Somos Primos

May 2005 
Editor: Mimi Lozano

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




Iowa, USA
Artist: Ray "Bubba" Sorenson
The flag is painted on, not draped.


Content Areas

United States
. . 3
. . 43
Galvez Patriots
. . 45
Orange County, CA
. . 47
Los Angeles, CA
. . 54
. . 60
Northwestern United States
. . 80
Southwestern United States
. . 83
. . 93
. . 100
. . 108
. . 111

East of the Mississippi  . . 130
East Coast
. . 132
. . 140
. . 156
  . . 160 
  . . 164
. . 176
Family History
. . 177
. . 184
. . 186
. . 189

“I prefer to be true to myself, 
even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, 
rather than to be false, and incur my own abhorrence”  
Fredrick Douglass

Sent by Willis Papillion


  Letters to the Editor : 

On a personal note. I cannot thank you enough for all that you and your staff do for the Hispanic / Latino community. Believe me, I was ever so touched when I read the article about the San Gabriel Indians by Victoria Duarte Cordova in your April 2005 newsletter. No doubt, Victoria would be so pleased with you and she definitely would be happy to have her long, long years of research finally published and made public. Vicky often told me that she was doing the research for the young people, but she never seemed to have a date of completion for this project. We all are so proud of Vicky.
Thanks for making my day, Mimi.
All my best, always, Lorri
Lorraine Frain

I have been on your mailing list for almost three years and I think it is time to send you a belated thank you for all those wonderful stories about our ancestors and our culture.  My wife and I were introduced to your mail list by a high school classmate from Laredo, TX who now lives in San Antonio, Walter Herbeck.
I look forward to your monthly email.  
Brigido H. Mireles
Round Rock, Texas
I so enjoy reading all the articles on the great contributions of our Hispanic forefathers. It is just so informative. Keep up the good work!  A friend from San Antonio Texas,  
Becky Shokrian,
a direct descendant of the Angel of Goliad.

Dear Mr Inclan,
I read the family tree of Don Juan Galindo and wife , excellent  work. You have save me hundreds of  hours  of research . I would like to see a continuation of item # 66 ,specifically on Maria Dolores Bermea Galindo and her descendant's.    Thank You Bro.
Javier Trevino (  §                                                           

Hi Mimi, I'm so glad you liked it! I really enjoyed doing the article and talking to all the women. While I was writing, I decided to begin a little genealogy research of my own, and I found much to my surprise that some members of my dad's family had been in the U.S. since the 1600's! It was all very interesting and I plan to do more research this summer. Thanks for all your help. Good luck with  all,
Franziska Castillo


   Somos Primos Staff:   
Mimi Lozano, Editor
John P. Schmal, 
Johanna de Soto, 
Howard Shorr
Armando Montes
Michael Stevens Perez

Sam Anthony
Margarita Araiza
Tom Asensio
Paulette Atencio
Ed Barraza

Mercy Bautista Olvera  
Treyce Benavidez
Barbara Benge
Eva Booher
Eloise Cadinha
Bill Carmena

Peter Carr
Artemisa F. De Casas Molina
Roberto Campos
Franziska Castillo
Lynette Chapa
Angel Custodio Rebollo
Johanna De Soto
Bea Dever
Zeena Eate
Edna Yolanda Elizondo Gonzalez

Charlie Erickson
James Estrada Hardy
Karla Everett
Lorraine Frain
Gabriel Garcia
George Gause
Gloria Golden
Robert Silas Griffin
Eddie Grijalva
Odell Harwell
Lorraine Hernandez
Carlos Martín Herrera 
        de la Garza 
John D. Inclan
John O. Leal
Felicia R. Lee
Alex Loya
Loretta Martinez Williams
Brigido H. Mireles
Marino Montero
Nancy Morebeck
Lupe Dorinda Moreno 
Marcela Murri
Paul Newfield
Rafael Ojeda
Willis Papillion
Yolanda Patino
Antonio R. Pena
Roberto J. Perez Guadarrama
Elvira Prieto
Mario Robles del Moral
Anita Rivas Medellin
Cathy Robbins
José León Robles de la Torre
Viola Sadler
Alejandro Sanz
Rosemarie Salmon
Steve Santillan
John P. Schmal
Becky Alvarez Shokrian
Howard Shorr
Ella Smith
Belinda Rose Torres (Corre)
Javier Trevino
Janete Vargas
J.D. Villarreal
Sylvia Villarreal Bisnar
Doug Westfall
Brent Wilkes
SHHAR Board:  Laura Arechabala Shane, 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


Hispanics have a problem. . 
National Archives, May 12th, "Hispanics, Education and Civil Rights." 
All Gave Some, Some Gave All
Passing of a Generation
Sheriff Joe Arpaio, America's Toughest Sheriff
25th Annual Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition
74th Annual WD Writing Competition  
Workshop to make writers of warriors
"Uncover the Mind"
Lalo Guerrero, 'father of Chicano music dies
We Need You to Save Our Heritage
Census Bureau News Facts, Special Edition: Cinco de Mayo  
Hub race woes serious 
The Values We Live By
Current Newsworthy Tidbits:  LATINO LOOP
Texans seek compensation from Mexico for 12 million acres lost 
Illegal Immigrants Are Bolstering Social Security With Billions
Bill mandates diverse faculty  
"Finding Cousin Tony" 

To be Bilingual,  a strong asset in the new millennium
Study Showing Economic Benefits of Preschool for all children
New Development in Mestizo Psychology: Theory, Research, Application
The Case of a Lifetime


Hispanics have a Problem . . . 

Charlie Erickson, founder of Hispanic Links asked me for an history of my personal involvement with the National Archives. 

Hispanic Link is a national news agency founded in February 1980 by Charles A. Ericksen, Sebastiana Mendoza Ericksen, and Hector Ericksen-Mendoza.

                                          The following is the brief narrative that I sent. 

 "Hispanics have a problem and the problem is that Washington, D.C. doesn't even know we exist  here in California." Those were my first words to my husband when he greeted me at the airport.

That was ten years ago, 1995, my first trip to D.C.. Because of my heritage involvement, as editor of Somos Primos, my name, resume, etc. was submitted to Senator Orrin Hatch to participate on the U.S. Senate Task Force on Hispanic Affairs. I was invited to participate, as Historian. I was honored and took the responsibility very seriously.

The first Task Force meeting and the entire experience of visiting the Capitol was life changing. My perspective on American history had evolved through researching personal family history in present day Texas and Mexico. I had learned that the presence of my ancestors among colonial census and land records contradicted the history that I had been taught. U.S. history textbooks had virtually excluded the historical Hispanic presence.

Determined to evaluate the conditions of public historical recognition in the capital, I visited every monument, tourist site and museum which I felt should have some mention of the Hispanic American presence, and presented in a accurate and positive way.

I looked for any evidence which a tourist from Kansas or Germany could pick up. Nothing, I found nothing, no brochures, posters, items, charts, graphs, postcards, etc.

The general public would not have grasped the significance of the Spanish explorers and colonizers in the foundation and development of the United States, nor the persistent existence of Hispanics in the formation of the American people. We were not there.

The Smithsonian bookstore had less than a dozen books on Hispanics/Latinos on their shelves. Their World War II exhibit included a small display on Hispanics, but the emphasis and slant was on how Los Angeles Pachucos fought against our military. Living in Los Angeles during that time period, and having researched the episodes, I knew the facts were not presented accurately.

Arlington Cemetery had books on the contributions of other ethnic groups, (as did the Washington Memorial), but nothing on the military contributions of Hispanic-Americans. The tour bus drivers (I went on several tours), pointed out many heroes as we circled the grounds, but not one with a Spanish surname.

I would have thought that at least a mention would have been made of Pvt. Felix Longoria. Longoria killed in WW II was denied the right to be buried in his own hometown. The injustice unified Latino activism.

The Library of Congress' Hispanic Reading Room is excellent, but not a tourist spot.
I wanted to judge what a student from South Carolina or Maine would subjectively conclude as he toured the Capitol. Would he be enlightened concerning Hispanics? Would he return to his small town realizing that some Hispanic Americans are descendants of colonizers that preceded the Mayflower? If not, than the public displays had failed them, had failed me.

Many of my ancestors were colonizers and settlers in present day Texas as early as 1691. Marrying among the indigenous whose heritage goes before written record, my ancestors were at home. However, many left their property and homes and fled to Mexico during the American take-over in 1848. About seventy-five years later, my grandparents and family returned to Texas. My ancestors were considered immigrants, aliens. Categorized by newcomers whose presence in Texas was perhaps 50-80 years old.

Eagerly, I visited the National Archives. Again, I found the same neglect of our history. The reference librarian showed me one single book on their shelves for doing Hispanic research in the National Archives. There were no How-To brochures as with all the other ethnic groups. There were no other guides on the subject of Hispanic research in their bookstore either.

Since 1990, I have been editing  Somos Primos, for our research group, the Society of Hispanic Historical and Ancestral Research. My trips to D.C. strengthened my resolve that positive, historical visibility was greatly needed.  

January 2000, Somos Primos went online as a free monthly e-magazine devoted to Hispanic heritage and diversity issues, The mission was to increase historical understanding and encourage personal family history research.

The networking capability of the internet created national and international visibility and connections that eventually resulted in being asked by Sam Anthony, Producer of Public Program at NARA, to assist in bringing a Hispanic awareness to the resources of the National Archives. This was a request for a volunteer opportunity I could not resist, in spite of living in California.

Last year, in May with the opening of the World War II Memorial we held a 2-day series of lectures by Hispanic veterans who served in WW II as NARA. Then in October, we held a 2-day conference on researching Hispanic family history.

The following month, in November, Sam Anthony asked me to assist him in putting together the Hispanic America series for 2005. Through weekly teleconferences with members of the advisory committee, we have tried to fulfill the topics NARA assigned to us. In organizing the committee, I attempted to bring together a national cross-section of volunteers in various fields of professional endeavor to meet the challenge.

In addition, a website was created to log the conference-call results and update the progress of our efforts. The website is open to public reading. Support and comments are welcomed. 
Please go to:

Our first event is May 12th. Judge Fredrick Aguirre, Orange County, California was a natural choice to put together the May 12th event, "Hispanics, Education, and Civil Rights." We have worked on numerous heritage projects in the past, and Rick has a personal interest in the subject of public school segregation. His father, uncles, aunts, cousins were in segregated schools in Orange County. Rick was one of the first students in his family to attend a non-segregated school after the Mendez vs Westminster School Board was won in 1946.

The focus of the panel will be the contributions made by Hispanic leadership in desegregation of schools, prior to the well-known Brown vs. Board of Education. Text of the argument by Judge Aguirre can be found on the website.

Upcoming participation at the Archives includes . . .

July 3-4th: re-enactor Hector Diaz as Spanish colonial General Bernardo de Galvez.
Plus, a San Antonio group, the Texas Connection to the American Revolution, and the Granaderos, San Antonio and Maryland Chapters will participate in the parade. Sylvia Carvajal sutton is the liaison.

September 24th: Hispanic Family History Conference being organized by George Ryskamp, Director of the Center for Family History and Genealogy at BYU

October 12th : "Latino Blood, American Heart" power point presentation by artist Eddie Martinez and a panelists of historians, historical overview of the contributions of Hispanics to the U.S. military.

November 10-13th: NARA will offer tours for Hispanic veterans. Debbie Salazar, Chairwoman for the National GI Forum is the liaison.

December: NARA is mounting a display and event, "The Way We Worked." Dr. JV Martinez, Senior Advisor with the Department of Energy is our  liaison.

Please distribute the press release below to friends, family and educators, particularly those on the East Coast.  


National Archives and Records Administration
700 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20408-0001

You are cordially invited to attend a special event at the National Archives.

On Thursday, May 12, 2005 a nationally recognized panel of experts will present "Hispanics, Education and Civil Rights." The discussion will be held from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm in the William G. McGowan Theatre. 

Moderated by California Superior Court Judge Frederick P. Aguirre, who will present his article on the 1945 California desegregation case: "Mendez v Westminster School District: How it influenced Brown v Board of Education," the distinguished panel includes: U.S. District Court Judge (Retired) James DeAnda, co-counsel in the 1954 U.S. Supreme Court case of Hernandez v State of Texas and lead counsel in several landmark cases regarding public education in Texas; California Supreme Court Justice (Retired) Cruz Reynoso, former Vice-Chair of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights and presently a Professor at the University of California, Davis School of Law; and Professor Norma V. Cantu of the University of Texas at Austin School of Law who was the former Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights for eight years and former regional counsel of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund. The panel will analyze, from a legal and historical perspective, the road that Hispanics have paved to insure equal educational opportunities.

The National Archives is located on Constitution Avenue, between 7th and 9th Streets, NW. There is no on-site parking and no free metered parking spaces along Constitution Avenue until after 6:30 p.m. Limited free parking is available one block south on Independence Ave along the National Mall. The nearest metro stop, directly across the street from the Archives on 7th and Pennsylvania Avenue, is "Archives/Navy Memorial" on the Yellow and Green lines.

Patrons are reminded to enter the National Archives through the "Special Events Entrance," on the ground level, located to the right of the grand staircase.

If you would like to reserve seats for this event, please send an e-mail to We look forward to seeing you at the event on May 12.

Sincerely, Sam Anthony
Producer, Public Programs
National Archives and Records Administration

All Gave Some, Some Gave All.

THIS IS  AWESOME!!!  Sent by Viola Sadler

I'm told that there is a huge rock near  a gravel pit on Hwy.25  in rural Iowa. For generations, kids have painted slogans,  names, and obscenities on this rock, changing it's character many times. A  few months back, the rock received it's latest paint job, and since then  it has been left completely undisturbed. It's quite an impressive sight.  Be sure to scroll down and check out the multiple photos (all angles) of  the rock.  I thought the flag was draped over the rock, but it's not.  It's actually painted on the rock too.  Here's the  artist Ray "Bubba" Sorensen.  


Text on the surfaces of the rock. 

We confide in our strength without boating of it; we respect that of others, without fearing it.
Thomas Jefferson 1793.

Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and success of freedom. John F. Kennedy 1961

We will not waver; we will not tire; we will not falter; and we will not fail. Peace and freedom will prevail. George W. Bush 2001

Photos on the web courtesy of Candy & Family

"Passing of a Generation"

Words of CPT. Stephen R. Ellison, M.D.
Page design by Mary Jones
Shared by Paul Newfield


Sheriff Joe Arpaio, America's Toughest Sheriff



Sheriff Joe Arpaio (in Arizona) who created the "tent city jail":  

He has jail meals down to 40 cents a serving and charges the inmates for them.

He stopped smoking and porno magazines in the jails. Took away their weights. Cut off all but "G" movies.

He started chain gangs so the inmates could do free work on county and city projects.

Then he started chain gangs for women so he wouldn't get sued for discrimination.

He took away cable TV until he found out there was a federal court order that required cable TV for jails. So he hooked up the cable TV again only let in the Disney channel and the weather channel.

When asked why the weather channel he replied, so they will know how hot it's gonna be while they are working on my chain gangs.

He cut off coffee since it has zero nutritional value.  

When the inmates complained, he told them, "This isn't the Ritz/Carlton. If you don't like it, don't come back."

He bought Newt Gingrich' lecture series on videotape that he pipes into the jails.

When asked by a reporter if he had any lecture series by a Democrat, he replied that a democratic lecture series might explain why a lot of the inmates were in his jails in the first place.

With temperatures being even hotter than usual in Phoenix (116 degrees just set a new record), the Associated Press reports: About 2,000 inmates living in a barbed-wire-surrounded tent encampment at the Maricopa County Jail have been given permission to strip down to their government-issued pink boxer shorts.

On Wednesday, hundreds of men wearing boxers were either curled up on their bunk beds or chatted in the tents, which reached 138 degrees inside the week before. Many were also swathed in wet, pink towels as sweat collected on their chests and dripped down to their pink socks. "It feels like we are in a furnace," said James Zanzot, an inmate. "It's inhumane."

Joe Arpaio, the tough-guy sheriff who created the tent city and long ago started making his prisoners wear pink, and eat bologna sandwiches, is not one bit sympathetic He said Wednesday that he told all of the inmates: "It's 120 degrees in Iraq and our soldiers are living in tents too, and they have to wear full battle gear, but they didn't commit any crimes, so shut your damned mouths!"

Sheriff Joe was just reelected Sheriff in Maricopa County, Arizona.


The 25th Annual Lorian Hemingway Short Story Competition is accepting entries through 
May 15.
The competition was created for writers who've yet to achieve major-market success. All fiction genres accepted, with a 3,000 word maximum. Prizes include $1,000 for first place and $500 each for second and third place winners. Source: Tips and Updates From 04-05-05 

74th Annual WD Writing Competition
Writer's Digest Writing Competition! Entry deadline - May 16, 2005

The categories:
Inspirational Writing, Memoir/Personal Essay, Magazine Feature Article, Genre Short Story, Mainstream/Literary Short Story, Rhyming Poetry, Non-rhyming poetry, Stage Play, Television/Movie Script, Children's Fiction

Grand Prize: $2,500 cash and all-expense paid trip to New York City to meet with editors and agents. Writer's Digest will fly you and a guest to NYC, where you'll spend three days and two nights in the publishing capital of the world. While you're there, a WD editor will escort you to meet and share your work with four editors or agents! Plus, you'll receive a free Diamond Publishing
Package from Outskirts Press.

Last year's grand-prize winner, Michele R. Bardsley, signed with the Levine Greenberg Literary Agency (which she visited during her New York trip) and already has a book contract...and she didn't think she would win! This year, the winner could be you - but not if you don't enter! For complete rules and entry forms, or to submit your entry online, visit

First Place: The first-place winner in each category receives $1,000 cash, a manuscript critique and marketing advice from a Writer's Digest editor or Advisory Board member, commentary from an agent and $100 worth of Writer's Digest Books.

Second Place: The second-place winner in each category receives $500 cash and $100 worth of Writer's Digest Books. 

Third Place: The third-place winner in each category receives $250 cash and $100 worth of Writer's Digest Books.

Fourth Place: The fourth-place winner in each category receives $100 cash and a free copy of the 2006 Writer's Market Deluxe Edition, and a one-year subscription to Writer's Digest magazine.

Fifth Place: The fifth-place winner in each category receives $50 cash and a free copy of the 2006 Writer's Market Deluxe Edition, and a one-year subscription to Writer's Digest magazine.

Sixth through Tenth-place winners in each category receive $25 cash and a free copy of the 2006 Writer's Market Deluxe Edition.

PLUS a special prize for select Writer's Digest subscribers: All current WD subscribers who enter the competition and provide a valid subscription number are eligible to win a special prize package featuring a one-year subscription renewal to Writer's Digest, the 2006 Writer's Market Deluxe Edition, $100 worth of Writer's Digest Books and one year's worth of Writer's Digest special issues (15 in all, a $90 value!).  Five winners will be chosen at random from all eligible entries received.

For a full list of prizes, complete information and an entry form, please visit

Workshop to make writers of warriors
by Gwendolyn Driscoll, Orange County Register, 2- 28-05 
(714)796-7722 or

CAMP PENDLETON • Speeding through the trash-strewn streets of Alamadi, Iraq, Cpl. Veronika Tuskowski crouched down in her open Humvee and prayed she would not become the next victim of a sniper's bullet.  The 22-year-old Marine's experience - and thousands of others like it-is the stuff of war-time.

For several dozen Camp Pendleton men and women last Friday, it also became the stuff of literature.  Tuskowski was one of about 40 service members to attend the last leg of a nationwide writer's workshop organized by the National Endowment for the Arts.

The $600,000 "Operation Homecoming" program brings authors such as Tom Clancy, Shelby Foote and Mark Bowden together with servicemen and women and their families in an effort to create "what may be the largest written record of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan," according to NBA Chairman Dana Gioia.

The workshops are the brainchild of Gioia, who received about 900 poems, stories, letters and other written documents from military personnel around the world and plans to publish an anthology of the best.

"One of the things we're trying to do is give people who may not think of themselves as writers the encouragement," Gloria said. "We're trying to give people permission to talk about their experience."

The workshops have been widely praised for providing a literary outlet to military personnel who have experienced the trauma of war, as well as for their effort to breathe life into dry military descriptions of war tactics and strategy.

It is also an ambitious attempt to ferret out, among the khaki camouflage uniforms and "high and tight" haircuts at Camp Pendleton and at military bases around the world, a future Stephen Crane, Ernest Hemingway or Kurt Vonnegut.

"I think the most exciting thing about military history in the last 80 years is writing it from the ground up," said military historian Victor David Hanson, who, along with fiction writer Tobias Wolff, led the Camp Pendleton workshop. "Only lately have people like yourself (started to) write down their experiences."

The Pendleton Marines listened carefully as Hanson described great battles in history, and coached them to describe the detailed, physical sensations of war - "the graphic nature" - while still aiming for "the wisdom for the ages."

"Can you be transcendent? Can you captivate somebody?" he asked.

The aspiring authors were then asked to pen a short description of a traumatic or terrifying experience.

The result of such efforts is writing that often deals with issues of loss or separation, according to Operation Home-coming's director, Jon Peede.

"Spouses write a lot about longing, waiting for families to come home. We've had people write about what it is for an (explosive device) to blow up near them (or) to lose somebody in their platoon. We've had a lot of poems,"

The sample submissions posted on the NEA Web site reveal another common theme: patriotism.

"There are three songs that give me an uncontrollable electric shiver throughout my body," wrote Air Force officer Lt. Christopher Cohoes. "They are the National .Anthem, Taps, and a hymn named 'Eternal Father, Strong to Save.'"

Another writing sample ends with a prayer that the American flag "be more than a token of patriotism but a reminder of the frailty and sanctity of life."

At least one poem, in which a Marine attempts to tame a wild alley eat, expresses a weary cynicism; "I donned a plastic glove and was the first to pet/ This wild creature who may be/ The one true heart and mind that America/ Had won over."

Outright criticism of the military or the war, however, is considered "editorial" and not "literature," according to Peede. "Literature reports an experience, it doesn't advocate a position," he said.

