratic opponents in his second race for the 24th Senatorial District. Then came the General Election of November 7, 1978: In the General Election, Alex P. García received 51,075 votes in the race for the 24th Senatorial District against the Republican Loyal A. Weaver, who received 19,340 votes.

In the Primary election of 1978, Richard Alatorre won 13,743 votes, winning 71.7% against his two Democratic opponents, Joseph R. Chavez and Sally Acosta, in the battle for the 55th Assembly District. In the General Election, Richard Alatorre easily defeated his Republican opponent, John M. Feliz, by 27,081 to 18,510 votes.

In 1978, Joseph Montoya moved from the Assembly to the State Senate. However, a Latino did not win Montoya’s Assembly seat in the 60th District when he advanced to the State Senate.

In the 1978 Primary Election, Congressman Edward Roybal easily defeated his Republican opponent, Robert K. Watson, by 38,699 votes to 11,289 in the battle for his 25th Congressional District. By this time, Congressman Roybal had served his constituency for almost 16 years, having taken his seat in the House of Representatives in 1963.

In 1978, Senator Ruben S. Ayala was reelected to the 32nd Senatorial District, putting together 79,837 votes, against John Ridley’s 48,415 votes. Art Torres won 17,582 votes in the primary election for Los Angeles’ 57th Assembly District. In the 56th Assembly District race, Art Torres won 23,086 votes against J. Raul Blacksten’s 5,512 votes.

The 1980 Elections

In 1980, Matthew "Marty" G. Martinez, a Monterey Park Councilman, was elected to the Assembly. Before entering politics, Martinez ran an upholstery shop in Monterey Park. However in 1974, he won election to the Monterey Park City Council. In 1980 Democratic Primary Election, he defeated the 16-year incumbent, Jack Fenton, who had initially defeated John Moreno. This victory was engineered with money and support from Representative Howard Berman of Panorama City, who had hoped to oust Fenton in order to win the Assembly Speakership. A resident of Monterey Park in Los Angeles County, Martinez had been born in Colorado and served as Mayor of Monterey Park for several years. The political expertise and financial support of Berman was crucial in bringing Martinez into the Assembly.

In the November 4 General Election, Richard Alatorre, the Democratic incumbent for the 55th Assembly District of Los Angeles, won 33,819 votes (67.4%) against his two opponents. At the same time, Art Torres easily won reelection to Los Angeles’ 56th Assembly District, receiving 24,848 or 81.4% of the votes in his run against two opponents.

Assemblyman Peter Chacón won reelection to the 79th District (San Diego) with 42,844 votes (62.1%) against the Republican Bailey, who received 25,447 votes (or 38%). In the 25th Congressional, District, Roybal easily won reelection with 49,080 votes, or 66% of the total in his race.

After the 1980 elections had ended, California Chicanos were represented by two senators (Ayala and García), five Assemblymen (Alatorre, Torres, Chacón, Martinez, and Montoya), and one Congressman (Roybal).

The 1982 Elections

The year 1982 became an important year for Chicano representation in the State of California. The State Legislature, under the direction of State Assemblyman Richard Alatorre, had reapportioned political districts through the State. As Chairman of the Assembly’s Reapportionment Committee, Alatorre had played an important role in creating two new Latino Congressional Districts. As a result of this reapportionment, two Latinos Marty Martinez and Esteban Torres were elected to Congress and joined longtime U.S. Representative Edward Roybal (D-Los Angeles), who had been the only Latino in the state's congressional delegation since 1962.

In a special election on July 13, 1982, Marty Martinez, the Democratic Assemblyman from Monterey Park (who had joined the Assembly after the 1980 Assembly election), was elected as the Representative of the 31st District to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of George E. Danielson (who had resigned to become an appeals court justice). Martinez then defeated the Republican John Rousselot, a Congressman who had lost his district through reapportionment in a very heated campaign. Marty Martinez would eventually be reelected to nine succeeding Congresses, serving from July 13, 1982 to January 3, 2001.

Esteban Edward Torres, the Democratic Assemblyman from La Puente, was elected to serve as the U.S. Representative to Congress from California’s newly created 34th District, which included the East Los Angeles business district, Pico Rivera, Whittier and Santa Fe Springs, and other environs of the San Gabriel Valley. He would serve in this capacity to 1999.

State Senator Richard Alarcon, representing Sun Valley, was elected to represent the 20th Senate District, which included the greater San Fernando Valley. Alarcon, who narrowly defeated Assemblyman Richard Katz in June's primary election, won the general election by garnering more than 66 percent of the vote.

In the meantime, Montebello School Board member, Charles M. Calderon, gained Martinez’s vacated Assembly position. Charles Calderon, a Democrat from Alhambra, was elected to serve the 59th Assembly District, which included Alhambra, Monterey Park, South El Monte, Pico Rivera, Montebello and parts of South San Gabriel, Whittier, El Monte and the City of Industry. Assemblyman Calderon would serve in this capacity from November 1982 until April 1990, when he was elected to the Senate to represent the 30th Senate District.

Also in 1982, Assemblyman Art Torres challenged the incumbent State Senator Alex Garcia in a bitter primary battle for the 24th Senate District and won. The 24th Senate District included South Pasadena, East Los Angeles, Eagle Rock, Vernon, Maywood, Commerce and Bell Gardens.

The Rise of Gloria Molina

Torres' vacant Assembly position itself produced a bitter battle. Thirty-four-year-old Gloria Molina had put together an impressive resume by working for various state and federal political causes. A native of Montebello, Molina went to Assemblyman Richard Alatorre – who had already become a powerful local political figure – and asked for his endorsement in her campaign for the 56th Assembly District seat.

However, Alatorre had already picked his own candidate, Richard Polanco, for the position. Spurned by the Eastside political establishment, Gloria Molina took on their handpicked candidate for a State Assembly seat and won, even against great political odds. In defiance of the old-boy network, Molina defeated Polanco and would serve in the State Assembly from 1982 to 1987, becoming the first Chicana elected to the State Legislature and the first to hold a significant elective position in Los Angeles County.

By the end of 1982, Chicano representation had increased significantly from eight elected officials to ten. In Sacramento, Ruben S. Ayala and Art Torres served as Senators, while five persons (Alatorre, Chacón, Montoya, Molina and Calderón) had seats in the Assembly. At the same time, the number of Chicano Congressman had increased from one to three.

November 6, 1984 General Election

In 1984, all three Chicano Representatives to Congress were reelected to their positions. Edward Roybal won reelection to the 25th Congressional District with 74,261 votes (or 71.7%) against the Republic Bill Bloxom and Libertarian Anthony G. Bajada. At the same time, Representative Marty Martinez won reelection to the 30th Congressional District, with 64,378 votes (51.8%) against his Republic opponent, Richard Gomez, who won 53,900 votes (43.3%). Esteban Torres also won the race for 34th Congressional District with 87,060 votes (59.8%) against his Republican opponent Paul R. Jackson, who received 58,467 (40.2%).

Meanwhile, in the California State Assembly, Richard Alatorre won reelection to the 55th Assembly District with 44,505 votes (70.1% of the total). Charles Calderon, the Democratic Incumbent, won reelection to the 59th Assembly District with 55,869 votes (67.1%). Pete Chacón won reelection to San Diego’s 79th Assembly District, winning with 52,898 votes (66.9%) against Shirley M. Gissendanner’s 23,420 votes (29.6%).

In 1985, seven Chicanos were seated California State Legislature, making up 6% of the total membership: Chacón, Alatorre, Calderon and Molina in the Assembly, and Joseph Montoya, Ruben Ayala, and Art Torres in the Senate. In the meantime, three Chicano Congressman continued to serve as delegates from California in the House of Representatives.

As California moved into the second half of the decade, Federal agencies and Chicano activists in Los Angeles began to chronicle a continuing practice of discrimination against the Latino community with regards to reapportionment. At the beginning of 1985, no Latino sat on either the Los Angeles City Council or the County Board of Supervisors, even though the Latino population of Los Angeles County had been tallied at 27.6% in the census five years earlier. Starting in 1985, a series of events would take place that would bring a great balance to the representation of Hispanics in both Los Angeles and the State of California.


Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund and William C. Velasquez Institute, "California Congressional Redistricting Plan" (Submitted July 17, 2001, Los Angeles).

Political Participation of Mexican Americans in California, Report of the California Advisory Committee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights (Sacramento, Calif., August 1971).

Jay Rosenlieb, "Racial Politics and Representation: Chicanos and Redistricting," Claremont Journal of Public Affairs, Vol. 7 (Summer 1980), p. 44.

Richard Santillan, "California Reapportionment and the Chicano Community: An Historical Overview 1960-1980," in The Chicano Community and California Redistricting, Vol. I (Rose Institute of State and Local Government, Claremont Men’s College, 1981.

Richard Santillan, Chicano Politics: La Raza Unida (Los Angeles: Tlaquilo Publications, 1973).





Mexican pioneer established Boise, Idaho enclave in late 1870s
The Huartede Jauregui Spanish Civil War Archive in Reno

Mexican pioneer established Boise, Idaho enclave in late 1870s


Jesus Urquides helped shape the city's development decades before Idaho became a state

By Denise Oshodi
The Idaho Statesman, 7-10-2005
Sent by Angie Jensen

A stylish and trim Mexican man braved a rough wilderness to become one of the Old West's premier mule-packers, and some local residents want to cement his place in Idaho history.

Jesus Urquides followed the late-1800s Gold Rush as a muleteer — equivalent to today's long-haul trucker — which eventually led him to Idaho. He settled in Boise and established a Mexican-American neighborhood of "casitas," or little houses, called Spanish Village that stood for nearly a century at the edge of downtown.

Many modern-day residents don't know about Urquides' and other Mexicans' subtle yet important influence on Boise. Or that around the turn of the 20th century, the city abounded with Basque, Irish, German, Chinese and Bohemian people who brought a variety of cultures to a burgeoning city.

A Centennial High School history teacher and three local researchers want Boiseans to know about Urquides and the city's Mexican heritage that predates the wave of farm workers who moved here in the 1940s. The stories also may help today's Idaho Hispanics feel connected to Mexicans who came as Idaho pioneers, the researchers say.

"I had never heard about that before," said Ernesto Garza, a 26-year-old who grew up in Nampa and Texas as a seasonal farm worker. "It just makes me feel like less of an outsider."

Many people assume Mexican-Idahoan history started with the federal Bracero Program, which brought thousands of Mexicans to work on U.S. farms during World War II. But the Idaho Census counts a Mexican community of at least 50 people living in Idaho by 1880. Many of them were mule-packers who supported the mining industry, which dominated the Idaho economy.

Knowledge of the city's roots might get lost as Boise grows, said Centennial High teacher Max Delgado. Urquides' Spanish Village was demolished more than 30 years ago, and few know about it.

"Sure, the pioneer people, they remember Urquides, but more and more the place is changing because people are coming from other places," said Delgado. "I think this is one way of keeping Idaho, Idaho."

The historians won a grant from the nonprofit Idaho Humanities Council to create the muleteer's illustrated biography, which will be published in September. For months, the researchers have plunged into photo archives, old Sunset magazine and Idaho Statesman clippings, death records and maps to learn about Urquides' story. They found more: a family tree cut short by tragedy, a lost Boise neighborhood, the risky mule-packing business and a descendant of Boise's Spanish Village who still lives in Idaho.

Jesus Urquides stands out among the other mule-packers who came to Boise because he stayed and ingrained himself in the developing new city. He added to Boise's cultural mix by founding an ethnic enclave not too far from the heart of the city.

When the need for mule-packers declined, many of the men he worked with left Boise to go back to California and Mexico. But he stuck around. He made a name for himself over time and grew popular among Boise merchants, some of whom depended on the supplies he transported.

But few people know about Urquides and his subtle influence on Boise, and historians say he deserves recognition in Idaho's pioneer history. Here's a slice of Jesus Urquides' story:

A teenage Urquides left his home in Sonora, Mexico (just south of what is now Arizona) around 1850 and found a job as a mule-packer in California, where he eventually became a U.S. citizen. As the years passed, Urquides traveled throughout Idaho, the Sierra Nevada, California, Oregon and Washington following the mining hot spots with mule teams.

He towed furniture such as pianos, beds and tables or supplies of barrels and boxes of food and mining equipment, usually 50 miles.

Urquides also found himself hauling for the U.S. Army.

Around 1877, he carried military supplies that the U.S. government used in a campaign against American Indians. The entire operation took 350 mules, which carried ammunition and artillery.

The general called Urquides a "fast little packer" and talked about how the resilient mules endured a meager diet when trekking through the high mountains. On one of the trips — from Boise to Canyon City, Ore. (about 200 miles) — a lieutenant insisted Urquides take supplies to the front lines. So he went, bullets soaring above him. Years later in a newspaper interview, Urquides remained upset because the lieutenant put his and others' life at risk on that trip.

Urquides brought his new bride, Adelaida, to Boise from San Francisco in 1877. Their firstborn died before he turned a year old. The couple had two more sons and a daughter. One of the sons died at 26 of a lung disease, and their daughter's husband died around the same time of a brain hemorrhage.

Urquides' daughter, Lola Binnard, never remarried and took care of Urquides until his death in 1928. Adelaida developed a mental illness and spent her final years in the State Hospital. When Binnard died, she had no blood heir to execute her will and keep the family's belongings. The only grandchild the researchers came across was adopted in Washington and they can't find her. Much of his family's artifacts and history are lost.

But Urquides lived a long healthy life. Community leaders Dr. George Collister and W.H. Ridenbaugh — after whom two Boise streets are named — held Urquides in high regard.

A joke landed Urquides in police custody in 1898. While standing outside in downtown Boise, Urquides announced he would bet 50 cents that Spain would win the first naval battle in the Spanish-American War. A jovial crowd formed at 8th and Main streets to see what the commotion was about and moments later the police chief showed up and told Urquides to move along. He refused, and the chief arrested him, charged him with obstructing the sidewalk and fined him $13.

In a letter to The Idaho Statesman, prominent citizens like Ridenbaugh and Collister signed a letter Urquides had written in defense of his character.

Urquides stayed fit throughout his life and rode horses in the years leading to his death at 95 years old in 1928. He's buried in Pioneer Cemetery on Warm Springs Avenue near Broadway Avenue.

Highlights of Hispanics in Idaho

During the late-1800s and early 1900s, fewer than 150 Mexicans were counted in Idaho each decade. The numbers jumped past 1,000, however, as the Mexican Revolution that started in 1910 forced many to leave their country and head for the United States.

The state's sugar beet industry hired many Mexicans and Mexican Americans around this time, according to a University of Idaho history Web site. The Idaho economy started to shift from mining to farming in southern Idaho with new irrigation technology, said historian Kathy Hodges. By World War II, the United States was undergoing widespread labor shortages. So the government made an arrangement with Mexico to hire seasonal farm workers.

According to "Mexican Labor and World War II" by Erasmo Gamboa, up to 4,000 braceros or Mexican farm workers came to Idaho each year, from 1943 to 1947. The Idaho Census counted 46 Mexicans in 1870 when the population was 22,000. By the year 2000, more than 100,000 Hispanics were estimated to live in Idaho, which had a total population of 1.3 million people, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Mule-packers hauled goods from cities to mining camps

The discovery of gold gripped California in 1849, and miners traveled to remote territory to dig and pan. Isolated from developed cities, the miners needed to import food, fresh clothing, and the saloons they frequented needed whiskey. That's where mule-packers stepped in. Before stagecoach and wagon roads, before extensive train lines, and long before semi-trucks, mule-packers served as freight-haulers.

They used the small Mexican mules, able to carry half their weight (roughly 400 pounds and more than 600 pounds for the strongest). A packer would round up a group of mules hours before dawn and saddle them with custom "aparejos" made out of grass-stuffed leather bags. He had to know how to tie ropes just right, estimate the weight each mule could handle and care for the animals.

Snow, deserts, rocky ground and steep climbs made the trip challenging for mules and the packers. They often fell victim to highwaymen who robbed them of gold and supplies.

"Now we have 18-wheeled trucks, we have railroads, we have airlines," said high school teacher and researcher Max Delgado. "In those days, people waited weeks and months for packages and food or just any mail. I think we take it for granted now that everything is just so readily available."

Bobby Gaytan, a Boise artist who's illustrating the biography about Urquides, called his dad: "Check this out," he told him. "The story was awesome because my dad is a trucker ... A lot of us don't think about how things got to certain places and who got them to certain places."

The mule-packers had a job like his dad, Gaytan said, moving much-needed goods as an integral part of the economy.


Members of Millie Tribolet's family grew up in Spanish Village

Millie Tribolet's grandfather, Manuel Fontes, lived next-door to Jesœs Urquides in Spanish Village. Beyond looking at old photos of Fontes and a couple of family letters, she knows very little about him or the Mexican-American village.

The research team of Max Delgado and historians Kathleen Hodges, Ana Maria Schachtell and Linda Morton-Keithley browsed through phone books and newspaper clippings to find someone named Fontes. They found her eventually, after reading an obituary.
"I didn't think anybody at all was interested in the Fontes family," said Tribolet, who lives in Northwest Boise. Her maiden name was spelled Fontes and Fontez. "So when Max called me, I was really surprised ... I've always been very proud of the name."

Her parents died when she was young, and her grandfather, who was a few years younger than Urquides, died before she was born. "I was never told much of anything ... I just remember hearing Spanish Village mentioned," she said. "I just knew that (Manuel Fontes) was a miner and came from Spain."

Her dad grew up in Spanish Village but moved to Gem County shortly after marrying Tribolet's mother. Tribolet says she remembers visiting a small white house in the village as a girl once, but not much else. Her sister sold the Fontes home in Spanish Village in the 1950s, Tribolet said.

Delgado said the research team is continuing to look for descendants or anyone who might have information about Spanish Village or Urquides.

"Hopefully, when this gets out, we get other information," Delgado said. "There's a lot of stories out there.".


Center for Basque Studies Newsletter 
Fall 2004 Number 70 Pg. 4-5

The Huartede Jauregui Spanish Civil War Archive in Reno
By Jose Luis De La Granja

At the end of the nineties, the Basque Studies Library at the University of Nevada, Reno acquired from a book dealer in Bilbao a large and important archive on the Spanish Civil War of 1936-1939, which had belonged to Jose Maria Huarte de Jauregui (1898-1969) of Navarre. Head archivist of the General Archive of Navarre and member of the Academy of History and the Academy of Fine Arts in Spain, Huarte de Jauregui was a Carlist who participated in the Civil War, achieving the rank of artillery lieutenant in the army of General Franco, and head of the Military Command of Zarautz (Gipuzkoa). The origin of the archive relates to this military post, which allowed him to collect abundant documentation on the new Francoist State that was created at that time in Gipuzkoa, and also numerous documents confiscated in Euskadi under the jurisdiction of the first Basque Government (Bizkaia) and in the rest of the northern zone of the Spanish Republic (Santander and Asturias). This archive focuses on the Civil War, but includes as well the historical periods just prior to and following it: the Second Republic (1931-1936) and the Franco Dictatorship (1939-1975).

In 2003, the Basque Studies Library completed a catalog of the Huarte de Jauregui Archive, consisting of sixty-three pages that can be consulted on the Internet. These thousands of documents, most of them original and unpublished, along with clippings and pamphlets of the period, are kept in some thirty archive boxes that are classified in three categories: the first refers to the Republican area of the Civil War, the second— the most numerous—refers to the Francoist area, and the third—the smallest—includes various Basque nationalist magazines from the 1930s and many newsletters from the Franco faction, published in Paris during the Civil War.

The most interesting documents concerning the Second Republic are political manifestos and electoral propaganda from the right, left, and nationalist parties, produced for the Spanish Parliament general elections of 1931, 1933, and 1936. There is also documentation from unions (mainly, the socialist General Workers' Union), as well as on the religious problem and the Basque Statute of Autonomy, two key questions in the political life of Euskadi during the Second Spanish Republic.

The documentation preserved in this Spanish Civil War archive is immense and varied, though most of it is of a military or political nature. The most valuable part concerns Franco's army offensive in the northern Iberian Peninsula in 1937: first in Bizkaia in the spring, later in Santander in the summer and Asturias in autumn. The military conquest of this industrial and mining territory was very important for the final victory of the Franco faction in the war. What is most interesting about this archive is the abundant documentation on the armies that fought in the north:

the Republican army, within which the Basque army was situated; and the Franco army, comprising the Brigades of Navarra along with the Carlist militiamen. Within the archive are diverse historical documents, such as reports of battalions; official reports on war actions, the Navy of the Basque Government, the Department of Military Information; communications between military commands—for example, many telegrams exchanged by the ministry of Defense, the socialist leader from Bilbao, Indalecio Prieto, and the head of the northern Republican Army, general Gamir Ulibarri, among others.

Among the political documents are briefings, letters, peace proposals to the Basque nationalists encouraging them to abandon the Republican cause, calls to resistance or to surrender (subject of a proclamation of Franco to the Bilbainos asking that they surrender, on the eve of the taking of Bilbao in June 1937), Nazi propaganda against Communism, printed in Spanish in Hamburg, Germany, etc. The archive also contains quite a few pamphlets: those published by the Basque Government of Jose Antonio Aguirre, various on the controversial case of the Basque Catholics and on the international controversy created by the bombardment and destruction of Gernika by the German Legion Condor. The Prancoist version of this event can be read in the Bulletin d'Information Espagnole, published in French by its supporters. There are also many dossiers from the Spanish, French, English and Italian press on the course of the Spanish conflict and its repercussions in the Basque Country. In addition, this archive preserves some notebooks, maps, flags, and many photographs.

The most documented zone of the Basque Country is the coast of Gipuzkoa from Zarautz to the border with Bizkaia, taken over by the army coup in September 1936 and controlled by the Military Command of Zarautz, headed by Huarte de Jauregui from March of 1937 until November of 1939. By studying the copious documents generated by this command, related to the ministers of Franco's government and high commands of his army, one can pinpoint the first introduction of Francoism into the region of Gipuzkoa. The firm political repression is apparent in numerous police reports and in long lists of exiled nationalists or leftists, prisoners, and those who were fined (the fines were camouflaged with the euphemism, "donations for the National Trea- sury"). In addition, the army, Carlists, and the Falange constmcted a new State with a Fascist character with the help of part of the Basque Church, at the same time that the nationalist clergy was retaliated against. The relations between the forces forming the Francoist group were not always cordial and there were conflicts between Carlists and Falangists or between the military and civil powers; for instance, the dispute that put Comandante Huarte himself in conflict with the mayor of Zumaya, who was removed from office and detained by him in 1937. This is a good example of the fact that in Franco's Spain the supreme power lay in the hands of the army. The archive informs us of the visit of Count Ciano, Minister of Exterior Affairs of Mussolini's fascist Italy, to Gipuzkoa in 1939, who was entertained in Zarautz by Huarte de Jauregui with a sumptuous lunch, as can be seen from the menu card written in Italian.

The later part of the archive refers to the Franco dictatorship, centered in the years of World War II (1939-1945), and the several rival branches of the Cariist movement gathered around the aspirants to succeed Franco with title of King—Carios VIII, Javier de Borbon Parma with his sons Carios Hugo and Sixto, and don Juan de Borbon. It also focuses on an exiled and clandestine Basque nationalism with its manifestos, pamphlets, and periodicals. These documents end in the 1970s, although their principal compiler, Jose Maria Huarte de Jauregui, died in 1969 in Madrid.



St. Lawrence Day Massacre and Pueblo Uprising
Illegal entry by non-Mexicans rises
Reviews of Latino Literature
Pluma Fronteriza 
Uncool shirts are the new cool
Tia Juana must wear mandated clothes
Border Revolution

St. Lawrence Day Massacre and Pueblo Uprising

Wednesday, August 10, 2005 marks the 325th anniversary (1680-2005) of the St. Lawrence Day Massacre and Pueblo Uprising.  401 Hispanics perished on that fateful day: over two hundred Spanish men, women and children excluding 21 friars and another 200 New Mexicans of Indian and mixed racial descent.  
1629 New Mexican Hispanic survivors (as per Salineta muster-role on the road approaching El Paso del Norte) fled to El Paso del Norte.  About half of those survivors (about 800) returned to Northern New Mexico in 1692 to form the core of the Reconquest under General don Diego de Vargas.  The other half (also about 800) resettled in Nueva Vizcaya (El Paso del Norte area, Chihuahua and Durango) where their descendents flourish to this day.  I am one of many descendents of the Diaspora of 1680 to return to New Mexico over the years and centuries.  
We are descended from these 1629 massacre survivors.  On this August 10th anniversary of the St. Lawrence Day Massacre let us remember the 401 Hispanic men, women and children who perished in 1680 and the 1629 Hispanic massacre survivors from whom we are all descend.  
For the names and a count of the massacre survivors see
In the spirit of convivencia,
Luis Brandtner y Nava G.
Santa Fé/Alburquerque de Nuevo Méjico del Norte

"Luis the work you have done is great and I hope everyone will take the time annually to remember our antepasdos so suffered in settling of this country.  As you know we have a memorial mass done to keep them in mind. By the way I hope you enjoyed the pictures of the monument in the news letter. It is about time we all realize what it took to lay the foundation for this country and the Spanish were the ones who began the process."         

Conchita Lucero
July 31st, 2005

Other than Mexicans on the borders . .  Illegal entry by non-Mexicans rises
Source: Christian Science Monitor,  July 26, 2005 
By Kris Axtman | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor
Sent by Win Holtzman

HOUSTON - After decades of attempting to dam the flow of Mexican immigrants crossing into the United States illegally, federal agents say a new crisis is emerging along the southern border and they are helpless to stop it.

Those coming from Brazil, Central America, and 'countries of concern' could hit 150,000 this year.

Non-Mexicans are spilling over the border in record numbers - some from countries with terrorist ties - and most are set free soon after being captured.  Already this year, the number of non-Mexican apprehensions has far outpaced last year's total in just eight months. And while they are still a relatively small percentage compared with the number of illegal Mexicans, critics say the federal government's policy in dealing with them is far more dangerous.

Because OTMs, or "Other Than Mexicans" as the Border Patrol classifies them, must be returned to their country of origin, they cannot be simply sent back across the southern border, as most Mexicans are. Under US law, they must be detained (in the US) pending a deportation hearing. The problem is, immigration detention centers are packed, so most OTMs are given a court summons and told to return in three months. A full 85 percent don't.

According to the Border Patrol, some 465,000 OTMs have taken advantage of this "catch and release" policy to settle here in the US. "It's an insane policy which encourages OTMs to come into the country illegally, and we shouldn't be shocked that they are coming in record numbers," says T.J. Bonner, president of the National Border Patrol Council, which represents more than 9,000 agents.

In fact, he says, after crossing the border, many OTMs flag down agents or walk up to them and surrender, knowing they will be released. "The word is out," says Mr. Bonner. "They know that as soon as they are caught, they will be free to roam at will."

In a hearing in the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security earlier this month, Border Patrol Chief David Aguilar said his agency has apprehended 919,000 illegal immigrants so far this year - 119,000 of whom were OTMs.

That puts the agency on pace to hit 150,000 such apprehensions by the end of the fiscal year, almost triple last year's high-water mark of 65,000 OTM apprehensions. In fiscal 2003, the numbers were around 40,000, and in 2002 and 2001, around 30,000 each.

"We should be greatly concerned because OTMs do not register, their travel documents are suspect, and they have no biometric records that can be checked to verify identity," remarked the appropriations subcommittee's chairman, Harold Rogers (R) of Kentucky.

Most are from Brazil and Central America, but Mr. Aguilar reported that last year 644 came from "countries of concern."

What's most disturbing, say immigration experts, is that the increase in OTM apprehensions comes on the heels of the US war on terror.

"We are not protecting Americans against the next terrorist attack," says Michael Cutler, a former special agent with the Immigration and Naturalization Service and a fellow at the Center for Immigration Studies in Washington. "There are so many holes in the system."

He points to the OTM loophole as one example. Another is the Visa Waiver Program, which allows residents from 28 countries, including Canada, to enter the US without getting a visa in their home country.

Mr. Cutler believes everyone entering the US, no matter what their country, should have to obtain a visa that documents personal information, the purpose of the visit, and contact information once they arrive. Shoe bomber Richard Reid, for instance, was born and raised in London and boarded a plane for the US with only a passport.

"We are all fixated on his shoes, and now passengers are required to take off their shoes, yet nobody wants to deal with the issue of how he was able to enter the country in the first place," says Cutler.

Other critics say the guest-worker proposal, which is being touted as a way to know who is here, ultimately leaves the door open for document fraud and illegal entry. In the end, says Cutler, "the number of OTMs coming in is a barometer of how effective we are at deterring illegal immigration."

To help combat the increase in non-Mexican crossings, two US cities have been participating in a pilot initiative, known as the "expedited removal" program.

Border Patrol agents in Laredo, Texas, and Tucson, Ariz., are able to make decisions without the help of immigration judges in deciding whether a person has a valid case to fight deportation. And agents in the Rio Grande Valley sector, where the majority of OTMs cross, are being trained in the program.

Still, even under the expedited process, agents are finding a familiar problem: There is nowhere to house the immigrants while they wait to be deported.

Border-state politicians have been clamoring for years for more funding for detention centers, and some worry that if apprehended Mexicans began requesting immigration hearings instead of taking "voluntary departures," the problem would become even more dire.

Already, says former INS agent Bonner, the recent surge in OTM apprehensions is tying up precious time and manpower along the border. In some areas, like the Rio Grande Valley, some 75 percent of the sector's resources are devoted to dealing with the problem.

Border Patrol agents, he says, know that most OTMs have no intention of returning for the court hearing - and that is incredibly frustrating for them. "It's more than a little demoralizing," he says. "They feel like social workers. They are not enforcing the law; they are simply enabling people to break it - and that goes against the grain of any law enforcement officer."

Full HTML version of this story which may include photos, graphics, and related links


By John P. Schmal

"Epic of the Greater Southwest," by Rubén Sálaz Márquez, paper, 620 pages, $39.95, Available through Cosmic House, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

The established author Rubén Sálaz Márquez has produced a new work about the history of the Greater Southwest. This book is neatly divided into three separate parts:
Part One: PreContact
Part Two: Spanish Period
Part Three: American Period

The second and third sections, in turn, are divided into more sections, dealing with a wide range of historical issues, including Spanish institutions, society, Indian Affairs, the Mexican-American War, the railroads, frontier law and order, statehood and Americanization. In most of these sections, the materials have been further divided into the individual states: New Mexico, Texas, California, Arizona, Oklahoma, Colorado, Utah, Nevada.

Rubén Sálaz’s book is not for the hard-core researcher interested in very detailed and specific investigations into the Southwest. Such serious researchers – including yours truly – will have to continue crawling our way through the library stacks and straining our eyes in the microfilm rooms at U.C.L.A., the University of New Mexico, or Arizona State University. However, Señor Sálaz’s book is definitely a welcome resource for the average person: for the high school student, the college student, the amateur historian, and for persons who have an appreciation of Southwestern and Chicano history in general.

As the author states in the Foreword, the intention of this book "is to lay an introductory historical foundation" to the Greater Southwest. The book is easy to read, succinct and informative, and once read, will make a handy reference guide to be used time and again.

Email contact information:
Published by: Cosmic House, P.O. Box 7748, Albuquerque, N.M. 87194.
TEL-FAX: (505) 839-4849
Also available at Barnes & Noble online and Borderlandsbooks.

"Batista’s Talent / Batista y Su Talento," written and illustrated by Beni Angio, paper, 172 pages, illustrated, bilingual (Spanish and English), $14.99, Available through or from the author.

"Batista’s Talent / Batista y Su Talento" is a delightful story about a young boy’s serendipitous journey of self-discovery and introspection. A youngster on the threshold of adolescence, Batista has a series of experiences that make him understand and appreciate his own artistic abilities. But, in the process, Batista also begins to understand a little bit more about the world around him and the personality traits that influence his actions.