Such definitions may illustrate the careful balance of aims and interests involved in fostering writers in a military setting.

"A good deal of (straight description) is honest," said Carol Burke, a professor of literary journalism at UC Irvine and author of a book about military culture. "But the experience of war as we know from any group of soldiers coming back is an ambiguous one and is not often that simple."

Adding to the descriptive .i- challenge was the workshop's composition: Up to 40 percent of participants were employees of the base's Consolidated Public Affairs Office, the public mouthpiece responsible for safeguarding the Marine Corps' image.

Toskowski, herself a broadcaster for Camp Pendleton's television station, KPEN-TV, sand she came to the workshop in hopes of learning skills that will help her tell a positive story about the Marine Corps.

She chose to write about her trip to deliver medicines to a hospital in Iraq on unsafe roads - "the scariest thing that's ever happened" - but also a heroic humanitarian story. Less emphasis was placed on the flower pots thrown at her by some of the hospital's patients.

"People want to hear about blood, guts and gore," said Tuskowski. "A lot of the positive things don't get covered."

Excerpt: "Three Thousand Antoinettes"  By Capt. William J. Toti

"The dreamlike sequence of what I saw when I ran out of the Pentagon and to the point of impact just minutes after the attack plays in my head several times a day. I encounter total devastation. Aircraft parts, most no larger than a sheet of paper, litter the field. I can make out, on one of the larger pieces of aluminum, a red "A" from "American Airlines." What little is left of the plane lay a burning fissure in the side of the building. A column of black smoke rises into the air, bending towards the Potomac' over the top of the building. A fire fighter sits in the cab of a burning fire truck making a radio call. I wonder, what the heck is he doing? Could that radio still possibly work? (It did.)

And more to the point, I wonder, where is everybody? Thousands of people work in that building, there should be hundreds streaming out of the emergency exits right now. But at first I see no evacuees.

Then as I round-the corner of the heliport utility building, I notice a very small number of walking wounded, and then, on the ground, one " gravely injured man. This is where the dreamlike sequence ends, and the work begins." 

NEA's Operation, Homecoming: 
Writing the Wartime Experience

"Uncover the Mind".  Standard adult size. For a LIMITED time and a LIMITED quantity available now are WHITE rubber band bracelets that say...  "Uncover the Mind"... "" on them.

They are beautiful! My son actually designed them. He said, "Uncover the mind is to find truth and truth is white mom because it's pure and good".
If you are interested in receiving one, please let me know and provide a mailing address! These will only be available through May 10th so contact us today!  

Thank you, Treyce  



Guerrero, 'father of Chicano music,' dies

The songwriter who sold millions of records in Spanish and English was 88.

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, via The Orange County Register, March 18
Guerrero did hundreds of free concerts at schools and senior centers into his 80s.
Photo at 87 years old, 2004

Rancho MIRAGE Eduardo "Lalo" Guerrero Jr., who for 60 years created songs in Spanish and English chronicling the Mexican-American experience, including Pachuco music later used in the play "Zoot Suit;" has died. He was 88.

The man that President Clinton called the father of Chicano music died Wednesday at an assisted living facility in Rancho Mirage, said his son, Mark Guerrero of Palm Springs.

Guerrero was born in an adobe house in the poor Barrio Viejo neighborhood of Tucson, Ariz., on Christmas Eve 1916.

He had no formal musical education, but his mother taught him guitar, and during trips to Mexico, relatives inspired him to write songs.

After dropping out of high school during the Depression, Guerrero drifted to Los Angeles, where arranger-producer Manuel Acuna saw him on a street, asked if he was a musician and had him in a recording studio the next day.

"It wasn't planned. I didn't have an agent," he told The Associated Press last year. "It just never occurred to me."

Guerrero went on to create more than 700 songs and sold millions of records in Spanish and English in a bewildering number of styles, from swing to protest songs, cha-chas to rock 'n' roll. His Spanish hits included "Nunca Jamas" and "Cancion Mexicania," which has been described as Mexico's unofficial national them.

Guerrero also wrote ballads in the Mexican "corrido" style that honored Robert F. Kennedy and farmworkers' rights leader Cesar Chavez.

He already was a star in Mexico and the Southwest for his traditional songs when he crossed into the mainstream charts in 1955 with a parody of "The Ballad of Davy Crockett" from a Walt Disney movie. He replaced the pioneer frontiersman with a Mexican called Pancho Sanchez. It sold 500,000 copies.

A string of hit parodies followed in English and Spanish, including "Pancho Claus" and "Elvis Perez."

Some took satirical swipes at discrimination, such as "Mama, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Busboys."

Guerrero also did a series of children's albums featuring Las Ardillitas, a trio of squeaky-voiced squirrels that became wildly popular in Mexico and the Spanish-language community. He created them the same year that a song featuring Alvin and the Chipmunks came out in the United States. Alvin's creator sued but the suit was thrown out.

Guerrero lived in the East Los Angeles area for many years and had a popular nightclub there. He later moved to Cathedral City, near Palm Springs.

Eduardo "Lalo" Guerrero Jr.

Born: Dec. 24,1916. in the Barrio Viejo area of Tucson, Ariz.

Training: Taught to play the guitar by his mother, Concepción, who had at least 15 other children.

Big break: During the Depression, was discovered on the streets of Los Angeles by a music producer who signed him to a recording contract.

Achievements: Believed to be the first artist to write and record bilingual songs. His work included everything from novelty tunes ("Tacos For Two") to the anti-discrimination protest song "El Chicano."

Hits: "Canción Mexicana," "Chicas Patas Boogie," "Vamos a Bailar"

Impact: His music was central to Luis Valdez's 1977 play and 1982 movie "Zoot Suit." Cited as a key influence by the rock band Los Lobos, comedian Cheech Marin and activist theater troupe Culture Clash.

Honors: Received National Medal of the Arts from President Clinton, alongside such luminaries as jazz artist Lionel Hampton, actor Robert Redford and Broadway composer Stephen Sondheim. Was declared "a national folk treasure" by the Smithsonian.

We Need You to Save Our Heritage

Source: Hispanic Magazine

Here's a chance to give back to your community, and preserve deserving legacies of U.S. Hispanics who have contributed to American society.

HISPANIC Magazine, and its sister publications, and Hispanic Trends, will launch an ambitious effort to preserve Latino history and heritage for future generations.

Working together with other organizations dedicated to restoration and preservation, HISPANIC aims to save historic sites, buildings, books, music and other cultural symbols in the United States.

Do you know of a historic site in your city that should be preserved for future Latinos? Have you collected the works of a particular Hispanic artist 

that should be preserved? Are you endeared to a particular landmark because it meant a lot to your immigrant family and it has since been neglected?

Tell us where, when, and why these projects should be preserved and HISPANIC will look into restoring them and making the public aware of these important sites and/or documents. We need you to help make this ambitious effort a success.

HISPANIC Magazine and Hispanic Trends will be writing about these projects in upcoming issues and the stories also will appear on in the Hispanic Heritage Plaza.

Contact us at: Save Our Heritage, 999 Ponce De Leon Blvd., Suite 600, Coral Gables, FL 33134 or email: Joe Vidueira at  j

You may also fax us at: 305-774-3578 Attention: Save Our Heritage.


Census Bureau News Facts for Features Special Edition: Cinco de Mayo  
April 20, 2005
Sent by:  JV Martinez
May 5th marks the Mexican army = s victory over the French invaders at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. In the United States, the celebration of this battle has come to be known simply as the A Cinco de Mayo. @ Along with Mexican Independence Day on Sept. 16, Cinco de Mayo has become a time to celebrate Mexican heritage and culture.

25.3 million *
Number of U.S. residents of Mexican origin in 2003. 
These residents constituted 9 percent of the nation = s total population.

16.6 million *
Number of people of Mexican origin who reside either in California (9.9 mil) or Texas (6.7 mil). People of Mexican origin make up nearly one-third of the residents of these two states.

10 million *
Number of foreign-born residents from Mexico. They constitute about 3-in-10 people who were foreign-born. .

Percentage of Mexican family households containing five or more people.
This is the highest rate of large households among Latino groups.


Percentage of people of Mexican heritage who work in managerial or professional occupations.

Number of U.S. tortilla manufacturing establishments in 2002. These establishments employed 12,000 people and had an annual payroll of $296 million. Tortillas, the principal food of the Aztecs, are known as the bread of Mexico.

$266.6 billion
The value of goods traded between the United States and Mexico in 2004.  Mexico is our nation's second-leading trading partner, after Canada.

* The figure given does not include people living in group quarters.

The following appeared on, April 21, 2005
Sent by Howard Shorr
Headline: Hub race woes serious, study finds:

"Despite metro Boston's increasing diversity, 80 percent of  African-Americans and roughly half of Hispanics polled recently said  that racial discrimination remains a somewhat serious or very serious problem that can cost jobs or promotions and make others feel unwelcome > at sporting events and shopping centers."

Abstract: The Values We Live By

Remarks by Raul Yzaguirre at the 2004 NCLR Annual Conference Phoenix,Arizona, June29,2004

We chose to bring our Annual Conference to Phoenix for the first time not only because the Convention Bureau promised us 70-degree weather in June, but also, more importantly, because this is our birthplace. When the Southwest Council of La Raza opened its doors for business in 1968, our Board of Directors chose Phoenix as our headquarters. Since then, in good times and in bad, we have had a continuous presence in this great city.

It feels good to be home.

If I may, I would like to discuss three interrelated topics with you today - our shared history, our shared beliefs, and our shared future. For you see, we need to define who we are or others will do it for us.

There are those like Professor Samuel Huntington, who recently released a book entitled, Who Are We?: The Challenges to America's National Identity. He asserts the absurd notion that the growing presence of Latino immigrants is a threat to America. The essence of his argument is that America, in order to remain American, must be a nation perpetually dominated by a White, Anglo Saxon, Protestant, and English-speaking cultural and racial majority.

Our Shared History

Let's use this time in Phoenix to educate ourselves and our fellow Americans about Latinos. Let us remember who we are and how we got here.

More than 500 years ago, long before the pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, our forefathers came to this new world. They were met by another set of our ancestors, native to this land. Over time, and with the inclusion of unwilling immigrants from Africa, a new people emerged whom we now officially refer to as "Hispanics." But in our barrios, many of us refer to ourselves as La Raza or, more precisely, La Raza Cosmica, the cosmic race, a race of all races, the Hispanic people of the new world.

We are as "white" as Cameron Diaz, and as "black" as Sammy Sosa. We are brown, we are red, and we are yellow. We are Arab and Jew. We are European, African, Asian, and Native American. And if your name happens to be Basque, like mine, you can arguably claim to be from the lost continent of Atlantis.

For Latinos, it is not me color of one's skin that determines a person's worth: it is the quality of his or her values, culture» ethics, and manners. For ours is a welcoming and inclusive culture that is ever open to enrichment

Over time, we became Americans - some by choice, many by conquest. Historians agree that our country traditionally has been reluctant to wage war. Yet, there are two acknowledged exceptions to this tradition - the two events which changed our destiny as a people were the only two wars of conquest fought by the United States: the Mexican American War and the Spanish American War. These were our country's only wars of aggression fought with the explicit goal of extending the territorial expanse of the United States.  


Current Newsworthy Tidbits: LATINO LOOP
Sent by Lupe Dorinda Moreno

Sears has partnered with Latina Media Ventures, the publisher of Latina magazine, in an exclusive partnership to create Latina Life, a new line of apparel, footwear and handbags influenced by the style of Hispanic women. Latina Life will debut at 425 Sears stores in Fall 2005, and an assortment of merchandise will also be available on The line, designed by Jones Apparel Group under the fashion direction of Latina magazine, will cater to the sophisticated lifestyle needs of fashion-conscious and career-oriented women. 

Congrats to LATV, a bilingual youth network in Los Angeles whose ratings regularly surpass MTV, VH1, Mun2 and Fox Sports en Espanol among Hispanic viewers between the age of 18 and 34, according to the Nielsen Hispanic Station Index (NHSI). The network's Mex 2 The Max show pulled in more than 38,000 viewers per night in the week of April 11 - 15, more than quadruple the viewers for MTV in English. 

"Encyclopedia Latina: History, Culture and Society in the United States" is a four-volume, 2,000 page encyclopedia which includes over 650 entries chronicling Latino art, culture, government, technology and commerce in the US. The book is being released by Scholastic Library Publishing and was edited by Ilan Stevans, a professor of Latin American and Latino Cultures. 

If you would like to be added to our list of LATINO LOOP recipients, please email us at and in the subject box, write "SUBSCRIBE". 

Texans seek compensation from Mexico 
for 12 million acres lost after 1848 treaty

Aminta Zarate steps from a 170-year-old family cemetery on the south Texas ranch where she grew up.  A descendant of the region's first Spanish settlers, she wants compensation for 
lands she says were unjustly taken from her ancestors.



Sunday morning soccer players from Mexico crossed into Texas at Los Ebanos on the only hand-pulled ferry on the Rio Grande.  When the border was redrawn in 1848, Mexican families north of the river suddenly found themselves on U.S. soil, and descendants say they suffered many injustices.

"Since I was a little girl, since my mother was a 
little girl, we've always known this history," said Yolanda Zárate, during a visit to an old family 
ranch, La Noria Cardeneña in south Texas."


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. 

Sent by George Gause

EDINBURG, Texas – She learned the story as a little girl, growing up amid rattlesnakes and cactus thorns on a small cattle ranch in south Texas. The land is ours, they told her, all the way to the horizon and beyond. It was granted to our ancestors by Spain and Mexico, they said, then stolen after it became part of the United States in 1848. 

She is 86, a widow of prodigious memory and unswerving will. Over the past 27 years, she has gone to court, spoken with senators, met with ambassadors, petitioned presidents. And now the former elementary school cafeteria manager has joined forces with a San Diego law professor, demanding more than $2 billion from Mexico on behalf of her group, the Asociación de Reclamantes, or Association of Land Claimants. 

"It's more than money," Zárate said on a recent Saturday morning, seated inside a small office attached to her beige brick house in this quiet town of 45,000 residents. "I want justice for what they've done to our ancestors, that's what I want." 

The story is an odd historical footnote, overlooked in textbooks and unspoken in the classrooms of south Texas. But it has been passed down, like a burning torch, from generation to generation among the descendants of the original European settlers of this harsh, flat region on the U.S.-Mexico border – land that belonged to Spain, then Mexico, then the United States. The Cárdenas and the Cantus and the Ballis, the Longorias and the Cavazos and the Zárates, families whose ancestors never crossed the border. Rather, they like to say, the border crossed them, in 1848, after the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. Their petition boils down to this: In 1941, Mexico signed a treaty with the United States, agreeing to compensate 433 south Texas families for the loss of 12 million acres between the Rio Grande and Nueces rivers. The land once belonged to their ancestors and was part of Mexico, then became U.S. territory when the 1848 treaty was signed. But Mexico never did pay – and it shows no signs it will. 

"This case has been covered with a veil," said Jorge A. Vargas, a professor of international law at the University of San Diego who has taken up the cause of the Asociación de Reclamantes. "No one knows about this case in Mexico. If you interview historians, diplomats, attorneys, no one knows about it." 

He has brought the issue before Mexico's National Commission for Human Rights and is awaiting a reply. Vargas says the petition is a test of President Vicente Fox's administration's commitment to human rights. 

It is one of the longest-running land disputes in the Southwest, and unusual because the claimants, mostly U.S. citizens, are targeting Mexico for injuries suffered after the lands were no longer part of Mexico. 

The claims raise some delicate issues, and at first sight, the group's demands might seem downright bizarre. Why would Mexico, where many are still smarting over the loss of vast parts of territory to the United States, agree to pay such a staggering amount of money to a group of U.S. citizens? 
Jorge A. Vargas, a law professor at the University of San Diego,is defending the Asociación de Reclamantes. 

Some say Zárate is a quixotic figure, waging a hopeless campaign. But she's won her share of admirers. 

"She's a great lady and I love her. A hero," said Jess Araujo, a personal injury attorney in Orange County. "She means well and has tried everything, but there are a lot of players on the chessboard at this point, and she's just one small part of it." 

Araujo was part of the original team of attorneys who represented the Asociación de Reclamantes  from its founding in 1978 until the mid-1980s, working on a contingency basis. 

In its heyday, when victory seemed more likely, the association swelled to more than 7,000 members. Today, there are fewer than 200. Zárate is secretary-treasurer, and her eldest daughter, Yolanda, 65, is president. 

"My sisters say: 'You're crazy. Mexico will never pay. Why are you spending your time that way?' My nieces, they don't think it's possible, it's too much work," said Yolanda Zárate, a registered nurse. "We want to give it one more try, in our lifetime. We want everybody to know the truth." 

Yolanda cries easily as she tells the story, recalling injustice done to her ancestors. But Aminta Zárate said she never weeps. 

She is a small woman, with a commanding presence and old-fashioned reserve. Yet her eyes brighten when she talks about growing up on a ranch, about the trips to churches and courthouses of northern Mexico and south Texas with her late husband, Julián, to dig up birth and death and marriage records. 

"Peleen por las tierras, porque van a ganar," Julián told her, as he lay dying of cancer in 1995. "Fight for the lands, because you will win." 

Aminta Cavazos Zárate traces her ancestry to 16 land grants, the largest belonging to José Narciso Cavazos, her great-great-grandfather, who was deeded 600,000 acres in 1792 by the king of Spain. That grant was known as San Juan de Carricitos. 

Between 1750 and 1848, Spain and Mexico made 365 land grants in the region defined by the Nueces River and the Rio Grande. The settlements that sprouted there were a means of sealing off the wealthy Spanish mining regions in central Mexico from the French and the English, said Armando C. Alonzo, a Texas historian whose book, "Tejano Legacy: Rancheros and Settlers in South Texas, 1734-1900," looks at land tenure in the region. 

Though claimed by the independent Republic of Texas, the Nueces region remained part of Mexico until 1848, when the border was drawn at the Rio Grande and the lands became part of the United States. 

Today, the area is known as the Rio Grande Valley, or the Trans-Nueces Strip, sometimes the Wild Horse Desert. Worn gravestones, old wells and the crumbling foundations of houses hint at the days of rancheros. The residents are largely Hispanic. Unlike other regions, families with Spanish surnames here are not newcomers, but descendants of the oldest settlers. 

The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ended two years of bloody war between the United States and Mexico, is key to the claims of Zárate and the Asociación de Reclamantes. Under Article Eight of the treaty, the United States promised to uphold the private property rights of Mexicans who ended up on the U.S. side of the border. 

Lawsuits alleging violations of the treaty have arisen across the former Mexican territories, from California to New Mexico to Colorado. But in Texas, an independent republic for nine years before it became part of the United States in 1845, events unfolded differently. And today, large numbers of descendants of the original grantees continue to keep the past alive. 

"The California land grants were adjudicated under federal law, and settled before the turn of the century in court," said Richard Griswold del Castillo, a San Diego State University professor and author of "The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo." But in Texas, property claims were reviewed by a state land commission. And unlike Southern California, large numbers of Tejano heirs of the original grantees have remained in the region, passing on stories of past injustice. 

During the turbulent decades that followed the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, many rancheros and their descendants lost their properties, piece by piece, to Anglo settlers imbued with the spirit of Manifest Destiny. A large part of San Juan Carricitos became part of the vast King Ranch – Zárate says through deceitful practices, but the King Ranch has insisted that it got its lands through legitimate means. 

Descendants of the land grantees found themselves with smaller and smaller parcels, they say, and treated as second-class citizens. Historians have documented racism, violence and land fraud against Mexican families. But to this day they debate to what extent this caused the displacement from their lands. 

Alonzo, who is a visiting professor at St. Mary's University in San Antonio, says the causes of land loss were complex. 

"Did Anglos take advantage of some Mexicans? There is no question in my mind that this did happen. Did it happen all the time? No," Alonzo said. Before drawing conclusions, he advocates careful review of each grant, some of which go back 250 years. 

But this much can be documented: In 1923, the United States and Mexico established a General Claims Commission to settle outstanding claims between the two countries rising from the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. 

Mexican government officials reached out in south Texas among the population of Mexican origin, soliciting claims for loss of property and other injuries, and presented them as Mexican claims to the commission. It was a tactic, some say, to offset U.S. claims. 

The United States presented 2,781 claims against Mexico, worth $513 million, on behalf of its citizens, many of whom had lost oil wells in Mexico. Mexico presented 836 claims against the United States, for $245 million; of those, 433 were in south Texas, representing 12 million acres valued $193.6 million. San Juan Carricitos, Zárate's ancestral land, was among the claims. 

For the next 16 years, nothing was done. Then, in 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt, anxious to prevent Mexico from joining the Axis powers, proposed an arrangement: The two countries would swap claims, and each would treat the claims as a domestic issue. 

It was a good deal for Mexico, given the difference in sums. The United States asked for an additional $40 million from Mexico, but agreed to pay all the outstanding claims lodged by U.S. citizens against Mexico. 

Mexico, in turn, agreed to pay the claims that had originally been aimed at the United States, including the Texas land grant claims. 

By 1948, the United States had paid off its claims. Mexican President Manuel Ávila Camacho had signed a decree in 1941 calling for legislation to provide compensation for its claimants. But the law was never passed. 

"The decree was enacted, and nothing happened after that," said Vargas, of the University of San Diego. "That is certainly a constitutional violation."  The heirs began protesting early on. Doors occasionally opened, but in the end, they always closed and the heirs went home to south Texas empty-handed. 

In 1955, a group of 600 descendants traveled to Mexico City, demanding meetings with the Mexican government and staging protests, to no avail.  The next big push came with the founding of the Asociación de Reclamantes  in 1978. Mexican government officials angrily questioned why they should compensate a group of U.S. citizens. 

"They were initially outraged," recalled Araujo, who was part of a team of young American attorneys working for the Asociación  on a contingency basis. "We said, 'We'd much rather be going against the U.S., but your government agreed to this treaty.' " 

Unsuccessful in Mexico, the association filed suit against the Mexican government in U.S. federal court, but Judge Thomas Hogan in Washington, D.C., said the issue was not within the court's jurisdiction. 

Rodolfo de la Garza, a professor of political science at Columbia University in New York City, says the case of the Reclamantes  shows that the interests of the Mexican government and U.S. Chicanos don't necessarily coincide. 

"It's a really bizarre case, because Mexico didn't really do anything," he said. "Why would Mexico owe them money? Who owes them money is the U.S." 

But after meeting with the Reclamantes  in the early 1990s, Jorge Montaño, then the Mexican ambassador to Washington, saw merit to their claim. "From a legal point of view, Mexico in fact had a commitment to pay," Montaño wrote in his 2004 memoir, "Misión en Washington." 

"I limited myself to listening to them without committing myself to anything more than passing on the information to the appropriate authorities in Mexico City. That way, we could win some time." Now Vargas is giving it one more try, representing the association on a contingency basis. 

He has written repeatedly to Mexican treasury and foreign-ministry officials in Mexico City. The reply is always the same: "Until the law is passed, this office is not in the position of examining or discussing any specific proposal relating to the claims, because there would be no basis for them." 

In 1991, the Reclamantes  petitioned Mexico's National Commission for Human Rights to review their case. It was quickly rejected on the basis that the alleged injustice happened too long ago. But Vargas has filed a new petition claiming a denial of justice under international law. 

Today, with interest, the original $193.6 million debt has swollen to $2.2 billion, Vargas said. 

"If Mexico is truly in favor of human rights, then Mexico must pay them," he said. Vargas' next step will be to go to the Mexican courts, and if that doesn't work, to the Interamerican Court of Justice in Costa Rica, and if necessary, he says, to the World Court in The Hague. 

Zárate tires easily these days and can't travel as she used to. She has achieved much in three decades: a treasure trove of genealogies of south Texas families, cabinets filled with photographs and historic documents, and the chance to honor the memory of her ancestors who settled south Texas so many years ago. 

But her job, Zárate says, is not yet done – not until she is compensated for the losses she says her ancestors suffered.  "They're not going to beat me," she said. "I'm going to win this case." 

Sandra Dibble: (619) 293-1716;

Illegal Immigrants Are Bolstering Social Security With Billions  
Sent by Brent Wilkes 

Illegal Immigrants Are Bolstering Social Security With Billions
Jim Wilson/The New York Times  April 5, 2005

Illegal immigrants who worked in a vineyard in Clarksburg, Calif., paid taxes for Social Security and Medicare, but will not get any benefits.

Published in: 
STOCKTON, Calif. - Since illegally crossing the Mexican border into the United States six years ago, Ángel Martínez has done backbreaking work, harvesting asparagus, pruning grapevines and picking the ripe fruit. More recently, he has also washed trucks, often working as much as 70 hours a week, earning $8.50 to $12.75 an hour. 

Not surprisingly, Mr. Martínez, 28, has not given much thought to Social Security's long-term financial problems. But Mr. Martínez - who comes from the state of Oaxaca in southern Mexico and hiked for two days through the desert to enter the United States near Tecate, some 20 miles east of Tijuana - contributes more than most Americans to the solvency of the nation's public retirement system. 

Last year, Mr. Martínez paid about $2,000 toward Social Security and $450 for Medicare through payroll taxes withheld from his wages. Yet unlike most Americans, who will receive some form of a public pension in retirement and will be eligible for Medicare as soon as they turn 65, Mr. Martínez is not entitled to benefits.

He belongs to a big club. As the debate over Social Security heats up, the estimated seven million or so illegal immigrant workers in the United States are now providing the system with a subsidy of as much as $7 billion a year. 

While it has been evident for years that illegal immigrants pay a variety of taxes, the extent of their contributions to Social Security is striking: the money added up to about 10 percent of last year's surplus - the difference between what the system currently receives in payroll taxes and what it doles out in pension benefits. Moreover, the money paid by illegal workers and their employers is factored into all the Social Security Administration's projections.

Illegal immigration, Marcelo Suárez-Orozco, co-director of immigration studies at New York University, noted sardonically, could provide "the fastest way to shore up the long-term finances of Social Security."

It is impossible to know exactly how many illegal immigrant workers pay taxes. But according to specialists, most of them do. Since 1986, when the Immigration Reform and Control Act set penalties for employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants, most such workers have been forced to buy fake ID's to get a job. 

Currently available for about $150 on street corners in just about any immigrant neighborhood in California, a typical fake ID package includes a green card and a Social Security card. It provides cover for employers, who, if asked, can plausibly assert that they believe all their workers are legal. It also means that workers must be paid by the book - with payroll tax deductions.

IRCA, as the immigration act is known, did little to deter employers from hiring illegal immigrants or to discourage them from working. But for Social Security's finances, it was a great piece of legislation. 

Starting in the late 1980's, the Social Security Administration received a flood of W-2 earnings reports with incorrect - sometimes simply fictitious - Social Security numbers. It stashed them in what it calls the "earnings suspense file" in the hope that someday it would figure out whom they belonged to.

The file has been mushrooming ever since: $189 billion worth of wages ended up recorded in the suspense file over the 1990's, two and a half times the amount of the 1980's. 

In the current decade, the file is growing, on average, by more than $50 billion a year, generating $6 billion to $7 billion in Social Security tax revenue and about $1.5 billion in Medicare taxes. 

In 2002 alone, the last year with figures released by the Social Security Administration, nine million W-2's with incorrect Social Security numbers landed in the suspense file, accounting for $56 billion in earnings, or about 1.5 percent of total reported wages.

Social Security officials do not know what fraction of the suspense file corresponds to the earnings of illegal immigrants. But they suspect that the portion is significant. 

"Our assumption is that about three-quarters of other-than-legal immigrants pay payroll taxes," said Stephen C. Goss, Social Security's chief actuary, using the agency's term for illegal immigration. 

Other researchers say illegal immigrants are the main contributors to the suspense file. "Illegal immigrants account for the vast majority of the suspense file," said Nick Theodore, the director of the Center for Urban Economic Development at the University of Illinois at Chicago. "Especially its growth over the 1990's, as more and more undocumented immigrants entered the work force."

Using data from the Census Bureau's current population survey, Steven Camarota, director of research at the Center for Immigration Studies, an advocacy group in Washington that favors more limits on immigration, estimated that 3.8 million households headed by illegal immigrants generated $6.4 billion in Social Security taxes in 2002.

A comparative handful of former illegal immigrant workers who have obtained legal residence have been able to accredit their previous earnings to their new legal Social Security numbers. Mr. Camarota is among those opposed to granting a broad amnesty to illegal immigrants, arguing that, among other things, they might claim Social Security benefits and put further financial stress on the system. 

The mismatched W-2's fit like a glove on illegal immigrants' known geographic distribution and the patchwork of jobs they typically hold. An audit found that more than half of the 100 employers filing the most earnings reports with false Social Security numbers from 1997 through 2001 came from just three states: California, Texas and Illinois. According to an analysis by the Government Accountability Office, about 17 percent of the businesses with inaccurate W-2's were restaurants, 10 percent were construction companies and 7 percent were farm operations. 

Most immigration helps Social Security's finances, because new immigrants tend to be of working age and contribute more than they take from the system. A simulation by Social Security's actuaries found that if net immigration ran at 1.3 million a year instead of the 900,000 in their central assumption, the system's 75-year funding gap would narrow to 1.67 percent of total payroll, from 1.92 percent - savings that come out to half a trillion dollars, valued in today's money.

Illegal immigrants help even more because they will never collect benefits. According to Mr. Goss, without the flow of payroll taxes from wages in the suspense file, the system's long-term funding hole over 75 years would be 10 percent deeper.

Yet to immigrants, the lack of retirement benefits is just part of the package of hardship they took on when they decided to make the trek north. Tying vines in a vineyard some 30 miles north of Stockton, Florencio Tapia, 20, from Guerrero, along Mexico's Pacific coast, has no idea what the money being withheld from his paycheck is for. "I haven't asked," Mr. Tapia said.

For illegal immigrants, Social Security numbers are simply a tool needed to work on this side of the border. Retirement does not enter the picture.

"There will be a moment when I won't be able to continue working," Mr. Martínez acknowledges. "But that's many years off."

Mario Avalos, a naturalized Nicaraguan immigrant who prepares income tax returns for many workers in the area, including immigrants without legal papers, observes that many older workers return home to Mexico. "Among my clients," he said, "I can't recall anybody over 60 without papers."

No doubt most illegal immigrants would prefer to avoid Social Security altogether. As part of its efforts to properly assign the growing pile of unassigned wages, Social Security sends about 130,000 letters a year to employers with large numbers of mismatched pay statements.

Though not an intended consequence of these so-called no-match letters, in many cases employers who get them dismiss the workers affected. Or the workers - fearing that immigration authorities might be on their trail - just leave. 

Last February, for instance, discrepancies in Social Security numbers put an end to the job of Minerva Ortega, 25, from Zacatecas, in northern Mexico, who worked in the cheese department at a warehouse for Mike Campbell & Associates, a distributor for Trader Joe's, a popular discount food retailer with a large operation in California. 

The company asked dozens of workers to prove that they had cleared up or were in the process of clearing up the "discrepancy between the information on our payroll related to your employment and the S.S.A.'s records." Most could not.

Ms. Ortega said about 150 workers lost their jobs. In a statement, Mike Campbell said that it did not fire any of the workers, but Robert Camarena, a company official, acknowledged that many left.

Ms. Ortega is now looking for work again. She does not want to go back to the fields, so she is holding out for a better-paid factory job. Whatever work she finds, though, she intends to go on the payroll with the same Social Security number she has now, a number that will not jibe with federal records. 

With this number, she will continue paying taxes. Last year she paid about $1,200 in Social Security taxes, matched by her employer, on an income of $19,000.

She will never see the money again, she realizes, but at least she will have a job in the United States.

"I don't pay much attention," Ms. Ortega said. "I know I don't get any benefit."

Packages of false papers allow illegal immigrants to get employment and pay taxes, enriching the Social Security fund for other employees. 

Bill mandates diverse faculty
State senator wants university employees to reflect population
By Melissa Mixon
The Daily Texan, Top Stories 4/5/2005 
Serving the community of The University of Texas at Austin since 1900
Sent by Howard Shorr

A bill that would ensure public universities in Texas employ faculty and staff that are reflective of the state population was left pending Monday during a Senate subcommittee meeting on higher education.

State Sen. Juan Hinojosa, D-Mission, authored Senate Bill 1643 to require the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to develop a strategy for universities to use in recruiting and hiring minorities.

Universities would then be required to implement strategies for recruiting and retaining minority faculty and staff. Each year universities would be required to report to the board how they are implementing their developed strategies. 

In a statement read by state Sen. Judith Zaffirini, D-Laredo, Hinojosa said Hispanics make up 30 percent of the Texas population. Out of this number, he said Hispanics make up 4.8 percent of the faculty and 10 percent of the staff at institutions of higher education. His statement said blacks make up 10 percent of the Texas population while only 4 percent are employed as faculty and 2 percent as staff at universities in Texas.

In support of the bill, Javier Olguin, vice president of the Texas Association of Chicanos on Higher Education, said universities need faculty to reflect the state\'s demographics in order to achieve success.

"The demographics in the state of Texas are changing, and changing radically," said Olguin, who works as coordinator of student recruiting at Austin Community College. "One thing we know for a fact as educators and from many research studies conducted is when faculty and professional staff at universities reflect the population that they serve the chances for success increase considerably."

Also left pending was a bill that would allow the THECB to create measures that universities must meet to close the gaps by 2015.

State Sen. Florence Shapiro, R-Plano, filed Senate Bill 1228 and said the bill will "hold [universities\'] feet to the fire."

She said when the "Closing the Gaps" program was implemented in 2000, universities were not given guidelines on how to achieve in areas for 2015.';paragraph[1] = '"I think we\'ve allowed institutions to set their own goals, and often times they have not even begun to reach those goals, and 2015 is right around the corner," Shapiro said. "Texans need to know what their universities are doing." 

Shapiro said prior to a vote in support of tuition deregulation, one of the main concerns was having a system of accountability. In summer 2003, the state deregulated tuition, giving universities the power to set tuition rates.

Under her bill, the board will create guidelines for universities to increase enrollment by 500,000 and increase the number of four-year degrees to 50 percent. She said universities will be compared according to size, among other categories.

"If progress is not sufficient then the board must freeze the institution\'s ability to raise designated tuition over the cost of living," Shapiro said.

Another bill left pending by Shapiro would have the THECB and the Legislative Budget Board review accountability reporting requirements for universities. Shapiro said the two boards could consolidate some of the requirements in order to save universities money that is spent on compiling the information.

A bill filed by Committee Chairman state Sen. Royce West, D-Dallas, was sent to the full Senate subcommittee. His bill would simplify the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

Also left pending was a bill that would allow the THECB to create measures that universities must meet to close the gaps by 2015.

State Sen. Florence Shapiro, R-Plano, filed Senate Bill 1228 and said the bill will "hold [universities'] feet to the fire."

She said when the "Closing the Gaps" program was implemented in 2000, universities were not given guidelines on how to achieve in areas for 2015. 
A date to address pending bills has not been set.

"I think we've allowed institutions to set their own goals, and often times they have not even begun to reach those goals, and 2015 is right around the corner," Shapiro said. "Texans need to know what their universities are doing." 

A date to address pending bills has not been set. 




Hello Mimi, 
Below is the story that I submitted for "Chicken Soup for the Genealogist's Soul." David Deford said he liked the story, but won't know until closer to September if it will be printed in the book or not. Even if it's not, I'm still happy that I wrote it. Thank you so much for your email telling me about the book. You are a great "Cousin-friend." Love, Sylvia 

Finding Cousin Tony 

"Our ancestors choose one person in each family
to have an interest in genealogy so that we will not forget them."


Finding Cousin Tony

 Our ancestors choose one person in each family
to have an interest in genealogy so that we will not forget them.
Mother, isn’t he beautiful?" We were standing on the front porch and cuddled in my arms was the most beautiful baby boy I had ever seen. The year was 1946 and I was 11 years old. After that day I would not see him again for 54 years.
The baby was my first cousin, Tony Buquor, the son my favorite uncle, Tony and his young wife, Carmen. They were living in California when they met and married. But when Carmen found herself pregnant, they traveled to San Antonio, Texas, to be with family and await the birth of their first child.
We were delighted to have Tony and Carmen in our home. My uncle was so dashing and Carmen absolutely beautiful. I still have a picture memory of them kissing on our front porch. How romantic, I thought.
Our whole family was very excited especially my mother because her youngest brother was home again, and she was about to be an aunt for the first time.
My Aunt Carmen didn’t like San Antonio but my Uncle Tony wanted to stay, so one day she packed up the baby in a basket and left on the train for Chester, South Dakota, her home town to be with her family. We were devastated. The baby and Aunt Carmen were gone, just like that.
Over the years, we received letters and pictures of Tony from his maternal grandmother. His grandmother was so kind to keep us involved in his life. She wrote that he was a good student, what grades he received, and how much he liked school. She also told us he loved to play the piano. In his pictures he always had a big smile on his face. His grandmother explained how he thought his cousins were "cowboys" because they lived in Texas. Because my mother often sent him cowboy clothes, hats and boots for his birthdays or Christmas he thought we always wore clothing like this. The letters stopped coming when Tony was about 12 years old. Over the years, we always thought of our cousin somewhere far away in South Dakota.
From time-to-time I asked my mother if she had heard of him. One time she said that Carmen had remarried and Tony was living with his grandparents. She also said that his grandparents had changed his name. "What is his name now?" I asked. My mother said she couldn‘t remember Carmen‘s maiden name. "Oh me, they changed his name? Now we’ll never find him" I exclaimed.
Many years later after I retired, I began to devote more and more time to genealogy, and soon genealogy became an "obsession." I often thought of finding Tony but since my mother couldn’t remember Carmen’s parent’s name and had misplaced her letters, I didn’t know how to start.
One day in the spring of 2000, I sat at my desk to work on some genealogy files, but thought I’d check my email first. What a shock I had. There was a forwarded email from an "Internet Cousin" living in Austin, Texas, Ruth Rollow. (I call cousins I have met only through emails as "Internet Cousins," and I had yet to meet Ruth. She is my 2nd cousin; her grandmother and my grandfather were sister and brother.
The email, began, "I think this is yours." I read the email and screamed. Running outside into the back yard waving the email, I screamed to my husband, "I found my cousin Tony." I found my cousin Tony." Looking at me as if I had lost my mind, he asked, "What are you talking about?" After catching my breath I told Hank all about my cousin Tony and how we had "lost him."
It was amazing the path the email took. First, Tony and another "Internet Cousin," Susan Platter (A 3rd cousin; our great-grandfathers were brothers) who was born and still lives in England, somehow found each other through inquiries posted on the Internet. In Tony’s email to Susan, he stated that he didn’t know much about his father’s family. All he knew was that his father’s name is Anthony Alexander Buquor, his grandparents were Adolph and Alice Buquor, he had an aunt by the name of Hortense, and they were all from San Antonio. Through many years of research, Susan knew that the Buquor family was from San Antonio but didn’t recognize the given names in the email. She thought Ruth in Austin might know, so she immediately forwarded the email to her. Ruth thought she recognized these names, so she immediately forwarded the email to me. This all occurred on the same day.
After settling back down at my desk, I caught my breath and dialed Tony’s office number listed in the email. He was not there. I left a message with his secretary explaining who I was. I then called his home. No answer. I was beside myself anxious to talk to him. I sent him an email. In about 30 minutes the phone rang and it was Tony. When I heard a voice say, "Hello, "I’m Tony Buquor," the breath went out of me and I choked up. There was silence on both ends. I couldn’t talk. Finally I managed to say, "You have no idea I exist, but I held you in my arms when you were a newborn." He didn’t know how to respond. I introduced myself as his father’s niece, Hortense Buquor’s daughter and said, "I’ve wanted to find you since you were a baby." I think his response was: "For Heaven’s Sake."
We had about five conversations that day. I told Tony all about our family and how much my sister, brother and I idolized his father as children. I mentioned that we thought of him often and hoped one day to find him. We discussed the fact that we thought his grandparents had changed last name, and didn’t know how to find him. "No, they only changed my middle name from ‘Alexander’ to ‘Francis,’ not my last name" he said.  I’m sorry that I hadn’t tried to find him sooner.
Tony said he and his wife, Lou, had been high school sweethearts and now had two grown sons attending college; Scott, his eldest, in Boston and Mark in Chicago. When Tony retired as a Colonel in the Air Force he went into the ministry and ordained an Episcopalian Minister. His current position was Assistant to the Bishop in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Lou joined our conversations on the extension phone and it was wonderful getting to know her too.
I informed Tony that his father, grandmother and Uncle Sonny were all deceased, but that, my mother, his "Aunt Hortense, was still alive at age 88. "I know she will be anxious to talk to you but please give me a day or so to prepare her before you call," I said. Because of her advanced age I was afraid the shock would be too much for her.
We talked about genealogy and how I had been tracing our ancestors for almost 20 years. I told Tony and Lou that I would print a family history book showing his ancestry and send it to them. I completed the booklet immediately and put it in the mail the same week. When Tony received the booklet, he had two copies made, one for each of his sons.
Our family has been traced back to the 16th Century in Spain, France, the Canary Islands of Spain, and Belgium. They were early settlers in Acadia (now Nova Scotia), Louisiana, Tennessee and Texas. They were explorers, builders, farmers, soldiers, patriots, ground breakers, founders of towns, leaders of men, and just plain citizens. "We are overwhelmed and have not had time to digest this yet," he said when he called to thank me.
In one of our conversations, I asked Tony and Lou and their family would like to come to California for my son’s wedding. My son, Rey and his fiancé, Yevette, were planning their wedding in October. My mother, brother and sister and their families would be in California during that week and it would be a wonderful opportunity to meet them all. Tony, Lou and their two sons made the trip to meet family. What a tearful, emotional reunion it turned out to be.
When Tony walked through the front door of my home for the first time, I put my arms around him and said, "You’re a little bit bigger now than you were when I held you last." He just laughed. I don’t think he knew how to respond to that.
It was wonderful. Looking at Tony, my mother and I tried to find a resemblance to his father but there is none. Cousin Tony has white hair, a very fair complexion and sparkling blue eyes. My Uncle Tony had dark hair, olive complexion and brown eyes, like the rest of the family. Cousin Tony took after his mother’s Scandinavian family.
In April of 2001, Tony and Lou traveled to San Antonio for a family reunion. Actually we had two reunions; one at my sister Lydia and her husband, Joe’s ranch in Kerrville, Texas, and one at my brother Rene and his wife, Marilyn’s home in San Antonio. Of course, my husband Hank and I came from California. We met Ruth Rollow for the first time. She and her husband George made the trip from Austin. She gave Tony a binder with certificates and pictures of our great-grandfather, P. L. Buquor, who had been mayor of San Antonio during the Civil War and a Texas Ranger. Our cousin Mary Jane and her husband, Alan Scarboro, came from Kansas, and my niece, Lisa Penaloza, came from Colorado. Tony’s mother’s family is small, and at our reunions we had as many as 25 close family members at any one time. I’m sure he was flabbergasted at times.
Early one morning six of us piled into Rene’s van and we took off to give Tony and Lou a tour of San Antonio, his father‘s hometown. We took them to his father’s gravesite first. He prayed a few words over the grave when we gave him time to be alone. We drove by the house his grandparents lived in when they were alive and the house he came to when he was first born. We then went to the San Fernando Cathedral, the church his ancestors (the Canary Islanders) built after settling in San Antonio in 1731. Tony told me he was especially moved being in the very church and taking holy water from the font where his ancestors worshiped.
On another day we introduced Tony and Lou to the Hispanic culture of San Antonio in which we were raised. Fiesta Week was going on, so we went to a few of the celebrations and even danced in the street at the Mexican Market Square. We didn’t need to introduce him to Mexican food as he already had his favorites.
Before Tony and Lou left, Tony made sure he spent some quality one-on-one time with his Aunt Hortense. He had a lot of questions. My mother enjoyed telling Tony stories about his dad when they were young. He told me when he and Lou got ready to leave, that finding his father’s family made him "feel complete." I cried when I heard this as I had no idea of how he must have felt growing up without a father. It made me very happy to realize that I played a part in that.
In October of 2002 my mother turned 90 and Lydia, Rene and I gave her a big birthday party. As per her wishes, she had a real San Antonio Fiesta complete with mariachis. In attendance were over 100 family members and friends. Tony, Lou, Scott and Mark came to San Antonio for the celebration. Although my mother was the guest of honor, Tony, Lou, Scott and Mark were certainly treated like celebrities. I was proud to introduce Tony and his family and tell told the story over and over of how we had found him after more than 54 years.
I will always be indebted to Susan Platter, my cousin "across the Pond," and Ruth Rollow from Austin for bringing Tony back into my life, and equally thankful that Susan introduced me to her niece, Carolyn.
"Hi, I‘m your cousin, Carolyn Baum," she said when I answered the door. Immediately I saw a family resemblance and felt a kinship. You do look like a "Buquor." After getting to know each other better, we invited Carolyn to stay with us while remodeling her family home close by. She stayed with us off and on for almost a year and this cemented our relationship. We have become very, very close friends. Now, I cannot imagine my life without her, or Tony, Lou and their boys for that matter. I had no idea when I started delving into genealogy that it would bring such life-changing rewards.
Another cousin, Sonya, came back into my life just a few months ago after not seeing each other in 51 years. The last time I saw Sonya was in 1954 at my wedding. She was 13 years old and my junior bridesmaid. We lost touch soon after her family moved to California. Through a genealogy association I belong to in San Antonio, I made the connection through a mutual cousin who keeps in touch with her. When Sonya and I talked on the phone, there was a lot of -- "Do you remember when…."?
My interest in genealogy has not only allowed me to reconstruct our family history to share with family members, but to meet unknown relatives and reconnect with long-lost loved ones. It is unbelievable how this passion has changed my life as well as the lives of others. My love of genealogy has rewarded me many, many times in so many ways, and I look forward to the discoveries to be made in the future.
One day years ago while researching at the San Antonio Library, a lady I met said: "Our ancestors choose one person in each family to have an interest in genealogy so that we will not forget them." I am grateful that I was chosen.