The author, Beni Angio, was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Through her mother, she is of Italian descent. Her father was a Uruguayan of French and Portuguese descent. Beni’s character, Batista, is a composite drawn from both her Argentine and Italian origins.

Beni has lived most of her life working in the jewelry and hotel businesses and is presently engaged in writing pursuits. She is a talented artist with a great love of her native Argentina and a deep affection for her Italian roots. This book can be most appreciated by children, adolescents and young adults. It is bilingual, with Spanish text on the left side and English text on the right side.

"Batista’s Talent / Batista y Su Talento" can be purchased through or by contacting the author at The author is bilingual (Spanish and English).


Pluma Fronteriza 
Newsletter of Chicano(a)/Latino(a) Writers of the El Paso and Cd. Jurez Border Region 
Summer 2005 Volume 5, No. 2
23 pages, full text reviews of current books.


Sara Martone, Dallas Morning News
The Orange County Register
July, 6, 2005

Uncool shirts are the new cool
By Laurence Iliff
The Dallas Morning news

When Mexico's status-conscious youths traded their designer label T--shirts for ones bearing expressions such as "Naco" and "Es-tar Guars" a few years ago, it should have been fashion suicide.

Naco in Mexico means "tacky," "low-class," "uncool" and a lot of other derogatory things. "Estar Guars" is a mangled "Star Wars."

But instead of dying, the T-shirts sparked a craze, demonstrating that "Ser naco es chido," or "Being uncool is cool." 

The celebration of clashing cultures came about because of two former art students:
Edoardo Chavarm, 29, is a co-founder of the clothing company NaCo, which is a de-liberate bilingual play on the "Co.," for "company." The other co-founder is Rob by Vient, 27.

The two became friends in 1999 while studying at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, where the distance from their home country al-lowed them to see their own culture in different ways.

"We started to notice that we would say things like 'estar guars' instead of 'Star Wars,' and we thought that was funny," said Chavarm, a Tijuana native who uses the tension between U.S. and Mexican cultures in many of the 120 T-shirt designs.

A NaCo favorite, "Chilangolandia," borrows its design from Disneyland T-shirts and refers, ironically, to crowded Mexico City as a fantasyland. Residents of Mexico City are often referred to as chilangos.

The "Pecsi" shirt is a play on how Mexicans pronounce Pepsi.

"I don't think if I didn't live In Tijuana this would have happened," Chavarin said. "It came from a clash of cultures, from a clash of worlds." The word naco is not insulting or racist or offensive in the context of his creations, Chavarin said, because the designs are more about embracing one's crassness than rejecting it.

Being naco, he said, "doesn't have to do with education or money. It's like wearing a lot of jewelry in the hip-hop community or like tight jeans. I think we do it with enough humor so that it's not derogatory. You have to own your roots."

On the bilingual NaCo Web site one can buy T-shirts for shipment in the United States (average cost is $20), as well as take a naco quiz (Spanish only).

"The plus we have in the United States is the nostalgia factor. You're bringing them something from home," said Chavarm.  NaCo sells several thousand T-shirts a month and has nearly 20 full-time employees, Chavarm said. Nobody is get-ting rich yet, but the company is in a growth phase, he said. Success was not automatic.


The Orange County Register
Sunday July, 10, 2005

City threatens sellers in Tia Juana with removal from pedestrian mall if they don't wear mandated clothes.
By Elliot Spagat, the Associated Press

The city is planning a fashion makeover for its throngs of female street vendors by giving them an ultimatum: Wear brightly colored, traditional clothing, or leave.

The new dress code took effect June 25 in a popular pedestrian mall in time for the Fourth of July weekend, al-though most vendors ignored it and wore jeans and sweat jackets.

The new decree, ordered by Mayor Jorge Hank 

David Maung, The Associated Press

Rhon, is designed to showcase the city's melting pot of cultures to the outside world. He Said themandate will allow visitors to "feel Mexico." Those who disobey will receive two warnings, then must leave the area where the dress code applies.

The costumes "are very nice, very clean, very colorful, very happy-looking," he said in an interview Saturday in his City Hall office, which he of different Indian styles, someone or trying to take shares with a caged parakeet, Some feature brightly colored away their dignity" a parrot and a python in a ribbons as trim, while others glass tank. The new code applies only to vendors in a pedestrian mall that begins near San Diego's main border crossing a short stretch lined with pharmacies, restaurants and souvenir shops. It is in effect on weekends only. The outfits are a mishmash of different Indian styles. Some feature brightly colored ribbons as trim, while others are emblazoned with the word "Mexico" from head to toe. Men must wear black paints and white shirt.

"It's part of out culture," said Councilman Edgar Fernandez Bustamante, who wants vendors to dress up weekdays as well. "It's not a question of making less of someone or trying to take away their dignity."

Border Revolution
Sent by Johanna De Soto

Table Of Contents  [[Links from each of the underlined topics, clear, concise.]]
History of the Mexican Revolution 1910-1920 

Mexican Nationalism and fighting in the Revolution 
Mexican Migration to the United States 
US Reaction to Migration and Immigration Laws
The United States Response and Involvement with Mexico during the Revolution 
U.S. Military Involvement 
President Wilson & Mexican Policies 
United States citizens living in Mexico during the Revolution 
The Mormons 
Wealthy families 
U.S. Investors 
Women's involvement in the Mexican Revolution 
American Women 
Mexican Women 



Blacks Pin Hope on DNA to Fill Slavery's Gaps in Family Trees 
Professor Researching Black Latino history

Blacks Pin Hope on DNA to Fill Slavery's Gaps in Family Trees 
By AMY HARMON, The New York Times, SCIENCE   | July 25, 2005
DNA tests are fueling the biggest surge in African-American genealogy since Alex Haley's 1976 novel, "Roots."

Sent by Win Holtzman  and John Inclan
Charles Larkins, whose great-grandmother was a slave, asked Hayes Larkins, above, the slave owner's white great-grandson, to take a DNA test to see if they are related. They await the results. 

So it was especially satisfying for Ms. Fair, 64, when a recent DNA test suggested that her mother's African ancestry traced nearly to the root of the human family tree, which originated there 150,000 years ago.

"More white is showing in the color, but underneath, I'm deepest Africa," said Ms. Fair, a retired parks supervisor in Cincinnati. "I tell my friends they're kind of Johnny-come-latelies on the DNA scale, so back up, back up."

Ms. Fair is one of thousands of African-Americans who have scraped cells from their inner cheeks and paid a growing group of laboratories to learn more about a family history once thought permanently obscured by slavery. They are seeking answers to questions about their family lineages in the antebellum South - whether black, white or Native American - and about distant forebears in Africa. 

The DNA tests are fueling the biggest surge in African-American genealogy since Alex Haley's 1976 novel, "Roots," inspired a generation to try to trace their ancestors back to Africa. For those who have spent decades poring over plantation records that did not list slaves by surname and ship manifests that did not list where they came from, the idea that the key lies in their own bodies is a powerful one.

But the joy that often accompanies the answers from the tests is frequently tempered by the unexpected questions they raise. African-Americans say the tests can make the ugliness of slavery more palpable and leave the hunger for heritage unsatisfied. Some are unsure what to make of the new information about far-away kin, or how to account for genes that undermine a racial identity they have long internalized.

The interest in using genetics to construct a family tree comes despite warnings from scientists that the necessary tools to tell African-Americans what many want to know the most - precisely where in Africa their ancestors lived and what tribal group they belonged to - are still unreliable. 

The most that blacks who use DNA tests can hope to learn now is that their genetic signature matches that of contemporary Africans from a given tribe or region from a DNA database that is far from complete. To assign an ancestral identity based on that match is highly suspect, scientists say; a group whose DNA has not been sampled may be a more precise match, or the person might match with several groups because of migration or tribal mixing. 

Each test can also trace only one line of a person's many thousands of ancestors, making the results far more murky than the promise held out by some testing companies. 

Still, the popularity of the DNA tests seems a testament to the unremitting craving for a story of origin. However flawed or scientifically questionable, the results provide the only clue many African-Americans have to the history and traditions that members of other American ethnic groups whose immigration was voluntary tend to take for granted. 

"There's just something about knowing something after years of thinking it was impossible to know anything," said Melvin Collier, 32, a black student at Clark Atlanta University who recently learned that his DNA matches that of the Fulani people of Cameroon. "It's still pretty overwhelming." 

Some African-Americans, more interested in searching out recent relatives who in many cases can be dependably identified with a DNA match, are asking whites whom they have long suspected are cousins to take a DNA test. And in a genetic bingo game that is delivering increasing returns as people of all ethnicities engage in DNA genealogy, some are typing their results into public databases on the Internet and finding a match that no paper trail would have revealed. 

"I've been sitting here for years with nothing left to try and then, boom, this brand new thing," said B. J. Smothers, a retired urban planner in Stone Mountain, Ga., who says the results of a DNA test have brought her closer than she had ever been to discovering the identity of her father's grandfather. "DNA is our last hope."

Published: July 25, 2005
(Page 2 of 2)Ms. Smothers's father, 88, knew that his father was born a slave in Wilcox County, Ala., but the DNA test showed that he has a European paternal ancestry, a result shared by nearly a third of African-Americans who take the test. The news was not exactly a surprise. But as eager as she is to discover the identity of her great-grandfather, Ms. Smothers is also bracing for a wave of new anger.

"I am kind of preparing myself for what I am going to feel when I find the family, when it's real," she said. She regularly looks for matches to her father's DNA in the online databases where amateur genealogists publish their genetic identities along with more prosaic contact information. Some day, she is certain, she will find a match that will lead to her white relatives. 

Family reunions via DNA are not always warm affairs. When Trevis Hawkins, 37, a black oncology nurse from Montgomery, Ala., e-mailed a white man with the same surname whose DNA matched his this year, the man seemed excited. But after Mr. Hawkins gave him the address to his family Web site, which includes pictures, he never heard from him again. One African-American, upon confirming a match with a white man whose ancestors had owned his, told him he owed reparations and could start by paying for the test, said Bennett Greenspan, chief executive of Family Tree DNA, which offers tests for $129 and up. 

But Charles Larkins, whose great-grandmother was a slave, says proving or disproving his suspicion that her owner was his great-grandfather would be cathartic. Mr. Larkins recently e-mailed Hayes Larkins, the slave owner's white great-grandson, to ask whether he would take the DNA test. Because the Y chromosome, which determines maleness, is passed virtually unchanged from father to son, scientists can use it to determine whether two men share a common ancestor. "I'm not going to be like the Jefferson descendants, denying anything happened," Hayes Larkins said, referring to a 1998 DNA test that indicated that Thomas Jefferson had fathered at least one child with his slave Sally Hemings, which his white family had denied. The two Mr. Larkins are waiting for the results to arrive.

For Nickesha Sanders, who already knew her great-great-grandfather was a white slave owner in Tennessee, the appeal of the DNA test was the promise of a link to Africa. "I wanted to be able to connect to my history before slavery," said Ms. Sanders, 26, a student at Texas Southern University. "I wanted it to be more than, the boat stopped at the shores, then slavery, emancipation, civil rights, all that struggle. 

"To find out about her maternal ancestors, Ms. Sanders paid $349 for a test that analyzes mitochondrial DNA, which is passed on largely intact from mothers to their children and serves a similar purpose as the Y chromosome for scientists tracing ancestry. The results, from a Washington company, African Ancestry, indicated that Ms. Sanders shared a genetic profile with members of the Kru people of Liberia, who, she was pleased to learn, were known for inciting slave rebellions. But the news did not mean as much to her grandmother, who had hoped to find proof of the American Indian blood she had always been told ran in the family, a frequent quest for African-Americans taking the tests. 

The results have propelled some test-takers to plan visits to their newly adopted homelands and to find others here who have been told they share the same ancestry. In online discussion forums, African-Americans with the same DNA test results call each other "cousin." After a lifetime of knowing only that their family came from Africa, some liken the new association to adopted children finding their birth mother. 

"Africa is not a country; it's a continent," said LaVerne Nichols Hunter, a retired mathematics teacher in Pittsburgh, whose DNA test results placed her ancestors in Cameroon, Sierra Leone and Liberia. 

But if DNA test-takers are making too much family history out of too little genetic information, social scientists say, it is not a phenomenon unique to the new technology. "Identity is a process," said Alondra Nelson, a sociologist at Yale who studies the intersection of race and genetics. "Narratives and stories about family and kinship are always to some extent people making meaning out of their experiences with whatever tools they have.

"When a radio host in Chicago revealed at a Kwanzaa festival last year that he was of Mende descent, several attendees who had received the same DNA result gathered to trade notes, a moment some said they found especially meaningful because slave owners made a point of separating Africans from the same tribes to prevent them from communicating.  But Kwame Bandele has learned enough about the civil war in Liberia, which the tribe his paternal DNA test identified is involved in, to feel deeply troubled by the kinship. 

A manager at General Electric, Mr. Bandele has tried to persuade the company to provide ultrasound machines for pregnant women in refugee camps.  He sends out e-mail with news about the war to friends, but feels he should be doing more.  "There was a massacre with machetes the other night," he said. "My people are in bad shape." Ray Winbush, a psychology professor at Morgan State University, said being told that his ancestors hailed from the Takar people of Cameroon served to underscore his disconnectedness, both from an ancestral tribe he knows little about and from an American society that can still be a hostile place for African-Americans. "It's like being lost and found at the same time," Mr. Winbush said.

Professor Researching Black Latino history

Ms. Lozano:

My name is Grisel Y. Acosta, and I am a writer and professor. I work at Hudson County Community College in Jersey City, just five minutes away from Manhattan. I've been working on an informal account of the black Latino experience in the United States, told through interviews, creative non-fiction, poetry, and brief historical facts.

I saw your work on the "Somos Primos" website, and I am very impressed at how thorough and well-organized your information is. I think it is just wonderful that you have put together this booklet of information and I would love interview you, either by phone or through email. I've interviewed educators, authors, actors, community leaders and college students for this project, and I think your historical insights would complement the personal accounts. The hope is that this anthology, of sorts, will be published by a university press and used not only in classrooms, but also to inspire discussion of Latino roots within the Latino family. A sample of what I have done can be seen at this website:

I also conducted a panel discussion on the subject at my school. It included a black Latino playwright, educational leaders, artists, and community activists. The panel went over very well with the students, many of whom are black Latino, but I did feel I as if I had to disguise its purpose from my school's conservative administration. I would like to discuss issues like these with you, if at all possible.

I can be reached at this email address, or at home at (201) 521-0866. Thank you very much for your time, and thank you for your wonderful work.


Grisel Y. Acosta




Crazy Horse monument, Sculptors face facts, Memorial needs money
Leather Men
Brazil's Indians turning to politics
Museum Displays American Indian Legend's Earrings

Priest Bartolome Cervantes Negrete criticized
Native American Records Coming Soon
Mestizo identity is the heart of virgil Elizondo's life and work


Photo Doug Dreyer, The Associated Press

The Orange county Register 
May 30, 2005

Crazy Horse monument
When it's finished - and no one is predicting when that will be - the sculpture will be:
563 feet high ,
641 feet long
taller than the Washington Monument
The sculpture is so large t
he four presidential heads on Mount Rushmore, 17 miles away, would fit inside the nine-story-high warrior's head.'


Sculptors face facts: Memorial needs money

Nearly 60 years in, fundraising begins to complete the massive tribute to Crazy Horse.

By JOE KAFKA , the Associated Press

Custer, S.D. Nearly six decades have passed since work began on the Crazy Horse Memorial, a granite mountain being carved into a .colossal sculpture ;of the Sioux warrior, arm outstretched toward his ancestral homeland, astride a stallion more than two football fields long.

But, with $17 million; spent -so far, raised largely from visitors and others, familiar with the project, only a portion of the monument is finished. Now, for the first time, a national fund raising drive is being quietly started in hopes of accelerating the pace.

The monument was suggested in 1939 by Sioux Chief —Henry' Standing Bear, who asked sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski to do the work. Ziolkowski, an acclaimed sculptor from Boston, had "worked briefly at Mount Rushmore.

After considering the project for years, Ziolkowski began sculpting the mountain on June 3,1948. He doggedly pursued it for the rest of his life, rejecting federal money and other government help.

"Korczak always, believed that if it were done by government, fit would never be finished the way it should be," explained development director Fred Bully. Ziolkowski died in 1982, but his widow, Ruth, and seven of their 10 children have continued the labor of love.

Crazy Horse's face was finished in time for the 50th anniversary of the project in 1998, shifting the focus to the 22-story-tall horse's head. An additional 4 million tons of granite must be removed to complete the project.

Ruth Ziolkowski, 78, still is actively involved and has no intention of retiring.

Visitors frequently ask when the sculpture will be done. Her stock answer: "We don't honestly know."

Some view the sculpture with facetious humor: "Be back in 100 years to see it completed," a Canadian tourist wrote in the Crazy Horse guest book recently.

Others are more optimistic. "Big change since our 1974 visit. Keep it up," wrote a couple from Dover, Del.


September/October 2004

Leather Men

Rock art in Colorado and Kansas has offered up evidence for armored calvary among the Plains Indians. Doctoral student Mark Mitchell of the University of Colorado identified the petro-glyphs, which depict leather-armored warriors, most likely Comanche, astride

similarly clad horses. Plains Indians like the Comanche first obtained horses from the Spanish in the mid-seventeenth century. Native Americans also probably got the idea for protecting themselves and their mounts with leather "armor" after seeing Spanish horse soldiers. Leather armor fell out of use as firearms became available to American Indians . in the mid-eighteenth century. Mitchell notes that while the existence of leather-armored horsemen has been long known (a Jesuit priest in present-day New Mexico showed leather-armored mounted warriors battling Apache foot soldiers in a 1720 painting), these petroglyphs are the first depictions thought to be crafted by Plains Indians. "There is some recorded history but virtually no archaeology of the Comanche, which makes these rock-art depictions very valuable," says Mitchell. "They should point us to additional places to look for Comanche sites containing artifacts associated with horses."

Brazil's Indians turning to politics

The Orange County Register, Wednesday Nov 2004

BRASILIA, BRAZIL From isolated villages in the Amazon jungle to far-flung settlements in the vast savannas of the interior, Brazil's Indians are venturing as never before into mainstream politics.

Initial results from last month's local elections show that four Indians were chosen as mayors and five as deputy mayors, while final results are expected to give Indians more than 100 posts.

The numbers may seem small but they represent a jump from the one Indian mayor elected in 2000.

Indian organizations see the results as a critical step in pushing back the centuries of abuse and prejudice they have suffered since the Portuguese first landed in Brazil in 1500, bringing enslavement and ill-nesses that slowly killed off many Indians.

The 1988 constitution, which restored democracy after more than two decades of military rule in 1985, gave Indians the right to vote for the first time in their history.

Although Indian politicians do not yet have one group uniting them, the political aims of their various parties are similar - to get their lands marked off, to have health ser-vices and education, and to gain full access to the mineral riches on their lands.

Sebastiao de Souza Konohum, joint coordinator for the defense of indigenous rights at the government's Indian agency, Funai, said the improving results for Indian candidates is largely thanks to better organization.

"We started organizing in 1980 and boosted that; work after the 1988 constitution," said Konohum, himself an Indian from Matto Grosso state. "In the future, our aim is to create an Indian party to look after our interests."'

Konohum expects that more than 100 Indians will be elected in these polls to office as mayors and local council members, up from 89 in the last vote. The full results are not yet ready. Nationwide there are nearly 5,600 municipalities in the country of 180 million.

Indians' best-yet political results came in parallel with a historic rise in their numbers - the first after a steady decline from the estimated 6 mil-lion people when the Portuguese first arrived.

The latest census in 2000 put Brazil's Indian population at 734,000, up from 400,000 at the end of the 1980s. Those numbers in themselves reflect the political ambitions of Indians as many more were willing to define themselves as Indians in the 2000 census, said a spokes-woman for the Catholic-run Indigenous Missionary Council. Brazil lets individuals define their race.

Museum Displays American Indian Legend's Earrings


Sent by Johanna De Soto

American Indian Pocahontas gained fame in the 17th century for keeping peace between Indians and British settlers.

LONDON (June 10) - A pair of mussel shell earrings set in silver and believed to be among the only surviving possessions of legendary American Indian princess Pocahontas went on display at a London museum Friday in their first public showing since 1907.

Each earring is formed of a double mussel-shell, the rare white kind found on the eastern shore of the Berings Strait. They are set in silver rims, inlaid with mother-of-pearl, and are worth approximately $500,000.





The mussel shell and silver earrings are valued at half a million dollars.

   Photo, AP

Pocahontas, daughter of Chief Powhatan of the Algonquin Nation, gained fame for keeping peace and serving as an "ambassador" between American Indians and British settlers. Little is known with any certainty about her, but her life has been memorialized in stories, songs and images.

By legend, she saved Capt. John Smith from execution in 1607 before being captured by the English in 1612 and used as a pawn in dealing with her father. She converted to Christianity in 1613 and married tobacco planter John Rolfe a year later.

She sailed for London in 1616 to great fanfare in a trip aimed at obtaining funding for a Jamestown Christian school for American Indian children. She may have received the earrings during that trip. She died in 1617 and was buried at St. George's Church in Gravesend, near London.

The earrings were handed down through the Rolfe family and now belong to the Association for Preservation of Virginia Antiquities.

"She is often referred to as an ambassador between two cultures. You can see her coming (to London) and dying here and being buried here as evidence of that, as sort of a link between the two countries," said Bly Straube of the Virginia antiquities group.

Legend has it that Pocahontas' link to the colonists began when she flung herself over Smith to save him from execution by her father, who had made Smith place his neck on a rock.

But anthropologists examining Smith's papers believe he may have misunderstood what happened. Straube said the tribe only meant to initiate Smith as family through a ritual in which the tribe leader's daughters welcomed him.

"The Indian way of killing people was not to lay them against a rock and bash out their brains," Straube said. "They would tie them to a tree and use shells and scrape their skin off and dig out their entrails."

The earrings were sent from Virginia for the exhibition at the Museum of Docklands marking the upcoming 400th anniversary of the first permanent British settlement in America at Jamestown, Va., which was founded in 1607. They will be on display until July 10, when they will be moved back for the 2006 opening of a new museum of colonial artifacts.

The Jamestown collection from the early 17th century also includes tobacco pipes, freshwater pearls and a silver ear pick, a tool for cleaning earwax that was regarded as a symbol of high social class.

Priest Bartolome CERVANTES NEGRETE criticized
  Cocula and Guadalajara Jalisco

Sent by Ophelia Marquez

An entry in the diocesan records of Nueva Galicia, in Guadalajara, relates that in 1702, the leaders of the Indians from San Pedro Susticacan, in the parish of Jerez (Zacatecas), complained to the "visitador". They were unhappy with what the priest, Bartolome Cervantes Negrete and the vicar, licenciado Melchor Marin de Mayorga were changing; "bautizos un peso, matrimonies catorce pesos, defunciones quince pesos, defuncion de angelito cuatro pesos, fiesta titular de Sr. San Pedro cinco pesos y por cada imagen en procesion cinco pesos."

On 16 July 1710 was the burial of Maria Negrete, the widow of Lorenzo de los Reyes cervantes, in Guadalajara,s Church of San Francisco. She had declared her will on the 7th before Bartolome de Castro, "Escribano Real". The will's executors were her sons, Lazaro Cer'vamtfiMfr Negret® and the priest "Bartolotne Negrete, cura beneficiado de Jerez".

Lazaro, too, had aspired to the priesthood, for in Guadalajara, in 1691, he presented this information so as to be admitted; Born in Cocula 11 Apr 1674, he was the legitimate son of Lorenzo de los Reyes Cervantes, "Escribano Real de Haciena y Caja" and Maria Negrete y Plaza. Paternal Grandparents; Captain Bartolome de los Reyes y Cervantes and Catalina Lopes de Salazar. Maternal Oranparents; Captain Diego de Negrete Cortes and Jacinta Romero y Plaza.

He didn't profess however. Rosa de Chavarria was his first spouse and on 7 May 1713, he remarried in Guadalajara to Antonia Perez Lomelin. She was from Jalostotitlan (Jalisco), the daughter of Manuel Lomelin y Mendoza and Josefa Perez Maldonado y Saavedra. Being a widow upon her death, her burial was 5 June 1729 in Nueva Galicia's capital. One son, Manuel Cervantes Negrete y Lomelin professed for the priesthood in 1741. Two siblings, Basilic and Ignacio resided in Nochistlan (Zacatecas, the original homestead of the Lomelin family. They wed two sisters; Manuela and Maria Duran Ruiz de Esparaza y Gonzalez respectively.

From this lineage was Jose de Negrete, O.F.M. In 1706, he was the Order's "Provincial" (headmaster) in Jalisco.


The Clf Newsletter 
A Publication of Clayton Library Friends Volume XIX May 2005 Number 2


Clayton Library will have some new microfilm concerning Native American records by May. Clayton Library Friends has purchased the following rolls of microfilm at the direction of Clayton Manager Marje Harris.
From the Oklahoma Historical Society (each item is a single roll):
AMD 026 Emmet Starr, Manuscripts, Old        Cherokee Families and their            Genealogies, Index to Surnames, "B-Z." No index for "A."
AMD 028 Emmet Starr, Manuscripts, Old Cherokee
Families and their Genealogies, Family
 AMD 029 Emmet Starr, Manuscripts, Old Cherokee
Families and their Genealogies, Miscellaneous
(Note: Clayton Library already has AMD 027.)
KA 1 Kiowa Agency Census & Enrollment: Census of Kiowa, Comanche, Apache and Wichita & Affiliated Bands, Undated & 1869-1883 (oClayton Microfilm rolls cover 1895-1939).
KA 2 Kiowa Agency Census & Enrollment: Census of Kiowa, Comanche, Apache, Caddo & Wichita & Affiliated Bands. 1883-1890.
KA 3 Kiowa Agency Census & Enrollment: Census of Kiowa, Comanche, Apache, Caddo & Wichita & Affiliated Bands. 1890-1894.
KA 4 Kiowa Agency Census & Enrollment: Census of Kiowa, Comanche, Apache, Caddo & Wichita & Affiliated Bands. 1893-1901.
KA 52 Kiowa Agency Births, Marriages, Divorces, Deaths, Wills and Related Records (1869-1925): Wills (1890-1924); Cemetery (1896-1924): Vital Statistics (1893-1919):
Births (Undated and 1895-1924); Marriage Register (Volume) (1893-1901); Marriage Licenses (Volume) (1905-1907), Marriages (1871-1901); Report of Legal Marriage (Undated and 1902-1924); Divorce Docket (Volume) (1917-1919).
PA 1 Pawnee Agency Census & Enrollment, letters
and documents sent and received June 4, 1894 through March 28, 1927. Census volumes and lists for the Nez Perce, Kaw, Tonkawa, Pawnee and Oto and Missouri, 1880-1926.

QA 1 Census and Enrollment. Letters and documents received December 10, 1877 to June 11, 1897. Census volumes and lists for the Cayuga, Miami, Modoc, New York, Nez Perce, Ottawa, Confederated Peoria, Potawatomi, Quapaw, Seneca, Eastern Shawnee and Wyandot.
Sac and FoxShawnee Agency census and enrollment. Letters and documents, sent & received. December 6, 1865 through May 5,
1924. Census volumes and lists for the Iowa, Mexican Kickapoo and Oto 1881-1920. SFSA 2 Sac and FoxShawnee agency census and enrollment. Census volumes and lists for the Citizen Potawatomi, 1883-1921.
From the National Archives:
T 500 Records of Choctaw Trading House, 1803-1824,
6 rolls.
 T 1029 Letter Book of Natchitoches Sulphur Fork
Factory, 1809-1821, 1 roll. 
M 142 Letter Book of the Arkansas Trading House,
1805-1810, 1 roll. 
M 1059 Selected Letters Received by the Office of
Indian AffairsRelating to the Cherokees of
North Carolina, 1851-1905, 7 rolls. 
M 234 Letters Received by the Office of Indian Affairs,
1824-1881, Rolls # 113-18,143-44,185-87,
237-40, and 806-07.
These seventeen rolls represent the records and corre-spondence relating to the removal of the "Five Civilized Tribes" or nations into the Indian Territory (now Oklahoma). The material represented is as follows:
Cherokee Agency, 1824-80
Cherokee Emigration 
Roll #113........1828-36
Roll #114........1837
Roll #115........1838
Roll #116........1839-54
Cherokee Reserves 
Roll #117........1828-40
Roll #118........1841-50
Chickasaw Agency, 1824-70
Chickasaw Agency Emigration 
Roll #143........1837-38
Roll #144........1839-50
Choctaw Agency, 1824-78
Choctaw Agency Emigration 
Roll# 185........1826-45
Roll #186........1846-49
Roll #187........1850-59
Creek Agency, 1824-76
Creek Agency Emigration 
Roll #237........1826-36
Roll #238........1837
Roll #239........1838-39
Roll #240........1840-49
Seminole Agency, 1824-76
Seminole Agency Emigration. 1827-59 
Roll #806........1827-46
Roll #807........1848-59


Nation Catholic Reporter October 8, 2004
Sent By Mary Sevilla, CSJ, Assistant Provincial of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, Los Angeles Province.

Mestizo identity is the heart of virgil Elizondo's life and work
An influential theologian writes of Jesus, the Hispanic experience and himself
By Ed Conroy

A mestizo Messiah, born to be seen as neither Jew nor Gentile, is the Jesus of Galilee at the center of Virgil Elizondo's pioneering theological work.

To Fr. Elizondo, Jesus' dual cultural identity "as a marginal Jew from Galilee of Gentiles" was nothing less than what was required to bring peace to humanity.

In his most recent book, A God of Incredible Surprises: Jesus of Galilee, Elizondo explores that theme in depth and celebrates his native San Antonio as a place where the work of Jesus' "new creation" is taking place daily.

Recognized by TIME magazine as a leading global spiritual innovator, Virgil Elizondo is widely acknowledged as a pioneer among Hispanic theologians in the U.S. Catholic church.

He is, by definition, a modern mestizo, conscious of the intermingling of indigenous and European influences in his life, having obtained his STD/PhD. at the Institut Catholique in Paris. Today, the recipient of numerous honorary degrees, he lives in two worlds.

During the workweek, Elizondo serves as visiting professor of theology in the Institute for Latino Studies at Notre Dame University. He regularly returns to his native San Antonio, though, where he serves as associate pastor at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church, deep in the heart of the city's predominantly Mexican-American West Side.

Elizondo also maintains an office at the Mexican-American Cultural Center, the internationally recognized center for multicultural pastoral foundation he helped found. There, he writes and hosts Spanish-language programs for the San Antonio archdiocese's Catholic Television service.

Influenced early on by the work of the French Jesuit paleontologist/thelogian Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, he sees the process of mestizaje (the Spanish word for the mixing of races and cultural backgrounds) as creating a new evolutionary phylum of humanity.

As a Mexican-American who observed the oppression of his people's culture from the margins of mainstream "Anglo" society of South Texas, Elizondo's own life experience informs his concept of marginalization.

Throughout the Gospel stories, Elizondo sees Jesus as shunning the powerful in order to identify with those whose lives have been marginalized, to give them the healing they need.

Now, with the publication of A God of Incredible Surprises, Elizondo has produced a succinct personal testament to his life and thought.

In 12 short chapters, Elizondo explores the paradox of Jesus, "so human he must be divine," the "unsuspected beauty" of his humble birth and his conscious sacrifice of his life, the importance of his formation in the marginalized world of Galilee, his gifts of the restoration of innocence and his example of peace and faith in the face of death, and the transformational spirit of Pentecost that, even today Elizondo asserts, is creating "a new humanity."

Elizondo took a few moments recent-ly at his office in the Mexican-Ameri-can Cultural Center to answer some questions about the central concepts with which he works and their relationship to his own life.