Sylvia Villarreal Bisnar

Sylvia Villarreal Bisnar was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, where her family began a new life as early as 1721.  She is the mother of five children and 11 grandchildren and worked as a legal office manager, executive secretary and medical/legal word processor.  She began researching her ancestry so that her children and grandchildren would know where they came from and be proud of their heritage.  Sylvia and her husband, Hank, have been full-time RVers for the past two years and travel extensively.   Her greatest joy was visiting the homeland of her ancestors in Nova Scotia, Louisiana as well as Texas.  Sylvia began writing shortly after retirement in 1997 and is currently working on a book of a photographic safari to Africa where she and Hank were married at age 62.   Besides a passion for genealogy, she enjoys reading, knitting, photography and traveling.  You may reach Sylvia at

To be Bilingual,  a strong asset in the new millennium

Dr. Maceri's articles have appeared in "The Los Angeles Times," "The Washington Times," "The San Francisco Chronicle," "Hispanic Magazine," "Montreal Gazette," "The Japan Times," "La Opinión," "The Korea Herald," "L'Unità," and elsewhere.

Chris Loughran believes that "to be bilingual " will become a strong asset in the new millennium and that's why her son Ryan has been going to a dual-language school since Kindergarten. Ryan is now 11 and he keeps on honing his bilingual skills in Junior High School.

A recent report published by Goldman Sachs points out that Ryan is on the right track to succeed in the global economy. The report sings the praises of dual-language schools, which teach academic subjects in two languages. The report stressed that if young Americans wish to take leadership roles, they must have skills and knowledge of "languages, geography and cultures."

Although foreign language teachers have been saying the same things for years, it's nice to see an investment company reiterate the same ideas. Sadly, American education is still focusing on English monolingualism although some things are beginning to change. The number of dual-language schools championed by Goldmans Sachs is small but growing rapidly. There are now about 300 dual language schools nationwide, more than double the number of 1995. Although the most typical combination is English-Spanish, others involving Asian and European languages are also available.

These dual-language programs are very popular and waiting lists are very common in school districts that make them available. Typically, they exist in communities which have sizeable immigrant populations or in university towns where multilingual education is highly prized.

The federal government encourages dual-language schools and provides funds to implement these programs. San Bernardino schools, in Southern California, for example, received $1,375,000 over five years to implement their dual-language program.

The advantages of bilingualism become evident in the entire education of students. Students educated in more than one language develop a mental agility that monolinguals lack. One of these advantages has to do with something researchers call a "plasticity" of the brain. 

Bilingual children recognize that just as there are two ways to say something, there are also two ways to learn and solve problems. This mental agility is evident in learning foreign languages. Just as it's easier for someone who knows how to play a musical instrument to learn a second and a third one, thus it is also easier for someone who knows a second language to learn a third, or even a fourth one.

Studies at Dartmouth University and George Mason University found that kids educated in dual-language schools outperform monolingual children on standardized tests. Students in dual-language schools did better than those in traditional bilingual education and those educated only in English.

The benefits of bilingualism become evident as kids grow into adults and will affect their pocketbook even in the US, a country in which English is clearly king. In Florida, Hispanic families speaking only English averaged a yearly income of $32,000, while those speaking both Spanish and English had incomes of $50,376, according to a study conducted by the University of Florida. Yet, naysayers exist. Ron Unz, a California software entrepreneur who spearheaded anti-bilingual education initiatives in California, Arizona, and Massachusetts, stated that dual-language schools sound like "bilingual education" with a "different name." Yet, bilingual education and dual-language programs are very different. The first approach tries to teach school subjects in the immigrant kids' native language to ease the transition into English-only education. Dual-language schools, on the other hand, aim to make students fluent in two languages regardless of their home language.

Unz tried also to eliminate bilingual education in Colorado but he failed because many parents were concerned that the initiative would have also done away with dual-language programs and deprived their kids of the opportunity to become bilingual. Colorado's parents were wise. If your school district does not offer a dual-language program, contact your school board and request t it. It will not only be a great investment for your kids but for the rest of the country as well. 


Sacramento, CA – The National Council of La Raza (NCLR), the largest national Latino civil rights and advocacy organization in the U.S., today hailed a Rand Corporation study released yesterday which shows that every dollar spent on public preschool for all four-year-olds results in two dollars of economic benefit to the state of California such as reduced costs for remedial education and increased worker productivity. Latinos now account for nearly 47% of all three- and four-year-olds in California.

“If Latino kids are not succeeding in school, then the school system in California is not succeeding. Key to reversing that trend is a preschool system that works for all children. NCLR and its affiliates are dedicated to helping the California preschool system become a success story that can serve as a model for other states,” said Janet Murguia, NCLR President and CEO. 

NCLR and the Early Care and Education Task Force of the California NCLR Affiliate Network (CNAN) – eight affiliated community organizations in California that have developed innovative early child education programs for Latino children – are working with the California Preschool for All campaign, a broad coalition supporting preschool for all. The coalition advocates for increasing the number of bilingual teachers and other personnel trained to work with students learning English; requiring preschool programs to train and involve parents in decision-making; and allowing for public/private center-based and home-based preschool, including programs run by community-based organizations. 

“Teachers who have the training and experience to work with children learning English can help them not only master the language, but also gain the reading, counting, and social skills that they will need for kindergarten,” continued Murguia. “Preschools that are based within our neighborhoods can get parents, and the whole community, involved in their children’s education. Engaging parents early will prepare them to be effective advocates throughout their children’s educational careers.”

“The new Rand report is exciting in that it shows that California can profit economically through a greater investment in preschool,” said Murguia. “Preschool for All offers tremendous social, economic, and academic rewards that we can all support and benefit from in the future.” 

Members of the California NCLR Affiliate Network Early Care and Education Task Force include California Association for Bilingual Education (CABE); Chicano Federation of San Diego County, Inc.; Community Child Care Council of Santa Clara County; Council for the Spanish Speaking (El Concilio); MAAC Project; Para Los Niños; Parent Institute for Quality Education (PIQE); and The Unity Council.

For more information on NCLR and the CNAN Early Care and Education Task Force’s work on Preschool for All in California, please contact Alexandra Jost or Miriam Calderón at (202) 785-1670, or Ana Gámiz in the NCLR Sacramento office at (916) 448-9852, ext. 206. 

New Development in Mestizo Psychology: Theory, Research, and Application
by Manuel Ramirez III, University of Texas-Austin
Occasional Paper No. 46, January 1999
Article from Mexican American Psychologist
Sent by Willis Papillion

[[The Introduction to the following study. Please go to the site for the full text.]]


The present conference on Chicano Psychology marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of Chicano/Mestizo Psychology. I introduced the term "mestizo psychology" in my book entitled Psychology of the Americas: Mestizo Perspectives in Personality and Mental Health in 1983, but the birth of Chicano Psychology dates back to 1973, when the first conference on Chicano Psychology was held at the University of California at Riverside (Ramirez and Castaneda, 1973).

I am frequently asked by my White colleagues: "Why propose a psychology specific to one group of people? After all, psychology is a science and as such should be universal and applicable to everyone." My answer is that there is a need for a Chicano/Mestizo Psychology for three reasons: (a) Mainstream psychology does not reflect the psychological reality of Latinos and other peoples of color; (b) mainstream psychology does not embody the spirit of the movement for social justice characterized by the African American, Chicano, and Native American-Indian civil rights movements; and (c) Mexican psychology and established Latin American psychology are not based on the socio-historico-political realities of Latinos in the Americas, but are mere translations of Anglo/Western European Psychology from English into Spanish

This paper presents the historical origins, the tenets, and a summary of recent developments in Chicano/Mestizo psychology. It argues for the need to continue the struggle to ensure that a psychological science that is truly Mestizo and multicultural at its core continues to evolve and to survive.

About the Author: Manuel Ramirez III
Born and raised Texas along the United State-Mexico border. He received a BA in Psychology and a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Texas. He has taught at California State University-Sacramento, Rice University, Pitzer College of the Claremont Colleges, the University of California-Riverside, and the University of California-Santa Cruz. He is currently a professor of psychology at the University of Texas-Austin and Clinical Professor of Psychology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center-Dallas. His current research interests are in multicultural psychotherapy, the relationship of acculturation to mental health and family dynamics, and the relationship of multicultural orientations to life and cognitive flexibility to success in university environments. He was named distinguished minority researcher by the American Educational Research Association and the Texas Psychological Association.

Ramirez, Manuel, III, (Ph.D.) "New Developments in Mestizo Psychology: Theory, Research, and Application," JSRI Occasional Paper #46, The Julian Samora Research Institute, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, 1999.

Table Of Contents

What is Mestizo Psychology? History of Mestizo Psychology: Pioneers Conferences on Chicano Psychology Recent Developments in Mestizo Theory Recent Developments in Research Recent Developments in Practice Conclusions Appendix References 

What is Mestizo Psychology?
It is a psychology in the tradition of W.E.B. DuBois and George I. Sanchez. It is a psychology of liberation, a psicologia de la gente, a multicultural/multiracial psychology that emphasizes freedom, empowerment, and respectful individualism.

The tenets of Mestizo Psychology are as follows:

1. The person is an open system.
The person is inseparable from the physical and social environments in which he/she lives. Traits, characteristics, skills, perceptions of the world, and philosophies of life evolve by meeting the environmental challenges the person encounters. Information and knowledge coming from others and from the environment are seen as modifying, incorporating, and influencing the psychodynamics of the person. The individual modifies and affects others and the environment as he/she interacts with these elements. In this ecological context, person-environment fit is the primary criterion for determining the quality of human adaptation.

2. The spiritual world holds the key to destiny, personal identity, and life mission.
Spiritualism serves to link the individual with supernatural forces in the cosmos, and can influence individual and group destiny. The emphasis on development is both on achieving control over the supernatural by attaining self-control and self-knowledge and also on enlisting the help of a person or spirit who can mediate between the supernatural and the individual. A strong identity with the group to whom the individual belongs is also important, because the group can provide access to knowledge concerning the maintenance of a proper balance between the individual and the supernatural.

Those persons who are believed to have special knowledge ­ access to supernatural powers or possession of such powers ­ play an important role in personality development and functioning. Curanderos, espiritistas, shamans, and the clergy all help individuals in their search for self-knowledge and identity and also treat and advise those who are experiencing problems of adjustment. In addition, Native Americans believe that by achieving communication with the spiritual world, a person can have a vision or a dream that can provide him/her with an adult identity, a life mission, and a spirit-helper to facilitate the attainment of life goals.

Religion is also perceived as playing an important role in achieving harmony with and protection from negative supernatural forces. Not only does religion provide models with which to identify and codes of conduct that facilitate the achievement of meaning in life and death, but it also provides confession as a means of achieving reconciliation with the self and the supernatural.

3. Community identity and responsibility to the group are of central importance in development.
The individual is socialized to develop a strong sense of responsibility to the group. The person then comes to feel that at all times he or she is the representative of the group. "I am the people" is a statement often made by members of North American Indian groups. LaFramboise (1983) observes that a central value of Native American cultures is the importance of close ties to the homeland and extended family. She reports that this value is inculcated in children by having the entire community participate in the socialization process. Identification with family and community is also encouraged through extended family involvement in modeling and instruction in cultural traditions. This mode of socialization is most evident in the powwows (Parfit and Harvey, 1994), which are held regularly by the Indian nations of North American. One of the functions served by powwows is to maintain a sense of community by teaching traditions and values to the young.

From the mestizo worldview, the individual is seen as embedded in the context of the family group. Recognition of the important role of family identity or familism in the social sciences and helping professions has been one of the major contributions of the native cultures of the Americas and the world.

4. Emphasis is on liberation, justice, freedom, and empowerment.
The history of the cultures of mixed ethnic peoples is one of struggle against political and economic oppression, and the stories surrounding these struggles are important in the education and socialization of children. The heroes of these struggles are held up as models for young children and adolescents.

Poverty, human misery, racism, repression of individual rights, and equality of opportunity are all visible realities for people of mixed heritage. These also affect the socialization of individuals; they are the principal reason for the pragmatic orientation of a mestizo, multicultural/multiracial psychology.

The Indian nations of North American have influenced the development of mestizo psychology because Native American societies are free of rulers, slavery, and social classes based on land ownership, unlike many European societies. Most of the early European ethnographers and philosophers who described American Indian societies described them as just and equitable compared to the societies they had known in Europe (Weatherford 1988).

5. Total development of abilities and skills is achieved through self-challenge.
A Native American belief is that self-challenge and endurance of pain, hardship, hunger, and frustration encourage the development of the individual's full potential. Children are encouraged to seek out competitive situations, and the goal of education is the full development of capacity. Lee (1976) has observed that Native Americans were historically taught "to engage themselves in the elements - to meet them with an answering strength. If a torrential rain fell, they learned to strip and run out in it, however cool the weather. Little boys were trained to walk with men for miles through heavy snow drifts in the face of biting winds, and to take pride in the hardship endured" (p. 53). One of the principal goals of self-challenge is still to learn restraint and self-control. LaFramboise (1983) reports that respect is accorded to individuals in Native American culture who exhibit self-discipline.

In the Mestizo view, personality is the sum total of the experiences of coping with life's challenges and problems. In addition, personality is also reflective of the changes ­ environmental and social, as well as personal ­ that have been encountered in life. The life history of every person is a series of lessons resulting from successes and failures in meeting life's diverse challenges. The nature and quality of experiences with life challenges and change determine the degree to which the person is open to and accepting of pluralism and diversity in his/her environment. The person is either open to, and accepting of, diversity, viewing it as the key to surviving rapid and radical change, or he/she is protective, self-centered, and easily threatened by diversity and change.

6. The search for self-knowledge, individual identity, and life meaning is a primary goal.
Both the Mayas and the Nahuatl-speaking peoples of the Valley of Mexico historically believed that an individual comes to earth without a face, without an identity. Identities were achieved through socialization and education. In order to develop identity, it was believed, a person had to learn self-control. Achievement of identity through self-control and personal strength was believed to lead to development of free will. What the Nahuas called self-admonishment, which meant to know for oneself what one should be, was the major goal of education. Leon-Portilla (1963) observes that the Nahuas, even more than the Greeks, arrived at the relationship between identity and change of self-image; they conceived of the self as being in constant motion and change.

7. Duality of origin and life in the universe and education within the family plays a central role in personality development.
The psychological concept of the duality of origin and life emerged from the cultures of Indian nations of Central and South America and the Caribbean. Polar opposites - male and female, religion and war, poetry and math - were often fused in the cultures of the Nahuas and the Mayas. In the religion of the Nahuas, the god Ometeotl represents the dual nature of the culture. Ometeotl is androgynous - both masculine and feminine, both father and mother of the gods. The duality for the culture is also reflected in the many male/female deities contained in the religion of the Nahuas. Duality was further present in other aspects of the Nahua and Mayan cultures, for example, the association of science with mysticism reflected in the time theory of the Mayas and the calendaric diagnoses of the Nahuas.

In addition, these cultures saw education as the key to the proper development of the personality and of free will. Education was believed to be the responsibility of both the parents and the philosophers (tlamatinime). Parents educated the child up to about age 15, at which time he or she entered a school to be taught by the tlamatinime. Education was formalized and mandatory.

What is Mestizo Psychology? | History of Mestizo Psychology: Pioneers | Conferences on Chicano Psychology | Recent Developments in Mestizo Theory | Recent Developments in Research | Recent Developments in Practice | Conclusions | Appendix | References


The Case of a Lifetime
by Joel Russell
April 2005, HISPANIC BUSINESS Magazine
Sent by Rafael Ojeda 

Brigida "Bridget" Benitez spent six long years working on a pair of cases for the University of Michigan admissions office. When the Supreme Court finally settled the matter in June 2003, it marked what the New York Times called "the most important statement on affirmative action in a quarter century." Plaintiff and former University of Michigan president Lee Bollinger declared it "a great victory for American higher education, and for the nation as a whole."

At issue in the cases – involving three white college applicants who claimed discrimination because race was considered in the application process – was whether diversity at public universities was a compelling state interest and whether the specific Michigan programs were "narrowly tailored" to address discrimination, as the Supreme Court had previously required. 

Ultimately, although the Michigan cases yielded a split decision – striking down an undergraduate numerical system. But by upholding the university law school's system, the court clearly upheld the principle of a compelling public interest for diversity in education.

"It was a once-in-a-lifetime case," says Ms. Benitez, partner at the law firm Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr in Wash-ington, D.C. "I wanted to protect the opportunity for millions of people to get a college education."

Ms. Benitez's influential role in the nationally significant cases helped propel her selection as Hispanic Business magazine's 2005 Woman of the Year, honoring the national impact of her accomplishments and her long-term commitment to progress in the Hispanic community, as well as her leadership, innovation, vision, and character.

John Payton, a partner at Wilmer Cutler and one of the most prominent African-American attorneys in the nation, recalls asking Ms. Benitez to join the University of Michigan cases soon after the firm took them in 1997. 

At the time, he says, people considered affirmative action a lost cause. The consensus opinion was that it was going to die, so the attorneys should "just make the noble arguments and let the end come," Mr. Payton says. "But we were determined to talk around that argument. We were in this to win, not just to play it out."

With Ms. Benitez as second chair, the legal team set out to develop new arguments about the real-world benefits of affirmative action, rather than relying on the idealism of social justice. The litigators assembled a massive body of evidence from psychologists, demographers, sociologists, educators, and historians.

"We presented concrete data on the benefits of diversity in education," Ms. Benitez says. "The experts came together, all to tell the story of how diversity helps all students."

The court quickly grasped the argument. In her opinion for the majority, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor wrote: "These benefits are not theoretical but real, as major American businesses have made clear that the skills needed in today's increasingly global marketplace can only be developed through exposure to widely diverse people, cultures, ideas, and viewpoints."

One example of the arguments presented by Ms. Benitez and her team involved affirmative action in the military. During the Vietnam War, the Army had an all-white officer corps while the enlisted men were disproportionately minority. In combat conditions, the racial tensions contributed to what the military officially called "loss of unit cohesion." "What that means is that the soldiers were sometimes attacking their leaders and killing them," Mr. Payton explains.

To remedy the situation, the military worked to achieve racial and ethnic integration in the officer corps. That included recruiting minorities to the military academies and insisting on a diverse student body in ROTC (Reserve Officers' Training Corps) programs at colleges and universities across the country. The lawyers applied the same logic to civil professions, particularly law.

Ms. Benitez worked on the politically charged cases from their inception at a federal district court in Michigan, through the appeals courts, and all the way to oral arguments before the Supreme Court. The cases put Ms. Benitez, a prominent Republican, on the same side of the issue with traditionally Democratic groups in favor of using gender and ethnicity as a factor in college admission, an idea opposed by some conservative Republicans. 

But in six years of working the case, the issue of partisanship never once came up, says the Democratic-leaning Mr. Payton. "There's a recognition in Washington that there's a need on important public issues for bipartisanship," Ms. Benitez says. "I think diversity in public education is tremendously important." 

"We've had a number of high-profile Republicans, like former Secretary of State Colin Powell, who have come out in favor of the principles of affirmative action," adds Cari Dominguez, chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and a friend of Ms. Benitez. "I think there are many Republicans with similar views."

When the Supreme Court handed down its decision, praise rolled in from across the political spectrum. Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle called it a "clear victory for all Americans." President George W. Bush congratulated "the Supreme Court for recognizing the value of diversity on our nation's campuses."

As the first Hispanic female partner at her firm, Ms. Benitez has a personal interest in the issue of diversity. Women now account for nearly half (48.3 percent) of law school graduates, and they make up 40 percent of the legal professionals in the private sector, a significant gain from 14 percent in 1975, according to a 2003 study by the EEOC. But Hispanics represent only about 3 percent of legal professionals, the study found, far below the Hispanic proportion of the population at 13.5 percent.

The numbers shrink at the top of the profession. Research from the National Association of Law Placement (NALP) based on 2004 data found that in Washington, D.C., only 4.9 percent of the law partners at major firms were people of color. Nationally, the figure came in even lower at 4.3 percent. In terms of gender equality, women accounted for only 17 percent of the nation's law partners. "Although the presence of women and attorneys of color at firms has increased each year since 1993, the total change since 1993 has only been marginal," the NALP observed.

"It's a rough road," Ms. Benitez concedes. "All I can tell you is I started at Wilmer Cutler in the second year of my practice, and I was the first Hispanic woman partner. Today, I'm the only Hispanic partner."  "Bridget has been a pioneer, and she has handled it marvelously," exudes Mr. Payton. "And being a pioneer is never easy – I don't care what people say."

For her part, Ms. Benitez offers a simple remedy for prejudice and discrimination: excellence on the job. "You have to know that people are going to make negative assumptions about you, and you have to be ready to prove them wrong," she says. "When people make those assumptions, make sure the opposing side is the one that gets the surprise. The one way to break down barriers is top-level performance."

Ms. Benitez graduated from Boston College Law School, where she was a National Hispanic Scholar and served as editor-in-chief of the law review. She worked for two years at a firm in Boston before joining Wilmer Cutler in the nation's capital. Besides the Michigan cases, Ms. Benitez has handled legal matters for clients including Citigroup, Sears, Pulitzer, American Home Products, and Qwest Communications. In 2003 she obtained a multimillion-dollar arbitration settlement for the federal government's Overseas Private Investment Corp. (OPIC) for a deal in Egypt. 

In her practice she also leads teams of attorneys to conduct internal investigations of Fortune 500 corporations. Here her bilingual and cultural skills come to the fore. Ms. Benitez has organized multinational investigations in conjunction with local lawyers in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and other venues in Latin America. 

She often works from home before coming into the office, where she typically can stay until 7 p.m. or later. Somehow, she finds time for community and pro bono work – another key consideration in the Woman of the Year Award. 

Her connection to the Hispanic community played a role in her most recent volunteer work. Last year, as president of the Hispanic Bar Association for the District of Columbia, she organized a Spanish-speaking legal aid clinic. According to the Brookings Greater Washington Research Program, the proportion of the population with limited English-language skills has increased from 6 percent to 9 percent since 1990, and most of these immigrants are Hispanic. Ms. Benitez addressed 
the issue by working closely with Court of Appeals Judge Vanessa Ruiz and social service organizations CARECEN (Central American Resource Center) and Ayuda. 

"As an attorney, I'm not sure she has any weaknesses. She has an unbelievable personal presence. She has substantial leadership skills," says Mr. Payton. "And all that has possibilities outside the firm. That's why she is head of legal organizations." 

Ms. Benitez currently is on the American Bar Association's Standing Committee on Election Law Advisory Commission and the D.C. Bar's Pro Bono Committee. She is vice-president of communications for the Republican National Lawyers Association. In addition to her presidency at the D.C. Hispanic Bar, she has served in the past as vice-president for the Hispanic National Bar Association, co-chair of the D. C. Women's Bar Association Litigation Forum, and as a member of the Advisory Committee for the Minority Corporate Counsel Association.

Mr. Payton notes that the law's tradition of public service has frayed in recent years as firms demand more billable hours from their employees. But for Ms. Benitez, community involvement is a natural part of her culture and career. Last 
year, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund gave her its Excellence in the Legal Profession Award. 

"The legal profession is an excellent career choice for those interested in the great debates that go on in our society," Ms. Benitez advises. "It allows you to balance your profession with public service, and I value that." 







Hay versiones un tanto disparatadas sobre el origen de este linaje, manejadas por fantasiosos genealogistas, pero apartándonos de ellas, lo que sí está comprobado es su origen toponímico, ya que tomó su nombre del lugar así llamado, hoy perteneciente al ayuntamiento de San Vicente de la Barquera, en la provincia de Santander, antiguamente incluido en las Asturias de Santillana. Sobre una roca, aún puede apreciarse una torre donde campean las annas de esta estirpe.

Del solar primitivo dimanaron diferentes ramas que se establecieron en Oviedo, Reinosa, Celada de Marlantes, Hoz de Solorzano y el Valle de Peron derivando de ellas otras que se asentaron en México, Buenos Aires, Cartagena de Indias y Andalucíó Una ilustre rama se denominó Duque de Estrada.

Los Estrada dieron variados personajes a través de varies siglos, destacándose entre el Don Gonzalo García de Estrada, conquistador de Córdoba y Señr de Frías y Salazar, la, que en su esposa doña Maria Martinez tuvo a don Sancho González de Estrada, Arzobispo de Sevilla, y a don Femando González de Estrada, Obispo de Calahorra; frey Luis Pérez de Estrada, Comendador de San Julián en la Orden de Alcántara; frey Suero de Clavero de la misma en 1334; don Alonso de Estrada, uno de los primeros Gobernadores de la Nueva España, don Antonio de Estrada Manrique y Tejada, Colegial San Bartolomé de Salamanca, del Consejo General de la Inquisición, Oidor de la Real Chancillería de Granada, Regente del Consejo de Navarra y Obispo de Palencia a principios del siglo XVI. 

En la Orden Militar de Santiago ingresaron:

Don Antonio Estrada y Hemández Harnero. Concejo de Onis, 1634; don Lope de Estrada y Urbina, natural de Cartagena de Indias, onginario de Asturias, 1635, y don Bartolomé de Estrada y Valdés, natural de Oviedo y oriundo del Valle de Peñon, 1665, y don Bartolomé de Estrada, natural de Oviedo, ya citado como santiaguista en 1665, Gobemador y Capitán General de la Nueva España, y de doña Ana Niño de Córdoba, de Puebia de los Angeles; nieto del ovetense don Antonio de Estrada y de doña Isabel Ramirez Jove y Valdés.

Los hermanos de Bernardo y don Diego Martin de Estrada y Angulo, nacidos en Cartagena de Indias, hoy Colombia, ingresaron en la Orden de Alcántara el año 1705, demostrando ser hijos de don Jerónimo de Estrada, natural de la parroquia de Bimenes, en Capitán de Infantería, a quien Felipe IV otorgó en 1704 el título de Marqués de trada, y de doña Juana de Angulo, así como nieto patemo de don Bemardo de de la misma naturaleza y de doña María Fernández de Ciriero.

La misma merced les me concedida en 1538 y 1686, respectivamente, a don Juan de Manrique, Colegial Mayor de Oviedo, natural de Valladolid, y a don Cosme de Estrada Y Nave de Pedraza, de Talavera de la Reina, Toledo.

En la Real y Distinguida Orden de Carlos III, fueron admitidos:

Don Nicolás Estrada y Posada Balbín, nacido en Peón, Asturias, en 1807, Jefe de a de la Real Armada Española, hijosdalgo notorio de casa y solar conocido; don iego de Estrada y Lopez Pintado, en 1783, natural de Sevilla, Marqués de Casa Estrac originario de la ciudad de León, y los hermanos don Luis y don Francisco Estrada y de Campos, de Madrid y Valladolid, respectivamente, en 1845 y 1843, oriundos de Segovia, que a veces utilizaron el apellido Alvarez de Estrada, que hoy llevan los Marqueses de Camarines.

Don Alonso de Estrada, natural de Ciudad Real donde era Regidor Perpetuo e hi natural del Rey don Femando "el Catolico", file un controvertido personaje de su época que peleó en Flandes y la Isia de Sicilia y durante el alzamiento de los comuneros de Castill siendo Almirante de Malaga y Corregidor de Caceres. Llegóa la Nueva España con Corté en 1523, participando en numerosas conquistas que Ie valieron grandes riquezas, siendo nombrado, juntamente con don Rodrigo de Albomoz, Teniente de Gobemador del conquistador. Murió en el ano 1530, dejando varios hijos de su esposa doña Mariana Gutiérrez Flórez de la Caballería, con quien había casado en su tierra natal.

Don Francisco de Estrada, natural de Sevilla, grumes de Colón en su cuarto viaje, llegó a la Nueva España con Narváez, participando en la conquista de Pánuco y la ciudad i Tenochtitlán y otras acetones militares. En premiosa sus servicios, el Emperador Carlos V otorgó en 1539 el siguiente escudo de armas:

En campo de azur, un puente de piedra de dos ojos sobre ondas de agua de azur plata, sumando una torre de oro aclarada de azur. Bordura de gules, con siete veneras i plata, en su mitad diestra, y siete armiños de sable, en su mitad siniestra.

Las armas primitivas y puras del linaje se describen asi:


Don Antonio de Estrada, fue designado Tesorero de la Real Hacienda de Acapulc0 en 1627; don Bartolomé de Estrada Gobemador del territorio de la Nueva Vizcaya, en 1677; en este mismo ano, don Andrés de Estrada Corregidor de Zacatecas; don Pedro Ignacio Estrada, obtuvo el nombramiento de Alcalde Mayor de Metitlán de la Sierra, en 1707, y don José Ignacio de Estrada, el de Regidor de Córdoba, Veracruz, en 1784.

De una rama procedente del lugar de San Martín, en Asturias, fue tronco en México don Manuel García de Estrada y Trespalacios, mayorazgo de su casa en la indicac población, que en el siglo XVIII pasó a establecerse en el hoy Estado de Michoacán, siendo dueño de la hacienda de San José Apeo y las Minas de San Ignacio, en la jurisdicción de Maravatío. Tuvo el cargo de Alguacil Mayor del Santo Oficio de la Inquisición y de si bodas con doña Maria Ignacia Duarte y Nocedal y doña María Isabel de Mafra, dejo dilatada sucesion que aún pervive en nuestros día, especialmente en la ciudad de Morelia.

Information above from BLASONES Y APELLIDOS by Fernando Muñnoz Altea. (c) 2002
For information on obtaining a copy of the 828 book, contact or at P.O. Box 11232, El Paso, Texas 79995  or by contacting Armando Montes

For information on Estrada families in California, click.
For pedigrees of Estrada families, go to

Heráldica y Genealógia Hispana
Sent by Bill Carmena

Armorial:  En nuestro armorial disponemos de más de 65,000 escudoes de armas de LINAJES ESPAÑOLES, que puedes consultar completamente gratis. No tienes más que introducir el apellido deseado en el buscador. En caso de que no aparezca información sobre algún linaje, contacta con nosotros y nestro equip de investigación encontrará la respuesta.

Galvez Patriots

Gabriel Garcia Productions
The Relations Between Spain and the United States


The movie cast from Timeless

Inspired by historical events, Timeless recounts a chapter of American history which is little known: the contributions of Hispanics in the American Revolution. It is the first film shot in Spanish and English in Washington, DC, with an award winning cast & crew.         

Synopsis: Circa 1781, during the American Revolution, a Spanish envoy sent by Carlos III, king of Spain, arrives on the new continent bringing money and support to General George Washington and the rebels.  His mission is sidetracked by love ...

[[ Producer/Director Gabriel Garcia said the 30 minute film is historically correct.  The romance was added to raise interest among viewers.  He goal was to provoke interest among viewers, to stimulate further research on the contributions of Hispanics in the American Revolution. ]]

The Relations Between Spain and the United States:
Lousiana and the Middle West Territory (1763 - 1795)

By Antonio R. Peña

This article analyses the political, military and social relations that were established between Spain and the United States on the middle ground territories since 1763 to 1795. A great European power and a new republic fought over those unpopulated territories and the relations between them oscillated between cooperation and confrontation. Two opposite conceptions and political and socioeconomic models clashed and crushed in the same place.

Key words: middle ground territories, Continental Congress, Continental army, Western Conventions, Virginia Assembly, Louisiana, Mississippi, Spanish government, Great Britain, France, James Wilkinson, José Bernardo Gálvez, Esteban Miró, Conde de Aranda, Floridablanca, George Washington, State Board.


Our main focus at Archiving Early America is primary source material from 18th Century America-- all displayed digitally. A unique array of original newspapers, maps and writings come to life on your screen just as they appeared to our forebears more than 200 years ago. 

As you browse through these original documents, you will find it easier to understand America's early residents, those who shaped and created the early Republic. These archival materials-- forming as they do an historical record of a significant time in the American experience-- are displayed in their original formats so they can be read and examined detail. 

This unique resource is made available at no charge for personal use only. All of the materials found here are proprietary and protected under the copyright laws. Their use for any commercial or for-profit purpose....or their display or reproduction on any other media or format (such as another Internet site, distance learning course, an intranet or CD-ROM) is strictly prohibited and a violation of the copyright laws (see Rules of Use). However, commercial use of the images at this site or any of the images in our library is available through license. For information, please see The Early American Digital Library. 

Of special interest is the Maryland Gazette containing George Washington's Journal of his historic trip to the Ohio Valley. It is the only original copy privately held. Because of its historic significance and its rarity (most Americans are unaware of its existence), the March 21 and 28, 1754 issues of The Gazette can be viewed here in their entirety-- exactly as Washington wrote it, down to the last comma, apostrophe and period. It is available in the Milestone Documents section at this site. 

The availability to view these historical documents on-line 24 hours a day, literally at one's leisure, would have been considered no small miracle a few years ago. Today, this capability allows us an opportunity to see--- for the first time in many cases--- the way in which the colonists and early Americans expressed themselves...and the kinds of media they utilized in the process. 

Displaying documents from America's historical past achieves the following: 1) Provides open access of historic documents to the greatest number. Private collections by definition are closed to the public, and can be seen only by family and close friends. Institutions, for a variety of reasons, all too often make their historical collections difficult, if not impossible, to access by the public-at-large. 

2) Re-awakens, encourages and maintains an interest in this country's early history--- the roots of American society. Original two-century-old newspapers, maps and books that faithfully chronicle the events of the day track the beginnings of The Republic as few history books alone are able to do. These historical documents are an important adjunct to the study of early America.


May 21st:  SHHAR Quarterly meeting:  
Corridos . . Unofficial Mexican history . . .Free, entertaining, fun
Press release. . . please share . . . come and enjoy
Los Angeles Times article by Agustin Gurza

Corridos sin Fronteras: A New World Ballad Tradition, San Diego exhibit
Cinco de Mayo Celebration at The Bowers Museum of Cultural Art



Press release
20 March 2005
For more information: 714-828-7497

Dedicated Corrido Authority to Address SHHAR

Guillermo E. Hernández, PhD, of the UCLA faculty, is the invited speaker at the May 21st meeting 
of the Society of Hispanic Historical and Ancestral Research (SHHAR). His topic is Corridos: Sung Tales of Unofficial Mexican History.

For approximately two hundred years corridos have been a cherished part of a traditional heritage in various regions of Mexico and the United States. In these verse narratives, characters engage in heroic, often tragic, episodes conveying the language, experiences and values of common people. How does one assess the quality of a corrido? As in other cases of artistic creation, a corrido may be considered a classic when it is still treasured after several decades of existence and thousands of miles from its source of inspiration. A few are still popular after more than a hundred years. Corridos survive because in their lyrics and melodies resonate the cultural history and identity of the folk. Indeed, these historical, linguistic, and musical renditions, of apparent artistic simplicity, oftentimes possess great beauty and complexity.

Dr. Hernández, who teaches Chicano Literature and Spanish Medieval Literature, has authored numerous works, including Chicano Satire: A Study in Literary Culture. (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1991) and Diez Mil Millas de Música Norteña, memorias de Julian Garza. Currently the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (SITES) has the exhibit: Corridos: Sin Fronteras installed at the Museum of San Diego History, Balboa Park, 1649 El Prado, San Diego. Dr. Hernández was a curator for that installation. See:

The former chair of the Chicano Studies Resource Center at UCLA, Dr. Hernández worked with the Los Tigres del Norte Foundation to bring the Arhoolie record collection to UCLA. This collection, rescued by Chris Strachwitz of Cerrito, CA, captures the early recordings of Norteño musicians and Tex-Mex (today known as Tejano) groups and soloists. The entire Arhoolie Frontera Collection is being digitally transferred, annotated and archived.

The SHHAR meeting will begin at 2:00 p.m. at the Orange Family History Center, 674 S. Yorba, Orange, CA. Meeting is open to all and there is no charge. Light refreshments will be served.

SHHAR is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization; founded in 1986, with the goal of helping Hispanics/Latinos research their family history. Although the group is based in Orange County, California, networking participation via the Internet is worldwide through its emagazine Somos Primos. This publication is dedicated to past and present articles, events and information concerning Hispanic heritage issues. The editorial focus of Somos Primos is to connect present day situations to its historical foundation. The contributions of our ancestors are important to understand the many social issues of today. More information: 714-894-8161 or;



In a Mexico Groove

Arhoolie Records’ owner will share his vast collection via a UCLA project.
By Agustin Gurza, Times Staff Writer
Los Angeles Times, Calendar, Tuesday, February 1, 2005


Chris Strachwitz, an avid music explorer, felt like a visitor in a foreign world when he started collecting Mexican records half a century ago. He had no music catalogs to guide him. No sales charts or trade journals to consult in an industry at times as transient as its migrant customers. Plus, he was a German immigrant and didn't speak Spanish.

But Strachwitz had an ear for the grass-roots music he discovered in America—Cajun, country, gospel and the blues. And he heard a common quality in those rustic sounds of society's dispossessed, no matter what the language.

"The first time I ever heard Mexican music was on a small station in Santa Paula, and I just loved it," says Strachwitz, owner of the respected folk music label Arhoolie Records. "God, it had this sound, and the way these two voices blended together. To me, that's the most soulful stuff I've heard. I mean, I heard it in blues. I heard it in hillbilly duet singing. It didn't sound to me all that different."

Eventually, Strachwitz, 73, had amassed what is now considered the world's largest collection of commercially recorded Mexican and Tex-Mex music, more than 100,000 individual performances spanning almost 100 years and numerous styles, from norteñas to boleros and rancheras. Experts say it's the most comprehensive repository of Mexican vernacular music anywhere, including Mexico.

Soon, the public will be able to access a digital archive of the collection through a special project sponsored by the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center, in collaboration with New Mexico's Fund for Folk Culture. With the help of the university's Digital Library Program, the entire Arhoolie Frontera Collection is being digitally transferred, annotated and archived in the same way the records were gathered ­ one by one.

Early on, Strachwitz understood the importance of this enduring rural music, not just as entertainment but as an oral account of a marginalized population. In the grooves of the thousands of records in his collection revolves the largely undocumented history of Mexican immigrants over the last century.

The project is being funded primarily by the Los Tigres del Norte Fund at UCLA, named for the famed norteño group based in San Jose. Los Tigres, along with its record label, Fonovisa, established the fund to promote the study of the genre, historically disdained or dismissed on both sides of the border.

By this summer, the public will have Internet access to the first phase of the project, all 16,000 78 rpm recordings from the first half of the 20th century. Each file includes a snippet of the song, an image of the record label and information about the record's creators, content and condition.

So far, more than three-fourths of the digitized 78s are accessible at Still to come in the painstaking transfer process, depending on future financing, are Arhoolie's stockpile of 14,000 45s and 3,000 long plays, covering the 1950s through the 1990s.

The collection contains rare recordings by major artists, such as legendary duo Los Alegres de Teran, Chicano music pioneer Lalo Guerrero, San Antonio accordion ace Santiago Jimenez and his son, Flaco, known for recent collaborations with guitarist Ry Cooder.

One of the most important items is one of the oldest.

The 1928 recording of "El Contrabando de El Paso" (The El Paso Contraband), a Texas tale about liquor smuggling during Prohibition, is considered one of the world's first narcocorridos, a precursor to the border ballads about drug trafficking that would become so popular half a century later. Although the song has been recorded dozens of times over the years, experts say the composer had never been identified ­ until now.

True to the tune's first-person narrative, the man who wrote it appears to have been the man who lived it.

Last year, UCLA Spanish professor Guillermo Hernandez, author of an upcoming book about corridos, traced the events that inspired the song, which tells the story of a group of smugglers being taken by train from El Paso to the federal prison at Leavenworth, Kan.

Old prison records identify one of the convicts as Gabriel Jara, caught with 90 gallons of illegal brew in the early 1920s. Hernandez knew he had found his man when he discovered in the archives that the 28-year-old Jara had written several letters to Leonardo Sifuentes, a resident of Ciudad Juarez.

The prisoner's pen pal, as it turns out, happens to be half of the singing duo of Hernandez &Sifuentes, who made that historic recording. Professor Hernandez, no relation, believes the convict was transmitting his verses through the U.S. mail.

The discovery won't change history or make anybody rich. But it shows that in this type of Mexican music, art doesn't imitate life -- it documents it.

As former head of the Chicano Studies Resource Center, Hernandez was instrumental in bringing the Arhoolie collection to UCLA. He was a graduate student at UC Berkeley in the 1970s when he first met Strachwitz and got engrossed in his collection.

Strangely, Strachwitz says roots music was largely missing from his own rural boyhood in what is now Poland, where country folk "listened to Nazi music, mostly marches, and pop music which was horribly schmaltzy."

Strachwitz was just 16 when his family came here after World War II. He started collecting records almost as soon as he hit these shores.

He studied math and engineering at Pomona College and UC Berkeley, then briefly taught German in high school. In 1960, he founded his own label to capture the folk music that so fascinated him (

Mexican country music has provided the soundtrack to rural life since the Mexican Revolution of 1910, which sparked the first big waves of immigration. But most of the early recordings were made in the States, not in Mexico, says Strachwitz.

There was no market for the music in its homeland, he explains, because Mexican peasants earned too little to afford records, even if their homes had electricity to play them.

On the U.S. side, however, major record labels catered to an immigrant workforce earning dollars. Evidence of their growing buying power can be found in customs documents which show that the most common items being taken back to Mexico are records and record players acquired here, according to research conducted by Hernandez, the UCLA professor.

During World War II, a shortage of shellac forced U.S. labels to concentrate on American pop music, says Strachwitz. Mexican labels started taking up the slack in the late '40s, once they realized the market's potential.

In considering the fate of his collection, Strachwitz wanted to make sure the music wasn't just stored in a corner, even in some place as prestigious as UCLA. He knew of other bequeathed collections that "simply go into a dark hole someplace and they'll never be heard again."

UCLA's Digital Library Program was a high-tech way to keep the music alive.