Was his concept of the importance of mestizaje influenced by the work of the early 20th century Mexican philosopher and statesman Jose Vasconcelos, who coined the term (later adopted by the Chicano movement) raza cosmi-ca— the cosmic race — to describe the Mexican people?

"No, not really," Elizondo said. "Vasconcelos had the idea that the Europeans were going to improve the indigenous races through mestizaje. I see it as a meeting of equals."

In fact, Elizondo said, one of his most influential experiences in forming his own concept of •mestizaje came when visiting Mexico City's Plaza de Tres Culturas, also known in Tiateloico, where one of the city's oldest Catholic churches, made of volcanic rock, stands next to ruins of Aztec pyramids.

"There is a plaque there," Elizondo said, "that reads, in Spanish, 'On the 13th of August, 1521, Tiateloico, heroically defended by Cuauhtemoc, fell to the power of Hernan Cortes. This was neither a victory nor a defeat, but the painful birth of the mixed race that is Mexico today.'"

Tiateloico is also significant in Mexican history as the site of the massacre of hundreds of student protesters in 1968 by soldiers of the Mexican army, only recently investigated by the government of Mexican president Vicente Fox.

This concept of "neither a victory nor a defeat" extends to the "both/and" (rather than "either/or") thinking that pervades the concept of mestizaje Elizondo has developed in his work. More-over, Elizondo sees the period in Mexico that followed the battle of Tiateloico as truly an extraordinary spiritual opening in the history of humanity.

"The evangelization of Mexico was a fascinating missionary endeavor that rivaled the early apostolic period of the church," he said. "Christianity penetrated the Mexican soul in a profound way, as we see reflected in Mexican music, art and architecture."

At the heart of that penetration was the Mexican ability to understand the nature of Jesus' sacrifice on the cross.

"Sacrifice — human sacrifice — had been a central part of Aztec culture," Elizondo said, "but now it was transformed."

After the original "golden moment" of evangelization, though, the people of Mexico and its institutional church went through centuries in which large parts of the population were left to their own devices to maintain their religious traditions.

As Elizondo has described them in his book Guadalupe, Mother of the New Creation, those traditions began very early on in the colonial period as a result of the experiences of St. Juan Diego with Our Lady of Guadalupe.

To Elizondo, the fact that the influences accepted by Mexico's indigenous people during the early days of evangelization endured through centuries to the present day is a remarkable phenomenon, showing "incredible folk wisdom."

Yet Elizondo maintains that Mexican piety is not Marian to the diminishment of Jesus, as Protestant evangelicals sometimes imply.

As he puts it: "I think our Latino religion, which is based on the two key icons of Mary and Jesus, is much closer to the Christianity of the Gospels than other expressions of Christianity that do not appreciate the incredible and fascinating bond between the mother and the son. This bond is so close that I would dare to call them a redeeming team."

At the heart of that relationship, to Elizondo, is their mutual experience of being marginalized.

That experience, for Mary, he said, came through being "adopted" by her husband, Joseph, and being regarded, socially, as the equivalent of an unwed mother.

Elizondo characterizes Jesus' own marginalization through being born in a manner regarded as illegitimate, and working humbly as a carpenter in Galilee.

What does Elizondo make of the importance attached by the writer of the Gospel of Matthew who took pains to characterize Jesus as a descendant of the royal house of King David?

"Well, in contemporary terms, there is probably someone working right here in San Antonio who is a descendant of Moctezuma working as a mechanic," he said. "I think that would be analogous."

Jesus was an entirely new kind of patriarch, Elizondo said.

As he puts it in his new book: "As Jesus had reversed many of the notions and customs of his time, he reversed even the image and meaning of' father' to that of the merciful father who unites the new family through tenderness, compassion, forgiveness, and love."

The recognition of one's own mestizaje is an opportunity, Elizondo said, to love oneself, just as one is.

"When I was much younger, I was encouraged by one of my teachers to change my name to Ellison and adopt an Anglo-American identity," Elizondo told me. "I still respect my former teacher very much and love him as a friend, but at the time I really had to choose who I was going to be in relationship to society."

In the concluding chapter of his new book, titled "If Jesus Had Lived in San Antonio," Elizondo draws a direct parallel between the community of San Antonio and Jesus' Galilee, where diverse peoples mixed, where Jews were Hellenized yet remained Jews.

In particular, he reflects upon the rich diversity of people who shopped and visited at his father's grocery story — "Blacks, Jews, poor Baptist and Methodist whites and of course Mexicans"— who enlivened and expanded his understanding of their faith experiences.

No doubt it was that same love of diverse, multicultural community that inspired his vision in founding the Mexican-American Cultural Center and motivated his work, during the 1980s and early '90s, as rector of San Antonio's San Fernando Cathedral.

His tenure coincided with a period of Hispanic cultural re-awakening in San Antonio, encouraged by the city administration of then-mayor Henry Cisneros.

Although he is suffering from macular degeneration, Elizondo has not lost the urge to write.

His next book?

"I want to write a day book of meditations, one for each day of the year," he said. "I want to call it La Biblia a tu alcance, or, in English, The Bible at Your Fingertips."

No doubt it will not be his last.




Boletín Informativo de la Red de Juderías de España, Junio 2005
First American Jewish Families
Crypto-Jews in Colonial Mexico
Sephardic Jews founded key cities in Mexico
 Paths Of Memory: The Trajectory of the Jews in Portugal

Foto: Anterior edición de la Festa da Historia
 Boletín Informativo de la Red de Juderías de España, Junio 2005
Mandado por Edna Yolanda Elizondo

[[Editor: Great variety of cultural and historical articles, with photos. Do check it out. ]]

La novena edición de La Conversa de Hervás se desarrolla los días 7, 8, 9 y 10 julio. Hay ambientación en el barrio judío a partir de las 19h. A las 22:30h, se representa la obra de teatro La Conversa de Hervás de Solly Wolodarsky.  En Jaén, la Asociación Iuventa (; organiza Ecos de un pasado hebreo. Las leyendas de la judería, a cargo del grupo Jaén en Movimiento. La representación es gratuita, en la Plaza de Santa María de Jaén, los sábados 9 de julio y 13 de agosto, a las 20:30h. Colaboran Plan Urban, Delegación del Gobierno de la Junta de Andalucía y Patronato de Cultura, Turismo y Fiestas del Ayuntamiento de Jaén.
Uno de los actos más relevantes de Ribadavia es la conocida Festa da Historia, organizada por la Fundación Festa da Historia y declarada de Interés Turístico Nacional. Todos los habitantes se visten de época y recrean la vida durante la edad media: la moneda oficial es el maravedí, hay artesanos, malabaristas, prestamistas, escribanos y otros personajes relacionados con las dos culturas. El sábado 27 de agosto, durante todo el día, en el conjunto histórico de Ribadavia. A las 12h empieza la representación teatral de la Boda Judía, a cargo del Centro de Estudos Medievais. Los novios e invitados recrean los pasos de esta celebración hebrea tradicional. Para participar en el banquete es preciso reservar al teléfono (+34) 988 470 882. A las 20 h hay una segunda representación teatral: O Malsín, a cargo de Grupo Festa da Historia, representación popular del drama vivido entre los judíos conversos a principios del siglo XVII. Este espectáculo gratuito transcurre en la Judería, Plaza Mayor y Castillo.
Diez años han transcurrido desde la creación, en el año 1995, de la Red de Juderías de España-Caminos de Sefarad, y veintiún socios lo forman en la actualidad. Muchos han sido los proyectos realizados en estos últimos años, repartidos en tres áreas básicas complementarias unas de otras: gestión, formación e investigación y desarrollo del turismo cultural sostenible. Proyectos y actividades, todos ellos, que cumplen con los objetivos generales de esta red: la conservación y la difusión del patrimonio judío español.

Este verano nuestro empeño está puesto en la creación de un entramado de productos culturales y turísticos especializados en aquellos ámbitos más relevantes de nuestros destinos, de forma que se complementen y permitan al visitante, además de disfrutar, conocer y reconocer las huellas de un pasado común. Presentamos en este último boletín un buen número de eventos turísticos y culturales repartidos por toda España que esperamos puedan satisfacer los variados intereses de nuestros visitantes y aprovechamos para expresar nuestra gratitud a todas aquellas personas que se interesan por nuestras actividades y participan de ellas, con la esperanza de que el programa que hemos preparado para el verano 2005 sea de su agrado.

Assumpció Hosta
Secretaria General 
Red de Juderías de España-Caminos de Sefarad 


This is must reading on the subject!!

The entire book is online and can be searched by surname and or first name.
Sent by Johanna De Soto

When it first appeared in 1960, Malcolm Stern's Americans of Jewish Descent marked a milestone in the study of American Jewish genealogy.  The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives is proud to make the latest edition of this classic text available online.

Researchers now have access to the complete text of Rabbi Stern's monumental volume that was published in 1991 as the updated and revised 3rd edition entitled: First American Jewish Families: 600 Genealogies, 1654-1988.  This publication is an historical document in its own right, and it is not our intention to alter it in any way.  Students of American Jewish genealogy are encouraged to use this text as a basis for their research. 

In the near future, the American Jewish Archives will work on a system whereby serious scholars will be able to post emendations and additions to further the general knowledge about American Jewish genealogy. If you have additions or corrections that you would like reviewed for possible inclusion in any addendum to the information in this resource, please contact us.

Additional Information
Dedication and acknowledgements from the 3rd Edition
Foreword to the 3rd Edition by Jacob Rader Marcus
Preface to the 3rd Edition by Malcom H. Stern
How to use this resource


Sent by Johanna De Soto

Anussim: involuntary converts, people who were baptized through force or fear

Marrano: from swine, Jews who converted to Catholicism.

Jews were among the early European settlers of New Spain. They inhabited the region uninterruptedly since 1521, even though their presence was forbidden for the majority of the time. They came under false identities, having converted to Catholicism to avoid expulsion from Spain. The conversos, also called " "Crypto-Jews," "New Christians" or "Anussim" led a paradoxical existence. Their mere presence in Spain or New Spain is not easy to understand. When the Catholic kings Ferdinand and Isabella decreed all Jews in the kingdom should convert to Catholicism or leave the country, there were many people who became real Catholics. But a large number of Jews found a way to keep their beliefs, rituals and spirituality hidden in order to remain in Spain.

Many came to the New World in search of more religious freedom, hoping to keep their Spanish and Jewish identities. They could have immigrated to countries such as Italy and Turkey and practiced their religion with freedom, but they felt connected to Spain, the land, the culture, the language, and felt they had a right to live in the land they had always known. Many Crypto-Jews stayed in Spain, or came to the new world, taking the risk of being discovered and punished by the Inquisition, living a life of secrecy. According to Salvador de Madriaga, "the Jews of 1492 left behind a deeply judaized Spain; and they went abroad no less hispanified." (Seymour Liebman,. The Jews in New Spain, 20) Jews were part of Spanish society and culture, and that would not change in New Spain.

Most of the details about the lives of the Crypto-Jews in New Spain are actually provided by the Inquisition itself. Records of trials describe in detail their customs, religious and cultural practices, and how they were passed on from generation to generation. "From the minutes of the trials much can be learned of the psyches, values, characteristics, and customs of the Mexican colonial Jew." (Liebman, New Spain, 52) As time went by and the Mexican Jews became more and more detached from a real Jewish religious life, those customs changed in order to allow them to fit into colonial Mexico and survive the grasp of the Inquisition. Crypto-Jews incorporated not only Christian rituals, but also native practices they learned from the Indians who worked as their servants. Inquisition trials also helped make sure that Jewish culture was transmitted to new generation of Jews, explaining in detail how they kept Jewish holidays, prayers they recited, etc.

And though the memory and knowledge of mitzvoth became increasingly blurred as the generations went by, … customs and traditions nevertheless remained in the Conversos’ memory and were handed down for centuries from generation to generation. Furthermore, for as long as the Inquisition courts existed, the Inquisitors were always there to remind the Conversos of what Jewish tradition was, and to revive their memories of Judaism. (Perry & Cruz, Cultural Encounters, p 178)


Jews were not supposed to have settled in the New World. In a decree of 1522, King Charles V forbade all recent converts to go to the Indies. In 1523, an edict specifically prohibited Jews from entering New Spain. Still, the conversos crossed the ocean, bringing their traditions, culture and rituals. In order to obtain licenses for emigration, they "paid bribes, forged papers, and appropriated old Catholic names from tombstones in Spain." (Seymour Liebman, The Enlightened, p20) Those Jews believed the Spanish colonies would give them more freedom to practice Judaism, being away from Spain, but still live in a Spanish environment. The Inquisition soon followed them to the New World.

There were Jews in the group that accompanied Cortés in the Conquest of Mexico, among them Hernando Alonso, who would become the first Jewish martyr in New Spain. Alonso prospered in the New World, raising cattle, lambs and pigs. He was not a religious Jew, and was probably prosecuted by the Inquisition because of his connections with Cortés.

Crypto-Jews were part of colonial life, and many of their traditions outlived them and remained with Mexican culture. They tried to keep as much of their Judaism as possible, while practicing Catholicism in public. That meant anywhere from keeping the Sabbath and the holidays and eating a kosher diet, to merely avoiding pork and praying for the coming of the Messiah. Some believed that the knowledge and intention to follow Mosaic laws was enough to keep Judaism alive. Early in colonial life, Jews were not the main target of the Inquisition, and lived peaceful and successful lives in Mexico. The vast majority of Mexican Jews were of Sephardic descent, coming predominantly from Spain and Portugal, and had led rich cultural and economic lives in Europe. They were educated, and had "acquired a degree of nationality not found in other countries." (Liebman, New Spain, 19) During the sixteenth and part of the seventeenth centuries, the "Conversos" were well accepted by the general population. They had their place in society, holding occupations that the Spaniards would rather not assume. They were commonly merchants, shopkeepers, peddlers, importers.

Aside from religious observance, colonial Crypto-Jews were very similar to the Christian settlers. Jews and Christians had friendly relationships, and many Catholics even helped Jews hide or escape the Inquisition. Still, Crypto-Jews led a dual existence. They had to know enough about Catholicism in order to convince authorities that they were practicing, good Christians. They also had to hide their true identity from their servants and slaves. The natives were in sort of a similar position, being catechized by Catholic friars and forced to leave their religion and culture behind. Most Jewish settlers in Mexico had native servants, who were instructed by the Church to report any suspicious heretic behavior. To avoid being reported to the clergy, Jews "established a bond of religious fraternity with the natives, sealed with a drop of blood." Blood had been an important symbol in native religion. Some Conversos taught Jewish principles to the natives, which, although a great risk, could also instill some feelings of resentment against Catholic dominance. As early as 1508 there were complaints that natives were being corrupted by Jewish teachings. There are accounts of Jews who tried to ridicule Christianity to the natives, stressing that the true Messiah would not have been crucified. They also reminded the Indians of the high status of their own priests and gods. The Church certainly feared an alliance between Jews and Indians, but such joint resistance never occurred in a large scale. One of the reasons may be the distinction the Catholic authorities established between the two groups. Natives, new to the faith, were to be protected and educated. Judaizers were seen as enemies of the Church, and should not be spared by the Inquisition. Interestingly, Jews managed to silently resist the Inquisition more effectively than the natives, whose religion and culture was all but erased by the Church from Spanish Mexico:

The Indians had been conquered not only in a military way but in spirit as well. Their own religious life had been suppressed, their gods defeated; their social mores were disorganized, their priests and leaders often killed. (Clarence Haring, The Spanish Empire in America, 187)


The term Crypto-Judaism refers to a broad range of practices and beliefs held by Jews who had been forced to convert to Catholicism. The "Crypto-Jew" was a paradoxical character. Crypto-Jews acted in a way to "convince" the Catholic Church they had abandoned Judaism, but at the same time they carried a burden of guild for having rejected Judaism and accepted a new faith, even if only in exterior. They held a strong belief that the Messiah would come and free them from Catholic dominance:

Thousands of humble Anussim led a life filled with shame and fear, guilt and despair, hoping for some Moses to deliver them from the Christian Pharaoh, or some new Esther who would defeat the Hamans of the Inquisition.

(Perry & Cruz, 186)

That belief probably gave people strength to remain Jews. It also created a strong tradition of superstition. Mexican Jews were more superstitious than religious. Some superstitions common among the Anusim included the wearing of amulets such as broken pieces of matzah in a bag around their necks to avoid catastrophes. They also believed that single women should dry their hair well after washing, and put it up in a bun, in order to attract a good husband. Some Jews only ate all brown or black chickens, with no feathers of any other colors. These superstitions are not necessarily based on Jewish Law or beliefs, and probably incorporated some native and Christian customs.


One of the customs the Crypto-Jews kept, in order to attain redemption and expiate their guilt for conversion to Catholicism, was fasting. Although Jewish law mandates fasting only on Yom Kippur, Mexican Jews fasted several times during the year. People also had to keep their fasting from servants. One tactic was to send servants away on errands during mealtimes, when the food was thrown away. Other forged arguments when they sat to eat, then claimed they had lost their appetite. Jews sometimes fasted openly in groups, claiming that the fasting was in honor of the Virgin of Carmen. Some people in the community were known for their ability to fast. The concept of "suffering and self-denial as a means of salvation was borrowed from Catholicism." (Liebman, New Spain, 63)

Yom Kippur was the most important day of the year. Apparently Mexican Jews did not follow the lunar calendar, there was a set date for the celebration of Yom Kippur, September 10th. Even non-religious Jews celebrated Yom Kippur in some way. Rituals included bathing and cleaning the house the day before, and eating a meal of fish and vegetables. People were encouraged to wear new clothes (contrary to what is customary in the present), and some women lit candles. Candles were very expensive in colonial Mexico, and therefore attracted attention. For this reason, women left candles on the table weeks before Yom Kippur so people would be used to them the day of the holiday. During the day, some people would walk in the streets with toothpicks in their mouths to hide the fact that they were fasting. To break the fast, Jews ate a meal of fish, eggs and vegetables. The tradition of breaking fasts with those foods was taken from the Spanish. The most important Yom Kippur tradition, of asking forgiveness from friends and relatives, was also kept. The Inquisition used that practice as a sign of Judaizing.

After Yom Kippur, the most important fasting occasion was Purim, a holiday which celebrated Queen Esther and her confession of her faith to her husband, the King, in order to save the Jews. The parallels between the two historical moments were clear to the Anussim. Purim is usually one of the happiest holidays in the Jewish Calendar, with children dressing up in costumes and making a lot of noise during services. In New Spain, it was a more solemn festivity, because there had been no Queen Esther to save them. One particular holiday that is still kept in Spain and New Mexico has its basis in the Jewish celebration of Purim. The Feast of Saint Esther, usually described as a woman's holiday, is a time when mothers traditionally have gathered to teach their daughters ways of the home and prepare an elaborate family dinner that by many accounts includes fruit-filled pastries, or empanadas, for dessert. It takes place in March, at the same time Crypto-Jews used to celebrate Purim.

The Sabbath, the holiest moment in Jewish life, was also observed in New Spain. Mexican Jews could not gather for a Sabbath meal on Friday evenings with friends and family as it is customary, but there were services on Saturdays to celebrate the end of the Sabbath. Candles were sometimes lit under a table covered with a black tablecloth, so passersby would not see the light of the candles. There were sermons, with prayers usually recited in Portuguese and Spanish. There were few prayers recited in Hebrew, probably because the teaching of Hebrew was not common in Mexico.

Passover, which celebrated the freedom of the Jews from slavery in Egypt, was also observed carefully. Mexican Jews considered their situation a sort of "spiritual slavery," and thought a literal observance of the holiday would help bring their own freedom (Liebman, New Spain, 67) One of the Passover traditions was the sacrifice of a white lamb, whose blood was to be "put on the two side posts and on the lintel of the house where the lamb was to be eaten." (Liebman, New Spain, 68) That practice was read by the Inquisition as a sure sign of Judaizing. Jews made and ate matzah or tortillas during the week of Passover. Christians were used to matzah as a remedy prescribed by Jewish doctors for stomach ailments. The word "Phase" was used in reference to Passover to deceive Christians. The holiday was celebrated on March 14th, even though following the lunar calendar Passover never falls that early in the year.


Jewish tradition is very academic, but "conversos" could not write or preach. Jewish writings and books were forbidden by the Inquisition. The only known writings of a Jew in the colonial period are those of Luis de Carvajal, who was executed by the Inquisition in the sixteenth century. His writings show "the extent of the penetration of Jewish erudition into early Mexican culture." (Richard Greenleaf, Mexican Inquisition, 171) Carvajal created many prayers that are still recited on Yom Kippur:

I have sinned, my Lord; but not because I have sinned

Do I abandon plaint and hope for Thy mercy;

I fear that my punishment will equal my guilt,

But I still hope for forgiveness through Thy kindness (Perry & Cruz, 190)

In his testament, written hours before his execution, he reaffirms his faith in the Jewish God and his desire to die as a Jew:

…And because Thou bestowest so much kindness and infinite mercy upon all [men], I, the poorest and most miserable of all, beg and implore in charity that Thou, in the impending moments of my death, which I wish to welcome in honor of Thy holy name and genuine law, mayest not forsake me. (Liebman, 126)

Carvajal goes on to proclaim the principles of the Jewish faith, following the format of Maimonides: "I believe that God our Lord and universal Creator is one and no more. Hear, O Israel, the Lord thy God is one, and there is no other." (Liebman, 126)

Many Catholic prayers and observances were adapted for Jewish use. The concept of purgatory was introduced into Jewish belief, as well as the practice of praying on one’s knees. Some native customs were also incorporated into Jewish ritual. For instance, praying with a cloth wrapped around one’s hands is a custom that has no origin in Judaism or Catholicism, but a Mayan painting shows an Indian woman praying in that way.

There were no established synagogues in New Spain, and the Jewish community gathered in private rooms to worship. There was no Torah or Hebrew prayer books, which were forbidden by the Inquisition. As Jews did not live in a separate area of the city, worshipping quarters needed to be disguised. In 1589, Francisco Rodrigues de Matos was accused of being a Rabbi and convicted by the Inquisition, but it is doubtful that he was, in fact, a Rabbi. The title "Rabbi" was commonly used by the Inquisition to qualify people who were more learned about Jewish Law than other Anusim.

Mexican Jews felt it was important to have their children marry other Jews. It was common for suitable grooms to be recruited from Jewish communities in Europe to marry young Mexican Jewish girls. Ideal partners would be devout and learned. The brides were very young, generally under fifteen years old, and although their husbands were chosen by their fathers, the girl’s approval was necessary if she was older than twelve. In the absence of a Rabbi, the marrying couple would sign a document in the presence of both families. A Catholic ceremony would follow.

Circumcision was commonly practiced among Mexican Jews, even though it made it easy for the Inquisition to identify them. There was a variation of circumcision that was probably taken from the Indians, in which the boy’s penis would be cut longitudinally. There is a theory that claims that circumcision may have created a bond between Jews and Indians. The operation was performed on boys between the ages of nine and thirteen, not on newborns. Some families adopted some other form of mark, such as a cut on the shoulder, as their symbol of the covenant.

Jewish dietary laws were also adapted to Mexican life. The refusal to eat pork was the most common accusation made by the Inquisition to "conversos." Most Anussim were almost vegetarian, avoiding red meat most of the time. Poultry had to be decapitated and cleaned of all blood. Women generally slaughtered the animals, getting rid of the blood during the night so neighbors and servants would not see it. Jews ate basically the same foods that Christians did: fish, vegetables, eggs and olives. Those foods are not meat or dairy, so they were particularly practical for people who kept a Kosher diet, where meat and dairy cannot be mixed.

Frequently Jews invited their Christian friends for meals, when they made stews which included pork. In that case, they would either drop the pieces of pork to the floor, or push them around the plate leaving them for last, when they would claim they were satisfied. Such practice actually violates Jewish Law, but it was used when Christians were around. It was also fairly common for Jews to serve bacon to their Christian guests, avoiding to eat or regurgitating it after the guests were gone. Children were told to only eat food prepared by members of their families. Jews also drank chocolate, a traditional native drink prepared without milk which could be drank with dairy or meat dishes. Some Jewish foods were incorporated into Mexican diet, such as the challa (pan trenzada), and the alfajor, a sweet made of almonds, walnuts and honey, which is usually eaten during the Jewish New Year.

Women were important members of the "converso" community. Many Jewish women were tortured and burned by the Inquisition. The simplified religion kept by Mexican Jews was not as hierarchical as traditional Judaism, so women had a more important role in keeping traditions and educating the children.

The women have greatly contributed to the perpetuation of marranism, often behind the back of their husbands: they figure also in greater numbers than men in the autos de fé. (Perry & Cruz, 181)

The female leaders of the Anusim communities composed and transmitted rituals and liturgy for Jewish and crypto-Jewish holidays … and for life-cycle events. They were referred to as sacerdotisas or guadalupitas(!), and were regularly turned to for decisions on all religious matters. They also served as medicine women (curanderas) employing both herbs, amulets and incantations in their healing and midwifery, for which reason some were burned at the stake, accused of witchcraft. Some women preserved, practiced and transmitted kabbalistic traditions, elements of which appear in the Spanish-language prayers they composed. (Shulamit Halevy, Anusim in North America)

It was common for the Inquisition to accuse "conversos" of disrespecting Catholicism and mocking the Christian faith. Although most of these accusations were false, many Jews did resent Catholicism and sometimes criticized the Church in public. There are accounts of burnings of images of Jesus and saints and breaking of crucifixes. "Christ epitomized the cause of [the Jew’s] problems." (Liebman, 85) In 1536, Gonzalo Gómez was accused of placing a cross on the roof of a hut and hanging chili peppers on the arms of the cross. A Jewish repair shop put crosses on the soles of the shoes of his customers, "so they would be treading on a cross." (Liebman, New Spain, 84) Why would Crypto-Jews choose to insult inanimate objects they did not believe in the first place, risking getting in trouble with the Inquisition? Although secrecy was necessary for survival, Crypto-Jews sometimes revealed their true identity by revolting against their oppressor. Although they were not intentional martyrs, some people came to the conclusion it was worth it to be true to their Jewish identities, instead of leading a double life.

The hidden life of Crypto-Jews was not so easy to lead. It was risky, and when someone was caught by the Inquisition that person was tortured until he or she denounced all the people in the family who kept Jewish practices. Therefore, not every Jewish family passed down the secret of their identity to their children. Traditions and practices were still handed down, but as time went by and the Inquisition relaxed its persecution of Jews, people lost the motivation to remain hidden Jews. More and more people became assimilated, until all Crypto-Jews had disappeared from Mexico by the eighteenth century. Some traditions such as lighting candles on Friday nights were still kept, but families were not aware of their meaning. When religious freedom was established in Mexico, there were no families coming forward and identifying themselves as Jews. Later, many families were identified through traditions they had been keeping for generations, but they were not aware of their origins. Of these, only a small number returned to Judaism.

The Crypto-Jews were an important part of the Colonial Mexican population, because of their silent resistance, their dual existence and the culture that resulted from it, mixing Jewish, Christian and Indian customs. Although the Inquisition eliminated a good number of Jews, it has kept a detailed record of their lives. And even though persecution and assimilation interrupted the Jewish presence in Mexico, traces of their culture have remained and are identifying more and more people who are descendants from the Anussim.

Image: Back Room Ritual by Diana Bryer
Performing Colonialism 
Melissa Bromfman de Ferrante
ID 014-78-5789
December 21, 2000

Cruz, Anne J. and Perry, Mary Elizabeth. Cultural Encounters. Berkeley, University of California Press, 1991Greenleaf, Richard. The Mexican Inquisition of the Sixteenth Century. Albuquerque, University of New Mexico Press, 1969. Halevy, Shulamit. Anusim in North America Tradition, 1995 Haring, C.H. The Spanish Empire in America. New York, Oxford University Press, 1947 Lea, Henry Charles. The Inquisition in the Spanish Dependencies. New York, The McMillan Company, 1908 Liebman, Seymour. The Enlightened. Coral Gables, University of Miami Press, 1967 Liebman, Seymour. The Jews in New Spain. Coral Gables, University of Miami Press, 1970 


Dear Mimi.
    In early March of this year I submitted an article to you regarding the Semitic spot, and a families Sephardic history. I came across another great article, which tells of a very interesting connection of Sephardic history, and some well known cities in Mexico.
   Keep up the good work. 
   Thank you much,   Richard Duran
Sephardic Jews founded key cities in Mexico
San Antonio scholar to discuss culture at Laredo temple
TRICIA CORTEZ, Laredo Morning Times, May 20, 2005 
Sent by Richard Duran

In the 1500s, Sephardic Jews founded several key cities in Mexico, namely Monterrey, Saltillo, Monclova, Guadalajara, Zacatecas and San Luis Potosí. Advertisement  
They soon moved northward and quickly established themselves as part of the ruling class. 

"The fact that Nuevo Reyno de Leon (now the Mexican state of Nuevo Leon) was founded by Sephardic Jews is extremely important and serves as the basis of contemporary culture of Northern Mexico and South Texas," historian and scholar Richard G. Santos said. 

"Today, we find many of their descendants as business people, educators and in the arts. Some are acutely aware of their Sephardic roots, many are not," he said. 

Santos, a San Antonio native with deep Mexican Jewish roots, will give a talk this evening on how the Sephardic Jewish culture "is very much alive today." . 

Author of "Silent Heritage: The Sephardim and the Colonization of the Spanish North American Frontier, 1492-1600," Santos teaches English and history at Southwest Texas Junior Community College in Crystal City. 

He has conducted extensive research over the past 25 years on Sephardic Jewish colonizers, combing the national archives of Mexico City, state archives of Nuevo Leon and Coahuila, municipal archives of Monterrey and the archives of New Mexico, and several towns along the Rio Grande. 

More than 400 years after Sephardic Jews colonized and laid their roots in the New World, their influence can still be felt in colloquial Spanish phrases, foods such as flour tortillas, cabrito al pastor, capirotada and pan de semita and "our general world view and religiosity," Santos said. 

"What they really passed on were survival skills," he said. "They survived not only expulsion from Spain but religious and social discrimination." 

Furthermore, the philosophy of the Spanish American frontier, "cumplo pero no obedezco (I deliver but don't obey)" can be attributed to Sephardic culture, Santos added. 

Hailing from the Iberian peninsula, records show that Sephardic Jews settled in Spain and Portugal as far back as 1500 B.C. Sepharad means "the land where we grew up to be princes and princesses," Santos said. 

When they were expelled from Spain in 1492, by order of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, many left for the New World and lived their lives as crypto-Jews, practicing their religion in secret. 

Some were also sincere converts to Catholicism. The alternative was death at the hands of the Inquisition. 

One key Sephardic colonizer in the New World is Don Luis de Carvajal y de la Cueva, a Portuguese Jew, who established the kingdom, now state, of Nuevo Leon in 1580. 

Don Luis was a businessmen who dealt in African slaves, Native American slaves, wine and European merchandise. In 1576, he captured the British pirates of John Hawkins near Tampico, Santos said. 

One year after founding Nuevo Leon, Don Luis re-established what is now Monterrey in 1581. 

This Mexican city, originally named Santa Lucia, was founded in 1575 by Alberto del Canto, a Portuguese Jew born in the Azores Islands. 

In 1575, Del Canto also founded the cities of Monclova (originally called la Trinidad), Cerralvo (originally San Gregorio) and Saltillo. 

One interesting side note, Santos said, is that Don Luis de Carvajal changed the name of Santa Lucia to San Luis in 1581, before the name was permanently changed to Monterrey in 1596. 

"It is interesting that descendants of the original founding Sephardic families refer to Monterrey as San Luisito," Santos said. 

Another important Sephardic family during this era was the Oñate family. They were Basques of Jewish ancestry. 