The work is being done at Arhoolie's El Cerrito, Calif., headquarters by Antonio Cuellar, a paid employee who listens to each song as it's being digitized. Cuellar, who played in a Latino punk-rock band, keeps a running index of various themes contained in each lyric -- "Love, unrequited," "Boasting, sexual," Execution, firing squad," "Strikes and lockouts," Murder at dance or celebration" and "Tragic triangle."

Many of the old corridos, including "El Contrabando de El Paso," were so long they were recorded in two parts, one on each side. Over the years, Strachwitz picked up every two-part corrido he could get his hands on.

Many of those original versions contain lost verses. Even Los Tigres, says Strachwitz, were surprised to discover in his collection a two-part rendition of "El Huérfano" (The Orphan), recorded 50 years ago on the Okeh label in San Antonio.

"They were just amazed that there were so many more verses than they had heard," says Strachwitz. "Nobody had ever seen these old records, and they finally began to realize that all this music had been documented since the beginning of the last century. So they were really impressed."


A collection for the ages

Title: "Ezequiel Rodriguez"
Ortiz y Maldonado con el Dueto Abrego  Label: Orfeo
This corrido, or narrative ballad, is one of the earliest recordings featuring two artists who would later become the famous duo Los Alegres de Teran, the first superstar group in Mexican regional music. The duo was composed of Tomas Ortiz, on the 12-string guitar known as bajo sexto, and Eugenio Abrego, who's backup accordion on this record. Their big hits from the '50s are on the Falcon label, based in McAllen, Texas. Their early recordings on the Orfeo label, based in Monterrey, Mexico, are very rare.

Title: "El Contrabando de El Paso" (El Paso Contraband)
Luis Hernandez-Leonardo Sifuentes    Label: Victor
Recorded in 1928, this corrido about booze-smuggling during Prohibition is considered an early precursor to the narcocorrido, the drug-smuggling ballads that became widely popular in the 1970s. This 78 rpm is the original version of a song that has since been recorded dozens of times, though later versions use the Spanish contraction "del Paso." It was recorded in the Texas border town by the New Jersey-based Victor label, which did field recordings in hotel rooms.

"Amor del Bueno"  Artist: Miguel Aceves Mejia  Label: Peerless
Aceves Mejia was one of the great mariachi singers of all time, famous for his thrilling falsettos. But he started his career singing tropical music. In this famous bolero, written by Abel Dominguez, he's backed by the orchestra of Noe Fajardo on Peerless, one of the major Mexican music labels. The record illustrates the breadth of styles included in the Arhoolie collection.



Museum of San Diego History

Corridos sin Fronteras: 
A New World Ballad Tradition

  "January 14th through September 5th" 

For more information:  
and  http://
Sent by Viola Salder


Cinco de Mayo Celebration at The Bowers Museum of Cultural Art
Thursday, May 5th, 2005
2002 N. Main Street
Santa Ana (The Courtyard)
$10 for Adults   For more information call, 714-241-7527

Entertainment and displays by local artists.
Honorable Lou Correa, 
Orange County Board of Supervisors to speak on the History of Cinco de Mayo



Steve Santillan art exhibit, City of Burbank Creative Arts Center Gallery
Danzantes Unidos Festival, "Siguiendo La Tradicion"
Cinco De Mayo Fiesta 
Farias-Talamantes Reunion dinner, May 25th, 2005  
Carriage Museum, Santa Barbara
Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Orphan Asylum and School 



Big Congratulations to Steve Santillan 

An Exhibit of his work, Saturday May 7th and May 26th 
City of Burbank Creative Arts Center Gallery

1100 West Clark Avenue
Near the Intersection of Olive Ave. and Victory Blvd.
Artists' Reception - Saturday, May 7, 2005
5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
For more information, please call, 818-238-5397


Danzantes Unidos Festival
"Siguiendo La Tradicion"
Gardena High School, March 18-20

Photos by Beatrice Armenta Dever

Over 1,000 folkloric dancers from throughout California, Texas, Colorado, New Mexico and Oregon attended the Danzantes Unidos Festival in Gardena, California in March announced Rosalie De Verona, Festival Director.

This annual event offered workshops featuring different regions in Mexico for the beginner to the advanced dancer.  A costuming workshop was also offered.

Siguiendo La Tradicion
was the Festival theme and the event continued the ongoing tradition of showcasing folkloric dance companies in concerts.  Promoting folkloric dance through teaching, learning, sharing, and nurturing friendships is the vehicle that strengthens the folkloric movement.



Cinco De Mayo Fiesta 
Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in style this year at the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach. There will be a fully-loaded program of Mexican mariachis, dancers from the world-renowned Ballet Pacifico, authentic cuisine accompanied with mouth-watering margaritas, and a lively blow-by-blow multimedia presentation of the Battle of Puebla by museum director (and triumphantly proud Mexican) Gregorio Luke.  

May 5 - 7:30PM to 10:00PM 
628 Alamitos Avenue , Long Beach,90802
Ages: 21+ Admission: $45 - $65, Discount: $10 off to museum members
For more information call: 562-437-1689 Or visit:
Sent by Lorraine Hernandez

Farias-Talamantes Reunion dinner, 2005  
Sent by Eva Booher EVA

We think it is time for us to get to know one another by getting together for dinner. This time was chosen because we have a cousin from Pennsylvia that will be here then. She has done much research on our families and can tell us about our Ancestors.

Five O’clock  Wednesday, May 25th, 2005
At El Torito Restaurant
3360 Ocean Park Blvd . Santa Monica, CA.  ( near Centinella and Santa Monica Airport)

Bring all your Family!

No Host Bar- Dinner  $20.00, includes Beverage Dessert and Tip (RSVP  310-451-3216  by May 10th, I need a count)

We have a beautiful Family Heritage which we are proud of.  we need to stand up and be seen and share our lives with each other. Having so few cousins left, put forth an effort to come together in love and talk things over.  Our past is interesting I am sure we all have stories and pictures to share with everyone.  

I have reserved a private room at El Torito, close for some of us and far for others.  Mark this special time and be there, is the way to do it, or we may never meet.  We are a piece of California history.  Our forefathers will be proud of all of us together as one.

Copy this letter and send it on to others who may want to come.


Carriage Museum, Santa Barbara

Source: Los Californianos

The Carriage and Western Art Museum of Santa Barbara has the largest collection of carriages and saddles outside the Smithsonian Institution. Its unique collection is comprised of over seventy horse-drawn conveyances manufactured between 1850 and 1911. The collection also includes one of a kind silver-mounted saddles and equestrian tack by noted leather craftsmen such as Bohlin and Visalia. On display are saddles once owned by Will Rogers, dark Gable, and Ronald Reagan. In addition, the museum features an original western mural by famed artist Ed Borein.

The museum was founded by Leonard Kummer. Mr. Kummer thought it was a shame that the old carriages, buggies, wagons, and stagecoaches were only seen once a year in the Fiesta parade. With the establishment of the museum, the collection can be viewed throughout the year.

The museum has several stagecoaches. The stagecoach was an important form of transportation. Stagecoaches went from Santa Barbara to Los Olivos from 1861 to 1901. A team of six horses pulled the twelve-passenger coach up the famous Slippery Rock route over the San Marcos Pass. The trek took eight hours with three stops to change to a team of fresh horses.

The Carriage Museum was remodeled this year. There are fake storefront buildings of an old western town called "Stagecoach Junction."

The museum is located at 129 Castillo Street in what used to be called Pershing Park. Museum hours are Sundays from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. Admission is free; donations are accepted.

Los Angeles Times
Karla Everett

Los Angeles Times, Jan 21, 1900:

DEATH OF A PIONEER: Francisco Lopez Succumbs to Infirmities of Old Age

Francisco Lopez, one of the oldest residents of Los Angeles, died late Thursday evening at the home of his daughter, Mrs. M. S. de Cummings, No. 1700 Michigan avenue, in his eightieth year.  The deceased was born in what is now San Diego county in 1820 and was a family of early settlers, his grandfather, Claudio Lopez, having come to this country during the last century with the priests who founded the San Gabriel Mission.  Such was the service of this pioneer that after his death his body was buried inside the mission and a tablet in his memory is in the mission today.

Francisco Lopez was at one time one of the largest property-owners in this section of the country.  His vineyard interests were very extensive and covered districts in this and surrounding counties.  He married early in life and his family consisted of nine children, five of the survive him.  They are Mrs. John Lazzarevich, Mrs. M. S. de Cummings, Miss Rose Maldenez and R. Bilderrain of the City of Mexico.  His wife died in 1875.  The funeral will take place this afternoon at 2 o'clock and the interment will be in the Catholic Cemetery.

Los Angeles Times, Oct 27, 1931:


Last rites for Mrs. Grace Lopez Wilson, member of a pioneer San Fernando Valley family, who died Sunday of complications from a fall about a year ago, will be conducted tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. at the St. Ferdinand Church in Pico street, San Fernando.  Interment will be in Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Glendale.

Mrs. Wilson, who was 65 years of age, was born on the Lopez rancho near San Fernando.

She leaves her husband, John T. Wilson, vice-president of the Federal Board Land Bank at Berkeley; two sons, John J. Wilson and Roland Wilson, both of Los Angeles; a brother, J. J. Lopez of Bakersfield, and six sister, Mrs. Louisa McAlonan, Mrs. Mary Villegas, Mrs. Charles Shaw, Mrs. William Mellon, Mrs. Dan Britton and Mrs. J. W. Alexander.

Los Angeles Times, Jun 24, 1936:

Final Homage Paid San Diego Resident, 105

SAN DIEGO, June 23. - Funeral services were conducted today for Mrs. Josephine Mendoza, pioneer San Diego resident who died Sunday.  Mrs. Mendoza was born 105 years ago at the San Diego Mission, the daughter of Senora Francisca Vanegas, also a native of San Diego county.

Mrs. Mendoza had never been out of San Diego county and her stories of early life in California were rich in historic value.  She leaves four children, twenty-six grandchildren and thirty-two great-grandchildren.

Los Angeles Orphan Asylum and School 
9th Ward, Los Angeles City
Los Angeles County, California, A.D. 1900*
Sent by Johanna de Soto

[[ There are 336 individuals, I just extracted the last few names.  The website has a search mode to check details on any of the individuals.]]  

327 Vega Paz Inmate W F July 1885 14 Mexico Mexico Mexico At School 10 Y Y Y
328 Schlotter Josephine Inmate W F Aug 1885 14 Texas Germany Germany At School 10 Y Y Y
329 Armbruster Elizabeth Inmate W F Oct 1886 13 Unknown Unknown Unknown At School 10 Y Y Y
330 Lopez Adela Inmate W F July 1890 9 Calif Calif Calif At School 10 
331 Gonzales Mercedes Inmate W F Nov 1890 9 Calif Calif Calif At School 5
332 Gonzales Madelina Inmate W F Dec 1892 7 Calif Calif Calif At School 5
333 Webb Myrtle Inmate W F Mar 1893 7 Arizona Arizona Arizona At School 10
334 Bajar Artenisia Inmate W F July 1892 7 Calif Unknown Unknown At School 10
335 Bajar Hermenia Inmate W F Feb 1891 9 Calif Unknown Unknown At School 3
336 Bajar Librada Inmate W F July 1896 3 Calif Unknown Unknown


The Sculptures of José Escobedo
Strengthening Latino Advocacy in the Bay Area on May 20, 2005
Admission of Latinos Rises at UC  

Spanish~Mexican Families of California, Volume III
     The Land Problem 
     Extract from: California a History, by Andrew F. Rolle, 1963
     The RANCHOS: Once belonging to the Families "Estrada" 
Descendents of Solano County's Pioneer Families
Old Mission San Juan Bautista



The Sculptures of José Escobedo. 


Field Work - The Sculptures of José Escobedo  
In the Ruiz Gallery through May 22 

1630 Van Ness, Fresno, CA  93721

Tel: 559-266-2623   Fax: 559-266-6904  

In the 1950’s through the 1970’s, José Escobedo created creatures from nuts, bolts, reinforced steel, gears, and junk he found on the East Side Ranch. He gave many of his objects away and sold some. The Escobedo exhibit of over 150 pieces is on loan to Arte Américas from the collection of Florence and Frank Caglia, and members of the Escobedo family.

“My father died in 1998 at the age of 91 from a massive brain aneurysm. He worked everyday of his life until the very end. He was a good father respecting everyone and everything, and I believe he was considered an admirable person to all who met him. He lived a simple life and adorned it with things he made from rubbish. Frank Caglia and my father were good friends, and we are very happy that the Caglia family decided to show his work. The highest compliment to my father would be that people will walk away with an appreciative smile for the work he put into his creations.” — Francisca “Patchi” Garcia, one of nine children born to Cuca Perez Escobedo and José Escobedo.

José Escobedo was born in Chihuahua, Mexico in, 1907. His parents were killed during the Mexican Revolution of 1910. When he was nine years of age, he and his sister migrated to Colorado, then to Los Angeles, and thereafter to the Central Valley during the Depression. It was while he was working at the East Side Ranch in Firebaugh that Escobedo started creating his art work. 

Strengthening Latino Advocacy in the Bay Area on May 20, 2005.

Latino Issues Forum (LIF) respectfully requests your presence at the upcoming community summit, ¡Adelante! Strengthening Latino Advocacy in the Bay Area on May 20, 2005.  This groundbreaking event will bring together Latino serving non-profit organizations, local elected officials and community members from around the Bay Area, to share information and develop new advocacy strategies for addressing policy issues in the fields of Education, Health and the Environment.

To register or for more information, please send your complete contact information to, or call (415) 284-7220.  You can also visit our website at  to obtain a registration form to fax us.

Abstract: Admission of Latinos Rises at UC  
Sent by Howard Shorr
Tanya Schevitz, San Francisco Chronicle Staff Writer, Wednesday, April 20, 2005
More Latinos than ever are being accepted to the University of California system. Overall, 50,017 graduating high school students in California have been offered a spot at one of UC's 10 undergraduate campuses. UC admissions officials expect about 30,000 of those to accept and enroll this fall. 

While whites and Asian Americans make up the majority, Latinos have seen a significant increase. A total of 8,438 Latino students from California were offered admission, compared with 5,570 in 1997 -- the last year before voters imposed the Proposition 209 ban on affirmative action. 

Latinos have continued to see steady gains in the past few years, growing from 7,795 in 2003 -- the last year that is accurate to compare with because of temporary cuts in UC admissions last year due to budget reductions. They now represent 16.8 percent of total admissions, compared with 14.05 percent in 1997. 

Susan Wilbur, UC's director of undergraduate admissions, said Tuesday that the university system continues to make small gains with underrepresented minorities in general. 

"UC is very focused on providing access to talented students of all backgrounds," Wilbur said. "At the same time, we are following the law. We are trying to work with our academic preparation programs to make sure we get students the information they need." 

Kenny Zepeda, 17, a Latino senior at Mission High School in San Francisco who moved from Guatemala just five years ago, was admitted to UC Berkeley and won a $30,000 annual scholarship from the campus. He had a 4.16 grade point average and a score of 1,000 (out of 1,600) on the SAT, he said. 

When he got a call telling him of his acceptance, he was filled with emotion. 

"I thought about everything that I went through and all the work I put in to get that. It was really something important for me," said Zepeda, who lives with his mother, a hotel housekeeper who doesn't speak English. "I always wanted to go to college because I knew that was the only way to get a better life." 

At UC's two most selective campuses, UC Berkeley and UCLA, the number of accepted Latinos, African Americans and American Indians still lags noticeably behind the totals of the affirmative action years. According to figures released by the UC Office of the President, 1,097 Latino students from California were admitted to UC Berkeley for fall 2005, making them 12.9 percent of the total. That compares to 1,216 Latino students in 1997, when they were 17 percent of the admissions. 

UC's report released Tuesday includes only California students, who make up more than 90 percent of UC admissions. This year, UC Berkeley admitted 262 blacks from California, making them 3.08 percent of the total. That compares with 525 black students in 1997 when they were 7.35 percent of the total. A total of 42 American Indian students were admitted to the freshman class at UC Berkeley in the fall, making them 0.49 percent of the admissions. That compares with 61 admissions in 1997, when they were 0.85 percent of the total. UC Berkeley is working to come up with ways to increase minority enrollment. 

Last weekend, UC Berkeley invited students from low-income and poor- performing schools to the campus to attend classes and panels describing the campus experience, Black said. 

Wilbur said that this year's admission of 50,017 is a record for California students. The increase is in large part due to a growing population of high school graduates, Wilbur said. 

Systemwide, UC accepted 76 out of every 100 students who applied. At UC Berkeley and UCLA, which have higher admissions criteria, only 28 of every 100 applicants were accepted. Many of those rejected by UC Berkeley and UCLA are eligible for UC's other undergraduate campuses. 

White students continued to make up the majority of admitted students, growing to 18,844 -- or 37.6 percent -- of those admitted this year, up from 18,640 in 2003. Asian American students also saw an increase in admissions to 17,297 -- or 34.6 percent -- this year up from 16,125 in 2003. 



Spanish~Mexican Families of California 
Volume III
Los Pobladores de la Reina de Los Angeles
Marie Northrop

The long awaited Volume III has been published by Douglas Westfall who shares the history of bringing forth the volume after Marie Northrop's death.

"Marie Northrop sent me a disk in August of 1993, of her preliminary work on Spanish~Mexican Families of California Volume III. Marie passed away the following year and I contacted Joe Northrop sometime afterward. He in turn, persued the project with Christie Bourdet, who had been working on it with Marie at the time.

Joe remarried in 1995 to Elma Friesen and she and I kept up the conversation of the book into this  year. Continuous contact was made with the Southern California Genealogical Society, about publishing the finished work.

Christie Bourdet spent the better part of a decade, working on the final version you see here. This publication may have never come to pass if not for the tireless efforts of Doug Miller, Pat Parish, and Fred Haughton, past and present Presidents of the SCGS.

It is with great pleasure that I present this publication to the society and with many thanks to all the above named participants for their diligence in completing this book.

Douglas Westfall, Publisher

PS: I still have the disk."

On behalf of the Southern California Genealogical Society, we are very pleased to announce that the long-awaited third volume of "Spanish-Mexican Families of Early California" will be available beginning May 13, 2005.  Marie Northrop's meticulous and respected research of the earliest families
of California is presented in three volumes:

VOLUME I was developed from Thomas Workman Temple II's "Genealogical Tables of Spanish and Mexican Families of California" (Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.) Most of the colonists came from northwest Mexico between 1769 and 1781 and numbered between 600 and 700 persons. The population increase to about 3,000 over the next 40 years resulted more from
a healthy birthrate than from immigration. The second edition of Volume I was extensively revised and expanded, published in 1987 and reprinted in 1999.

VOLUME II lists 265 family groups outside of Temple's Genealogical Tables in a format similar to Volume I. Included are the 11 founding families of the Pueblo de Los Angeles and 46 of the soldiers and their families who accompanied them on the overland expedition from Sonora and Sinaloa in
northern Mexico. Volume II was published in 1984 and reprinted in 1999.

VOLUME III focuses on the Pobladores of the Pueblo of Los Angeles. Covering the initial 15 settlers and their decendants in 525 pages, the volume extends far beyond 1850 with the genealogies of these early California residents. Included are Antonio Cota (Soldado), Roque Cota (Soldado),
Vincente Feliz (Soldado), Jose Fernando (de Velasco) Lara, Francisco Lugo (Soldado), Antonio Mesa, Jose Moreno, Jose Antonio Navarro, Luis Manuel Quintero, Pablo Rodriguez, Jose Alejandro Rosas, Jose Antonio Basilio Rosas, Jose Vanegas, and Antonio Clemente Feliz Villavicencio, with a genealogical summary of their descendants.

The 3-volume set of Northrop books makes an excellent addition for the home reference library, or for the shelves of your local public library, genealogical or historical society. We will gladly process your instructions for donations or gifts to other individuals and organizations.

Copies can be obtained in several ways:

Purchase any or all of Marie Northrop's volumes at SCGS's annual Genealogical Jamboree, held this year at the Burbank Airport Hilton and Convention Center on May 13-14, 2005.  If you want to stop by just to pick up your Northrop volumes, you won't have to pay a registration fee (although we hope you will want to attend the sessions and visit the exhibitors!). Parking fees will be charged.

Order your book online using our secure shopping cart at our new website.  You can pay using credit card or by sending a check or money order.  Web orders can be picked up at Jamboree or will be shipped beginning the week of May 16.

Purchase your volumes by phone (818-843-7247) or in person at the SCGS Family Research Library, 410 Irving Street, Burbank, CA 91504-2408, during normal business hours after Jamboree.


First of a series of articles by James Estrada Hardy, see below.

Jim Estrada Hardy and wife Virginia Buckles




James Estrada Hardy
First of a series of articles


For the Spaniards, LAND WAS ALWAYS HELD IN A PARTICULAR FASCINATION AND IMPORTANCE. Indeed, it was their very basis for measuring both wealth and status. Under the Spanish land system, newly discovered terrain belonged solely to the King, who did, however, authorize a few private grants to California colonists, as trustees of the Crown. Later, the Mexican colonization law of 1824 increased the number of California land grants to more than eight hundred. By the time of the American conquest, almost fourteen million acres in all had been granted by Spanish and Mexican officials, with some grants overlapping each other. A few claims existed that were gargantuan, 133,000 to 1,775,000 acres in size. The average expense to early grantees for sometimes-handsome properties had seldom exceeded twelve United States dollars.

Although the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, ending the Mexican War had guaranteed resident Californians protection and security in the "free enjoyment of their liberty, property and religion," increasing dissatisfaction over the large land grants was expressed by the settlers who had arrived more recently, especially the Americans. Two distinctly different land traditions—the Spanish and the Anglo-American—were at loggerheads. For perhaps too long the rural Hispanics populace had clung to its silver-trimmed saddles and other symbols of the past. After 1850, old-time California residents, with their many herds of stunted cattle in possession, which had to be offered for sale at prohibitive prices because of the high costs of raising them, faced increasing imports of stronger Texas longhorns. Many Ranchos fell into debt, finding themselves caught in a fatal net of rising costs, falling income, and heightened competition. Unfortunately for them, more and more land-hungry American farmers were streaming into this cattle frontier. Almost all of them sought land.

Ranchos located near a creek or on lake frontage were especially exposed to poachers. Overland cattle drovers often stopped at such places to water their stock. American homesteaders who liked what they saw frequently became squatters, challenging the right of the rancheros to hold their land grants intact. Some incoming Americans justified land seizures by pointing out that, unlike other areas of the United States, California had made available to the public almost no arable free land. Other squatters, who knew nothing of Spanish or Mexican land claims, looked upon unoccupied lands as government property legitimately subject to private occupation, claiming the produce of the land and even the stray cattle. Still other newcomers roamed about the country, living in their wagons and using up a free water supply and grazing areas; these nomads, too, often picked up unbranded calves and other range animals.

In 1849 the Secretary of the Interior appointed William Carey Jones, to investigate the validity of California’s land grants. Jones was to determine precisely which lands fell under congressional jurisdiction. His report of May 1850, was quite out of harmony with the wishes of the squatters. Jones found the majority of the Mexican grants in conformity with the law; in short, the titles were "mostly perfect," and "equivalent to patents from our own government." Even where technical evidences of ownership by grant were insufficient, continuous occupation was held to have established title.

A previous report on land titles, filed by Henry Halleck, on March 1, 1849, had reached a different conclusion. Halleck, an army captain, was then serving as California’s secretary of state under Colonel Richard B. Mason, acting military governor. His report, thus made under army auspices, highlighted the spurious basis and doubtful validity of many land claims granted in the Mexican era. Halleck found unsurveyed tracts particularly ill defined, both as to origin and as to boundaries. In the last year of the Mexican era, 1846, eighty-seven grants had been made by Governor Pico; some of these were to his personal friends. Such grants, may with no well-established boundaries, were the most questionable of all.

Viewed from the standpoint of the American pioneer, it was intolerable that "a few hundred despised Spanish and Mexicans" should control vast tracts of the most fertile and desirable lands to the exclusion of the American farmers. "What right did the Arguello’s, or the Estradas, or the Swiss Captain Sutter to regal estates of eleven or more leagues? Did not the land belong to ‘the hardy men who had faced the dangers of desert and sierra’ and brought American institutions and laws to California?"

Ultimately, the most important phase of the land question concerned how mush land might be opened up within the state by the federal government: which parts of California would be declared public lands for sale? After 1851, it took several decades to answer this question. The United States Land Survey of California was begun that year. Thereafter large tracts of federal land became available for sale and for pre-emption purposes, especially after the Homestead Act of 1862 was passed by Congress. California itself became a gigantic land merchant. The State was eventually granted 500,000 acres of land by the federal government for distribution, in addition to two sections in each township for school purposes. Many individual purchasers were attracted by the low prices of these federal lands, and some pressure was thereby taken off private landholdings that might otherwise have been subject to squatting.

As a preliminary step in the land survey, a congressional act of March 1851 ("to ascertain and settle the private land claims in the State of California") created a Land Commission to receive petitions from private land claimants and to judge upon the validity of their titles. Landholders failing to submit claims within two tears would forfeit all rights to their lands, which would thenceforth be considered "a part of the public domain of the United States." This Land Act was mostly the handiwork of Senator Gwin, whose sympathies lay with American landseekers. Justice John Currey of the California Supreme Court cogently questioned the constitutionality of the act.

It is certainly true that during the re-examination of grant titles by the Land Commission, which convened in San Francisco early in 1852, many native landowners were subject to embarrassment and perhaps, in some cases, to unfair legal treatment. On the other hand, a few fraudulent claims were uncovered.

Not all squatters were scoundrels! Many honestly believed that the grants on which they had settled were not actually the possessions of others. Thus they took on in good faith the backbreaking job of land development. Accurate surveys of grants generally did not exist, and most original boundary marks had disappeared or became unrecognizable. Things like "The large oak was taken as a boundary, in which was placed the skull of a cow and some of the limbs cut off" were used as boundary markers. Sometimes an owner’s cattle brand was burned into a tree. Such marks were quickly obliterated by nature and their existence was hard to prove. Further confusion because of numerous duplications and conflicts in the names and boundaries of grants. The Californios had built few fences and had almost never quarreled over boundaries. There had been no reason for disputes over land, which had been plentiful and a slight of value until the coming of the Americans.

The Land Commission had opened its hearings in San Francisco on January 2nd 1852: it finally adjourned on March 3rd 1856, having undergone a complete change of personnel during its existence. During that four year period rancheros searched their homes for the original grants from Spanish and Mexican governors, ferreted maps out of the Surveyor General’s San Francisco archives, called upon friends and relatives to testify to their long tenures on the land, and consulted lawyers (most of whom were American shysters themselves), all to justify their titles. The burden of proof relied on them. They were at a disadvantage in other respects, too. None of the land commissioners spoke or read the Spanish language. Claimants in southern California were further handicapped by their distance from the place of the sessions. Rancheros mortgaged at high interest rates to pay legal fees, made trips to appeal to Washington officials and agencies and waited hopefully for confirmation of their titles.

A large number of the land cases culminated in appeals to the United States Supreme Court. Legal delays ran into many years. Confirmation of the Patent on the SIMI Rancho, as an example took twenty-four and a half years. In another case a claimant had to wait thirty-five years before he could call his land his own. From 1865 to 1880 alone, the owners of The Rancho Palos Verdes underwent seventy-eight lawsuits, six partition suits, a dozen suits over the ejection of squatters, three condemnation proceedings, and other legal controversies outside the courts. Some titles were fortunately settled more quickly.

Confusion over titles was compounded when squatter settlements were "platted" upon lands claimed by the original grantees. In several such cases squatters tore down fences, built makeshift shacks, and ripped out boundary and ownership markers. Knifings, shootings, and other forms of bloodshed and personal violence occurred whenever squatters were threatened with eviction from lands on which they had made improvements. When they received adverse court decisions, settlers organized themselves to influence the nomination of judges sympathetic to their feelings. Squatters indeed sought to form a new Settler’s Party to safeguard their rights to land that they had made improvements. There soon were prominent politicians on both sides of the squatter-versus-rancher issues.

He fact that Congress could be pressured into rigorously shifting hundreds of land titles raised an unnecessary barrier between American claimants and Californios. He sense of security once felt by the Spanish and Mexican natives gave way to despair. Threatened sometimes by violence over land seizure or cattle rustling, the rancheros, unused to moving about with a revolver strapped to their hip, generally yielded. Law enforcement was not, incidentally, well organized in rural areas, and an influx of frontier "bad men," who could be enlisted by the squatters, made the rural areas dangerous.

Though the Californios theoretically had recourse in the courts, the law was often interpreted by squatter judges and squatter juries and administered by squatter sheriffs. The formidable amount of power on the side of the squatters at times lead to "squatter compromises" by which squatters could buy land whish they frequently already controlled with barbed wire and a revolver. Though such land sales radically altered the ranchos, this was frequently the only way to settle disputes with out violence.

A fairly contemporary assessment of all this confusion over land, that of Henry George’s Progress and Poverty (1871), stated:  "If the history of Mexican grants of California is ever written, it will be a history of greed, of perjury, of corruption, of spoliation, and high-handed robbery, for which it will be hard to find a parallel…".

The 1860’s were the years of the locust on California’s ranchos and farms. Land sales brought only temporary relief to the insolvent. Furthermore, a series of physical disasters combined to produce unfortunate results. In addition to a crop-destroying grasshopper invasion, came floods and then, in the middle of the decade, a period of bone-dry aridity. (Five thousand head of cattle were marketed at Santa Barbara in these years for only thirty-seven cents each, and the annual income of even wealthy American land barons fell to only $300.) Desperate rancheros tried to raise vegetables, to sell out corrals of horses, to rent them for plowing, to cut up cordwood to sell in the nearby towns—anything to recoup losses.

All their misfortunes, sometimes magnified, cannot, of course, be blamed on the United States land politics. Personal improvidence, falling farm prices after the Civil War, and mechanized agricultural systems were also responsible. New and oppressive property taxes reduced the fortunes of the landowners, encouraging concentration of vast holdings in the hands of lawyers and bankers. Mobilizing their credit effectively, California’s nouveaux riches formed relatively tax-free and tight land monopolies from whose deleterious effects the state took decades to rid itself.

In short, the Spanish-Mexican natives and the Americans were hurt by the confusion over land ownership in California. Public confidence in land titles was so shaken that for years buyers were well advised to exercise caution. No genuine title to land could be established in some cases until the 1870’s. This situation, incidentally, led to the founding of the flourishing state title-insurance business. Californian’s however weathered the many frustrations over land titles. The struggle over dissolution of these Spanish and Mexican land claims is, in a sense, related to the growth of a more modern California.



By Andrew F. Rolle

The United States Land Commission met in San Francisco for the first time in 1852. They were a federal appointed board to adjudicate the nearly five hundred Mexican and Spanish grant land titles and confirm or reject each petition as soon as possible. At the end of four years the seven judges had settled three claims.

Besides this major struggle between the claimants and the Federal government, there was continual complicated litigation in progress between individuals over the same tracts. Even when minor skirmishes had ended, the battle had to be begun again in the Supreme Court of the nation.

To fight with legal weapons cost money. Sutter spent $325,000 in ten years to maintain his title, his occupancy, and to make necessary improvements on his property. For twenty years the federal government was credited with robbing seven of every eight claimants seeking justice before the United States Land commission, making the private citizen, at prohibitive expense, defend his title against powerful opposition that had no cost to pay. The very people who had been assured of their land titles by the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, following the Mexican War, were thus despoiled. It was probably the most flagrant government confiscation of property in modern times, if we except the land-grabbing of the totalitarian states. The uncertainty of landownership held in check the development of the state’s natural resources for two decades.

Extract from; The Rivers of America

By Julian Dana, 1939

Husband and Wife

  Juan Malarin, Sea Captain and Merchant                Maria Josefa Joaquina Estrada Malarin

Parents of Maria Concepcion Juliana Malarin, wife of
Jose Guadalupe Rafael Papias Estrada

Uncle of:
Juan Urbano Malarin
The Rail Car Man



Once belonging to the Families "Estrada" and their relatives

Among the ranchos once possessed by the Familia Estrada was the RANCHO BUENA VISTA, and it was situated on the Salinas River, it was originally occupied as early as 1759 by Jose Maria Soberanes, a soldier of the Portola party, and his father-in-law, Joaquine Castro, of the San Francisco company. The Buena Vista was not far from the Monterey presidio’s "rancho del rey" where the military pastured their horses, cattle, mules and sheep. It was one of a group of six early and rather temporary private ranchos on the Salinas River near Monterey. Of the six, the names of the Buena Vista and Las Salinas appear in the list of ranchos the titles of which were finally confirmed The Buena Vista itself, long after the death of the first Soberanes and its abandonment by the family, was re-granted to another soldier, Jose Mariano Estrada and his son Santiago, in 1822-3. The Rancho consisted of 7,726 acres, this rancho in its later days was patented to Mariano Malarin, attorney for Santiago Estrada on 15 September 1869. Mariano Malarin, being a cousin of the Estradas.

*** Buena Vista, H.153; S.D. 204: Reg Br., 21; M. 247; U.S. 7,725.56 acres. Two square leagues in Monterey County granted May 1822 by Sola and June 1823 by Arguello to Jose Mariano Estrada, a native of Loreto and a soldier of the Monterey Company. This was an abandoned Spanish grant of 1795 that was given to Jose Soberanes and Joaquine Castro.

It is documented in the records of the Land Commission papers that there was 34 people who had, and were, living on the premises of the above-mentioned rancho, and the Rancho Llano de Buena Vista, for the past several years. (Bancroft Vol. II CA History)

*** The first reference # H.153 corresponds to the number of the case before the Land Commission which was appointed to judge these grants by the United States government. There was 813 such claims filed in the Hoffman’s index, but several were duplicates, some were fraudulent and some were merely too small to be considered as ranchos. The second number refers to the district in which the grant is located and may be either Southern or Northern, and it is by this number that copies of the original espediente’s, along with all related papers, are filed in the Federal Post Office Building in San Francisco. The third number refers to the Register of Brands, to be found in the volume marked Miscellany, MS. II in the Bancroft Library. Other grants shall also have a reference cited as Ex., which refers to the espediente as listed in the Jimeno and Hartnell Indexes of Land Concessions, 1830-1846. ***The Congress of the United States passed a bill March 3, 1851 establishing the Land Commission to investigate the validity of all Spanish and Mexican land grants in California, and to confirm titles thereto. Until March 1, 1856, when the commission disbanded, it examined 813 claims. Of these 591 were finally confirmed, and 203 were rejected. Of the 813 claims, 264 were settled by the commission, 450 were adjudicated by the district courts, and 99 by the United States Supreme Court. (* Spanish and Mexican Land Grants in California, R.H. Avina)

The RANCHO PASTORIA de los BORREGAS in Santa Clara County at Sunnyvale, 2 leagues were granted in 1842 to Jose Francisco Antonio Estrada, son of Jose Mariano Estrada, Francisco married Marcelina Castro, Marcelina’s brother Mariano Castro was claimant for 4172 acres, patented 17 September 1881. Also a portion of this rancho, 4,894 acres, was patented to Martin Murphy Jr. This rancho today would have encompassed everything north of El Camino Real from Castro Station (Mountain View) to Lawrence Station at Sunnyvale. *** H. 90/257; N.D. 84/97;Ex.265; M.144; U.S.4, 894.35 and 4,172.13 acres. In Santa Clara county, January 1842 by Alvarado to Francisco Estrada.

Granted to Joaquine Estrada, son of Jose Raymundo, was the RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA IN San Luis Obispo County at Santa Margarita. This was 4 leagues, being granted in 1841, and which consisted of 17,735 acres, and was patented 9 April 1861. *** H. 501; S.D. 149; Ex. 253; M. 316; U.S. 17,734.94 acres. Four square leagues in San Luis Obispo County, September 1841 by Jimeno to Joaquine Estrada.

Granted to Julian Estrada, son of Jose Mariano, was the RANCHO SANTA ROSA situated in San Luis Obispo County at Cambria that was 3 leagues or 13,184 acres, being granted in 1841 and patented 18 March 1865. ***H. 140; S.D. 173; Ex. 238; M. 323; U.S. 13,183.62 acres. Three square leagues in San Luis Obispo County, June 1841 by Alvarado to Julian Estrada, son of Jose Mariano Estrada.

The RANCHO ASUNCION located in San Luis Obispo County south of Atascadero being granted in 1845 to Pedro Estrada, son of Jose Raymundo, who was claimant for 39,225 acres, being patented 22 March 1863. ***H. 588; S.D. 76; Ex. 455; M. 318; U.S. 39,224.81 acres. In San Luis Obispo County, June 1845 by Pico to Pedro Estrada approved July 1845.

The RANCHO RINCON de las SALINAS, located in Monterey County south west of Castroville was ½ league granted to Cristina Delgado in 1833. Rafael Estrada, son of Jose Raymundo, was claimant for patent of 2,220 acres on March 1, 1881. ***H. 585; S.D. 215; Ex. 16; M. 255; U.S. 2,220.02 acres. ½ square league in Monterey County, December 1833, by Figueroa to Christine Delgado. Approved May 17, 1834.

The RANCHO SAN LUCAS, Monterey County at San Lucas. Two leagues were granted to Rafael Estrada in 1842. James McKinley was claimant for 8.875 acres, patented February 23, 1872. ***H. 530; S.D. 34; Ex. 282, 506; M. 315; U.S. 8,874.72 acres. Granted May 1842 by Alvarado to Rafael Estrada.

The RANCHO SAN SIMEON, located in San Luis Obispo County at San Simeon, 1 league was granted to Jose Ramon Estrada in 1842. Jose Miguel Gomez, a Mexican Priest and believed to be the brother of Rafael Gomez’ first husband of Josefa Estrada daughter of Jose Mariano Estrada, was grantee claimant of 4,469 acres which were patented on April 1, 1865. *** H. 504; S.D. 320; M. 322; U.S. 4,468.81 acres. One Square league in San Luis Obispo County, December 1842 by Alvarado to Jose Ramon Tibrucio Estrada, so of Jose Mariano Estrada, a native of Loreto.

RANCHO TULARCITOS, IN Monterey County at Jamesburg, Carmel Valley, 6 leagues were granted in 1834 to Rafael Gomez, husband of Josefa Estrada, daughter of Jose Mariano Estrada, and who’s heirs were claimants for 26,581 acres, patented 12 March 1866. Josefa Estrada later sold the rancho to the Boronda family who later sold a portion to the Marbles, this part of the rancho is today among the most naturally pristine parcels of land in the valley and is known as "The Marble Ranch". It is on the original Rancho Tularcitos that the Dona Juana Boronda is believed to have invented and processed the cheese that came to be known as "Monterey Jack", as she made this cheese by using a jack to press the homemade yellow cheese. ***Tularcitos, H. 195; S.D. 3; Ex. 95; M.291; U.S. 26,581. 34 acres. Six square leagues in Monterey County by Figueroa to Rafael Gomez, a Mexican lawyer and also grantee of Santa Rosa. *** Santa Rosa, H. 474; S.D. 294; Ex. 160; M.370; U.S. 15, 525.10 acres. 3 ½ square leagues in Santa Barbara County.

The RANCHO Llano de BUENA VISTA situated in Monterey County at Spreckles and which was 2 leagues being granted to Santiago and Jose Mariano Estrada in 1822-3. David Spence, husband of Maria Altagracia Estrada, daughter of Jose Mariano Estrada, was the claimant for 8,446 acres, patented 4 January 1860. Also was the RANCHO ENCINAL y BUENA ESPERANZA located in Monterey County 2 miles north of Chular was 3 leagues granted in 1834 and 1839 to David Spence, who was claimant for 13,391 acres, patented 23 May 1862. *** Llano de, H.518; S.D. 151; M. 266; U.S. 8,446.23 acres. Two square leagues in Monterey County granted June 1823 by Luis Arguello to Jose Mariano Estrada; often considered as one grant with Rancho Buena Vista. *** Buena Esperanza, H. 54; S.D. 4; Ex.94; M. 269; U.S. 13,391.64 acres. Two square leagues were granted November 1834 (Encinal) to David Esteban Spence; Alvarado granted 1 square league addition in April 1839. Approved August 29, 1835. Record of grant of Rincon de Buena Esperanza in 1844.

The Rancho EL TORO, Monterey County, 10 miles east of Monterey and which encompassed Mt. Toro. Jose Ramon Estrada was grantee of 1 ½ leagues in 1835. Charles Wolters was claimant for 5,668 acres, patented October 27, 1862. *** H. 194;S.D. 112; Ex. 7; M. 275; U.S.5, 668.41 acres. 1 ½ square leagues granted September 1835 by Jose Castro. He had formerly held San Lucas Gonzaga, but exchanged it for El Toro, to which an addition was made in 1840. Later he was grantee of San Simeon.

The RANCHO SANTA ROSA de CHULAR in Monterey County at Chular, 2 leagues were granted in 1839 to Juan Malarin, husband of Maria Josefa Estrada, daughter of Jose Mariano Estrada. Mariano Malarin, son of Juan, executor, was claimant for 8,890 acres, patented 31 October 1872. Also the RANCHO GUADALUPE y Llanitos de los Correos located in Monterey County 3 miles south west of Chular. 2 leagues were granted to Juan Malarin in 1833. His son Mariano, executor was also awarded the claim of 8,859 acres, patented 29 June 1865. ***Chular, H.154; S.D. 110; Ex. 46; M. 270; U.S. 8,889.68 acres. Two square leagues in Monterey County, September 1839 by Jimeno to Juan Malarin. *** Guadalupe Correos, H. 152 S.D. 109; Ex. 21; M. 273; U.S. 8,858.44 acres. Two square leagues in Monterey County, granted May 1833 by Figueroa to Juan Malarin, a native of Peru, Approved August 29, 1835.

To Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, brother of Josefa Maria Vallejo, the wife of Jose Raymundo Estrada was the RANCHO PETALUMA in Sonoma County at Petaluma and to near Sonoma. 15 leagues were granted in 1834 and 1843-4 granted. Vallejo was claimant for 66,622 acres, patented 19 November 1874. Vallejo’s claim was confirmed after he had given up his rights to squatters, who he was tired of fighting. Also the RANCHO SOSCOL (or Suscol) in Solano County at Benicia and Vallejo was granted in 1843 to Mariano G. Vallejo, whose claim was rejected as fraudulent. *** H.250, 800; N.D. 321, 256; M.49; U.S. 66,622.17 acres. Four square leagues in Sonoma County, granted October 1843 by M. Micheltorena to Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, five square leagues in 1844 by sale to Vallejo. Approved September 1845.

The RANCHO BOLSA de SAN CAYETANO also in Monterey County south of Watsonville, which was 2 leagues, was granted in 1824to Ignacio Vicente Vallejo who was the father of Josefa Maria Vallejo, wife of Jose Raymundo Estrada. Jose de Jesus Vallejo, a son of Ignacio, was claimant for 8,866 acres, patented 14 February 1865. Also RANCHO ARROYO de la ALAMEDA in Alameda County was 4 leagues granted to Jose de Jesus Vallejo in 1842. He was claimant for 17.705 acres, patented 1 January 1859. ***San Cayetano, H. 85, 689; S.D.35, 278; Reg.Br. 26; M.221; U.S.8, 886.43 acres. Two square leagues in Monterey County, granted by Arguello to Ignacio Vallejo a native of Jalisco, and probably to Pico, whose claim (H.689) was refused as he failed to fulfill the conditions of the grant. This had been a Spanish grant by Sola and in October of 1834 was re-granted by Figueroa to Jose de Jesus Vallejo. *** Alameda, H. 82,83; N.D. 59, 60; Ex. 216, 318; M. 133; U.S. 17.705 acres. Four square leagues in Alameda County, granted August 1842 by Alvarado to Jose de Jesus Vallejo, son of Ignacio Vallejo a native of Jalisco.