Don Cristobal de Oñate founded the cities of Guadalajara in 1528 and Zacatecas in 1548 while his son, Juan, established the city of San Luis Potosí in 1591. 

Don Juan later became the founder of what is now New Mexico in 1598, but he was not the first to make this northward trek. 

Seven years earlier, Gaspar Castaño de Sosa, a Portuguese Jew, took the entire population of Monclova up the Pecos River and into New Mexico in 1591 . 

There, Castaño de Sosa was arrested and the would-be colonists are brought to Zacatecas, from whence they returned to Saltillo and Monclova. 

According to Santos, Don Luis de Carvajal and other Sephardic colonizers "suffered the same fate as other conquistadores." 

"Once they were seen as being too powerful, they were removed from office," he said. 

In Don Luis' case, he was arrested by the Inquisition in 1585 and charged with harboring Jews and heretics, namely his sister and her children. 

She and her children, with the exception of two who escape, are burned at the stake. Don Luis, meanwhile, died in 1591 in jail in Mexico City. 

Santos said these Sephardic families were tightly knit and initially safeguarded their identity, property and wealth by only marrying among themselves. By 1800, however, they began to intermarry outside their group. 

Birth and death records also show that they identified and recognized all wives, as well as all legitimate and illegitimate children, Santos said. 

Because these families became part of the ruling class, they successfully relocated priests and others who complained of too many Jews in a particular area, Santos said. 

He noted that it is difficult to assess how many Sephardic Jews settled in the region since many hid their identities and never gave their real names or where they were born or their parents' names. 

(Tricia Cortez may be reached at 728-2568 or by e-mail at 

9th New York International Sephardic Jewish Film Festival 
Pg. 10

Following "The Rock and The Star"
2002, Brazil; 57 minutes \ Portuguese with English subtitles

Paths Of Memory: The Trajectory of the Jews in Portugal 
Directed by Elaine Eiger and Luize

Lopez, Nunes,Azevedo, Silva, Pinto, Oliveira... all are surnames of converted Jews, families of the "new" Christians of Portuguese ancestry who helped to form Brazil. In this documentary, the filmmakers journey across Portugal looking for traces of the Jews who once lived there, and who, for almost three centuries of the Inquisition, were forced to convert or be killed. It is a rediscovery of the Jewish-Portuguese roots that can be considered to have been fundamental to the ethnic formation of the Brazilian people.

Elaine Eiger is a photographer who was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Since the i98o's she has been developing artistic projects that mix video, computer graphics, and photography.

Luize Valente is a journalist born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She has worked as a screenwriter and editor for TV news programs for the past 15 years. In the year 2000, the pair released their book Israel Routes and Roots, composed of 64 color pictures and small texts from around the country. This documentary is their second project together.



Archivo Histórico Provincial Joaquín Blanco 
Buffalo still roam with help from Texas park System
HOGAR 2005 Journal
Area cemeteries under survey 
"Texans seek compensation from Mexico for 12 million acres lost after 1848 treaty"
Austin to become major Hispanic market July 25, 2005
Founding of Nuevo Santander & Laredo
Border Bandits 
Angel of Goliad Descendants Historical Preservation
Corridos De La Revolucion- part IV
Corridos Tejanos-Part VI- Finale
Mass for Gov Elguezabal
The Benson Latin American Collection acquires Anzaldúa archive
Networking. . .
     Francisca Maria Xaviera de la Garza
      Juan Bautista Chapa descendent  


Archivo Histórico Provincial Joaquín Blanco
Alfonso E. Rodriguez Ramos

Born in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Islas Canarias (España). Emigrated in 1956.

..... A lo largo de estos últimos años el Gobierno de Canarias, a través de la Viceconsejería de Acción Exterior y Relaciones Institucionales, ha mantenido diversas negociaciones en relación con los fondos de los Archivos de Béxar, en las que ha contado con la valiosa intervención de las Hijas de la República de Texas (responsables de la tutela y custodia del patrimonio histórico ) y con la comprensión de la Biblioteca Nacional de San Antonio, entre otros organismos e instituciones. Estas gestiones se han visto recompensadas con un acuerdo que se ha concretado en la obtención de la reproducción en microfilm del fondo. Los Archivos de Béxar se hallan depositados desde 1899 en la Universidad de Austin (Texas) y se componen de más de 250.000 páginas de documentación manuscrita y más de 4.000 páginas de material impreso relativas al periodo colonial de Texas.

.....Este rico legado documental constituye, sin lugar a dudas, la fuente más completa y detallada para el estudio de la vida civil, política y militar de la entonces provincia española. A partir de los documentos que componen la colección se podrá rescatar la memoria de los canarios en Texas en sus aspectos esenciales: la administración gubernamental de la provincia; el establecimiento de poblados, presidios y misiones; la vida social y administrativa de San Antonio; las luchas y relaciones con los indios; las fortificaciones; la amenaza francesa; las actividades económicas, y en suma, la vida y los esfuerzos de los colonos canarios. De este modo, gracias a su estudio y conocimiento, las huellas actuales de esta presencia isleña se harán más perceptibles y fáciles de entender.

..... Los documentos que se van a poner a disposición del público presentan una gran diversidad tipológica y una clasificación facticia establecida por los archiveros de la Universidad de Austin, plasmada en dos grandes agrupaciones archivísticas, ordenadas con arreglo a criterios cronológicos:

..... Serie General Impresa. Contiene comunicaciones impresas y publicaciones oficiales de las autoridades y órganos de gobierno, además de panfletos y publicaciones no gubernamentales.
Serie General Manuscrita. Incluye correspondencia oficial, registros matrimoniales, documentación militar, judicial y municipal de San Fernando de Béxar.

..... El actual estado norteamericano de Texas se corresponde a grandes rasgos con el territorio llamado durante la dominación española la Nueva Filipinas, una tierra fronteriza cuya escasa población se agrupaba en torno a las misiones franciscanas y algunos puestos militares. Temiendo el avance de los franceses desde Lousiana, la Corona y sus autoridades planearon su colonización. Desde el principio se pensó en los canarios por su laboriosidad y adaptación al suelo americano, para llevar a cabo esta empresa.

..... Los primero colonos formaban un grupo de diez familias procedentes de Lanzarote, La Palma, Tenerife y Gran Canaria, a las que se sumaron dos gomeros a lo largo de las escalas del viaje. Partieron del puerto de Santa Cruz de Tenerife, a bordo del navío "Nuestra Señora de la Trinidad y del Rosario" en marzo de 1730.
..... Los colonos llegaron a su destino a comienzos de marzo de 1731. Sin pérdida de tiempo se repartieron las tierras y comenzaron a trabajarlas. Introdujeron las técnicas canarias de regadío y trazaron las calles de una pequeña población entre los ríos de San Antonio y San Pedro. Así nació la villa de San Fernando de Béxar. Sus fundadores recibieron de la Corona el título de Hidalguía y conformaron la élite social y política de la región, cuyas señas de identidad se han transmitido hasta sus actuales descendiente, orgullosos mantenedores de su herencia.

..... La fundación del asentamiento civil de San Fernando de Béxar tuvo lugar junto al río San Antonio, frente a la Misión franciscana de San Antonio de Valero, más conocida como El Álamo. El 1 de agosto de 1731, se produjo la constitución del primer gobierno municipal de la villa de San Fernando de Béxar, el Cabildo fue formado por los varones casados del contingente de fundadores, quienes eligieron como primer alcalde a Juan Leal, natural de Lanzarote.

..... La villa creció, convirtiéndose en 1772 en la capital de Texas. Con el fin de la dominación española, Texas formó junto a Coahuila uno de los Estados de México. Durante el periodo de existencia de la República de Texas (1836-1845) se estableció el condado de Béxar y la ciudad recibió su actual nombre de San Antonio de Texas. A partir de 1846, el condado de Béxar y la ciudad de San Antonio se integraron en los Estados Unidos de América.

..... Dado el interés suscitado por la presencia de los canarios en San Antonio de Texas, y gracias a un acuerdo con la Dirección General de Cultura, la Viceconsejería de Acción Exterior y Relaciones Institucionales ha considerado oportuno depositar el conjunto de estos fondos en el Archivo Histórico Provincial de Santa Cruz de Tenerife y en el de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, para facilitar su acceso y consulta a los investigadores, historiadores, documentalistas y el público en general.


Buffalo still roam with help from Texas park System

THE DENVER POST, via The Orange County Register,  July 6, 2005

L. Scott Mann, The Denver Post

OUITAOUE, TEXAS • For 75 years they roamed thousands of acres of the Texas Pan-handle, a herd of nearly extinct wild bison, forgotten by the American public and known to very few.

In the summer, their range was the grassy plains. In winter, they would descend into the deep canyons of a region known as the Palo Duro, where they were protected against cold winds and snow.

Until 1874, the great southern bison herd numbered more than 3.5 million before buffalo hunters killed all but a few hundred of them one winter.

A pioneer woman, Mary Ann Goodnight, and her husband, Charles, rescued the remaining orphaned calves. But when the Goodnights died, the bison were left on their own.

They roamed wild for more than seven decades until a German conservationist urged the state of Texas to rescue the dwindling herd. Texas transferred the bison to Caprock Canyons State Park, southeast of Amarillo, in the winter of 1997-1998. The park is part of Palo Duro, where the herd historically roamed.

There, they are nurtured and cared for. The hope is that the 55 pureblooded survivors of the once-vast herd will someday number in the hundreds.

"It's amazing they survived," said Danny Swepston, wildlife district leader for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department in the Panhandle. "Their DNA is unique from other herds and they are the only surviving examples from the great southern herd," he said, as he carefully maneuvered a pickup truck among the bison at Caprock Canyons State Park. The park is a mixture of deep canyons, cliffs and grasslands.

The bison are unequaled in importance to biologists be-cause they remained isolated at the site where they were first caught by the Goodnights, and have never cross-bred with other bison.

Had it not been for the Goodnights, the southern herd would have disappeared 131 years ago.

Texas officials realized how important the herd was in 1994, when Wolfgang Frey, a member of the World Wildlife Fund, also known as World Wide Fund for Nature, contacted them. This ignited local, state and international interest in the herd.

In 1996, DNA samples from the bison revealed their DNA was different from any other bison in the world.

There are now three distinct subspecies of bison worldwide: the southern plains bison herd at Quitaque, the woods bison found in Canada and wooded areas of the northern United States and the European bison found in some European forests.

There are now 300,000 bison worldwide, Swepston said. The southern herd is genetically different from the northern herd and the European bison. They differ from the northern bison in size, color and other characteristics.  They are still wild, although they are now confined to 330 acres. The compound will increase this fall as the grazing area is expanded.

HOGAR 2005 Journal

Greetings to all HOGAR members, "primas", "primos" and friends:

We are proud to announce the completion of our 300-page HOGAR 2005 Journal and it looks great. Again, our special thanks go to the many 'primos' and friends, who graciously submitted and unselfishly shared their family histories, stories, trees, photos and their research and extraction work with HOGAR members and friends. 

The HOGAR 2005 Journal includes works contributed by: John D. Inclán, Dahlia Guajardo Palacios, Anita Rivas Medellin, Leonor Silva Urrutia, Dorina Alaniz Thomas, Gloria H. Benavides, Bernadette Inclán, Janet Paulos Khashab, Araceli Guadalupe Cerda Chavana, Sulema Riojas Ramos, Raúl Mitre Valle, Irma Longoria Cavazos, Teresa Longoria, Fred Alaniz, Érika Zamora, Uvaldo García, Rosemary Galván Walsh and Jerry Benavides. You will find these individuals in Santa Catarina and Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, California, Colorado, and in Edinburg, Galveston, McAllen, Laredo, Allen, Mesquite and Dallas, Texas.

We are aware of the many hours they have spent in their research efforts, and we greatly appreciate the information contributed for publication.  The data contributed will help our many 'primos' and friends in their genealogy research.  

HOGAR members who pay their dues will receive their journals next month or at the September Laredo conference. Nonmembers will be able to obtain their copy for a $30.00 donation.
(If you haven't, please visit our web site: )

Cariñosamente, Gloria and Jerry Benavides, 
HOGAR Publicity, Chairs

Sent by George Gause 
The Monitor, :Jul 11, 2005, Valley & State,  Pg. 9            

Area cemeteries under survey 
Historical commission recruiting volunteers for study 
By DANIEL PERRY Monitor Staff Writer

   WESLACO — Some Hidalgo County Historical Commission members working on a long-term study of cemeteries are seeking volunteers to ensure their efforts continue. 

   "I can’t do a lot of that work anymore," said Fran Isbell of Weslaco, 81, co-chairman of the organization’s cemetery committee. "We need to get some younger people in. It’s a little bit tiring." 

   Isbell and the commission became involved in the effort in the early 1980s when the McAllen Genealogical Society took the cemetery study on as a project. The La Joya school district and history supporters have worked on the effort in the past. 

   Audrey Hazlett, the commission’s treasurer and the Weslaco Museum’s coordinator, said she is already lobbying for the Weslaco school district’s history teachers to join the effort. 

   "That is a wonderful group of people who are interested, who might help us," she said. "It is a big job. Some of these are about 2,000 graves in one cemetery." 

   But others will be needed to carry on the process of finding religious, ranch, family and municipal cemeteries to determine who is buried in them and how many plots there are. So far, some of the sites that have been inventoried for genealogical purposes include Asadores Cemetery in Run, Ebony Grove Cemetery in Mercedes, the Hidalgo County Pauper Cemetery in Edinburg and El Rucio Cemetery in San Manuel. 

   "It is very hot," Hazlett said about the work. "It’s very dirty work. You have to get on the ground. A lot of them (cemetery owners) don’t like to do rubbings (on the gravestones). You have to be careful doing them." 

   The commission has ceased its inventory work for the summer because of the heat but will continue in the fall. But, members and volunteers are still seeking information on littleknown sites and who is buried in plots that do not have markers. 

   Isbell has been busy gathering historical tidbits about the cemeteries while the heat persists outdoors. A lot of the information she has found has been posted on an Internet site dedicated to the history of Texas’ cemeteries. 

   "I’m working on Peñitas (now)," Isbell said. "That’s been pretty well documented." 

   She has found in her work that Ojo de Agua in Abram has a casket table used in traditional Mexican and Spanish funerals, and that Florencio Saenz, the founder of Teluca Ranch, is buried in the county. She said Thomas Walter Jones, a surveyor who worked after the Mexican-American War to determine the boundary between Mexico and the United States, is buried at Santa Ana Cemetery in Alamo. 

   "What we discover is utilized by Texas historians across the state," Isbell said. "This information is filed in Austin and it gives people maybe some insights into Valley history that have not been written yet. It’s a very rewarding thing to do." 

   William MacWhorter of Weslaco, a member of the historical commission and the locally organized Native Plant Project, said some of the county’s cemeteries should be studied and preserved because they are home to rare plants and flowers, like antique roses, that must be saved. 

   "Apparently, the people in the communities are not aware of these plants," he said. "They are along fence lines at the edge of the cemeteries." 

   The Texas Historical Commission in Austin has guidelines people can use for recording and preserving cemeteries. Some of their recommendations include studying cemetery laws and taking photographs of gravestones. 

   "We feel they (cemeteries) are very valuable historic resources," said Gerron Hite, the THC’s cemetery preservation coordinator. "They are the directory of the early residents and reflect the ethnic diversity and unique population of the areas. Sometimes there is information found on the stones that is not found anywhere else." 

Daniel Perry covers Edinburg and general assignments for  The Monitor. You can reach 
him at (956) 683-4454. 

"Texans seek compensation from Mexico for 12 million acres lost after 1848 treaty"
[[Editor:  In the May issue 2005, a family is attempting to receive payment from Mexico for land that was taken movement during the troubled time that Texas seceded from Mexico,  "Texans seek compensation from Mexico for 12 million acres lost after 1848 treaty" by Sandra Dibble
UNION-TRIBUNE STAFF WRITER April 16, 2005,  Photos by Earnie Grafton/ Union-Tribune
Aminta Zárate says a 1941 decree by Mexico's president obligated the country to pay $245.1 million in compensation. 
This is a follow-up by Jose M. Pena, an expert on that historical issue.]]

As you know, 
I am close to publishing a book called:  Inherit the Dust From the Four Winds of Revilla."
The book represents a 250-year historical perspective of the establishment of Revilla (Guerrero Viejo), the awarding of the Porciones (10 were awarded to forefathers), the many factors that affected this ancient city and the land-grants, the separation of lands after Texas seceded from Mexico, the Mexican-American war, the studies and recommendations of the Bourland Miller Commission, the land grants awarded in Revilla as reconciled with records of the General Land Office, etc.  This is to tell you that my research was fairly thorough on some land grants.  One of the topics amply discussed in the book is the issue of Mexican debt for the $193.6 million to the Associacion de Reclamantes.  
The article is indeed correct and timely.  Mexico does owe members of the Associacion de Reclamantes $193.6 million (plus interest), so the $2.1 billion does not seem too far off. 
The problem is a complicated one.  Land grabbing problems really began at the time that Texas seceded from Mexico.  There was confusion on the border lines; Mexico recognized the Nueces River, but Texas recognized the Rio Grande.  Abuses took place.  When General Provision 8 of the Texas constitution was drafted, it included an implicit right for land to be expropriated from any person who might be or had helped the enemy (Mexico) during Texas struggle; untrue accusations took place.   There were also Indian and bandit attacks against Tejanos instigated by anglos.. Fear caused some lands to be abandoned.   These problems continued through the Mexican-American War and the division of land after the war.  When the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was negotiated, the U.S. troops were already positioned in the Mexican capital; Mexico's government was in disarray; Santa Anna had escaped to Colombia; and the Treaty was signed under some duress.  At the time U.S. Congress approved the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, it deleted -- at the request of President Polk -- a most essential article of the Treaty and changed another.   Mexico did a good job of coming up with the Protocol of Queretaro.   The investigations of the Bourland Miller Commission helped some people reclaim some land.  But, there were questions and doubts by the courts on whether the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, and certainly the Protocolo,  applied to Texas.  The problems dragged on until the Mexican Revolution.
The issue of debt by the U.S. of $193.6 plus million was formally introduced at the time that Alvaro Obregon was the only revolutionary left at the top.  He was elected President of Mexico and urgently needed to be recognized by the United States. At that time, Mexico owed money to U.S. Citizens for damage done by the revolution.  The U.S. did not want to recognize Mexico because of the expropriations and damage done by the revolution and also, the U.S. feared Article 27 of the Mexican Constitution because of the possibility of further expropriation of U.S. owned oil companies.   
To reach some sort of negotiating stance, Mexico accumulated a huge list of lands, amounting to the $193.6 million (plus interest), which had been lost by Mexicans in Texas.  The Bucarelli agreements set the issues on course and Mexico gained the essential diplomatic recognition it really needed.  Thus, the $193.6 million, which was backed by lands located in the U.S., served a very useful purpose in the recognition of Mexico.  Two commissions were formed; but their charters expired and they never resolved any land problems.  This took the issue to the 1930's.  Confiscations of oil properties by President Lazaro Cardenas further delayed its resolution.  
In 1941, with World War II looming on the horizon, the U.S. now needed Mexico's alliance real bad.  Thus, the exchange of debts took place between U.S. and Mexico.  As stated in the article, the U.S. and Mexico agreed to exchange debts in 1941.  By the terms of the agreement, the U.S. would pay -- and did pay its citizens -- its own claims against Mexico.   Mexico agreed (and paid) $40 million to the U.S. and it also agreed to pay the $193.6 million to the group that was later named Associacion de Reclamantes.  (The value of lands of one of my bzzz abuelos is included in the $193.6 million). 
A huge transformation took place during the exchange agreement of 1941.  Whereas the $193.6 million had been backed by lands during the time that the debt was against the U.S., the members of the Associacion de Reclamantes lost that essential leverage when Mexico agreed to assume the debt.  For the past 64 years, the $193.6 plus million has only been backed up by an international agreement and the "good faith" of one Mexican administration.  As we know, Mexico has had a blood soaked history; its political structure has been filled with endemic corruption; and its economic base has been weak in financial resources.
As you can see, the problem is over 80 years old; but, Mexico assumed the debt 64 years ago.  It acknowledged the debt in a Diario Official; Avila Camacho got an award for resolving the issue against the U.S..  Mexico has never drafted the required the reglamentos and it has never paid a single penny since then.  Mexico has played a very obvious and deliberate waiting game.  It's not surprising that the current administration of President Fox does not know about this issue.  Administration after administration, since 1941, have first claimed ignorance of the problem, then offered to settle the issue, and then delayed taking any action until they complete their presidential tour.  In the meantime, potential heirs multiply exponentially creating further inheritance complications; but, claimants or members of the Associacion de Reclamantes become old, die, and the issue is gradually forgotten.
The case was tried in the U.S. District Court and the Court of Appeals in the 1980's.  Their rulings, particularly by the Court of Appeals are most interesting and disturbing..  My book summarizes and analyzes some aspects of the rulings.
I find the article to be extremely timely because it fully supports what I say in my book which is in the final stages of publication.  I will advise all of you when it comes out.   I hope your readers read it because it is informative and educational.
Congratulations to Mrs Aminta Zarate, her daughter, and Sandra Dibble for writing the article and their optimistic beliefs.  I certainly want to wish them luck.  
However, based on what I saw, the title of my book expresses my thinking on the possible projected outcome of this case.
Best Regards,  Jose M. Pena

Austin to become major Hispanic market July 25, 2005
KVUE: Austin is becoming a major Hispanic market. According to a study by Hispanic USA, Austin will have the largest growth in the state over the next 20 years. The study estimates the current number of Spanish speakers ages 5 and above in the Austin area at 294,000. That figure is expected to rise to 374,000 in 2015 and 456,000 in 2025. That would raise the number of Spanish-speaking residents in the Capital City by 55 percent.
News source for the border 
Covering South Texas and the border from El Paso to Brownsville & Corpus Christi
Headline brief are available for free, subscription is needed for the full articles.
Sent by Mira Smithwick 
Below is an example of the kind of information included.

Founding of Nuevo Santander & Laredo

Nuevo Santander, one of the last northern provinces of New Spain, was established by Jose de Escandon. Upon receiving a commission to conquer this northern frontier, Escandon organized an entrada (expedition) of 1,750 soldiers that resulted in the founding of 20 towns and 18 missions between 1749 and 1755. By occupying this territory, comprised of what would become Tamaulipas, a piece of Nuevo Leon, and a portion of South Texas, New Spain hoped to convert the indigenous people to Christianity and to discourage French and English expansion.

The Spaniard, Jose de Escandon, born in 1700, served in a mounted regiment at Merida, Yucatan. Later he conquered the native inhabitants of Sierra Gorda for New Spain. As Lt. General, he received a commission to inspect the land between the San Antonio River and Tampico, known as the Seno Mexicano. Appointed governor, Escandon was responsible for settlements along the Rio Grande (Rio Bravo): Camargo (1749), Reynosa (1749), Dolores (1750), Revilla (1750), Mier (1752), and Laredo (1755). Laredo is the only remaining Spanish colonial settlement on the northern bank of the Rio Grande.

Laredo was founded on May 15, 1755, when Captain Tomas Sanchez, with three families, was granted permission to settle 15 leagues of land near an Indian ford on the Rio Grande. Sanchez lived across the river from Dolores, a large ranching settlement, and journeyed to Revilla to petition for a new villa. Born in 1709 in Nuevo Leon, Sanchez was a military veteran and had managed a rancho in Coahuila. The Sanchez estate ran cattle, sheep, goats, horses, mules, and oxen.

In 1767, during the Visita General (general visit) by Juan Fernando de Palacios, the governor of Sierra Gorda, New Spain officially designated the settlement as a villa and christened it San Agustin de Laredo, after a town in Escandon's native Santander, Spain. A plaza mayor (central public square) was laid out, and pore/ones (land grants) fronting the river were issued to the heads of households. Plots of land facing the plaza were surveyed for a church, a captain's house, and a jail.

Los Mexicanos-Tejanos

Thirty-four years after its founding, Laredo boasted 800 inhabitants, including espanoles, mestizos, mulatos, and indios. In this stratified society, prominent Spanish landowners were granted the title of don and dona. Mulatos and indios occupied the roles of servants, shepherds, and stock handlers.

Ranching and trading became the sustenance of the colony. Products were hauled from the Mexican interior through Laredo to San Antonio de Bexar and La Bahia. Cattle hides and wool were traded south in exhange for food and household necessities.

The Texas cowboy, or vaquero, had his roots in Spanish-Mexican ranching traditions. During the Spanish colonial period, the city government regulated round-ups to insure the proper distribution of wild cattle. Spanish brands, many resembling Moorish and Indian designs, were publicly registered. Located near springs and creeks, family-operated ranches such as Los Ojuelos, Dolores, and San Jose de Palafox developed into small communities.

Laredo was struggling to survive the raids of Comanche and Apache Indians in 1821, the year Mexico gained its independence from Spain. To gain prestige and reap the spoils of war, the nomadic Plains Indians waged hit and run warfare against the Mexicans. The Indians wiped out nearby ranches as the pleas for additional garrison troops were ignored.

Carrizo Indians, a group of Coahuiltecan peoples, lived in thatched huts and practiced a hunting-gathering existence using the bow and arrow. Reduced by disease and warfare, the Carrizos became Christians and slowly assimilated into Spanish culture.

The Republic of the Rio Grande

The Republic of the Rio Grande was created by a constitutional convention at the Orevena Ranch near present day Zapata on January 7, 1840. Discontented with the Mexican Centralist government's policies, some prominent Laredoans joined this Federalist revolt. Attempting to unite with representatives from Tamaulipas, Coahuila, and Nuevo Leon, the newly formed government consisted of a legislative council of eight members, with Jesus Cardenas, a Reynosa lawyer, as president, Antonio Canales, a Tamaulipas legislator, as army commander-in-chief, and Antonio Zapata, a successful mulato rancher, as chief army lieutenant. Laredo became the capital of the new republic.


Border Bandits 

[[Editor: Thank you to Mira Smithwick for forwarding the following communication, concerning an article that was published in the July issue of Somos Primos  entitled:  "Border Bandits" film inspires legislation.]]

Mira Smithwick,

Read the article you sent to Somos Primos, written by Elizabeth P. Byon, and titled "Border Bandits." There are two historical inaccuracies in the piece. The first is the historical fact that the elder Bazan and son-in-law Antonio Longoria had gone to the ranch owned by a Mexicana to use the telephone and were told it was not working. They left the ranch and were followed by three Texas rangers who were staying at the ranch, in a model T truck. The rangers shot them in the back and left them where they fell on the ground for no other apparent reason than they were Mexican. The second inaccuracy is the ranger who killed them. It was Henry Ransom, and not Bill Sterling as was indicated in the article who did the killing. Sterling was driving the vehicle while Paul West, the brother of Congressman from Texas, Milton West, was the third ranger.

I am forever amazed how people, and I refrain from condemning the people who so easily mis-interpret the Mexican history of Texas) are so ignorant about Mexican history. To he perfectly honest with you, racism in Texas is alive and well today. Nothing has changed since 1915, and the inaccuracies in Byon's article attest to that. In the spirit of truth and justice, I bring this bit of information to your attention.

Mario Longoria
San Antonio, Texas 

Angel of Goliad Descendants Historical Preservation

Dear Mimi, Enjoyed as usual the articles in July's issue of Somos Primos. I am learning so much on so many different topics. I just love it. It never occurred to me to send you a copy of the Resolution from our great state of Texas honoring our great ancestor: the Angel of Goliad . She is so declared a Texan Heroine. I did so want to include this in your next issue so that everyone will know what she did for our great state of Texas. Anyone else seeking information on the Angel of Goliad, please refer them to our website;  scrolling down to the Angel of Goliad Descendants Historical Preservation organization. 

Keep up the great work and enjoy your trip to Texas. 
Sincerely yours, Rebecca Shokrian a direct descendant of the Angel of Goliad: 
Panchita Alvarez

During the seventy-seventh Texas Legislature House Representative Kip Averitt, actually serving as a Senator for Texas District 22, authored a Bill that was passed by the House and the Senate on which Francisca Alvarez is congratulated and her memory is honored.  Here is a copy of the bill.

By Averitt                                          H.R. No. 802
77R13349 MMS-D


 1-1    WHEREAS, Francisca Alvarez, known as the Angel of Goliad,
 1-2    intervened to save the lives of many Texas prisoners of war during
 1-3    the Texas Revolution, helped some to escape, and gave assistance to
 1-4    numerous others; and
 1-5    WHEREAS, Senora Alvarez was among the families that
 1-6    accompanied General Jose de Urrea and his troops when they marched
 1-7    northward from Matamoros in February 1836 to help put down the
 1-8    rebellion in Texas; she was at Copano when Mexican troops there
 1-9    captured William P. Miller's Nashville Battalion, a group of some
 1-10  75 men; when she discovered how tightly the prisoners had been
 1-11  bound, she arranged for their bonds to be loosened and for the men
 1-12  to be given refreshment; afterward, she went with the part of
 1-13  General Urrea's force that marched the Nashville Battalion to
 1-14  Goliad, where they joined men of James W. Fannin's command who had
 1-15  been captured at about the same time; and
 1-16  WHEREAS, Hoping to discourage American aid to the Texan
 1-17  uprising, General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna had secured from the
 1-18  Mexican Congress a decree mandating the execution of all foreign
 1-19  hostiles who were captured; and
 1-20  WHEREAS, At Goliad, Senora Alvarez was instrumental in having
 1-21  the lives of 20 men spared from the general execution known as the
 1-22  Goliad Massacre; she also helped several men escape from the fort
 1-23  the night before the killing took place, and saved a 15-year-old
 1-24  boy on the morning of the fateful day; not long after, she is said
 2-1    to have secured the reversal of an order to execute all the
 2-2    remaining Goliad prisoners, a group consisting of the Nashville
 2-3    Battalion and the 20 others who had previously been spared; and
 2-4    WHEREAS, Moving on to Victoria, Senora Alvarez sent messages
 2-5    and provisions back to the surviving Goliad captives; with one or
 2-6    more of the other officers' wives, she stepped before a firing
 2-7    squad in Victoria to stop the execution of several Americans, and
 2-8    she persuaded the commanding officer to spare some 20 additional
 2-9    prisoners in his keeping; she also helped at least one prisoner
 2-10  escape; and
 2-11  WHEREAS, After the Texan victory at San Jacinto, she returned
 2-12  with Urrea's troops to Matamoros, where she aided Texas prisoners
 2-13  held in that city; in time, those writing about the revolution
 2-14  hailed her as the "Angel of Goliad"; and
 2-15  WHEREAS, Descendants of Francisca Alvarez have long resided
 2-16  in South Texas; their numbers have included King Ranch foremen, a
 2-17  county commissioner for Kleberg County, and Dr. Lauro Cavazos,
 2-18  former president of Texas Tech University and United States
 2-19  secretary of education from 1988 to 1990; and
 2-20  WHEREAS, The matriarch of this notable family earned the
 2-21  profound gratitude of Texas soldiers at the dawn of the Republic
 2-22  through her remarkable acts of generosity and humanity, and her
 2-23  story deserves to be known by all Texans; now, therefore, be it
 2-24  RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives of the 77th Texas
 2-25  Legislature hereby honor the memory of Francisca Alvarez, the Angel
 2-26  of Goliad, for the great assistance she rendered Texas prisoners of
 2-27  war during the turbulent days of the Revolution and the months that
 3-1    followed.

                                                                               Speaker of the House
    I certify that H.R. No. 802 was adopted by the House on May  11, 2001, by a non-record vote.
                                                                             Chief Clerk of the House



Richard G. Santos

SOURCE: Richard Santos
Sent by George Gause

The Mexican Revolution of 1910 through 1929 had strong ties with Texas which exist to this day. Government after government fell and like pebbles falling upon a pond, wave after wave of political refugees and exiled men and families migrated to Texas and the U.S. Southwest. Few stayed along the border while others halted momentarily in San Antonio, Texas before moving to the West Coast or Mid West. Consequently, from 1913 to 1929, the Alamo City seemed to be the political capitol in exile of Mexico as five former presidents, 28 cabinet members, dozens of generals, some governors and the wealthy, educated ruling class made San Antonio their home. During the same period, San Antonio had 17 Spanish Language newspapers and over 20 printing companies producing Spanish Language booklets, posters, announcements, etc.

Members of the Mexican ruling class were not the only ones to migrate to Texas and the U. S. Southwest. Poverty stricken teachers, writers, composers, musicians, philosophers, clerks, displaced families, farmers, ranch hands, defeated soldiers, deserters and camp followers joined the political refugees and exiled. Many became the labor force on the agricultural fields, industrial centers and entertainment industry. Bringing little more than their clothes and culture, the musicians and composers formed musical groups and introduced the Mariachi to Texas and the United States. As victims or participants in the on-going revolucíon, they sang of their exploits fighting for or against Porfírio Díaz, Francisco Madero, Pancho Villa, Lúcio Blanco, Venustiáno Carranza, Emiliáno Zapata and others.

First, the men and families who had been bitter enemies in Mexico had to co-exist in exile. Most set aside their political and/or military identities but ethnic identity tags based on economics set them apart. The well-to-do, educated, professional Mexicans in exile were commonly called "Latin Americans". The poverty-stricken and lower socio-economic labor force were called "Mexican" and their U. S. born children came to be called "Mexican

Americans". Separate and apart from each other, the groups formed respective social clubs, mutualist insurance-burial organizations and entertainment-festival organizations. For the first time, the 16th of September, Cinco de Mayo, quinceañeras (coming of age rite at 15 years of age), cascarones, piñatas and Mexican Catholicism were celebrated in Texas and beyond.

Unrelated but intertwined in history, the earliest recording studio in South Texas made its appearance. Blue Bird Records established itself on the third floor of the Blue Bonnet Hotel in San Antonio. Folk music of the South’s poor white (derogatorily called Hillbilly Music) and Black Music were being recorded and sold commercially in limited numbers. The recently arrived Mexicans in exile were not to be excluded. The Orquesta Pájaro Azúl (Blue Bird Orchestra) preserved time and history in its rendition of a revealing San Antonio version of La Cucaracha. The song was composed in Monterrey, Nuevo León by order of Pancho Villa. It is a direct and serio-comical jab at Mexican President-General Victoriáno Huerta nicknamed "La Cucaracha" (the cockroach). The nickname derived from the fact he was known to be a drunkard and mariguana smoker. As the Villista parody says, "La Cucaracha, la cucaracha ya no puede

caminar" (the cockroach, the cockroach cannot go forward), "por que le falta, porque le falta, mariguana que fumar" (because he lacks, because he lacks, mariguana to smoke). What is important about the San Antonio version is a direct reference to the alliance formed by the former enemies in exile. It says, "ya se van los Carransistas" (the Carransistas are leaving), "ya se van para Laredo" (they are moving to Laredo) "ya no son convencionistas" (they are no longer members of the convention/alliance) "porque tiénen mucho miedo" (because they are very afraid). As revealed and recorded by the song, the followers of Venustiáno Carranza moved to Laredo, Texas. Incidentally, many followers of former President Francisco I. Madero and the Flores Magón brothers left San Antonio for Kansas and Los Angeles, California. Huerta (aka La Cucaracha) went to Paris, then the East Coast where he was arrested by the U. S. Government for violating the Neutrality Law and imprisoned at Fort Bliss in El Paso. He passed away in captivity and was buried in El Paso. With Huerta gone, other versions of La Cucaracha appeared. Hence rebels sang La Cucaracha Carransista, La Cucaracha Porifirsta, La Cucaracha Villista and even a cucaracha which could not go forward because it lacked coca cola (porque le falta coca cola que tomar)!

Numerous corridos were also written about the lives and/or death of rebel leaders, their weapons, horses and/or women. However, many of the best known corridos de la revolucíon are technically not corridos as they are not journalistic ballads. They do not begin by giving the date of an incident and do not bid farewell at the last stanza. Perhaps the best known non-corrido deals with a camp follower whose boyfriend was a sergeant in a rebel force. La Adelita is described as being beautiful, jovial and her boyfriend says that if he does not get killed in battle he will buy her a white silk wedding dress and marry her. According to the cantada he is mortally wounded and in his last words asks Adelita to cry at his grave. La Valentina, Mariéta, Juanita, Las Trés Pelonas, Las Comadres, and Joaquinita were also camp followers (wives, girlfriends, etc.) immortalized in song as loyal companions. La Rielera (the railroad woman) on the other hand, is not a corrido de la revolucíon and the woman was not a camp follower or soldadera (female soldier). As the song says, "her Juan" is a railroad worker. In the last stanza, Juan says "Si porque me ves con botas (if you see me wearing boots) "piensas que soy military" (you think I am a soldier), "soy un pobre reilerito del ferrocarril central" (I am a poor railroad worker of the Central Rail Line).

Songs about soldaderas include La Guera who was a rebel female colonel praised for her bravery and leadership abilities. La Chamuscada (the burnt one) refers to a woman whose hands were burnt and yet she continued to participate in la revolución until reaching the rank of general. Soldadera Juana Gallo, is not said to have military rank, but is described as being a brave rebel leader in the ranks of Villa’s Los Dorados. Unfortunately, neither known Mexican recordings nor songbooks feature a corrido or cantada about rebel General Carmen Reyes. Surely somewhere along Mexico’s northern Pacific Coast there must be a Corrido de la Generala Carmen Reyes.

Blue Bird Records of San Antonio and other recording studios distributed and preserved in Texas and the U. S. Southwest the corridos and cantadas of La Revolución long before the revolution had ended and the songs allowed to be sung in Mexico. Not insensitive, deaf or blind to the development, Tejano musicians soon took advantage of the recording industry and the newly arrived Mexican music. Tejano conjuntos (usually a three-man group with the accordion as the lead instrument with a standup base and guitar or violin as accompaniment) started recording Mexicans songs. Likewise, La Orquésta del Profesor Aguilar from San Ygnácio Texas was soon traveling South Texas playing at festivals, weddings or any event where orchestral music was preferred. Some communities also organized orchestras or "bands" under the Knights of Columbus or Masonic Lodges. Master violinist Ciego Melquiádes of San Antonio, Texas continued to record mid 19th Century Tejano music and his original compositions (usually having ladies’ names) continued through the Roaring Twenties and included Charleston jazz pieces for dancing.

By 1929, Mexican music had arrived in Texas and the U. S. Southwest via the corridos and cantadas de la revolucíon. The music and the immigrants impacted the lives and culture of the Tejanos, Manitos (New Mexico-Colorado colonial families), Paisanos (Arizona colonial families) and Califórnios. At the same time, the U. S. entertainment industry and specifically radio, the recording industry and "the talkies" (movies with sound) were also having an impact on one and all. But first, the Catholic Cristero Uprising and the Great Depression would occur and impact native Spanish-speaking descendants of the colonial families, Mexican immigrants and everyone regardless of ethnicity, racial background, place of birth, residency or familial tenure in the United States.

In closing this segment we use the last stanza of the Triste Despedida (sad farewell) de Emiliáno Zapata as it called for peace and an end to the revolution. It says, "Adiós, adiós, mi alma vuéla (farewell, farewell, my soul takes flight) a preséncia del Creádor (in the presence of the Creator), quiéranse, amados paisanos (love each other dear countrymen) como manda el Redentor (as decreed by the Redeemer).

Zavala County Sentinel – June 8-9, 2005

Richard G. Santos

By Richard G. Santos
Fifth [and final] of a series of 5 columns on the corrido Tejano.
This is appearing in the Zavala County Sentinel, Vol. 95, No. 24 - June 16, 2005

SOURCE: Richard Santos
Sent by George Gause

The Congressional Prohibition Act of 1919 which outlawed the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages gave birth to a bloody period in U. S. history during which the Sicilian Mafia merged with Italian, Jewish, Irish and Anglo gangs to form the National Crime Syndicate known as La Cossa Nostra. The period has been extensively depicted in books, articles, movies and television documentaries. Across the nation people readily recognize the names of Al Capone, Charlie "Lucky" Luciano, Frank Netti, Dutch Schultz and John Gotti. Also, few are the adults who do not know or have never heard of the Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre. Moreover, all can be found in U.S. history textbooks in classrooms across the nation.

What about Texas? Who were the liquor smugglers commonly called tequileros who supplied the speakeasies and liquor drinking Texans during Prohibition? Who were the Olivéiras and how were they involved in the shootout at Bruni, Texas? And what about the earliest recorded drug related problems? Isn’t it ironic that Indiana-born Cole Porter, an extremely successful Broadway composer and playwright, would become part of U. S. History with such songs as "I get no kick from cocaine but get a kick out of you"? Yet, how many know that East Texas-born Black composer Huddie Ledbetter (aka Leadbelly) credited with super hit Good Night Irene, also wrote C. C. Rider about his cocaine problem? And isn’t Carga Blanca about a drug smugglers’ shootout in San Antonio’s Barrio de la Tripa the earliest Tejano ballad on the subject? Where are the documentaries? Where are the paragraphs in U.S. and Texas history textbooks? Where are movies that either demean or glorify the liquor smugglers and drug problems in Texas? You will not find them.

Instead, you will find the guardians of the truth with guitar in hand sitting around a cookout singing a corrido as fajitas, frijoles, pan de campo, tortillas and pico de gallo are being shared and oral history in song is passed from one generation to another. There, among the mesquital, cacti, blazing south Texas sun at a rancho, or late at night in someone’s backyard feeling a Gulf breeze upon the face, fighting off mosquitoes accompanied by fireflies, the elderly guardians of the truth pass their legacy to a younger generation. This is not a fictitious scene. I recorded them as they sang of their parents, grandparents and relatives. They sang of their towns and the Mexico – Texas border area. They shared their treasured cultural and historical heritage.

Thus, in this the sixth and last column of the Corrido series, we chronologically step back a bit and listen to Tejanos history in song. As noted in my Cancionero de Música Mexicotejana – Songbook of Tejano Music (COBEST, 1981, pp. 54-57), The corridos and cantadas of the lower Río Grande liquor smugglers preserve the history of the period. Among the better known compositions are Los Tequileros, Dionício Maldonado, Los Olivéiras, Charles Stevens and El Contrabando de Laredo. Due to their oral history recounting of events, there are a number of versions of each song. The differences range from length of song to addition or omission of names, towns and specific personalities. Those wishing to compare renditions should use Américo Paredes’ Cancionero, any of the numerous songbooks published in Mexico and the Cancionero published in Laredo, Texas by the Webb County Historical Commission in 1977. Since the two cassettes accompanying my Cancionero are out of print, interested readers should seek the CD’s of José Morantes‘ Corridos y Tragédias del Síglo 20 (Norteño Records, No. 805).

Also recommended are Los Más Famosos Corridos de Rínches y Contrabandistas by Los Tremendos Gavilanes (Del Valle Records, No., 1075) and Corridos Famosos by Los Alegres de Terán (Falcón Records, No. 4001).

The two versions of Los Tequileros (the liquor smugglers) which I recorded on the field in Duval and Starr counties differ slightly. Both versions start by giving a date. That is, el día dos de febrero (on the second of February) three tequileros were killed by the Texas Rangers. One version says they departed from Rancho los Ribeños while the other says it was the town of (Revilla) Guerrero, Tamaulipas. Both songs agree that when the smugglers got to the Río Grande they decided to invite Leándro to join them. Leándro said he was ill and could not join them. His mother is also quoted as telling him not to go. However, Leándro joined the smugglers and the three crossed the Río Grande heading toward San Diego, Texas. The Texas Ranger Company from Laredo, Texas was waiting for them near Mirando City, Texas. The Rangers caught the smugglers by surprise and Gerónimo was instantly killed while Silviáno fell mortally wounded. Leándro was shot "en un brazo" (in one arm), fell off his horse and could not fire a weapon. The Rangers asked Silviáno his name and he replied he was Silviáno García from China, Nuevo León. Silviáno then asked the Rangers to shoot him and take him out of his misery. According to the song, the Ranger Captain shot him to death. The composer noted all three smugglers were killed. Specifically, it says "los rínches serán muy machos, no se les puede negár" (it cannot be denied that the Rangers are very brave), nos cázan como venado para podernos matár" (they hunt like deer in order to kill us). In the second to the last stanza, the composer says he was not present at the ambush and that he composed the ballad from what the people were saying.

The history of El Corrido de los Olivéiras was well covered by José Martinez in his article published by the Alice Journal Magazine of Alice, Texas. The lyrics presented by Martinez differ insignificantly from those I collected on the field. The ballad begins by noting that on April 1, 1920, the Texas Rangers from Laredo ambushed and killed three Tejanos near Bruni, Texas. The three were Crecénsio Olivéira Jr., Dionício Maldonado and Vicente Aguilár. The three were reportedly on their way to Parás, Nuevo León when Crecénsio was to marry Chucha Gutiérrez. Notwithstanding Crecéncio Olivéira’s Sr.’s grief and anger, he arranged for a younger son (Conrado Olivéira) to marry Miss Gutiérrez. According to Martinez, the Ranger Captain was murdered the following year in Laredo, Texas. Crecéncio Olivéira Sr. was immediately suspected but he managed to present 500 eye-witnesses who testified he had been in Monterrey, Nuevo León at the time.

As I tell my classes and music presentation audiences, my favorite pre-World War II Corrido Tejano is El Corrido de Texas which is also known as El Corrido del Pensilvánio and Corrido de Pensilvánia. The ballad is an insight into what was happening with native-born Tejanos and first generation Mexican Americans as they sought "the American dream". It starts with giving a date and time. It says "El veintiocho de abríl at las dos de la mañana, salimos en un enganche pa’l estado de pensilvánia" (on the 28th of April at 2 in the morning we left under contract for the state of Pennsylvania). The song proceeds to tell how the composer’s wife/girlfriend offered to join him so that she may wash his clothing and help him. Another version of the song says she wanted to go so she could travel and have a good time. However, the contractor told him not to take her because he "did not want any problems in the State of West Virginia". Since the woman was not allowed to go, she decided to stay in "Foro-wes" (Fort Worth, Texas). She tells him not to be mean and send her a photo from wherever he might be. His reply at the end of the ballad is what makes the corrido socially and historically important. It says, "Adiós Foro-wes y Dalas con toda tu plantación" (good bye Fort Worth and Dallas and all your people), "ya me voy pa’ pensilvánia por no píscar algodón" (I am going to Pennsylvania because I do not want to pick cotton)! And so he did, and he was not alone.

Until the mid 1970’s, most corrido composers, like the late José Morante of San Antonio, continued to write about grass-root contemporary issues affecting the Spanish-speaking population. Unfortunately, the last twenty years have seen a decline of corridos Tejanos and a rise of Mexican corridos and cantadas glorifying drug runners and the drug cartels. At the same time, the rising popularity of Country-Western music among the Tejanos and (Black) Rap sing-songs with the under 20 Hispanic generation have delegated the corrido Tejano into a historical, cultural, artistic, musical manifestation of the past. More than ever, the guardians of the truth, guardians of our rich Tejano historical and cultural heritage, must be recognized and their knowledge passed to future

 generations con orgullo y terquedad (with pride and tenacity).


Mass for Governor Juan Bautista Elguézabal

Juan Bautista Elguezabal/ Mass
Mary zahradnick
Sent by Larry Kirkpatrick

Dear Elguézabal/ Algueseva family members and friends,

As some of you are aware, I have been researching my paternal family name since 1999. It has been a wonderful journey back in time and, also, an enlightening experience. Although countless ancestors from the Alguéseba (changed from Elguézabal in 1897) family have crossed my path during this search, this letter references Juan Bautista Elguézabal (1741 - 1805), who was governor of Coahuila and Texas from 27 July 1799 to 05 October 1805. In accordance with "The Handbook of Texas Online," Juan B. Elguézabal "... was appointed adjutant inspector of presidios of Coahuila and Texas in 1795 and made a detailed inspection of La Bahia in 1797. 

In 1796 he was appointed assistant to Governor Manuel Muñoz and became interim governor in August 1797. As acting governor when Louisiana was sold to the United States, Elguézabal received the flood of petitions of  immigrants from Louisiana requesting to move to Texas. He was distressed with the deplorable condition of Texas and indirectly advocated a more liberal policy for its development. Under his administration the  labama-Coushatta and Choctaw Indians were given permission to settle east of the Trinity River. José Irigoyen, appointed by the king to succeed Muñoz, never came to Texas to claim his governorship, and Elguézabal continued to serve as governor until his death in San Antonio on October 5, 1805...." As an added note, my three grandchildren are the ninth generation descended from Juan Bautista Elguézabal. He had significantly distinguished himself during his forty-five (45) years of military service under Spanish rule when he died while  serving as Governor of Coahuila and Texas. 

I have been fortunate to have obtained copies of eight (8)  generations of "marriage certificates" issued between 1778 and 1978. A substantial amount of recorded history, along with this esteemed individual's military correspondence, exists in the Bexar Archives in the San Antonio Main Public Library. Interestingly, this current generation's Algueseva family members, which are innumerable, stem from two of Juan Bautista Elguézabal's sons born prior to 1800. One of these sons settled in Muzquiz; the other established himself in Monclova (both in Coahuila Mexico). A memorial Mass will be celebrated to honor the memory of our fine ancestor on the 200th anniversary of his death. As direct descendents of this honorable figure, you are invited to attend the Mass. 

Please share this information with any other Elguézabal family members who are not reflected on this email list. The location, date, time follow: San Fernando Cathedral 115 Main Plaza San Antonio, Texas Saturday, 01 October 2005 5:30 PM In order to establish the number of individuals attending this 200th anniversary Mass, please let me know if you will be able to be present during this historical event. I do not have a computer at home and am limited to one (1) hour a day at the public library where I do my genealogy research. I ask that all replies to my library email address be limited to this topic. I thank you in advance for your understanding. My library email address is:  

I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge all who have supported this endeavor financially, those who contributed postage or phone cards, also those who shared copies of family documents and/or photos, etc., and for the encouraging enthusiasm and moral support I received throughout this inspiring and intriguing exploration of the past. If you have any questions or comments regarding the  above, please contact me. I do have some copies of "extended family" documents which might be of interest to some of you. Should any of you be researching the Elguézabal family tree and are missing any links, I will be glad to share any pertinent information I have available. If you have any copies or photos of members of the Elguézabal family during the 1800's in Muzquiz Coahuila Mexico, would you please share these with me? 

Additionally, I have recently received a reply from President Vicente Fox's office in Mexico indicating that my request for a photo or lithograph of Governor Juan Bautista Elguézabal has been forwarded to their Secretary of Public Education Office. If I receive this in a timely manner, there will be a short ceremony before the Mass at the "Spanish Governor's Palace" in San Antonio, Texas (105 Plaza de Armas), where the photo (or lithograph) will be displayed along with other historical figures. A follow-up email will be sent in August to remind you of this excellent opportunity to become part of our ancestor's rich history. I close for now hoping to hear from you in the near future and look forward to seeing you on 01 October 2005.  

Most sincerely,   Mary Esther Algueseva Zahradnick


The Benson Latin American Collection acquires Anzaldúa archive

AUSTIN, Texas - The archive of renowned feminist author, cultural theorist and independent scholar Gloria Evangelina Anzaldúa (1942-2004) has been acquired by the Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection at The University of Texas at Austin.

The Anzaldúa archive contains manuscripts of the author's major published works, including "Borderlands/La Frontera" and her "Prieta" stories, as well as unpublished manuscripts, notebooks, correspondence, lectures, and audio and video interviews.  In total, there is about 100 linear feet of material included in the archive.

Anzaldúa is widely recognized for her contributions to women's and gender studies and Chicano culture and history. She was born on a ranch in the Valley region of South Texas where her family worked in agriculture, even following the migrant routes for a year. Anzaldúa experienced first-hand the hardships of the dispossessed Mexican American community along the border with Mexico, and was also confronted by traditional conservatism within that community as she developed her own lesbian identity. These struggles had a profound influence on the trajectory of her education and writing.

Anzaldúa graduated from Pan American University in 1969 and received a master's degree in English from The University of Texas at Austin in 1972. She taught women's studies, creative writing and third world women's literature while working toward a doctor's degree at the University of California - Santa Cruz, and lectured and taught at a number of colleges and universities, including San Francisco State University, Oaks College and Norwich University in Vermont.  She also held the position of Distinguished Visiting Professor in Women's Studies at the University of California - Santa Cruz.

Anzaldúa's work has received significant critical acknowledgment for its singular voice and innovation and was especially praised for its scope and accessibility. She used her writing to explore her Chicana and lesbian identities and wrote as a feminist and woman of color. In the introduction to "Making Face, Making Soul" she wrote, "Theory produces effects that change people and the way they perceive the worldŠ'Necesitamos teorías' [we need theories] that will rewrite history using race, class, gender and ethnicity as categories of analysis, theories that cross borders, that blur boundaries - new kinds of theories with new theorizing methods."

At times, Anzaldúa's discursive style put her at odds with formal academia.  Her most famous work, "Borderlands/La Frontera," is an autobiographical work that combines theory, personal introspection and poetry, a fusion that placed it in opposition to traditional academic precepts against mixing genres. Today "Borderlands" is widely read in college courses along with "This Bridge Called My Back: Writings of Radical Women of Color," which Anzaldúa co-edited with Cherrie Moraga. Both texts have been successful in bringing the voices of women of color into the mainstream feminist discourse.

"I feel profoundly honored and privileged to know that our university has acquired such a magnificent wealth of knowledge, a priceless contribution that will forever build bridges across many disciplines and areas of specialty, including but not limited to Mexican American, feminist and sexuality studies," says Gloria González-López, assistant professor in the university's Department of Sociology.  "Beyond borders, the incalculable value of this acquisition will become a precious intellectual resource for all members of our local, national and international communities of academics, activists and artists. The irreplaceable presence of Gloria E. Anzaldúa will always be alive through the profound consciousness her courageous and ground-breaking intellectual work stimulated and transformed in the lives of countless members of our society."

Anzaldúa's papers will be processed over the next year by staff at the Benson with the help of the university's Center for Mexican American Studies and will be completed and available for access to researchers in fall 2006.

The Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection, a unit of the University of Texas Libraries, is a specialized research library focusing on materials from and about Latin America and on materials relating to Latinos in the United States. The collection contains nearly 900,000 books, periodicals and pamphlets, 2,500 linear feet of manuscripts, 19,000 maps, 21,000 microforms, 11,500 broadsides, 93,500 photographs and 38,000 items in a variety of other media.

This is a forwarded message. 
Please contact Travis Willman, if you have any questions regarding this announcement.  512-495-4644

Francisca Maria Xaviera de la Garza

To John Inclan,

I have been meaning to write since I first saw one of your trees last year.
I am a descendent of Jose Manuel Goceascochea and Francisca Maria Xaviera de la Garza through their daughter Feliciana.  Feliciana was my great-grandfather's grandmother through her daughter Gertrudis Tijerina.  I had traced just about all the line (direct) a few years ago.  All I had to start with was a series of articles on Feliciana and Estefana in the Houston Chronicle back in 1950.  My great-grandparents never spoke much about their family history.  In fact, my mother and her generation knew just about nothing.  I had to discover it all.  I have met one distant cousin Juan Tijerina of San Antonio who is also descended from Feliciana through her son Antonio, I believe.  Juan's father, who still lived in San Pedro and whom I met briefly, died a few years ago.  Juan sent me a photocopy of the title with all the history, but Juan himself knew little of the history.  I have also met Praxedis Cavazos of San Pedro who is also a fifth cousin of my mother's.  I haven't heard  from him  in  couple of years and I do need to get in touch with him. Anyway, you put together some very neat family trees.  I have all the information (or most) to put down nearly all the lines from my mother on back.  (My father is from the state of Guerrero and I have not gone beyond his grandfather.)  The one line I am having trouble with is a Sanchez line that comes through my maternal grandfather Salvador Gomez.  His  mother was Trinidad Ramirez whose grandparents were Trinidad Sanchez and Paula Morin.  All I have been able to find is the 1833 marriage record in Camargo.  But that was during the time when whoever was doing the recordkeeping put down only the names of the  couple.  It has been frustrating.   I have not been able to do any research in some years because beginning in 1994 I became the caretaker for my parents.  My father died in 1999 and my father died  in 2004.  But I have yet to get back into research because of other things, other issues, I have to take care of,  Anyway, you do good work and I just wanted to let you know that it was appreciated - even though I had what I needed for my tree already. 

Ruth T. Bello 

 Juan Bautista Chapa descedent  

Hello Mimi, this is Scott Martinez in O'Donnell, Tx. and I would like to be placed on your emailing list to receive a newsletter of your publication.  I stumbled across your website and found my great grandmother  Petra Mireles-Sanchez listed as a descendant of Juan Bautista Chapa through the work/research of John Inclan.  I would also like to thank you for all your efforts in helping to have made this possible.  
Sincerely Scott Martinez 

Subj: Re: Juan Bautista Chapa descedent  

I am more than pleased with your letter. Yes, I will add any new information that you can provided.
As for your search, look into the records of the OLDEST church in Seguin, the County 
Courthouse records (Let them know that you are doing your family history and you
wouldlike to see the OLDEST records, and the Seguin Library.
Good hunting
John Inclan
Keep in touch

"Scott M." < wrote:

Hi John, this is Scott Martinez in O'Donnell, Tx., and I ran across your work last nite and was excited to see my Great Grandmother Petra Mireles and her siblings as descendants of Juan Bautista Chapa.  At the age of 35 I only recently became interested in my heritage and started doing some research and collecting as many old photos as possible that were available to me in this area.  To my great surprise you've done all of the work for me on my  grandfathers' mother' line.  Whew!!!!!!!! I thank you for all your time and hard work.  I was wondering if you are continueing to add and post info on the web to lines as it becomes available to you or if you are stopping at the 10th generation.  I would love to compile information to add to your research on Petra Mireles and that of her siblings and their descendants.   They are listed in excerpt 300 and 301 of your work.   I am heading to Seguin this weekend to see what relatives are still living in the area and plan on working on the lineages from Petra and her siblings who settled in the San Antonio and Seguin areas.  Can you tell me what would be the best resources to use to continue my research.  Hope to hear from you and thanks again for your all your great efforts and time consuming work.  Sincerely Scott Martinez

Subj: Re: Notification  

Hi Mimi glad to hear back from you so soon, and even more pleased to hear that we are related.  Yes you may use my email address as needed.  Look forward to the update notifications.  I'm still a little dumbfounded that I have before me 151 pages of relatives whew!!!  Even more by the fact that this is the ancestors of only  "ONE"  of my grandparents.  Thanks again for taking the time to respond to my email.  Sincerely your cousin Scott Solis Martinez


Walk-in medical clinics sprouting up in stores
Canary Islanders Heritage Society of Louisiana


The Orange County Register
Sunday, June 26, 2005

Walk-in medical clinics sprouting up in stores
simple procedures frequently covered by major insurers.
By Martiga Lohn
The Associated Press

Minneapolis • When '' Ann Theisen's 6-year-old daughter, Hannah, had a sore throat, she didn't take the little girl of the family doctor. She went to the Cub Foods store down the street from her house, lured by the prospect of faster treatment at a MinuteClinic tucked into a corner of the supermarket. Within about 15 minutes - no appointment necessary - they were seen arid had the results of a rapid strop test: negative.

"It's the convenience factor," Theisen said.  MinuteClinic, based in Minneapolis, is on 'the leading edge of a new kind of clinic that offers swift treatment for simple illnesses.

MinuteClinic Operates in 22 Twin Cities and Baltimore locations, most of them in Target, Cub Foods and CVS Pharmacy stores. The. company has plans to open more than 80 clinics in 12 major metropolitan area east of the Rockies by year's end and to push westward next year.

At the quick-service clinics, nurse practitioners diagnose and treat strep throat, pinkeye, bronchitis and other common ailments. MinuteClinic executives say; their business is to healthcare what ATMs are to banks - it makes ordinary transactions easier and frees up traditional providers for more complicated oases.

It's a low-tech, low-cost innovation that could catch on, said Matt Eyring of Innosight, a consulting company that tracks health-care trends. "This is something that makes medicine much more available to consumers," Eyring said. "This kind of service will spread."

MinuteClinic was founded five years ago. Its competitors include MediMin, which operates in the Cleveland area, FastCare in Louisville, Ky., and QuickClinic in Akron, Ohio.

More than three-quarters of those who visit the clinics have health insurance. Major plans -'including Blue Cross Blue Shield, UnitedHealth Group and Medicare - include MinuteClihics in their networks in the Twin Cities.

Some employers have lowered insurance co-payments for MinuteClinic visits because they cost less than traditional doctor visits, said Michael Howe, the former Arby's head who joined the company earlier this month. And some companies - including Best Buy, Carlson Cos. and Guidant Corp. - host MinuteClinic operations at their corporate locations in the Twin Cities.

The American Medical Association and the American Hospital Association are wary of the trend. What is best for patients, they say, is an ongoing relationship with a doctor.

But Mai Pham, a senior researcher at the nonpartisan Center for Studding Health System Change, said the clinics could provide a better alternative for patients who might otherwise go to an emergency room for care or skip it altogether.

Howe said MinuteClinics limit their work to common illnesses and are quick to send patients to emergency rooms or back to their primary doctors if other symptoms turn up.

Cost: The average MinuteClinic visit does not require an appointment and costs the patient less than $50, which can be reduced to the same co-payment as a doctor's visit under several major health-insurance plans.


                                         4783 Hyacinth Av.   Baton Rouge  LA   70808
                                July 1, 2005 Sent by Bill Carmena

Greetings,     Our July meeting will be held on Saturday, July 9, 2005, at the Louisiana State Archives Building as usual.  The meeting will begin at 1:00 and our speaker will be Board member, Jean Nauman.  (Although this event is passed, I thought the activities would be of interest.)

    Jean will discuss the content of some letters she viewed on a trip to the Canary Islands.  The letters were written by  the Mayors of some of the villages on the island of Tenerife and concerned the recruitment process at that time.  Her presentation will also include the process she has developed to assist her in the translation of these letters.

    Our June 18th Barataria Program was a big success in spite of the torrential rain.  One person attending asked if we planned the miserable weather so that we could better understand the feelings of our ancestors as they tried to settle there.

    We invited members of both St. Bernard Societies and others and we presented a complete picture of the history of when, where, and why our "Boat Ancestors" were sent to Colonial Louisiana and why Barataria, Valenzuela, Galveztown, San Bernardo and Terre aux Boeuf were selected as settlements by the government of Spain. Your President opened the day with a brief discussion of our own Society, a short history of the seven occupied Canary Islands, and why and when our ancestors were recruited. Lynn Gray, a member of the Canary Islands Descendants Assoc., sang her beautiful rendition of Adios  Canarios and as she always does when she sings that song she brought tears to the eyes of many.

    Paul Newfield discussed the large number of ships which brought our people to New Orleans and Janelle Hickey described the "Hickey Book", the manifests of the ships which she and John found, copied, and offer to the Society for sale.    Our Junior Member, Stacey Punch, stood next to our beautiful flag which represents the Archipelago of the Canaries and described the center crest.  Vilora Bergeron discussed the Valenzuela  settlement followed by a light lunch.  Joan Landry and Taylor Fernandez brought provisions for the lunch.  Talking and visiting were a large part of the lunch break. Penny Reinhardt and her husband manned a genealogy table to assist those present who had questions about their own research.

    John Hickey next discussed Galveztown on the Amite River and Spanish Town in Baton Rouge, followed by Bill Hyland who presented the details of the settlements of San Bernardo and Terre aux Boeuf.  Following that Paul Newfield told the story of the Barataria settlement which included research done on the site in recent years.  Lynn Gray sang for us again with a song from the Canary Islands about A Little Orphan Girl.

    Chad LeBlanc assisted in making the whole program as visual as possible by setting up displays requested by each speaker.  He projected them from his computer onto the large drop-down screen in the Education Building where we met.  He set up pictures of interest onto the screen which changed at set intervals as people arrived.  Chad also videoed the entire program and he will prepare it to be copied.  I will keep you up to date on that.

    All of the Park Rangers with whom we worked before June 18 and on that rainy day were most courteous and helpful and I think many people discovered this wonderful site at the Barataria Preserve.     We also appreciate the many complimentary messages and letters we continue to receive and each person who helped in some way can be very proud of our Barataria Program.
Sincerely, Catherine Prokop




Artist: Peter Reginato
Hispanic Hartford
Guiding Light
A Family Reunion: Melendez-Ortiz clan  


“Little Mo”, 18" x 18" x 8", welded steel, acrylic paint, 2005
Peter Reginato:

Dear Friends,

I have the pleasure to announce that I am now represented in Europe by White8 Gallery, located in Villach, Austria.  I will be having a solo show at the gallery in the summer of 2006.

November 10, 2005, is the opening for my solo show at the Elaine Baker Gallery in Boca Raton, Florida.  I am also in several group shows this summer. The Fells Conservancy, located in New Hampshire, is sponsoring a group show titled “Gateway to Sculpture,” July 2nd through October 10th, in which I am represented by one large and two small sculptures.  You can see, more of my work in the ACA Gallery summer group show “Summer Salad” at ACA Gallery in Chelsea, June 18th to August 19th.

I hope some of you can make it to one of the shows.  And as always, you can see more of my sculptures on my website.

Also, link to these gallery websites for more:   
White8 Gallery:    Elaine Baker Gallery:   The Fells Conservancy:    ACA Gallery: 

Best Regards, Peter Reginato  
New York City NY 10012  

National Archives and Records Administration
700 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20408-0001

Saturday, September 24, 2005

10:00 - 4:00 Help Room with a few PCs, Adams Room
10:00 - 4:00 Handouts/Literature (staffed)

Opening session, Madison Room
10:30-10:40 Welcome, Dr. Weinstein
10:40-11:00 Getting Started, Rebecca Sharp
11:15-12:00 Finding a Place, George Ryskamp

Lunch Break

                   TECHNICAL TRACK                   INFO TRACK A                                 INFO TRACK B

TIME          Madison Rm-Presenter               Washington Rm-Presenter             Jefferson Rm-Presenter



On-line census records


Hartley et al

Supreme Court.
(Menendez) and
District Court Records

Robert Ellis

INS Records

Claire Kluskens





Nate Patch

RG 350-Bureau of Insular Affairs: Cuba, Puerto Rico

Heger et al

Research From Here and There in the National Archives of Spain & Latin America. 

George Ryskamp



Internet Research

Hartley et al

State Department


Land Records

Richard Fusick


Excerpt Hispanic Trends January/February 2005
Pg. 62-63

Hispanic Hartford
By Leonard Felson

Eddie Perez was a scared 12-year-old kid from Corozal, Puerto Rico, when he arrived in Hartford 36 years ago. Greeted by gang warfare, indecent housing and few opportunities, he could have ended up as another grim statistic. Instead, through perseverance and a few lucky breaks, four years ago Perez was elected mayor, the first Puerto Rican city executive in New England.

Although Hartford remains the most active Hispanic center, other Latino leaders beyond I the capital city say they, too, see new opportunities and expanded business growth.

Benjamin Ortiz, vice president of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Greater Water-bury, says the four-year-old Hispanic chamber is seeing slow but steady growth.  It features breakfast meetings or after-work networking events, and helps entrepreneurs establish business plans, says Ortiz. The chamber has also met with U.S. Rep. Nancy Johnson, who has helped bring federal funds to the Hispanic business community

Similarly the Greater Stamford Hispanic Chamber of Commerce continues to work on several fronts. Besides networking events, it, too, offers 12-week classes on how to start up businesses, partnering with the University of Connecticut and SCORE (the Service Corp of Retired Executives).

The chamber also offers micro loans to start-up businesses. Financial education workshops, ) sponsored in part by financial giants Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley, are also offered. 3 Like Hartford, Stamford's Hispanic population is sizable—about 30 percent of the city's 1 115,000 population. Being close to New York, ' chamber president Maldonado says business opportunities abound—especially in such ' industries as beauty salons, real estate offices r and mortgage and lending services. Given the high price of housing, Hispanics also are finding business opportunities in home service industries such as landscaping, masonry and housecleaning.

As head of the Hispanic chamber, Maldonado also serves on the Stamford Education Commission, formed more than a year ago to focus on closing the achievement gap among blacks, Hispanic and whites. "It's another indicator of economic development," says Maldonado. "Once you have an education, the doors are open for you."

Excerpt Smithsonian July 2005
Pg. 10

Guiding Light

Starting this summer, visitors can journey through the Castle and the collections of three Smithsonian museums in the helpful company of a personal guide—a hand-held, electronic one. The new Signifies are part of a pilot program designed to better provide visitors with all sorts of information, including where to get a cup of coffee or a bite to eat. Siguides are interactive maps, communication devices, sketchbooks and friendly, knowledgeable companions all in one. When everybody in your group has an Siguide, it's easy to stay in touch, even if you've wandered into different parts of a building, by sending wireless messages to one another.

At the Smithsonian Information Center in the Castle, visitors can try out Siguides for free as they roam around—and learn about—the Great Hall, the Commons, Schermer Hall and james Smithson's crypt. In the museums Siguides are available for rent.

Visitors to the National Postal Museum can choose from several Siguide-led thematic tours that explore the history of the Postal Service. When you see something you want to learn more about after you leave the museum, the Siguide lets you save information in a personal scrapbook, which you can view on a customized, personal Web site.

Nestra Herencia Fall/Winter 2004

A Family Reunion 
By Hector Luis Pardo Ortiz

The reunion was planned for the July 4th weekend, 2004, in Wildwood, New Jersey, camp out style. I was anticipating a nice turnout and a chance to see relatives I knew and get to know more those whom I didn't know very well.

At last the day arrived. It had been arranged by the Melendez-Ortiz clan of our family tree, on my maternal side. More than a hundred and fifty family members were gathered and settled in family tents in a designated area of the park. They had traveled from New York, South Carolina, Florida and other parts of New Jersey.

Some could not make it because of conflicting schedules and distance was tough for others. But my family is quite large, since my maternal grandmother, Rogelia Melendez, had nine children. Most did make it and this meant I would have new names to add to my family tree. A family member even brought in some T-shirts with ORTIZ/OLMEDA FAMILY REUNION written on them with the quote "A family that prays together, stays together" on a yellow background. I knew then we would have a great time.

I was looking forward to this family reunion because I had been researching our family tree for almost a year by then, going back as far as my great-great grandparents on my maternal side, back as far as the 1840s, in Guayama, Puerto Rico. The 1910, 1920 and 1930 censuses were a huge aid in gathering my family information. I learned where they lived at the time and what they did for a living. My families were farmers and laborers. In the span of three decades, my families lived amid humble surroundings and most lived basically in the same area. This made my research much easier than I had anticipated.

The censuses were invaluable because they provided so much information. Details such as the number of years my ancestors had been married, how many children they had and how many of those had survived were extracted from the records. They held a fascinating window into my family's past. For in-stance, from these records, I found out that my great-great-great-grandparents were born in Puerto Rico and had not come from Spain, like many other Puerto Rican ancestors had.




The vote is in the mail
The Right to Live Here and Vote There

Grupos de Google: se le ha añadido a Genealogia de Mexico  
Compromiso celebrado entre los herederos y compradores
Buscando informacion de Tomá s Arocha Cárdenas 
Argûelles en Monte Escobedo
Codicilo de Juan Bautista Chapa
Instituto De Organos Historicos De Oaxaca, A.C.
Personajes de la historia / Gobernadores de  Zacatecas
Matrimonios De Espanoles En La Antigua Taximaroa, siglo XVII

The vote is in the mail

By E. Eduardo Castillo Associated Press Writer MEXICO CITY – July 14, 2005 - Millions of Mexicans living and working in the United States will be allowed to vote by absentee ballot in Mexico's 2006 presidential election, a voting block so large it could dramatically change the race — provided the votes don't get lost in the mail.

The Mexican Postal Service has struggled for so long with a reputation for lost or stolen mail that officials are considering entirely bypassing the Mexican mail, perhaps by having migrants mail their ballots to a U.S. post office box address, and then transport them in bulk back to Mexico.

In Mexico, mail so frequently arrives late, tampered with, or not at all that many people here either use more expensive express delivery services or have given up on the mail altogether. Simply finding someone who knows where the nearest post office is has become a challenge in sprawling Mexico City.

Mexico's Congress approved the mail-in ballots in June, despite concerns voiced by all major parties about the Mexican Postal Service, known as Sepomex.

"We know Sepomex is rife with deficiencies, that its delivery times and its handling of correspondence as compared to that of other countries is excessive and that losing mail is the norm," said Jesus Gonzalez, a lawmaker from the Convergencia Party.

Underpaid letter carriers, mail theft, and antiquated facilities and procedures all plague the post office here.

In May, Gonzalo Alarcon, director of the Mexican Postal Service, told Congress that the mail system "could not guarantee voter secrecy" and that "we'd have limitations handling additional volumes that require special treatment, as the electoral project will require."

Despite linger doubts, officials of Mexico's Federal Electoral Institute maintain they can make voting abroad work, even if it means setting up mail-in ballot reception centers in the United States.

"We are going to set up mechanisms that will be exceedingly safe, because it would be very grave if during the first vote from abroad we had some logistical mishap," Rodrigo Morales, one of the electoral institute officials organizing the absentee voting system, said in an interview.

The institute has not yet decided on a final plan, but Morales said officials would reach out to migrant communities in the United States to ensure voting goes smoothly.

There are some bright spots, however. The plan approved by Congress calls for ballots to be sent out by certified mail, which contains a serial number that helps guarantee it reaches its destination.

Communications and Transportation Secretary Pedro Cerisola said that, unlike regular mail, more than 99.9 percent of Mexico's national and international certified parcels reach their destinations.

An estimated 11 million Mexicans live abroad, nearly all of them in the United States. Expatriates are legally allowed to vote and hold dual citizenship, but have been effectively barred from participating in elections because of the lack of an absentee ballot system.

  (In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed by ( without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational 



The Right to Live Here and Vote There
By Luke Holtzman

Since the United States was founded people realized the importance of the vote. The right to vote meant that you had a voice in what your county was going to do with your money and your freedoms. Without this voice a person had to live with the choices that someone else made for them.

Throughout history we have watched the right to vote evolve. And with this evolution of the vote we can see how it has directly affected society. We have gone from a society of where white males who owned property decided on how an entire nation should be run to a society where every citizen has the right to vote.

However, at first we ended up with a society where blacks were just slaves with no rights or chance to better themselves, a society where women had no say in anything and were more pieces of property than anything else. The woman's sole purpose, her only job, was to serve her husband. She had no rights, not even the right to her own children.

As the right to vote evolved so did society. After time every citizen in the United States was able to vote. For example on August 18, 1920 the 19th Amendment was ratified by Congress. The 19th Amendment stated that the right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. With these new rights society changed women became equals to men. They now had a voice they were able to bring themselves from being just a wife, just another possession, to an equal.

By the letter of the law Blacks were able to vote since the passage of the 14th amendment in 1868. But people figured out all kinds of ways to keep Blacks from voting. They would make Blacks pay large amounts of money and have to take all kinds of impossible tests before they were allowed to go to the polls. While all a white man had to do was sign his name. After getting rid of these injustices we were able to see blacks go from slaves, which were just basically pieces of farm equipment, to doctors and business owners. This just shows how important the right to vote is.

While doing research I found that United States citizens who did not live in the United States were still able to vote in elections. "The United States allows generally all U.S. citizens 18 years or older who are or will be residing outside the United States during an election period are eligible to vote by absentee ballot in any election for Federal office. An election for Federal office is any general, special, run off or primary election to select, nominate, or elect any candidate for the office of President, Vice President, Presidential Elector, Member of the United States Senate, Member of the United States House of Representatives, Delegates from the District of Columbia, Guam, Virgin Islands, and American Samoa, and Resident Commissioner of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico."

I found this very interesting and did even more research. As a result of this research, found that people could live in the United States and vote in the nation elections of their native county. In fact, I found out there are 70 other countries, including the United States, which allow citizens living out of the county to vote by mail.

Mexico has just followed suite and on June 28th 2005, the Mexican American Congress passed a bill allowing immigrants abroad to cast ballots by mail. Before Mexicans could vote by returning to Mexico, but crossing the border was viewed with fear that they could not return to their homes in the United States. Some Mexican nationals have lived in the United States for 30 years or more.

Although the rights of Mexican nationals living outside the county to vote in elections was established in 1996, there was no mechanism of voting in place. The Mexican federal government established a Binational Commission on Voting Abroad, with the intention of being in place by the 2006 presidential elections.

Among the options to be explored by the Commission are poll booths in consulates, of which there are 48 in the USA, electronic voting booths and voting by e-mail. A second concern is the 1996 law did not formulate rules of eligibility, which will also still have to be established. Thirdly, any system will be expensive and decisions will have to be made on how to pay for it. 

You may be saying to yourself that is good that they can vote in their own country, but if they are living in the United States why would they want to?

Mexico shares a border with the United States. Mexico's border is about 2000 miles. Many, many American-born Mexican-heritage people have families still living in Mexico. Historically, traveling back and forth between the two countries has always been very easy. It can and was done by foot in places like Tiajuana, Laredo, El Paso and hundreds of others immigration ports of entry. Traditionally many American-born Mexican-heritage families visit Mexico during the holidays. They have very strong emotional ties to Mexico.

It must be remembered that virtually everything west of the Mississippi River was colonized by the Spanish, and all the way, along the coast to Florida. Mexican descendants of the early Spanish colonizers feel a closeness to their Mexican roots, which in some cases go back to the actual colonization by Columbus. Although Americans of many generations, they still maintain a closeness to Mexico. Some Americans with Mexican ancestry have obtained duel citizenship, out of respect and honor to their Mexican heritage.

Many Mexican nationals living and working in the United States have property in Mexico and plan to return to Mexico once they have saved enough money to build a home or improve their home and property in Mexico. Men travel at risk and work in the United States living frugally and sending the bulk of their earnings to in order to better their lives and the lives of the family that they have left in Mexico.

In fact the amount of money sent to Mexico by Mexicans in the United States is an important part of the Mexican economy. A Few years ago, remittances were considered the 3rd most important contributor to the Mexican economy, now has moved up to second, and possibly first place. A new analysis of remittance sent from immigration workers in the United States to family members' abroad equals approximately $45 billion. The way it looks to me is they are contributing to Mexico's economy without a say on how the county is run. 

When you think that most of the Mexicans who send money back to Mexico are laborers earning minimum wages. It is staggering to think how many hours of labor this represents. These are not only just jobs like McDonalds these are all the jobs that Americans do not want to perform like slaughter houses, chicken pluckers, seasonal crop pickers. The United States benefits by having these Mexican labors because without them the consumer products would certainly go up in price to compensate for the higher price of labor. 

Immigrants from Mexico come to the United States to work, legal or illegal they are looking for jobs. They send money back to Mexico, mostly to family, but some give funds to their hometown to better the living conditions of their family's community.

Mexicans living in the United States also try to improve their community by donating money to the towns where they come from. One way that they do this is by purchasing goods specifically from their hometown. An example of this is when they purchase uniforms for their Mexican league soccer. Another example is where the Mexican government actually steeped in and made a three to one deal. This is where every dollar donated to their hometown will be matched by the Mexican Federal government the Mexican Municipal government and the city Government.

An article in the latest National Council of La Raza (NCLR) online bulletin (June-July) also said that "By lowering transaction fees by just 5%, 1 billion dollars could be saved yearly for Latino households." That shows that United States businesses are making money off of the hard earnings of Mexicans. Some banks are changing the percentage that they charge for transferring money. 

What this shows is that Mexican nationals living in the United States still feel a responsibility and concern for Mexico. It also seems only fair that Mexicans living abroad who contribute so much to the economy of Mexico should have some say in who will run the Mexican government.

The votes of Mexicans living in the United States will make a substantial difference in the Mexican elections. Mexico has nearly 70 million registered to vote in Mexico. The right to vote would be limited to those who obtained credentials before leaving the country, estimated to be 4 million of the estimated 10 million Mexicans living in the United States. Mexican legislators have said they expect 400,000 to 800,000 emigrants to take advantage of the law. That doesn't seem like a large enough potential voters for Mexico to make such a change 

It is estimated that Mexicans abroad constitute 14 per cent of all Mexicans of voting age, although at present only 1.5 million of the 10 million are registered to vote.

Another important fact is that Hispanics fertility rate is very high, and Hispanics are younger than the general U.S. population. That means that they can and will be an influence in any relationship between the United States and Mexico. Estimates have been made that by 2050, half of the United States will have Hispanic/Latino heritage. It is to the benefit of the United States to have Mexican heritage individuals living in the United States to care what is happening in Mexico. The economies are interconnected.

"The median age for Hispanics was 26.7 in July 2003, compared with 35.9 for the overall U.S. population, according to the Census Bureau. While the U.S. median age continues to rise, from 35.3 years in 2000, the median age of Hispanics remains the lowest of all groups. And most demographers predict faster growth among young Hispanics than among other young ethnic groups for the next decade.

Currently, 34.1 percent of Hispanics are younger than 18 (compared with 25.1 percent of the total U.S. population). In 2001, the fertility rate (the average number of children each woman will have during her lifetime) for Hispanics was 2.4 – higher than the national rate of 2.1, which also represents the natural replacement level. Similarly, while the number of live births per 1,000 Hispanic women is 96, the total U.S. rate is only 64.2, or more than 30 points lower."

The increased population of Mexicans in the United States are no longer confined to the Southwest states. Mexicans are finding other locations desirable. Two of the states experiencing the most recent influx are Nevada and Georgia, in those areas the increase has been about a 400% growth.

"Geographically, states with small Hispanic populations have shown the greatest growth in the last decade—with seven of the 10 fastest-growing states in the South. In the coming decades, the geographic dispersion of the U.S. Hispanic population should continue. In addition, as the demographics shift from immigrant to native-born, and from young to mature, Hispanic consumers are expected to become a more attractive market and represent a larger share of every consumer segment in the U.S. economy."

Two factors are of concern, the lack of reliability of the postal service and tighter securities at the borders. My grandmother said that some Mexicans have post office boxes on both sides of the border. They do not trust house to house mail service.

Current U.S. border security has made passage between the United States and Mexico very difficult for Mexicans without papers. Fearful of not being allowed back into the United States would definitely limit the potential participation of Mexicans-abroad in the Mexican elections.

When I think of the increasing numbers of Hispanic/Latinos in the United States estimated to be living in the United States in the next decades, I think the government of Mexico facilitating Mexican citizens to vote in the Mexican election will help bring stability to the continent. Mexicans living here will be concerned about what is happening here and what is happening there. Perhaps if the United States voters viewed the well being of both nations, as well, we would all benefit.

I think this should be an important issue to the United States. I feel that if our values and concepts that have worked to promote the United States to where it is today, as one of the leading nations, will be recognized by some of the Mexican voters then Mexico too may be able to fallow in the United States footsteps. This would greatly benefit the United States, I feel it would reduce a lot of the immigration problems and tension between the United States and Mexico.

It is kind of like the concept where if your neighbor’s house looks all run down and decrepit, it makes your house not only look bad but also go down in value. Right now Mexico is that run down house next to the United States. But with a little work from Mexican voters, hopefully we will see it transform into a beautiful redefined country.


Grupos de Google: se le ha añadido a Genealogia de Mexico 
le ha invitado a formar parte de Genealogia de Mexico 

Ésta es la descripción del grupo: Bienvenido!! Ahora eres miembro de la lista Genealogica más popular de Mexico y Latinoamerica!! Te invitamos a participar activamente, enviando tus 
comentarios y solicitudes a todos los integrantes de la Lista.

El propietario del grupo ha definido su tipo de suscripción como "Correo electrónico", lo que significa que recibirá una copia de todos los mensajes enviados al grupo en el momento de recibirlos. Para ver este grupo en la web o editar su suscripción, deberá crear una cuenta
de Google a:

Visite este grupo en la web desde esta URL:
Puede anular la suscripción a este grupo desde la URL siguiente:

Compromiso celebrado entre los herederos y compradores de la hacienda de San Francisco  

Fondo: Ciudad Metropolitana de Monterrey (segunda época)
Sección de Fondo: Tierras
Serie: Colindancias
Título: Compromiso sobre señalamiento de límites de tierras.
Fecha: 01/Abr/1737
Fojas: 6
Volumen: 13
Expediente: 1
Folio: 157 VTO NO. 66

Descripción: Compromiso celebrado entre los herederos y compradores de la hacienda de San Francisco, y los herederos de la hacienda de la Pesquería Chica, sobre señalamiento de límites de sus tierras. Reconocen la mojonera que han puesto en la punta del cerrito del Piojuelo, a orillas del camino de Pesquería a Monterrey "y desde dicha punta como quien mira al norte, yendo por el río de Pesquería Chica, línea recta a punta de la Loma Larga, en donde se puso otra mojonera de piedra encima de la punta de abajo para arriba, como un tiro de piedra..., siguiendo dicha línea a la punta de una loma que está inmediata al paso de las Lajas, el cual paso quedó para que abrevaran los ganados de los herederos de la hacienda de San Francisco; y es declaracíón que en el agua no se les a de perjudicar ni atrajar para ningún riego, aunque sea una huerta". Con ello dan fin al pleito que han venido siguiendo por esa causa. Por la de San Francisco figuran el Gral. Pedro de Elizondo, "heredero y comprador de la hacienda"; Manuel de la Garza Rentería, Miguel de la Garza, Diego de Montemayor, Cristóbal José González, Marcos de la Garza, Juan de la Garza y Alonso de la Garza Falcón. Por la de Pesquería Chica: el Cap. Juan Antonio de la Garza Falcón, coheredero de la 
hacienda y como apoderado de José Eugenio de la Garza Falcón,su hermano; José Elías de la Garza, apoderado del Gral. Clemente de la Garza Falcón, Gobernador Capitán General de la provincía de Coaguila (sic), su padre; Nicolás de la Garza Falcón y Diego de Villarreal, como herederos de Teodoro de la Garza Falcón. El Gobernador lo autoriza, "no obstante la impericia con 
que hicieron dicho compromiso que por ser su ánimo y el haber sido el evitar discordias..."., pena de 500 pesos si suscitan inquietud sobre el particular. Ante don José Fernández Fajardo, Escribano Público y de Cabildo. ("Quedáron de pagar los derechos, de dos términos expedidos").

Estimados primos en Mejico. . .  recibe esta carta.  Ojala que alguien puede ayudar.
Cordialmente,  Mimi Lozano 

Mi nombre es José Macías Arocha.
Buscando en página "somos primos", sobre el apeído de mi madre, en forma ascendente, encontré su árbol genealógico, como sigue, incisos 44, (iv), 27 (i), 13 (ii), 2 (ix) 1 (i).

Paso a exponerle mi problema:
En el inciso 44, entre los hijos enlistados de Tomás Arocha García, no a parece el de mi abuelo Tomás Arocha Cárdenas

Yo creo que es porque mi bisabuelo y muchos de sus hermanos emigraron a Santiago Apostol, Monclava, Coahuila, México.

Dicha emigración sucedió  hacia 1835 con una ancestra mía llamada María Josefa de la Natividad Arocha García. (inciso 27 (vii))

Como se ve el inciso 44, 45 y 46, mas tarde la siguieron sus hermanos entre ellos,  Tomás Arocha García, mi presunto bisabuelo. 
Pienso que al emigrar las familias, se perdió el rastro de los hijos restantes, cuyos nombres mecionaba mi madre Cosuelo Arocha Rodríguez.

Le agradeceré Cualquier pista que pudiera enviarme al respecto.

Para fundamentar mi dicho, le podré enviar (al fax que me indique) una copia fotostática del acta de nacimiento de mi madre, donde aparecen sus padres, Tomás Arocha (Cárdenas) y Amelia (sic Aurelia) Rodríguez  y sus abuelos  Tomás Arocha (García ) y Refugio Cárdenas.

También adicionalmente le podré enviar todos los nombres de todos los hijos de mi abuelo Tomás Arocha Cárdenas y su esposa Aurelia Rodríguez González junto con su fecha de nacimiento.

Me da mucha emoción saber que somos descendientes de los isleños, en especial de Don Francisco José de Arocha y de su hijo el capitán Simón Francisco de Arocha (sé que otro hermano de mi bisabuelo se llamaba precisamente Simón Arocha.

Gracias por su amable atención y los felicito por su trabajo Ojalé me trenga buenas noticias.

Hola a todos los del Grupo. 
Reciban un cariñoso saludo de mi parte.
Mimi y Jose Macias Arocha.

Estuve consultando el libro de Matrimonios de Monclova de Mickey Margot Garcia  de 1689 - 1822, y no aparece ningun Arocha en su Libro,  porque  los Arocha llegaron a Monclova en 1835, mas tarde .

Jose si perdiste el rastro de los familiares de  tu bisabuelo tienes que descartar que salieron de Coahuila  una de las fuentes principales de Coahuila esta en su Archivo Historico del Estado ,  o en los Archivos de la Iglesia Catolica o con los films de los Hermanos Mormones, escribele por este medio al Maestro Miguel Angel Muñoz Borrego su correo es el siguiente:

El Maestro Muñoz Borrego es un experto en Genealogia  y esta en  el Archivo de Coahuila y puede proporcionarles muchas fuentes donde poder encontrar lo que buscan , otra fuente muy importante en Mexico es El Archivo General de la Nacion su pagina es:
En Mexico a partir aprox  1859 a nuestros dias,  fue creado por Don Benito Juarez El Registro Civil de Nacimientos, Matrimonios y Defunciones,  tambien hay Censos , Protocolos y Testamentos contamos con muchisima informacion en los  Archivos , en todos los Estados de Mexico ,  pero tambien nos encontramos con el problema de que despues de esas fechas que mencionas  vino la Revolucion Mexicana  mucha gente desaparecio,  familias completas, se perdio mucha informacion , y mucha gente emigro a EUA, es por eso que tenemos PRIMOS en EUA. de los que emigraron no tan solo en esa Guerra de la Revolucion ,  sino tambien en la Guerra de Mexico contra EUA.

Jose de nada me sirve que me mandes por fax o por este medio el registro de nacimiento de tus Abuelos, o de tu Mama  no estan dentro de mi investigacion , en lo unico que te puedo ayudar es en decirte en que parte hay la posibilidad de encontrarlo. si yo tuviera los datos que tu tienes con gusto te los daria pero no los tengo y cada uno tenemos que hacer nuestro propio Arbol Familiar tal vez mas atras si tengamos algun familiar en comun puede ser en la 7a ,8a, 9a Generacion  nos cruzamos , son aprox entre 13a. 14a, 15a, o 16a, Generaciones las que estamos vivas mas o menos en esta epoca de los Conquistadores hasta nuestros dias,

Espero que esto te sirva y sino hay que seguir buscando que el que busca encuentra , asi que animo que el dia que menos lo esperes te va a salir la informacion que andas buscando sigue adelante, suerte que DIOS LOS BENDIGA.

Edna Yolanda Elizondo Gonzalez 

Buscando informacion de Tomá s Arocha Cárdenas  
Información adicional sobre los rollos de Santiago Apostol en
Monclova, para el señor Macías Arocha.

Batch J605317, Fechas 1819 - 1842, Rollo 0222408   (Niños)
Batch K605317, Fechas 1819 - 1842, Rollo 0222408   (Niñas)

El siguiente registro se encuentra en el lote K605317.  Como se puedever, esta persona tiene los mismos apellidos que Tomás Arocha García, en el mismo período y en el mismo lugar, lo cual indica una alta probabilidad de un parentesco.

Christening:  30 DEC 1835   Santiago Apostol, Monclova, Coahuila, Mexico
Parents:   Father:  YGNACIO AROCHA    Mother:  JUANA GARCIA     
Victor Villarreal

Argûelles en Monte Escobedo.

Por Leonardo de la Torre y Berumen

Su origen es castellanoleones, y en la municipalidad de Monte Escobedo del estado de Zacatecas se establecieron algunos miembros de la familia Argüelles, entre los cuales se hallaba Agripito Argüelles, quien contrajo matrimonio con Josefa Flores[1], madre que fue de don Rafael Argüelles[2], nacido el año de 1825 en Monte Escobedo[3], donde fue casado y velado[4] por el Presbítero Prudenciano Espinoza el 25 de julio de 1851 con Antonia Barragán[5], nacida por 1831 en Monte Escobedo[6], e hija legítima de Primo Barragán y de Tiburcia Monroy[7], y madre legítima de J. Refugio, María Dolores, Octaviana y de María del Refugio Argüelles Barragán, esta última nacida en Monte Escobedo, donde contrajo matrimonio con Anacleto Barragán, de quien quedo viuda,  estado en el que falleció de arteriosclerosis a los 91 años de edad en la ciudad de Jerez el 20 de diciembre de 1954, a las 17 horas.[8] 

Don J. Refugio Argüelles Barragán el año de 1954 ya había fallecido, dejando viuda a doña María del Refugio Aldana Robles[9], con quien contrajo matrimonio civil y eclesiástico, procreando varios hijos, entre los que se tiene a María Carmen, Aurelio, Alejandro, Tomás y al Presbítero don Carlos Uriel Argüelles Aldana, nacido en Monte Escobedo el 27 de enero de 1900,  y Párroco de Jerez durante 16 años, de 1950 a 1966.

Entre las personas sepultadas en el panteón de Dolores se encuentra la tumba número 1945 correspondiente a la familia Argüelles[10]. Ocupada por Alejandrina Mier García[11] sepultada en el mes de julio de 1987. María Refugio Aldana, Viuda de Barragán[12] sepultada en el mes de diciembre de 1954. Octaviana Argüelles Barragán[13] sepultada en el mes de mayo de 1955. Otilia Argüelles Arellano[14] sepultada por el mes de abril de 1955 en el lugar que ocupa María Carmen Argüelles Aldana[15], sepultada está última en el mes de diciembre de 1965. María Refugio Aldana, Viuda de Argüelles[16] sepultada el 16 de junio de 1968 y el presbítero don Carlos Uriel Argüelles Aldana[17] sepultado el mes de octubre de 1966, ya que falleció a las diez de la mañana del día 9 de ese mismo mes y año en la ciudad de Jerez, a causa de Infarto del miocardio, por paro cardiaco con hipertensión arterial y diabetes melitus con un intervalo de tres días.

Así mismo encontramos sepultadas a otras personas con este apellido, como: Arturo Argüelles[18] fallecido a los 51 años de edad en 1954, año en que falleció María de Jesús Argüelles[19]. Carlos Uriel Argüelles Landeros[20], muerto a causa de un accidente a las dos de la tarde del día 24 de diciembre de 1975 en la ciudad de Jerez, donde fue sepultado al día siguiente en el panteón de Los Dolores, a la una y media de la tarde en la fosa que ocupa María Refugio Aldana, Viuda de Argüelles. Se sepultó a perpetuidad[21].

Don Aurelio Argüelles Aldana, nació el año de 1903 en la municipalidad de Monte Escobedo, Zac.  Contrajo matrimonio civil y eclesiástico con Alejandrina Mier García, nacida el 30 de agosto de 1905 en Chalchihuites, Zacatecas[22], madre de la Señora Alejandrina y del Doctor Miguel Ángel Argüelles Mier,  vecino de Jerez en la casa marcada con el número 10 de la calle de Pino Suárez. Don Aurelio ejercía como empleado postal al momento que murió  en la casa marcada con el número 12 de la calle de Pino Suárez a causa de colecistitis calculosa[23] el 27 de octubre de 1954, a las doce horas del día en Jerez, Zac[24].

Alejandro Argüelles Aldana contrajo matrimonio con Leonila Robles de la Torre[25], y se avecindaron en la ciudad de Aguascalientes, y procrearon una familia de 4 hijos, que fueron Enrique, Rafael, María del Refugio y Alejandro, siendo el mayor de estos el Doctor Enrique Argüelles Robles, nacido el 14 de diciembre de 1927 en el Barrio del Encino, de la ciudad de Aguascalientes, y casado el 31 de mayo de 1961 con María del Consuelo Arellano Zajur, procreando a: Enrique, Consuelo, Alejandro Leonila, Fernando y Benjamín Argüelles Arellano, quienes se han desarrollado con éxito en su profesión, tomando estado, y procreando en la actualidad cuatro vástagos[26].

El matrimonio formado por Andrés Argüelles Montoya e Inés Flores, procreo entre sus hijos a: Sixto Argüelles Flores, quien contrajo matrimonio con Soledad Valadez Flores, hija que fue de Celso y Natividad, abuelos maternos de Catalina Argüelles Valadez, nacida en la ciudad de Jerez, el 22 de marzo de 1933 y avecindada el año de 1969 en Gómez Palacio, Durango.  

[1]  Para 1851 ya había fallecido, al igual que su esposo.

[2]  En 1954 ya había fallecido.

[3]  Declaró ser ciudadano, labrador de 36 años de edad, al registrar el nacimiento de su hija María Dolores Argüelles Barragán, nacida en la villa de Escobedo el 15 de febrero de 1869, a las 8 de la noche. Registro Civil a las diez de la mañana del día 17 de febrero de 1869 en la Oficialía del Registro Civil de Monte Escobedo, Zac. Libro de Nacimientos correspondiente al año de 1869. Foja: 15. Partida: 56.

[4]  Los pretensos fueron amonestados entre días festivos, que fueron: 18, 25 y 29 de mayo de 1851.  

Archivo de la parroquia de la Inmaculada Concepción de Monte Escobedo, Zac. Libro de Matrimonios, correspondiente a los años 1838-1852. Fojas: 123 vuelta. Padrinos: Andrés Elías y Sotera Argüelles. Testigos de vista: Ruperto Tagle e Hilario Meza.  

[5]  Ya fallecida en 1954.

[6]  Para 1869 tenía 28 años de edad, según declaración de su esposo.

[7]  Ya fallecida en 1851.

[8]  Murió en la casa marcada con el número 1 de la calle Luis Moya, en Jerez, Zac. Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac.. Fondo Reservado. Certificado de Defunción expedido por el Doctor Roberto Medina C., en Jerez el 20 de diciembre de 1954. 

[9] El Doctor Enrique Argüelles Robles, Médico Cirujano legalmente autorizado para ejercer la profesión (con los números 39312 y 15221) certificó la muerte de la Señora María Refugio Aldana Viuda de Argüelles, fallecida en la ciudad de Jerez, a las 22 horas y 20 minutos del día 13 de junio de 1968 por insuficiencia cardiorrespiratoria aguda, debida a paro cardiaco, por cardioangioesclerosis y arteriosclerosis generalizada. 

[10]  Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac. Relación de Gavetas. Familia Argüelles. Tumba No. 1945. Fojas: 172.

[11]  Falleció de Desequilibrio ácido-básico, hipoxia cerebral a las 16 horas del día 11 de julio de 1987 en Jerez, Zac. Siendo otras causas relacionadas con la enfermedad que produjo la muerte: Insuficiencia vascular Cerebral y Senilidad. Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac.. Fondo Reservado. Certificado de Defunción marcado con el número 172, y expedido por el Doctor Juan Manuel Loyola Ballesteros en Jerez el 11 de julio de 1987. 

[12]  Murió a los 91 años de edad. Oficialía del Registro Civil de Jerez, Zac. Libro de Defunciones, número 3. Acta 395 del año de 1954. Sepultada en el panteón de Los Dolores a perpetuidad.

[13]  Murió a los 94 años de edad. Oficialía del Registro Civil de Jerez, Zac. Libro de Defunciones, número 1-2. Acta 147  del año de 1956. Sepultada en el panteón de Los Dolores a perpetuidad. Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac. Índice General de Defunciones. Fojas: 3.

[14]  Murió a los 4 años de edad. Oficialía del Registro Civil de Jerez, Zac. Libro de Defunciones. Acta 115  del año de 1955. Sepultada en el panteón de Los Dolores a perpetuidad en el lugar que ocupa María Carmen Argüelles. Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac. Índice General de Defunciones. Fojas: 3.

[15]  En la foja 5 del Índice General de Defunciones aparece como María del Carmen Argüelles. Murió a los 57 años de edad. Oficialía del Registro Civil de Jerez, Zac. Libro de Defunciones. Acta 445 del año de 1965. Sepultada en el panteón de Los Dolores a perpetuidad. 

[16]  Fue hija legítima de J. Jesús Aldana Salas y de Ángela Robles, y murió a los 93 años y 6 meses de edad. Oficialía del Registro Civil de Jerez, Zac. Libro de Defunciones. Acta 264  del año de 1968. Sepultada en el panteón de Los Dolores a perpetuidad. Su certificado de defunción fue expedido por el Doctor Enrique Argüelles Robles en la ciudad de Jerez el 14 de junio de 1968.

[17]  Oficialía del Registro Civil de Jerez, Zac. Libro de Defunciones. Acta 403 del año de 1966. Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac. Índice General de Defunciones. Foja: 5. Sepultado a perpetuidad en el panteón de los Dolores. El acta de Defunción también se enumera con el número 404, cuya numeración puede ser incorrecta, por mencionarse más como 403. Cerificado de Defunción expedido por el Doctor Jesús Salinas Soto en Jerez el 10 de octubre de 1966. Informó los datos del deceso Luis Manuel García Pinedo, vecino de Jerez en la casa número 23 de la calle Morelos.  

[18]  Oficialía del Registro Civil de Jerez, Zac. Libro de Defunciones, número 2. Acta 338 del año de 1954. Sepultado en  el panteón de Los Dolores a perpetuidad. Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac. Índice General de Defunciones. Foja: 3.

[19]  Oficialía del Registro Civil de Jerez, Zac. Libro de Defunciones. Acta 395 del año de 1954. Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac. Índice General de Defunciones. Foja: 3.

[20]  Nació el 15 de abril de 1968 en Monte Escobedo Zac. Y fue hijo legítimo de los señores Tomás Argüelles Aldana y Rosa María Landeros Cabral, casados eclesiásticamente en la iglesia parroquial de Jerez a las once de la mañana del día 12 de enero de 1955.

[21]  Este niño murió por traumatismo cráneo encefálico, con un intervalo de 30 minutos. Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac.. Fondo Reservado. Certificado de Defunción expedido por el Doctor Carlos Caldera A., en Jerez el 24 de diciembre de 1975. Ocurrió a dar los datos de su deceso el Licenciado Roberto Landeros Cabral.  

[22]  Hija legítima de Feliciano Mier y de Micaela García.

[23] La enfermedad que causó la defunción fue Edema agudo del pulmón.

[24]  Archivo Histórico Municipal de Jerez, Zac.. Fondo Reservado. Certificado de Defunción expedido por el Doctor Roberto Medina C., en Jerez el 27 de octubre de 1954. 

[25]  Fue hija de doña María del Refugio de la Torre.

[26]  Esperanza Avalos Díaz y Rafael Herrera Esparza. Enrique Argüelles Robles, a propósito del Maestro.

en Nosotros. IMAGEN EL PERIODICO DE LOS ZACATECANOS. Jueves 15 de mayo de 2003. Año 7. Época II. No. 2214.  Págs. 8-9.

Codicilo de Juan Bautista Chapa  


Fondo: Ciudad Metropolitana de Monterrey (segunda época)
Sección de Fondo: Testamentos y Herencias
Serie: Testamentos
Título: Codicilo de Juan Bautista Chapa.
Fecha: 18/Ene/1694
Fojas: 3
Volumen:          5
Expediente:                              1
Folio: 67 V. NO. 28
Descripción: Codicilo de Juan Bautista Chapa, Bienes: la viña de su padre, Bartolomé Schiapapría, en Arbisola (sic por Albísola), que heredó en unión de Nicolás y Francisco, sus hermanos. Dice que Nicolás pasó a Cádiz, en busca de Juan Bautista, su tío, " y allí tomó el hábito", y que Francisco
falleció. Declara que ha escrito a Juan, su tío el menor autorizándole para disfrutrar la viña. Esta carta la hizo "cuando pasé a Nueva España, que fue por el año de cuarenta y siete, y no he tenido razón". La viña de su padre valdrá 400 escudos. Señala también como bienes: "una silla jineta, ya
traída, unas espuelas, un freno, Item, un alcabuz de rastrillo, usado, y una daga vieja, una cama de tablas con sus bancos y un colchón viejo, una frazada medio camera, una sábana y dos almohadas. Una mesa, una banca y tres taburetes viejos. Un escritorcillo muy maltratado y una cajuela donde
tengo mis papeles; una caja grande con su llave, una silla de espaldar... y un cuadro de San Jerónimo." Además, 30 sitios de ganado menor y ocho caba llerías de tierra en la Piedra Parada, jurisdicción de Cerralvo; dos solares en dicha villa, dos metates... un cazo de 10 libras, otro cacito
pequeño, una bacinica de cobre (que se la den a Juana), dos cucharas de plata, con los nombres suyo y de su esposa, uno en cada una, que se las dan a Gaspar. Declara que María casó con Francisco de Treviño, a la que dotó, y que le den el San Francisco y la virgen de Guadalupe. Señala ropa suya y 40 libros que deja a Gaspar; los italianos a Francisco Capurro Risso, de México, yerno de Juana de Vargas, cirujano; y que los latinos "que algunos son de mucha estima", se vendan y apliquen por su alma. De las dos caballerías en San Antonio de la Pesquería Chica, que fueron de Juana de Olivares, se den una a María y otra a Juana, sus hijas. Ante el General Antonio Fernández
Vallejo, Teniente de Gobernador. Testigos el Alférez Pedro de Almandos, el Alférez 
José Sáenz y Lázaro de Ávila.

Archive Research

Transcriptions of the documents cited in the Third Newsetter will be posted in June 2004.
Sent by Johanna De Soto  

(excerpt from Newsletter No. 2) 

Research in the various church and civil archives continues to bring to light references to organs, organists, and the musical world they were part of, so that we can imagine the historical context of the existing instruments, as well as those which no longer exist. It is especially exciting to come across information relating to an organ´s construction, and thanks to Sergio Navarrete´s research in the archives of the Oaxaca Cathedral (Archivo Histórico del Arquidiócesis de Oaxaca, AHAO), we first became aware of the date of the organ in San Matías Jalatlaco, 1866, and its builder, Pedro Nibra. This was later confirmed by an inscription on the rollerboard of the organ, which we had missed during a previous visit. Besides Navarrete, musicologists Jorge Mejía and Edward Wright-Rios and historians Nora Sedeño and Sebastian van Doesburg have generously shared their findings with the IOHIO, and other researchers working in Oaxaca are also on the lookout for relevant references. Nora, who was recently named director of the Municipal Archives of Oaxaca, has been collaborating with the IOHIO for several months and studying documents in the National Archives in Mexico City (Archivo General de la Nación, AGN), the parochial, notarial, municipal, and judicial archives in Oaxaca, and especially in the archives of the Oaxaca Cathedral. 

The date of construction of the present day organ in the Cathedral still remains a mystery, though a plaque inside the case from a mid-twentieth-century repair states that it was built in 1690. No evidence has appeared to confirm or disprove this conjecture to date. But Nora has discovered that a major intervention took place in 1787-88 by the organbuilder, Bachiller Doctor Don Pedro Antonio Pérez, as documented by a list of the materials solicited for the project, their costs, and the salaries of Don Pedro and his assistants in order to carry out this project. The work included the possible construction of the current organ as well as repairs to a smaller organ (which no longer exists). Further research will hopefully confirm the origins of the existing Cathedral organ. 

(excerpt from Newsletter No. 1)

The Oaxaca Cathedral houses one of the great musical archives in all the Americas. There has been more research carried out in these archives than in any other of the seven similar collections in Mexico. The majority of visiting scholars who come to do research in the Oaxaca Cathedral focus on the music manuscripts, which, though they account for a mere six per cent of the total number of documents, represent one of the great treasure-troves of music from colonial Mexico.

This is one of the few archives in the city of Oaxaca not destroyed during the Reform Period (1857-1901). Apparently a concerned priest smuggled the manuscripts out of the Cathedral in baskets on the backs of burros and secretly stored them in private homes until after the troubles had died down. The church of Santo Domingo, in contrast, lost all its documents during this period, as well as its carved altars (retablos), paintings and two organs. Subsequently the Cathedral documents were stored in boxes and gunny sacks in the old seminary building until the 1970s when they were finally moved over to the Cathedral. Thanks to the continuing efforts to insure the safekeeping of the manuscripts by Padre Fernando Vásquez Núñez, the guardian of the archives, the collection was finally catalogued and properly stored in 1997, with the music manuscripts filed separately from the other documents. The archives are now referred to as the Archivo Histórico del Arquidiócesis de Oaxaca (AHAO). 

Robert Stevenson was the first musicologist to study the manuscripts, when they were still in bags in the old seminary in the 1960s. Following in his footsteps, Aurelio Tello (Centro Nacional de Investigación, Documentación e Información Musical "Carlos Chavez" or CENIDIM) and Jorge Mejía (Director of the Centro de Iniciación Musical de Oaxaca or CIMO) began working in the cathedral archives in 1983. Tello´s work has focused mainly on transcriptions of scores, and he has written numerous articles about music in colonial Oaxaca based on them. His most recent publication (CENIDIM, 2001) is a transcription of sixty pieces from the famous Gaspar Fernández songbook. This manuscript is considered one the most important colonial music documents in the Americas. It contains over three hundred seventeenth-century pieces, most of which have not been heard for centuries. Thanks to Tello´s continuing work, much of this music may soon come to life again. 
In contrast, Jorge Mejía`s research has focused on references to music, instruments and musicians in the non-musical documents in the archives, especially the contracts between the cathedral and its musicians. Because of his discoveries we are beginning to piece together the history of organ building in Oaxaca, long after most of these original organs have disappeared. Mejía´s research is divided into four chronological categories: 1555-1604, 1644-1708, 1709-1739 and 1740-1800. (There are no documents at all for the period 1604-1644, probably due to the terrible earthquake in 1605 after which all record keeping was apparently suspended.) Documentation of the first phase will soon be available on CD-ROM and includes photographs of the original document, a transcription in Spanish and an interpretation of the data.

Mejía´s work has revealed important and fascinating information about the original cathedral organ, which was first mentioned in 1545 while it was still housed in the original cathedral building (name and site still not verified) before the present Cathedral was even built. The bishop at this time was Juan López de Zárate, who refers to this original church as having all the proper furnishings, including an organ. It is clear that this original organ was a small positive or portative (moveable) instrument. The first organist mentioned in the documents is Domingo de Alavéz (1555-1564). In 1560 the organ was transferred to the new cathedral building, located at the present site. Payment records show that in that same year Cristóbal Saenz, carpenter, was paid six pesos for his work to fix the bellows and the case, that Sr. Macías, shoemaker, was paid for leather to fix the wind chest and that Sr. Bejarano, organ builder, was paid forty pesos for technical repairs on the instrument (windchest, trackers, etc.). Once the organ was in place in the cathedral, music making could include both canto llano (plainsong) and canto de órgano (polyphony).

Soon after this it became apparent that the positive organ was not sufficient for the needs of the new cathedral building, and in 1569 Agustín de Santiago was commissioned to build a large, fixed (unmoveable) organ with the support of the bishop, who lent 1500 pesos for the project (an enormous sum in those days). Payment records show that Santiago had been commissioned previously in 1564 to build the choir stalls (sillería) in the new cathedral, including special benches for the women, a project carried out with indigenous labor. The first Oaxacan Maestro de Capilla mentioned in the records is Juan de Caravantes in 1574. 

Similarly fascinating references to organists, other musicians and the organs-the Cathedral seems usually to have had two-continue throughout Mejía´s reports, and the importance of his research cannot be overestimated. Scholars interested in his investigation can contact him at: or through the IOHIO. 

Ironically, less is known about the origins of the present cathedral organ than about some of its ancestors. Even its supposed date of construction, 1690, though in keeping stylistically with the case and pipework, is substantiated only by a plaque in the organ placed there during the 1957 intervention. Perhaps Mejía's continuing research will reveal more of its history. Extant organs throughout the state of Oaxaca prove that at one time there was a flourishing school of native organ builders in the city, and it is natural to suppose that the cathedral archives contain references which will contribute much to our understanding of its history and development.


Personajes de la historia / GOBERNADORES DE ZACATECAS

Por: José León Robles de la Torre
Sent by Mercy Bautista Olvera 

Gral. de Div. don Matías Ramos Santos, Gobernador de Zacatecas 1932-1936. Foto oficial de la Galería de Gobernadores que existe en el Palacio de Gobierno de Zacatecas.

Gral. de Div. don Matías Ramos Santos, Gobernador Constitucional del Estado de Zacatecas. Nació en San Salvador del Municipio de Concepción del Oro, Zacs., el 24 de febrero de 1891 y murió el cuatro de marzo de 1962 en la Ciudad de México. 

Dice el Profr. don Salvador Vidal García en su libro Biografías de Zacatecanos Ilustres, Edic. 1967, “...que fue de los revolucionarios que desde 1910 abrazaron la causa maderista y como soldado, fue escalando su jerarquía militar, hasta llegar a ostentar el más alto grado en el escalafón del Ejército Nacional, el de General de División”. 

En su tierra natal desempeñó el cargo de Presidente Municipal. En su carrera militar combatió a Villa en Chihuahua, y en Ciudad Juárez sobresalió al combatir a los escobaristas en 1929. 

De 1932 a 1936, fue Gobernador Constitucional del Estado de Zacatecas. Posteriormente, al subir a la Presidencia de la República don Adolfo Ruiz Cortínez, lo nombró Secretario de la Defensa Nacional de 1952 a 1958. 

En el Diario Oficial de la Federación (que obra en mi poder) de fecha 22 de diciembre de 1954, aparece un decreto del Congreso de la Unión, que en su artículo único dice: “Se concede permiso al C. General de División Matías Ramos Santos, para que, sin perder su ciudadanía mexicana, pueda aceptar y usar la condecoración de la Orden Nacional Honor al Mérito que en el grado de Gran Cruz Placa de Plata, le confirió el Gobierno de Haití...”. 

Su muerte: En un periódico de Torreón, Coah., de fecha cinco de marzo de 1962, dice: “Murió el General Ramos, ex-ministro de la Defensa, México, D.F., cuatro de marzo. (API) Falleció hoy en esta capital el General de División, Matías Ramos Santos, que fuera Secretario de la Defensa Nacional, en el régimen del Presidente Adolfo Ruiz Cortínez”. 

“El deceso, provocado por un infarto cardiaco, ocurrió a las 13:30 horas en el domicilio de Popocatépetl número 257, de General Anaya. Había cumplido el distinguido militar 71 años de edad el pasado 24 de febrero. 

“Fue el segundo infarto el que causó su muerte, pues había sufrido el primero el 22 de diciembre de 1961. Desde entonces no había abandonado su lecho de enfermo, hasta ayer, en que se presentó el desenlace. 

“Desde horas antes de su fallecimiento, el General Ramos Santos, estuvo rodeado de su esposa, hijos, hermanos (sin mencionar nombres) y parientes más cercanos, a quienes minutos antes dio su bendición. 

“Murió confortado con todos los auxilios espirituales y la bendición papal. Su cuerpo está siendo velado en su residencia, a muchas personalidades de los círculos oficiales, militares, diplomáticos y sociales de México. El sepelio se efectuará a las quince horas de mañana en el Panteón Jardín. 

“El General Matías Ramos Santos siempre cumplió con honradez todos los cargos que desempeñó, tanto en lo civil como en lo militar y fue ampliamente estimado por parientes y extraños”. 

En una época, también fue Presidente del Partido Nacional Revolucionario.


Guillermo Padilla Origel

Taximaroa o Tlaximaloyan , que significa: lugar de carpinteros o lugar donde se trabaja la madera, es ahora Ciudad Hidalgo, en el estado de Michoacán, territorio de Otomíes y Mazahuas, frontera de los reinos Mexicas (Aztecas o Purépechas ).

En 1401, los Tarascos conquistaron el lugar y en 1495, fueron derrotados por Moctezuma II, hasta que en 1500 después de varias guerras , triunfaron al mando del Catzonci Zuanga, tiempo después en 1521, mientras asumía el poder Tanganxoán II, el 23 de febrero arribó a estas tierras los españoles, entre ellos destacando Cristóbal de Olid y Gonzalo de Sandoval, y en 1524 , llegan los primeros frailes franciscanos.

En 1545, Don Vasco de Quiroga, amplía en hospital de la Inmaculada Concepción de María y en 1550 se inicia la construcción del convento y el templo , bajo la advocación de San José, después, en 1598, se declara a Taximaroa cabecera de la congregación de manera oficial , bajo el juez Cerón de Saavedra.

Así mismo , se incrementó el número de habitantes españoles , poblando el territorio, destacando los Padilla Barahona, con las tierras aledañas de "Jaripeo", y en el Siglo XVII, destacan varias familias de españoles, que a continuación enumero:

Alvarado Pedro de y Úrsula de Espinoza y Monzón
Arias Maldonado Diego y Catalina Maldonado y Sayas
Arroyo Bernabé de y Josefa de la Pompa
Betanzos Joseph y María Gutiérrez
Carrillo Altamirano Fernando y Floriana de Chávez
Correa Diego y Francisca González
Chaparro Tomás y María de Ortega
Escalante Francisco de y Lorenza Ramírez de Espinal
Espino Antonio de y Josefa de Olivares
Espinoza Diego de y Josefa González
Farfán Salvador y María de la Huerta
Fernández Correa Joseph y María del Puerto
Fernández Correa Francisco y Juana de Cisneros
Fuente de la Luis y María de Sayas
García Diego e Isabel Correa
Gutiérrez Salvador y Beatriz Velásquez
Gutiérrez Gaspar e Isabel de Zárate
Huerta de la Joseph y Luisa Montiel
Lira y Sayas de Diego y Gema Baca
Lira y Sayas de Joseph y Juana Navarro
Magallanes Matías y Catalina de Vargas
Maldonado Mateo y Juana Valdovinos
Maldonado Diego y Juana Ruíz de Corpa
Marmolejo Andrés y María García
Márquez Joseph e Inés Rivera
Martínez Marcos y Sebastiana de Valdecanos
Medina Francisco y María Pérez de la Fuente
Mejía Ignacio y María de Valdecanos
Mejía Ignacio y María de Zárate
Meza Francisco de y Ana Gutiérrez
Meza Blas de y Magdalena Gómez
Meza Pedro de y Úrsula Pacheco
Navarro Nicolás y Juana Hernández
Navarro Nicolás y Juana Rodríguez
Orozco Juan de e Inés Chaparro
Orozco Bartolomé y María Gutiérrez
Ortiz Joseph y Manuela Gutiérrez
Ortiz Diego y Nicolasa de Santillán
Padilla Barahona Joseph y Ana de Leyva
Padilla Barahona Fernando y María de Espinoza y Monzón
Paredes Luis y Beatriz de Buccio
Patiño Diego y Ana Gómez
Pedraza Nicolás de y María de Padilla Barahona
Pedraza Juan de y Francisca de Buccio
Pérez de Vargas Juan y Juana de Guzmán
Pérez de la Fuente Santiago y Catalina Buccio
Piñón Domingo y Josefa Hurtado
Ponce Antonio y Jerónima de Sayas
Ponce Diego y Elena de Pedraza
Ramos Diego y Tomasa Ponce
Rangel Juan y Juana de Zárate
Rivera Cristóbal de y Agustina de Carvajal
Rivera Diego de y Úrsula Durán
Rodríguez Sebastián y Josefa de Zárate
Rodríguez Miguel e Isabel de Orozco
Romero Antonio y Angelina de Pedraza
Rubio Bernabé y María del Puerto
Ruíz de Espinoza Juan e Isabel Gutiérrez
Salas Juan de y María de Campos
Salazar Farsate Juan de y Catalina Cervantes y Betanzos
Sánchez Diego y Antonia Rubio
Sánchez Francisco y Jerónima de Lira
Sayas y Lira Alonso de y Ana Carrillo Altamirano
Sayas y Lira Diego de y Jerónima Baca y Coronel
Serrano Bernardo y Juana Pérez
Sedeño Felipe y Catalina Sánchez
Soto Andrés de y Juana de la Fuente
Soto Alonso de y María de Lira
Soto Juan de y María de Ávila
Soto Joseph de y María de Solís
Torre Juan de la y Mariana de Salazar
Valdespino Fernando de y Catalina de Sayas y Argueta
Villanueva Cristóbal de y Juana Paredes
Zetina Francisco de y Ana Juarez
Zúñiga Diego de y Catalina



New U.S. Stamps, honor Caribbean influence
Carlos Benitez Franquis de Lugo 



September 17, at Miami, Florida they are releasing this fantastic sheet of stamps. 

Five each within the sheet as follows: Merengue, Cha-Cha-Cha, Mambo, and Salsa.

I finally found a link--you've got to see it:

Sent by Cindy Lobuglio

Carlos Benitez Franquis de Lugo 

Hi Mimi,  Dominick Vila is seeking information on Carlos Benitez Franquis de Lugo (1691-____).  I thought his bio-story was interesting. Use it for SP with Dominick's blessings. 
Paul Newfield

Paul, if you happen to come across any information about this person, please let me know...

Dominick Carlos Benitez Franquis de Lugo was born in La Orotava, Tenerife, in 1691. Carlos went to Havana, Cuba, where he married Ángela de Alarcón y Ocaña. In 1736 the King of Spain appointed him Governor of the province of Tlaxcala, Mexico; a post he could not occupy immediately since his predecessor was still serving his term. To solve the impasse Archbishop Vizarrón, the Viceroy of New Spain (Mexico), appointed Lugo Governor ad interim of Texas to succeed Manuel de Sandoval. 

Lugo arrived in San Antonio, Texas, on September 26, 1736 where he immediately ran into trouble with the local civil and ecclesiastical authorities because of his strong character and arrogance. He ran into problems upon arrival when he refused to show his credentials to people he considered of an inferior social class. The financial and political stability of the province of Texas suffered during his Governorship (1736-37) because of poor management skills and biased decisions. His policies on land ownership and mission rights favored the colonists from the Canary Islands that founded San Antonio in 1731 and constituted the elite of the city at that time; to the detriment of the Franciscan missionaries and the Coahuiltecan Indian tribes known as Tejanos by the Spaniards. 

His arbitrary policies caused civil and religious tensions that, coupled with frequent Apache raids, resulted in large desertions of Indians that had already converted to Christianity and alienated the influential missionaries at the Mission of Nuestra Señora de la Purisima Concepción de Acuña.

While in power Lugo placed Sandoval, his predecessor, under arrest  charging him with official misconduct. The charges were based on the territorial expansion achieved by the French during  Sandoval’s governance when Louis Juchereau de St. Denis built a fort west of the Red River in 1735. 

Sandoval  was also accused of negligence for not keeping official records, and for never living in Los Adaes (near Robeline, Louisiana) during his governance an act that, allegedly,  contributed to the French expansion in that region. Sandoval was later absolved of all charges. Lugo’s poor performance as governor and complaints from the missionaries led to an investigation and to his removal from office in September 1737. 

He was succeeded, temporarily, by Joseph Fernández de Juaregui y Urrutia and permanently by Prudencio de Orobio y Basterra. Lugo was assigned to a garrison in San Juan Bautista, from where he deserted and escaped to Mexico City. He got a commission in the garrison at Veracruz until his return to Spain where he served as a regimental officer in Savoya until his death. A cousin, named Juan Domingo Franquis, was an Infantry Colonel in Tenerife in 1747. 

Dominick Vila





Lepanto, the repulse of the Muslims
Battle of Lepanto
Don Miguel Cervantes Saavedra



the repulse of the Muslims

Don John's hunting, and his hounds have bayed-- 
Booms away past Italy the rumour of his raid. 
Gun upon gun, ha! ha! 
Gun upon gun, hurrah! 
Don John of Austria 
Has loosed the cannonade.
Lepanto - the Poem by G.K.Chesterton 

In 1571, Don John of Austria commanding the fleet of the Holy League, met the Ottoman Turks in the waters at the mouth of the Gulf of Patros. Here, where the Peleponnese meets the Morea, the basis of Western civilization had been laid thousands of years before in the city states of ancient Greece. When the smoke cleared after a hard fought naval engagement, thousands of men would be dead, the Turkish fleet broken and the Christian powers freed from the fear of the Mediterranean ever becoming a Muslim lake. 

It was one of the most decisive battles in history.  Links to background and the Battle. 


By Count Stewart Von Rathjen
Armas de ESPANA

Spain's greatest sea victory...On the16th of September, 1571 A.D. there sailed from the harbor of Messina one of the greatest fleets the Mediterranean had ever borne upon its waves. It consisted of over 300 vessels. On board these ships were 80,000 men. At the head of this armada was Prince Don Juan of Austria, brother of King Philip 2d of Spain, and the ablest naval commander that Spain possessed. 

At sunrise on the 7th of October the Christian fleet came in sight of the Turkish fleet at the entrance of the Bay of Lepanto on the west side of Greece, consisting of nearly 250 Royal Turkish galleys with a number of smaller vessels in the rear. On these ships were not less than 120,000 men. A great battle for the supremacy of Christian or Mohammeden was about to be fought between 2 of the largest fleets ever seen in the Mediterranean.

The loss to the Turks was immense, not less than 25,000 being slain and 5,000 taken prisoner. To Don Juan's prize may be added not less than 12,000 Christians captives, chained to the oars of the Turks, who now came forth with tears of joy to bless their deliverers. 

Among the combatants was a Don Miguel Cervantes whose future glory was to throw into the shade all the leaders in the battle. Though confined to bed with a fever on the morning of the battle, he insisted on taking part. His courage in the affray was shone by 2 wounds on his breast and a 3d in his hand which disabled it for life. Fortunately it was the left and the right remained to write the immortal story of Don Quixote de la Mancha. 

Thus ended one of the greatest naval battles of all time. It had been the opinion of Europe that the Turks were invincible at sea. This victory dispelled that theory and gave new heart to Christendom. It so dispirited the Turks that they dared not meet the Spanish at sea and the beginning of the decline of the Ottoman Empire may be said to date from the battle of Lepanto.


Don Miguel Cervantes Saavedra

Cervantes Saavedra, Miguel de , 15471616,
Spanish novelist, dramatist, and poet, author of Don Quixote de la Mancha, b. Alcalá de Henares

Little is known of Cervantes's youth. He went to Italy (1569), where, in the service of a cardinal, he studied Italian literature and philosophy, which were later to influence his work. In 1570 he enlisted in the army and fought in the naval battle of Lepanto (1571), receiving a wound that permanently crippled his left arm. While returning to Spain in 1575 he was captured by Barbary pirates and was sold as a slave; he eventually became the property of the viceroy of Algiers. After many attempted escapes, he was ransomed in 1580, at a cost that brought financial ruin to himself and to his family. As a government purchasing agent in Seville (1588–97), Cervantes proved less than successful; his unbusinesslike methods resulted in deficits, and he was imprisoned several time.



Fundación Mapfre Tavera
Fernâo ou Fernando de Magalhâes (in Portuguese)
Enfermedades y herencias

Trinidad Pushes Spanish
For Priests, a Crash Course in Spanish and Culture



La Fundación MAPFRE TAVERA tiene como objetivo contribuir a la consolidación de la Comunidad Cultural Iberoamericana mediante el conocimiento de su memoria histórica.
Para ello desarrolla un conjunto de actividades orientadas a la investigación histórica y a la preservación y difusión del patrimonio documental y bibliográfico de los países iberoamericanos.

Base de datos: Más de 5.000 registros sobre guías y catálogos de manuscritos iberoamericanos.
Consultar la Base de datos 

Directorio Web de Archivos Iberoamericanos: Este Directorio Web de Archivos permite consultar de manera rápida y sencilla un amplio listado de aquellos archivos iberoamericanos que disponen de una pagina web- propia o alojada en otra institución- en la que ofrezcan información relacionada con sus fondos y/o con los servicios que presta el archivo.
Los archivos históricos de cada país están organizados por categorías según su dependencia administrativa o la composición de sus fondos. Notifique aquí la incorporación de un nuevo Archivo en el Directorio Web

Data Examples: 
Carlos Arturo TAGLE: Nacido en Córdoba, Argentina, el 29 de marzo de 1897, hijo legítimo de Florencio Carlos TAGLE y de María Ercilia VASQUEZ MOLINA, nieto paterno de Isidoro Manuel Carlos TAGLE GUERRA y de María Candelaria FLORES MIRANDA; nieto materno de Lucrecio VASQUEZ MOLINA y de Ercilia MOLINA CAMACHO.  El Dr. Carlos Arturo TAGLE contrajo matrimonio con Carlota ACHAVAL GOMEZ el 12 de octubre de 1922.

Filemón TAGLE: Nacido en Córdoba, Argentina, el 20 de febrero de 1874, hijo legítimo de Isidoro Manuel Carlos TAGLE GUERRA y de María Candelaria FLORES MIRANDA; nieto paterno de José Carlos TAGLE USANDIVARAS y de Albina GUERRA y ARGUELLO ; nieto materno de Anselmo FLORES y de Anacleta MIRANDA. Filemón TAGLE contrajo matrimonio con María Eugenia QUENON ABACA el 25 de mayo de 1903.


Publicado en Folha do Domingo, de Faro (Portugal) el 24 de junio de 2005


Foi a 20 de Setembro de 1519, quando um portugués, Fernâo ou Fernando de Magalhâes, ao serviço da Coroa de Espanha, partiu desde o porto de San Lucar de Barrameda, comandando cerca de 250 homens distribuidos por cinco embarcaçôes: “Trindade”, “Santo Antonio”, “Conceiçâo”, “Santiago” e “Vitória”, com o objetivo de descobrir uma nova rota entre Europa e a Asia, a través do continente americano, buscando uma passagem marítima entre os Océanos Atlântico e Pacifico.

A expediçâo durou três anos, no decurso da qual deram a volta ao Mundo e a 8 de Setembro de 1522 chegou ao porto de Sevilha a nau “Vitoria” só com 17 homens. Durante o trajecto aconteceu de tudo, já que muitos mareantes morreram as mâos dos nativos, entre os quais o Comandante Fernâo de Magalhâes, outros deserteram em diversos portos, outros morreram vitimas das mais diversas enfermidades, com destaque para o escorbuto, para além dos motins registados, enforcamentos para exemplo do resto da tripulaçâo e tudo o que se pode producir numa aventura que durou três anos.

Esta expediçâo teve muita importancia para a actual provincia andaluza de Huelva, porque Magalhâes escolheu um portugués residente em Ayamonte para recrutar tripulantes daquela cidade fronteiriça, bem como outros habitantes de Palos e Huelva, pelo que foram muitos os onubenses que formaram parte desta viagem.

Numa lista de tripulantes que chegou ao meu poder encontrei: 2 de Ayamonte, 1 de Bollullos, 2 de Aroche, 9 de Palos de la Frontera, 1 de Trigueros, 14 de Huelva, 3 de Moguer, 1 de Lepe, 1 de Aracena e 1 de Almonaster la Real. Mas nesta lista faltam muitos tripulantes por duas razôes: a primeira é que muitos deles alegabam que eram de Sevilha de modo a encontrar facilidades para embarcarem, já que era na capital de Andaluzía que se faziam as inscriçôes e a outra baseava-se no facto de que muitos dos povoados que actualmente pertenecem à provincia de Huelva perteneciam a Sevilha e eram incluidos na sua zona.

Tenho em meu poder três listas de tripulantes da Viagem da Circumnavegaçâo e nenhuma delas é coincidente, incluso divergindo os nomes e, porque na época, muitos poucos eram os que sabian ler e escrever, pelo que os documentos raramente estavam completos.

                                                Angel Custodio Rebollo

Edición 13 de julio de 2005

Enfermedades y herencias
La dureza de viajes extremadamente largos, en muy deficientes condiciones higiénicas, hicieron que muchos de los españoles que viajaron a Indias después del descubrimiento de América por Cristóbal Colon, llegaran a tierra con enfermedades contraídas que, unos superaron y otros las fueron arrastrando por el resto de sus días, pero hubo otros que llegaban con sus defensas tan mermadas y contraían cualquier enfermedad que circulaba en el ambiente.

Tal es el caso de la enfermedad que contrajo el piloto Juan Pérez Albela, natural de Ayamonte, que era primer piloto en la flota de Manuel de Velasco y que partió de España en 1699.

La flota que pilotaba Juan tuvo que mantenerse durante varias invernadas en el puerto de Veracruz, por lo que decidió ir a vivir en tierra en una casa que había arrendado a un vecino de la población. Contrajo una enfermedad que le provocaba fiebres muy altas y un estado alternativo de inconsciencia que no daba ocasión a testar en forma y lugar idóneo. Un día antes de fallecer, pudo otorgar un poder para testar y nombró como única heredera universal a su hija Nicolasa, que cuando el partió contaba poco mas de un año de edad y como tutora a su esposa Francisca Camacho.

En el poder nombraba como albacea al vecino de Veracruz Luis de Montes y a sus compañeros capitanes de la flota Juan de Berroa y Miguel Castellano. Todos ellos se encargaron de que los bienes de Juan  Pérez Albela se vendieran en publica subasta, consiguiendo como remate final 460 pesos y 3 reales, que fueron enviados a España en la forma legal establecida y que llegaron a poder de su esposa e hija.

Pero no todos llegaban a reunir cantidades de importancia. Tal es el caso del paje Pedro Juan Arenas que marcha en 1722 para el puerto de Santísima Trinidad. Cuando llegan a dicho puerto, declaran tres testigos que Pedro Juan cayó al agua y se ahogó durante la travesía. Al contabilizar su patrimonio solo posee 14 pesos procedente de la soldada, descontando 4 pesos que le fueron  entregados como anticipo antes de partir y que fueron entregados a sus padres Felipe Arenas y Francisca Margarita Molina.                                                 

Angel Custodio Rebollo.

Hispanic Link Weekly Report
June 20, 2005 Vol.23 No.25

Trinidad Pushes Spanish

The English-speaking island of Trinidad is launching a campaign to have the nation's 1.3 residents speaking Spanish by 2020. Government officials say they want to make the island — seven miles off the coast of Venezuela — compete with Miami as the gateway to Latin America. Now 5% of Trinidad's population speaks Spanish.

The initiative includes requiring Spanish classes as early as elementary school and Spanish translations on the island's signs.

"We want to integrate our economy in Latin America," Trade Minister Kenneth Valley told the Miami Herald. In order to do this, he said, 'Trinidad needs to have an appreciation of the Latin culture and the language."

For Priests, a Crash Course in Spanish and Culture

NEW YORK, JULY 17, 2005 ( The Hispanic community forms close to 40% of the Catholic population in the United States. Yet, there is only one Hispanic priest for every 9,925 Hispanic Catholics. These statistics reveal an opportunity for English-speaking clergy to reach out to Hispanic Catholics -- if only they knew Spanish. That's where Curso de Hispanidad steps in: an intensive Spanish language and culture course held in Mexico for North American priests and seminarians. 

More information:


El Regimento Fijo de la Luisiana 1765-1821
A History of the Mexican-American People
"No child left behind" vs. education in 1895
Web for Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines records
Britain Marks Anniversary of Sea Victory 
Signers of the Declaration of Independence

El Regimento Fijo de la Luisiana 1765-1821
Sent by Johanna De Soto  and Bill Carmena 

For 56 years the Fixed Regiment of Louisiana stood guard over the Spanish Colonies of Louisiana and West Florida. As dedicated living historians we seek to accurately portray the members of the Louisiana Regiment, especially during their participation in the American Revolution. Through intensive research and attention to detail we hope to preserve and rekindle the memory of this all but forgotten part of Louisiana's history.

A History of the Mexican-American People
by Julian Samora and Parricia Vandel Simon
Recommended by secondary teacher, JD Villarreal

Table of Contents


The Indian-Spanish Heritage


What's In a Name?

CHAPTER 1 Introduction

The Melting Pot

CHAPTER 2 The Mexican Americans

Census Bureau Count 1930-1960
1970 Census Count

CHAPTER 3 Conquest of Mexico

Hernán Cortés
Cortes' Expedition
An Easy Victory
La Malinche
Converting the Indian
Creating a Labor Force
Bartolomé de las Casas

CHAPTER 4 Dreamers and Schemers

Outward Expansion
The Struggle for Power
The Search for Gold
The Silver Rush

CHAPTER 5 Farms and Forts-The Expanding Settlement

Migration Northward
The Haciendas
New World Aristocrats
Indian Raids-Spanish Garrisons

CHAPTER 6 The Buffer State

Building the New Colony
Pueblo Resistance
Frontier Hardships
Internal Strife and Oñate's Downfall
Indian Rebellion
The Kingdom Rebuilt

CHAPTER 7 Mission Settlements

Missions in New Mexico
Missions in Arizona and Texas
Missions in California
Junipero Serra
Decline of the Mission System


The Foreign Intrusion

Chapter 8 Threatened Colonies I: European Competitors

The French Threat
The British Threat
The Russian and Indian Threats
The Spanish Defense System
Los Angeles

Chapter 9 Threatened Colonies II: The Anglo Invasion

Invasion of New Mexico
Invasion of Texas
Invasion of California

Chapter 10 Frontier in Conflict

Rebellion in Texas
Stephen F. Austin
Conflict in New Mexico

Chapter 11 The Ultimate Violence

Manifest Destiny
The Monroe Doctrine
Annexation of Texas
California: Prelude to War
Mexican-American War
Santa Anna

Chapter 12 Heritage of Bitterness

Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
"New Citizens"
Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo(sidebar)
A Permanent Boundary
Continued Dispute
The Gadsen Treaty

Chapter 13 The New Southwest

Anglo Superiority
California: Forty-Niners
Cattle Barons
A Violent Land
Joaquin Murieta
Texas: The Lawless Society
The New Economy


The Mexican Heritage

Chapter 14 Invasion from the South

Opposition to Diaz
Zapata and Villa
Emiliano Zapata
Civil War in Mexico
U.S. Involvement
Francisco (Pancho) Villa
The Pershing Expedition
Refugees in the Southwest
The Sacramento Barrio
The Job Market

Chapter 15 Cheap Labor

Land Grants
Immigration Laws
The Great Depression
World War II
The Bracero Agreement
Illegal Aliens
Undocumented Workers
The Visitor's Permit
Migrant Farm Workers

Chapter 16 The Mexican American in an Industrial Age

Migration to the Cities
Mexican Americans and World War II
An Urban Population
The Zoot Suit Riots

Chapter 17 Search for Equality

Mexican Americans and the Schools
Struggle against Discrimination
Pursuing Civil Rights

Chapter 18 Striving for Self-Determination

Fraternal Organizations
Early Labor Organizations
Organizing Mine Workers
Organizing Agricultural Workers
Mexican Labor and the Great Depression

Chapter 19 Organizing for Survival

The DiGiorgio Strike
Ceasar Chavez and the Farm Workers
Lopez Tijerina and the Alianza
Good Neighbors at Home
Stimulating Political Action
Educational Organizations
Crusade for Justice
Political Activities of the 60s and 70s
La Raza Unida
The National Chicano Moratorium

Chapter 20 A Rich Tradition Continues

Los Vendidos
The Visual Arts

Chapter 21 The Religious Dimension of Mexican Americans

Mexican American Catholicism
Popular and Institutional Religion
Emergence of Popular Piety
Impact of Marginalization
Need for Change

Chapter 22 What the Future Holds

National Organizations
The Christian Churches
Published Materials
Mexican Americans and the Armed Forces
Government Agencies


Web for Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines records.

The meaning of the folding of our Flag can be found at:
Information sent by Carlos ( Ray ) Gonzalez,
Click for another memorable and major event in  Carlos Ray Gonzalez life click on Carlos Ray.

"No child left behind" vs. education in 1895
Sent by Mira Smithwick

                           What it took to get an 8th grade education in 1895

  --Remember when grandparents and great-grandparents stated that they only had an 8th grade
education? Well, check this out. Could any of us have passed the 8th grade in 1895?
This is the eighth-grade final exam from 1895 in Salina, Kansas, USA. It was taken from the 
original document on file at the Smokey Valley Genealogical Society and Library in Salina, KS, 
and reprinted by the Salina Journal.

8th Grade Final Exam: Salina, KS -1895  Grammar (Time, one hour)

1. Give nine rules for the use of capital letters.
2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications.
3. Define verse, stanza and paragraph
4. What are the principal parts of a verb? Give principal parts of"lie,""play," and "run."
5. Define case; Illustrate each case.
6 What is punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of punctuation.
7 - 10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand 
the  practical use of the rules of grammar.

Arithmetic (Time, 1.25 hours)

1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?
3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs., what is it worth at 50cts/bushel, deducting 1050 lbs. for tare?
4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven 
months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?
5. Find the cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.
6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.
7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at $20 per metre?
8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.
9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance of which is 640 rods?
10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

U.S. History (Time, 45 minutes)

1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided.
2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.
3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.
5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.
6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?
8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, 1865.

Orthography (Time, one hour) Do we even know what this is??
1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication
2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate 
letters, linguals
4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u.' (HUH?)
5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e.' Name two exceptions under each rule.
6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.
7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, 
post, non, inter, mono, sup.
8.  Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates
 the sound: card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
9. Use the following correctly in sentences: cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, 
raze, raise, rays.
10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical
 marks and by syllabication.

Geography (Time, one hour)

1 What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?
3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
4. Describe the mountains of North America
5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon,    
St. Helena, Juan Fernandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco.
6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.
7. Name all the republics of Europe and give the capital of each.
8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?
9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inclination of the earth.

Notice that the exam took FIVE HOURS to complete. Gives the saying "he only had an 8th 
grade education" a whole new meaning, doesn't it?! Also shows you how poor our education 
system has become... and, NO! I don't have the answers, and I failed the 8th grade test!

Britain Marks Anniversary of Sea Victory 
By Thomas Wagner
Sent by John Inclan

PORTSMOUTH, England - Two hundred years ago a daredevil naval hero by the name of Horatio Nelson led the British to a glorious victory over France and Spain. But that might not be clear from watching Tuesday's reenactment of the Battle of Trafalgar. 

Wary of offending European neighbors who enjoy a close but sometimes testy friendship with Britain, organizers decided to dispense with details such as who won and who lost. Instead of depicting the battle as a contest between countries, they assigned the fleets colors — red and blue — and left it up to the spectators to figure out which was which.

The Battle of Trafalgar was one of the most spectacular naval successes of all times. Nelson routed Napoleon Bonaparte's larger French and Spanish fleet and ensured that Britain ruled the waves for more than a hundred years. Though the battle cost him his life, he didn't lose a single ship.

Seventeen ships from five nations were enlisted for the mock confrontation off Portsmouth in southern England. The reenactment kicks off a long season of festivities in Britain marking the bicentennial of the battle, which took place on Oct. 21, 1805, off Cape Trafalgar, a low headland in southwest Spain.

French Vice Adm. Jacques Mazars, who is in charge of five vessels that are taking part, said: "We are proud to be here and to be part of this great all-week sea festival in Portsmouth. That's why the French navy sent five ships."

He said the point of such a ceremony isn't to put British forces on one side, and French and Spanish ones on the other, or to rekindle a rivalry, but to have the strong allies today celebrate a big moment in history when both camps showed great courage.

Tuesday's festivities also include 35 nations that have contributed 58 vessels to the International Fleet Review, with 57 heads of foreign navies attending. The 40,000-ton French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle and U.S. amphibious assault ship USS Saipan were among the ships that crowded the waters off Portsmouth.

"Most British people are taught in school about Trafalgar and Nelson," said Dennis Ulyet, 53, from Godalming near London. "It's good that so many countries have sent ships here, even the French and Spanish. It shows how the bitterness of the defeat is long gone and gestures of good will are now possible."

Nelson, one of Britain's greatest heroes, won a series of stunning naval successes against France and Spain that culminated in Trafalgar, during which he shattered the combined enemy fleet by taking it head-on. The victory arguably ended any hope of an invasion of Britain by Napoleon, enabling the British empire to grow.

A passionate man in love and war, Nelson became a people's hero, who often was shunned by the aristocracy at the height of his fame. His state funeral in 1805 was the largest ever held in Britain, with a mile-and-a-half-long procession behind his coffin in London. Today, his statue atop a column in London's Trafalgar Square remains one of the city's famous landmarks.

In the 1800s, ships such as the HMS Victory were that era's weapons of mass destruction. Sailing a ship through difficult weather and tricky currents was difficult. Knowing how to organize and maneuver fleets during a battle was even harder.

Signers of the Declaration of Independence

Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence? They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.

Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.
Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned.
Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army.
Another had two sons captured.
Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.

What kind of men were they?

Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists. Eleven were merchants, nine were farmers and large plantation owners; men of means, well educated, but they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.

Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.

Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken from him,  and poverty was his reward.

Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer, Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.

At the battle of  Yorktown, Thomas Nelson, Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.

Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed. The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.

John Hart was driven from his wife's bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished. Some of us take these liberties so much for granted, but we shouldn't.  Remember: freedom is never free!


Spanish Language Dichos

Ophelia Marquez, one of the founders of SHHAR,  has been collecting her mother's dichos for many years.  Porfiria Gutierrez Marquez, her mother,  had a dicho for every circumstance.  Ophelia  has collected over 500 dichos and will be sharing them in the months to come. These dichos will reflect Porfiria heritage which is from San Miguel el Alto, Jalisco, Mexico. 

Readers are welcomed to send Spanish dichos and/or comment on those that will be shared in this column.   Of interest would be how wide-spread  these dichos are?  Which Spanish speaking countries share them?

El mejor cocinero se le va un tomate entero. 
Anyone can make a mistake

El mal en otros es pasajero
What ails others is minor;  it is only major when it happens to you

El que nada debe, nada teme
If you are not guilty you have nothing to fear

El tiempo es el mejor amigo
Generally time uncovers the truth




Make Your Family Tree "Talk" Learn how to Gather Oral Histories
Genealogy Software Review 2005
Country Research Guides (PDF files)
Genetics and Professional Genealogy Seminar


Make Your Family Tree "Talk" 
Learn how to Gather Oral Histories

By Mary Thayer Haugen
The Erickson Tribune, Pg.6


Interest in genealogy continues to grow as mote and more people work on adding branches to their family trees. That will be enormously helpful for the generations that follow, are taking it one step further with oral histories can help bring those trees into full blossom.

"People want to know more about their relatives then when they were born and died. They want a connection with history," said Shirley Langdon Wicox, C.G., former president o the National Genealogical Society.

I wish I had asked more question of some o my older family members. I would like to have known more about their every day lives. Those kinds of things are important because they help you understand what life was like a generation ago. It's not the same as today," she adds.

"Often, people don't feel they have the time do oral histories, but I would encourage them not to delay it—even if you only give it short burst time," she says. "Get started."

Preparing The Interview

So, where do you begin? First, make sure you have a reliable recording device with plenty of tape or digital memory to go the distance. A microphone that clips on to clothing will work better than the microphone embedded in the recording device.

Schedule the interview in advance and give the interviewees some idea to the kinds of questions you might ask to get memories "warmed up" Begin the recording with the information about the interview, such as the name of the interviewer, name of the interviewee, the place, and the date. Avoid questions tat can be answered with a simple "yes" or "no."

"If you start out by asking people what they know about family history, they'll often say, 'nothing.' So, start with simple questions like 'When; did you go to school?' 'Did it have one classroom or many?' 'Did you walk or ride a bus?' Usually, you find something that gets a good response and you can build on that with questions like 'How?' 'Why? and so forth," Wilcox explains.

Props such as old photos can be a great way to start a conversation. Though it may; be tempting to skip ahead in your mind to the next question, remember to be an active, listener. The more interested you appear, the more likely your subjects will be to open up and tell stories you might not hear otherwise.

Questions to Ask, here are ten questions to get you started:

1. What is your full name? Do you know why your parents gave you that name?
2. Where were you born?
4. What did you do for fun as a child?
5. How did your family spend the holidays? What made them . special for you?
6. Did you have any family chores? What were they?
7. Did you go to church/synagogue growing up?
8. Did you have any pets?
9. What is the oldest relative you remember from your childhood?
10. How did you meet your spouse? How did you propose, or get proposed to?

Interview Tips

Your subjects may go off on a tangent. Often, this is when you get the best stories. So be flexible, and don't worry about adhering to your outline of questions.

Also, as your subjects speak, do not step into their silences. It may take them a while to recall a memory and formulate an answer. Give them time to collect their thoughts.

And do not attempt to "correct them about something. Oral histories are often not a true reflection of fact, but one person's experience of an event. And that experience may have faded with time. Simply let them talk at their own pace and the narrative unfold naturally.

After you've captured these wonderful stories for posterity, be thinking about how you will store them for future use. If you choose to keep them in an audio or visual format rather than transcribing them, be mindful of changing technology. It will probably be necessary to transfer your recordings to new mediums from time to time or else you may reach a point where you are unable to play them on.

Even if you don't have the equipment to record an oral history, you can still capture stories for your family. Start with your own.

"If you're now the head of your family, it's up to you to start writing your memoirs," says Wilcox. "Put down things you don't think are important; they will likely be very important to your grandchildren some day."

Genealogy Software Review 2005
Listed in order of rating 
Family Tree Maker 
Ancestral Quest
Sent by Lorraine Hernandez

Country Research Guides (PDF files)
Sent by Janete Vargas
All Countries Research- check this one first! 
African and African American 
Australia and New Zealand 
Latin America 
LDS Research 
Native American 
New England 
U.S. Military 

Genetics and Professional Genealogy Seminar

Was held  in Salt Lake City, Utah, July 6, 2005. Included for the potential contacts and resources.

The Utah Medical Association and Heritage Genealogical College are pleased to announce the Genetics and Professional Genealogy Seminar, "Grandpas Genes, the Ancestral File, and Current Genetic Research." Over the past twenty years, Salt Lake City has gained international prominence for Genetic Research and Studies at the University of Utah, and the Huntsman Cancer Center.  This is also the worldwide center for Genealogy Research, through the facilities and collections of the Family History Library of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Family History Libraries famous Ancestral File and International Genealogical Index databases have long been utilized by genetic and medical research teams searching for new medical breakthroughs relating to DNA and genetics studies.  A purpose of this seminar is to discuss the historical development of genetic and DNA research, and the benefits !  and limitations of genealogical da 
This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint sponsorship of the Utah Medical Association (UMA) and Heritage Genealogical College. The UMA is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The UMA designates this educational activity for a maximum of 6 category 1 credits toward the AMA Physician's Recognition Award. Each physician should claim only those credits that he/she actually spent in the activity.
The Utah State Office of Education also recognizes this seminar in its program for Continuing Education for Teachers, and will provide 8 credit hours of Teacher Relicensure Credits for Utah school teachers.    
Important Topics that will be discussed include: 
1) DNA testing and future insurance issues; 
2) DNA methods of identifying your family relationships; 
3) New roles for professional genealogists in genetics and medical research fields; 
4) Medical reasons for additional verification of your family research; 
5) Understanding Genetic Health Issues and Answers; and  
6) Developments in Medical Genetic Studies. 
To make it easier for APG members and other genealogists to have the opportunity to attend a seminar that will directly affect future courses of genealogy, HGC is holding this seminar the day before the Association of Professional Genealogists, and the Federation of Professional Genealogical Societies Conferences being held from September 7-10, 2005 right across the street at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City. This is a wonderful opportunity for people in many interests to learn about new developments in DNA studies relating to Medicine, Science, and Genealogy Research:
1) Learning about a topic that will have far reaching effects on everyone. 
2) Cost of $70 for the day (with registration by June 30th - $90 afterwards).  Special Pricing for Students will be $50.00 for the day.   
A) Medical Continuing Education Credit - 6 CME Category 1 Credits ($12.00 per credit hour.) 
B) Teacher Relicensure Credit = 8 credits. ($8.75 per credit hour.) 
3) Included with the seminar will be lunch and two refreshment (snacks) periods. 
Registration is limited to 300 seats. Please register soon!
Heritage Genealogical College was approved and licensed by the Utah State Board of Regents on April 6, 2000, and began teaching genealogical research classes through Salt Lake Community College from January, 2001, until May, 2005. HGC is now providing all courses necessary for its Genealogical Certificate Program, Associate Degree, and Bachelor Degree. HGC is currently licensed through the Utah Department of Consumer Protection.
The seminar program will address current research in genetics, the value of genetic counseling, and problems encountered by those with genetic conditions in obtaining insurance coverage.  Emphasis will be on cooperation between different types of professionals with the fields of Genetics and Genealogy Research for the benefit of patients and clients with genetic concerns and interests. 

Speakers include:
Paul N Daniels, BA, BS, DPM, President of Heritage Genealogical College 
John M Kitzmiller, II, AG, FSG, owner Kitzmiller Genealogical Services 
Alan Rope, MD and Pilar Lenglet, MS, from the Division of Genetics, University of Utah 
Marc Williams, MD, with the Genetic Institute of Salt Lake City. 
Scott Woodward, PhD, with Sorenson Molecular Research Foundation 
Robert Crisp, PhD, University of Utah, College of Science 
Stuart Schultz, JD, with Strong & Hanni law firm in Salt Lake City 
James W Petty, AG, CGRS, with Heirlines Family History and Genealogy
For more information regarding registration and fees for this truly unique seminar opportunity, go to the web site: or to or feel free to call 801-944-0254. 
Contact: Jeanette Daniels, Vice President, Heritage Genealogical College - 801-944-0254.

Sent by Benicio Samuel Sanchez Garcia, Presidente 
La Sociedad Genealogica del Norte de Mexico

fax: (81) 1340-0000  (81) 1340-0000 ext. 117 



America's First Immigrants
Walking with ancestors:  Discovery rewrites American prehistory 

America's First Immigrants
By Evan Hadingham 
Smithsonian November 2004, pg. 91-92

Researchers delving into the origins question have sought to make sense of archaeological finds far and wide, from Canada, California and Chile; from Siberia; and even, most controversially from France and Spain. The possibility that the first people in the Americas came from Europe is the boldest proposal among a host of new ideas. According to University of Texas at Austin archaeologist Michael Collins, the chief excavator of the Gault site, "you couldn't have a more exciting time to be involved in the whole issue of the peopling of the Americas. You can't write a paper on it and get it published before it's out of date Surprising new finds keep rocking the boat and launching fresh waves of debate."


Walking with ancestors:  Discovery rewrites American prehistory 
By David Keys, Archaeology Correspondent 
Published: 05 July 2005 
Sent by John Inclan
Humans arrived in America 25,000 years earlier than previously thought - at least 40,000 years ago - footprints found near Mexico City have proved. 

British and Mexican archaeologists said the discovery of the prints, made in volcanic ash near the town of Puebla, 80 miles south-east of Mexico City, will force a total rewrite of humanity's early migrations and is one of the most important archaeological finds of recent decades.

The layer of volcanic ash in which the 269 footprints are preserved has been dated by two different techniques - radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence dating - to between 38,000 and 39,000 years ago. Until now the earliest definite dates for a human presence in the Americas were 15,000 years ago. Given the location of the find, deep in the Americas, it makes it almost certain that humans must have first entered the Americas at least 40,000 years ago.

When combined with existing knowledge on prehistoric climate, the discovery suggests humans may have entered the Americas during a slightly less cold phase in the last Ice Age about 50,000 years ago. They would have walked over the ice-bound Bering Strait or island-hopped to Alaska via the Kuril and Aleutian chains of islands.

This means the migration into the Americas occurred at about the same time as the normally accepted date of the early Aboriginal colonisation of Australia and some archaeologists now believe that the first Americans were Australoid peoples closely related to the early Aborigines.

Given that the new evidence, it is also now conceivable that humans entered the Americas even earlier, perhaps during a much warmer spell about 70,000 years ago. It means archaeologists will now have to take more seriously two claims that a site in Brazil and another in Chile date from 50,000 and 33,000 years ago respectively.

The Mexican footprints were made by four to six individuals - probably two adults and between two and four children - in at least three episodes, several weeks or even months apart. Each time they were walking barefoot along the shore of a large lake, now Lake Valsequillo. The imprints were sealed and preserved by ash from successive eruptions of a nearby volcano, Mount Tolukuilla.
As well as human footprints, the archaeologists also found deer, camel, wolf (or dog) and puma prints.

The discovery, announced in London yesterday, was made by Sylvia Gonzalez and Professor Dave Huddart of Liverpool John Moores University and Professor Matthew Bennett of Bourne-mouth University. Dr Gonzalez said: "It shows our ancestors adapted to new environments much quicker and more easily than we had imagined."  Humans arrived in America 25,000 years earlier than previously thought - at least 40,000 years ago - footprints found near Mexico City have proved. 



Church Signs 

 The LangaList

Church Signs 

Sent by Gloria Oliver

Have you ever been driving down the road at 50 or 60 mph, passed a church and tried to read the sign out front? Here are a few ........ Some may sound funny, corny, or serious, but they always carry a good message for one liners:

"Exposure to the Son may prevent burning."

"The best vitamin for a Christian is B1."

"Under same management for over 2000 years."

"Soul food served here."

"Tithe if you love Jesus! Anyone can honk!"

"Beat the Christmas rush, come to church this Sunday!"

"Don't wait for the hearse to take you to church."

"Don't give up. Moses was once a basket case."

"Wal-Mart isn't the only saving place!"

"Prevent truth decay. Brush up on your Bible."

"It's hard to stumble when you're down on your knees."

"What part of 'THOU SHALT NOT' don't you understand?"

"A clear conscience makes a soft pillow."

"Never give the devil a ride. He will always want to drive."

"Can't sleep? Try counting your blessings."

"Forbidden fruit creates many jams."

"Christians, keep the faith -- but not from others!"

"Satan subtracts and divides. God adds and multiplies."

"If you don't want to reap the fruits of sin, stay out of the devil's orchard."

"To belittle is to be little."

"Don't let the littleness in others bring out the littleness in you."

"God answers kneemail."

 The LangaList
A Free Email Newsletter from Fred Langa  That Helps You Get More From Your Hardware,  Software, and Time Online

En algunas ocasiones anteriores he enviado algunos articulos de este newsletter que me resulta muy informativo y util, hoy lo envio completo porque me parecio que vale la pena que le den un vistazo y si les interesa la materia pueden suscribirse gratis..
Algunos de ustedes son suscriptores de este boletin pero de todos modos los incluyo en la lista de destinatarios.
Uno de los articulos que mas me intereso es el relacionado con la "proteccion" de la PC, mi opinion es que la mejor prevencion es no tener nada delicado almacenado, pero en fin, es mi opinion personal.

Sent by Armando Montes




                12/30/2009 04:49 PM