The RANCHO PARAJE de SANCHEZ 9also called Punta del Monte) in Monterey County 1 mile south of Gonzales 1 ½ square leagues were granted in 1839 to Francisco Lugo, grandfather of Josefa Maria Vallejo. Francisco’s daughter Juana Briones de Lugo et al claimed this rancho, which was of area 6,548 acres, patented 9 August 1866*** H.537; S.D. 230; Ex. 75; M. 282; U.S. 6,584.31 acres. Granted by Alvarado to Francisco Lugo, a Mexican soldier of Sinaloa. This grant was possibly made in 1834.There are several more ranchos awarded to Lugo’s, as follows: *** Santa Anna del Chino. H.433, 434; S.D. 182, 335; Ex. 231, 191; M. 477, 478; U.S. 22,193.50 U.S. 13,366.16 acres. Five square leagues in San Bernardino County, granted March 1841 by Alvarado to Antonio Maria Lugo, son of Francisco. And also granted San Antonio, Los Angeles County at Lynwood, Bell, Montebello and Maywood. Granted in 1810, 1823, 1827, and 1828 to Antonio Maria Lugo, who was claimant for 29, 513 acres. *** San Antonio, H. 706, 707, 708, 710; N.D. 383, 366, 368, 354,378; Ex. 136; M. 176; U.S. 4,440.31 and 3,541.80 acres. One Square league in Santa Clara County, by Arrillaga 1810, Arguello 1823, Echeandia 1827 –1828.

The RANCHO NAPA, H. 495, 500, 649, 694, 717, 720, 721, 722, 723, 724, 725, 726, 727, 728, 729, 730, 731, 732, 733, 734, 835, 736, 737, 763, 791; N.D. 67, 78, 149, 141, 225, 122, 146, 111, 123, 109, 116, 120, 118, 117, 110, 393, 71, 79, 66, 313, 76, 139, 164,112; Ex. 200; M. 76. Patented by U.S. in 29 tracts totaling nearly 30,000 acres.( N.D. 433, 453.) In Napa County, September 21, 1838 by Alvarado to Salvador Vallejo. Approved October 8, 1845. January 1, 1839 he received the grant of Salvador’s rancho, which was also called Napa (H. 582, 583, 577, 579, N.D.241, 261. 249, 212). This was probably patented under the name Yajome, M 77 U.S. 6,652.58 acres, although other claimants for part of this Rancho (Salvador’s) claimed that it was a grant of 11 leagues in June 1837. One of the many claims for Napa, Salvador was given a patent for 3,178.93 acres. A grant of Lupyomi made to him by Micheltorena in 1844 was rejected. The Napa Rancho was devoted to planting rather than livestock and from it the present town of Napa has grown. His father, Ignacio, was a native of Jalisco, Mexico, and of pure Spanish blood. He was the brother of Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo.

The Rancho Las PULGAS, in San Mateo County, at Belmont and Redwood City. Four square leagues were granted in 1824 and 1835 to Luis Antonio Arguello, whose heirs were claimants for 35,240 acres, patented October 2, 1857. 1857. ***H.2, 640, 746; N.D. 54, 293; M.148; U.S. 35,240.47 acres. Granted in December 1835 by Castro to the heirs of Luis Arguello. This grant was made in 1820-21 by Sola and confirmed by Castro, and approved by the Territorial Deputation December 10, 1835. It was at first rejected by the United States on the grounds that the grantees had failed to comply with the conditions and that Castro ha no power to make grants. However it was finally recognized.

The Rancho TRABUCO, Orange County at Trabuco Canyon. Five leagues were granted to Santiago Arguello et al. in1841 and 1846. John Foster was claimant for 22,184 acres, patented August 6, 1866. *** H. 412; S.D. 216; Ex. 247; M. 497; U.S. 22,184.47 acres. Five square leagues in Los Angeles county; two leagues granted provisionally February 1841 and finally July or August 1841 by Alvarado to Ramon and Santiago Arguello, grandson of former governor and also grantee of Melyo, district of San Diego, granted 1833, rejected by land commission of the U.S. This was formerly a Mission Rancho (Trabuco). Juan Foster settled in the district in 1844 and possibly received a part of this land grant in 1846 from Pio Pico, who’s sister he married. At any rate the grant was confirmed to him and he was also grantee of Rancho de la Nacion and purchased San Juan Capistrano.

The RANCHO NOJOQUE in Santa Barbara County south of Santa Ynes, 3 leagues were granted in 1843 to Raimundo Carrillo, husband of Tomasa Lugo, daughter of Francisco Lugo, the grandfather of Josefa Maria Vallejo, wife of Jose Raymundo Estrada. Carrillo was claimant for 13,285 acres, patented 11 September 1869. Raimundo Carrillo was also the brother of Maria Anna Ysabel Carrillo, grandmother of Jose Mariano Estrada. There are several more ranchos awarded to the sons and daughters of Raimundo Carrillo. The RAMCHO LOMPOC in Santa Barbara County at Lompoc was granted to Joaquine and Jose Antonio Carrillo who were claimants for 42,085 acres, patented 3 November 1873. The RANCHO MISION VIEJO de la PURISIMA in Santa Barbara County at White Hills 1 league was granted in 1845 to Joaquine and Jose Antonio Carrillo, who were claimants for 4,414 acres, patented 12 October 1822.

The RANCHO ZANJONES, Monterey County 2 miles S. E. of Chular. 1 ½ square leagues were granted in 1839 to Gabriel de la Torre. Mariano Malarin, executor claimant for 6,714 acres, patented August 9, 1866. *** H.151; S.D. 108; Ex.169; M. 271; U.S. 6,714.49 acres Granted August 1839 by Jimeno to Gabriel de la Torre,

The Early Way of Measuring a Rancho

Surveying in early California was on a strictly amateur basis. Town lots did not absolutely require surveying and, for ranchos, the overseeing of the job fell frequently to the alcalde of the pueblo having jurisdiction. He would set forth, with or without a surveyor but accompanied by two chain bearers, all on horseback. A cord (or reata) one hundred (sometimes only fifty) varas long was used – a vara was about 33 inches long – and to each end was attached a wooden stake. This cord was always brought before the magistrate prior to its use and its length would be officially attested. Taking, say a black willow tree, as a starting point, the party would place between the limbs dry sticks in the form of a cross. At the willow tree, one of the riders would hold his stick attached to the cord into the ground and one of the riders would proceed at a full gallop in the proper direction along the perimeter of the land being surveyed, and when the end of the cord was reached that rider would place his stick into the ground at which time the other rider would remove his stick from the ground and proceed to overtake the other rider and thus stretch the cord to its length and stick his stick into the ground, two well mounted vaqueros could thus run many miles of boundary line in the course of a day, at which time the process would continue again and again until the next land marker was established, this maybe would be a large boulder covered with moss or some other distinctive land mark, even another tree. This procedure would continue all the way around the property in question back to the point of beginning. These measurements were obviously little more than rough approximations and furnished enormous opportunities for error.

Because many of these ‘landmarks’ were transient or destructible and only a few decades would render them un-recognizable or obliterated them completely, as in a tree, it would not take long before that marker would become disintegrated and the ‘landmarks’ were often lost, this happening, often one piece of property would overlap another. Often times such things as a ‘cattle skull on the top of a large rock’ would be used, or even just a large piece of an old dead tree. Vital locations were marked by almost anything that was at hand without thought for the needs of the future.

The Alcalde (Judge or Mayor of the pueblos) was not only a notary, but also a receiver and keeper of documents. Not only deeds, but also mortgages, bills of sale, leases, powers of attorney, wills, petitions, and other instruments were put into his safekeeping. The alcalde would record such things a markers and directions of travel from such markers, as from the boulder with the skull atop it at a right angle we would proceed a declared number of lengths or reata’s with certain mention of other markers along the right line to such a point as a small creek or streamlet (or other object) was arrived at (or something being placed there) and thus turning toward the north, east, south or west, etc. etc. until the property was measured and such measurements were duly recorded. At the time of the meeting of the beginning point the land petitioner would hold a small ritual in which he would throw a few hands full of earth or stones into the air and claim the measured land his.

With the occupation of California in 1846 by the United States these land grants and surveys were to be recorded as certified documents to conform to the ways of the American recording system. Many deeds were put to question as to validity, and areas covered, thus requiring them to be surveyed using a more precise way of measuring and recordings.

Spanish and Mexican Land Grants in California, Rose Hollenbaugh Avina 1976

Los Ranchos de la Alta California, Robert G. Cowan 1977

Stokvis Studies in Historical Chronology and Thought

California Ranchos: Patented Private Land Grants Listed by County

Burgess McK. Shumway 1988



Sorry I received this too late to include the information last month, but thought those with heritage in Solano County lines would like to know about the following . . .

Descendents of Solano County's Pioneer Families

Source: Sequoia Genealogical Society, Inc., Volume 32, Number 1, March 2005

To All Descendants of Solano County's Pioneer Families: 1840's-1900

You are cordially invited to attend the Solano Pioneer Family reunion

Saturday, April 23, 2005,10am-4pm

At the Historic Rockville Stone Chapel

Suisun Valley Road & Rockville Corners Suisun, California.

For information, please contact: 
Nancy Morebeck: Tel. 707-448-5217, -   
Mary Higham: Tel. 707-426-2081 -

Old Mission San Juan Bautista

Source: Los Californianos

Mission San Juan Bautista was founded on Saturday, June 24, 1797 by Fr. Fermín Francisco Lasuén, the Presidente of the California missions. June 24 is the feast day of Saint John the Baptist, hence the name. This mission was one of four begun by Fr. Lasuén in the summer of 1797 to fill in gaps between the existing missions. The others were San José, San Miguel Arcángel, and San Fernando Rey de España.

Construction began almost immediately under the care of Fathers José Manuel de Martairena and Pedro Martínez. By Christmas, because of the friendly and cooperative indigenous people, not only was there an adobe church built but also a granary, barracks, a monastery, and some adobe houses.

In June 1803, the cornerstone was laid for the present church. With three naves or aisles, it became the widest of all the mission churches. It was dedicated on June 23, 1812. Padre Esteban Tapis is buried in the sanctuary of the church. He was, at one time, Presidente of the Missions, and he was the founder of the Mission Santa Inés. When he retired from office he came to San Juan Bautista where his musical talents brought fame and a new name to San Juan, "The Mission of Music." Two of his handwritten choir books can be seen in the Museum.

Interior completion of the church continued through 1817 when the floor was tiled and the main altar and reredos (which holds the six statues) were completed by Thomas Doak, an American sailor who had jumped ship in Monterey and who painted them in exchange for room and board. He married a Castro and continued to live in San Juan Bautista.

As you walk through the church, please note the animal prints in the tiles which were made while the tiles were left outside to dry in the sun. Also, note the "Cat Door" cut into the rear side door. This allowed the cats access at all times to catch mice. Mice were serious pests in the 1800s eating much of the harvest.

The convento wing is all that remains of the quadrangle that had enclosed the gardens. The kitchen served 1200 people three times a day. Our collection of books and art works are in many cases older than the mission. Some of the fine vestments in the museum are from China, Russia, and Venice and were used at the mission as recently as the 1930s.

The cemetery contains the remains of over 4,000 Christian Native Americans and Europeans. There is also the grave of Ascención Solorzano, the last pureblooded Native of this mission.

The mission registers list forty-two Indian tribes that belonged to the mission. They spoke twenty-nine dialects and thirteen different languages. Fr. Arroyo de la Cuesta learned more than a dozen languages and could deliver sermons in seven of them.

The church was secularized in 1835, when much of the mission property was seized by the Mexican government. In 1859, the present mission buildings and 55 acres were given back to the Church by Federal decree of the United States government.

San Juan Bautista has the only original Spanish Plaza remaining in California, and the church has had an unbroken succession of pastors from its foundation. It is the only mission with three aisles.

The present museum rooms were once the padres' living quarters and workrooms for the Natives. Over the years the rooms were used for Mass (1906) and storage.

In the Mission Museum the barrel organ may be seen. A barrel organ is like a big hand-cranked music box. Where this barrel organ came from is not very clear. Some say that George Vancouver gave it to Fr. Lasuén. It is also said to have come to Monterey on a whaling vessel. It came to Mission San Juan Bautista in 1826 or 1829. It was placed in the choir loft until the missionaries heard what tunes it played. Four of the thirty songs it played were "Go to the Devil," "Lady Campbell's Reel," "A College Hornpipe," and the "Marseillaise." The padres took it out of the choir loft when it was discovered that it did not play any music suitable to use in church. They played it for the Indians who loved it. Their favorite was the Marseillaise!

The gardens were the center of activity. Here were learned the skills of carpentry, tanning, weaving, and candle making.

The present Gift Shop was a storeroom. In 1847, it was a temporary home for the Breen family who had survived the Donner Party tragedy. Their family Bible is in the Museum. The second room was known as La Sala. Here the padres entertained their guests.

The San Andreas Fault runs along the base of the hill below the cemetery. In 1906, there was a violent earthquake which shook the greater part of central California. The sidewalls of the church collapsed and were restored in 1976. Vestiges of the original El Camino Real can still be seen north of the cemetery.

In 1997, the site of the original chapel was restored and dedicated to Our Lady of Guadalupe. It is here that daily Mass is held.


BYU Computer Genealogy Conference

Mormons and Their Neighbors 

Here are a couple tidbits from the BYU Computer Genealogy Conference, written by Duane  Dudley, Provo, Utah who shared his notes with Ileen Johnson, FHCNET Listowner, Orem, Utah
Sent by Janete Vargas

1.  Huge scanning projects are planned for FH Library holdings in the future.  It may never be totally complete.  The first big project is to scan books that were written before 1928 (copyrights have expired, and books are in danger of perishing), to eventually make them available over the Internet. 

2.  Keep checking the FHLC on  New holdings are being added every day.  There are some interesting things being added.  Do a keyword or title search for Moses Cleveland, then scroll down to the next to the last hit, "A genealogical register of the descendants of Moses Cleveland . . ." and click on it.  Under the notes section you will see, in red letters, "To view a digital version of this book click here."  The digitized book is located on the BYU web site.  BYU has a project to digitize books, and make them available on the Internet.  There is not a lot there yet, but they plan to keep working on it, particularly doing family and county histories. I know that BYU has book copies of county histories for essentially all counties in  the US.  

3.  The Web site  shows how to piece together the past from fragments that have survived.  Visit this web site to see an illustration from an online diary and a striking demonstration of a transcription tool called "Magic Lens".  There is not much on this site yet, but it does give you a glimpse of what may be coming in the future. 

4.  The future of Family History is going to be shaped a lot by the new upcoming generation.  
Some of the impacts they'll make:  
a)  They accept all formats; not just print. 
b)  They're mobile--like to use cell phones and other wireless devices.  
c)  They prefer instant messaging.  
d)  They're multitasked--can think about several things at once.  
e)  They're visual learners, looking for effective search-and-display capabilities.  
f)  They're collaborative.  They're not afraid of gadgets.  

5.  Google search tips.  See the following for a pdf file
 A couple tips presented were to:
 1) google search for Orrock  [or other web site or surname] and see what
     you get.  This searches ALL the genweb sites at once.  
2)  Search for [or other web site] tosee what sites have linked to yours.  

6.  PAF Companion 5.2 will be available about June.  The main changes will be the addition of colors either for ancestral lines or males/females.  More printing options available, including oversized charts.  Print your chart to file and take that to Kinkos to have them print it for you.  

7.  Be sure to migrate your genealogy date to new technology formats as soon as they become available.  Use the LOCKSS principle:  Lots of Copies Keeps Stuff Safe.

8.  Open Source Genealogy, with a new program called PhpGedView as an example.  This program, developed by John Finlay (aa computer programmer at BYU library), allows you to keep your genealogy data online, and work directly with it there rather than having to submit new HTML fuiles every time you make changes or additions.  Your relatives can also work with it there, and make changes and additions subject to your review.  The world can view your data, through filters
which you develop.  To see a description of the program and be able to use it (it's free, as are all opehn source programs), go to     You will need to have about 50 MB of web space available to you before you can use this.

9.  A wonderful list of free software for many different genealogical applications is found at   Sources are listed as hyperlinks.  Many of these are just as good as their commercial counterparts.  

10.  There will be a new Joseph Smith Website by Kevin Nielson coming online about May of this year.  This site is designed to show the prophet as he really was instead of the way so many Internet sites portray him.  

11.  PAFWiz was created by the developers of Ancestral Quest to do some of the things with your PAF 5 program that Ancestral Quest can do.  [Remember that PAF5 evolved from Ancestral Quest.]  PAFWiz's main  advantages are a quick way of searching the Internet IGI (much quicker than PAF Insight, but you have to type or copy and paste the data) and, and some special printouts like fan charts and PDF reports.  PAFWiz and Ancestral Quest are free to Family History Centers.  Go to "Contact Us" on the website  to see where to send an email requesting it.  See for more information about the program.  (Incidentally, Ancestral Quest does a much better job of printing sources on a family group report than does PAF5, but PAFWiz doesn't have that feature.)  PAFWiz works with PAF5 to do some of the things that Ancestral Quest does.

12.  Overland Trails -- pioneer journals, etc.   Keep an eye on the BYU sites, they are adding things all the time. Also see

Mormons and Their Neighbors
Sent by Janete Vargas

The Mormons and Their Neighbors database is an index to over 100,000 biographical sketches appearing in 185 published volumes. These sketches include persons living between 1820 and 1981 in northern Mexico, New Mexico, Arizona, southern California, Nevada, Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, and southwestern Canada.

Biographical information on Mormons has been difficult to locate. Although, a few basic biographical reference works had been compiled, their coverage fell far short of meeting the needs of researches in locating biographical information on Mormons. To bridge that gap, the compiler Marvin E. Wiggins, with the support of the Harold B. Lee Library, began in 1970 to index Mormon biographies in published works in the Harold B. Lee Library. However, many of the titles are in libraries throughout the church. The objective was to find as many Mormon biographies as possible. Since people of other faiths have lived sparsely populated by Mormons were included. However, no attempt was made to verify the religious affiliation of each person.

This index includes information exactly as it appears in the original source. No attempt was made to verify conflicting dates or spellings. The laborious task of verification remains with the researcher. Since this work is not a name index, only published works containing actual biographical information were indexed. If no biographical information of a person appeared, the name was not included. Names of parents and/or children listed in biographical sketches were not indexed unless additional biographical information on them was provided. 

Following are two sample entries from the index: 

Name Smith, George Albert 
Birth/Death 26 Jun 1817 – 1 Sep 1875 
Sources p. 5 Photo p. 5 
  v. 4, p. 35-39 
  v. 7 p. 75, v. 14, p. 196, v. 22, p. 791, v. 24 
Name Smith, George Albert 
Birth/Death 1842 – 1860 
  @ p. 320   
Entries list the name, birth and death date information as they appear in the source being indexed. The sources are indicated by an abbreviation followed by a volume and page number indicating specific location of the biographical sketch. Abbreviation codes are listed following the preface of this index with full bibliographic information on the book the abbreviation stands for. The “@” sign indicates that only sketchy biographical information is available for the source. “Photo” is listed when a photograph is available and the appropriate page number for the photograph is given.

Titles and other appellations to names (e.g., Jr., Sr., III, Judge, etc.) were removed since in the computer sort they acted as middle names and took such names out of proper alphabetical sequence. Names are sorted by birth and death date. Because different sources provide various amounts of information or conflicting dates, several entries may appear under a name. However, biographies of a single individual should still fall in the same sequence.

All sources indexed in this volume are located in the Brigham Young University. Biographies appearing in unpublished manuscripts were not indexed. The extensive manuscript collections in college and university libraries in Utah, as well as the Utah State Historical Society, the LDS Church Historical Department and the Daughters of Utah Pioneers library may also be valuable to researchers in addition to this volume.

This volume is dedicated to the late Hattie Knight. Hattie gave hundreds of hours to the index, though suffering from cancer, to contribute to what she felt was a worthwhile and important work. Her efforts provided impetus for future funding to complete this work. 

I thank the administration of the Brigham Young University Harold B. Lee Library for the professional development time and funds that have made this work possible. I also express my indebtedness to the many indexers during the 12 years needed to accomplish this task: Lorraine Austin, Terry Birdwell, Connie Friar, Katherine Gibson, Bonnie Hansen, Caroline Harris, Chandra Hervey, Mary Anne Jackson, Kerry Karli, Hattie Knight, Nancy Lichten, Katherine Mathusek, Penny Morris, Shauna Nielson, Lori Slovacek, and Marionanne Tosti and in 2003-2004 to student assistant Jared Tanner for considerable editing and correcting of the database.

Special recognition goes to the computer programmers of the Harold B. Lee Library T. Kelly Bradford and Jacob Jenson. They wrote many of the computer programs to locate and edit problems and establish the format for effective access to the index. Photocopies of biographical sketches are available through BYU Harold B. Lee Library interlibrary loan. There is a charge for photocopies.

A CD version was created by LDS Church Service Missionaries acting under the direction of Nauvoo Restoration, Inc. and Milton V. Backman from which this final database was created.

Mormons and Their Neighbors 
1222 Harold B. Lee Library 
Brigham Young University 
Provo, Utah 84602 


Captain Lugardo G. Lozano Memorial 
Anza expedition to colonize California came through Los Altos Hills
Cuentos From My Childhood by Storyteller
Photos of My Family                                                                                                Concordia Heritage Association
Sports can carry Hispanic athlete to new life 



Captain Lugardo G. Lozano Memorial 
Sent by Robert Silas Griffin

The students of the CAS History Club along with the administration and staff of Center for Academic Success High School in Douglas, Arizona hereby extend a cordial invitation to you to attend a headstone dedication and memorial ceremony for Captain Lugardo G. Lozano (1847 – 1922) a veteran of the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862, and of the war against the French 
Intervention in Mexico.  The commemoration of this event is internationally known as the Cinco de Mayo.  Captain Lugardo G. Lozano retired from 35-years in the military service of Mexico and resided in Douglas five years until his passing on May 31, 1922.  The memorial ceremony will begin at 12:00 noon on Thursday, May 5, 2005, in Section K of Calvary Cemetery at 1501 -5th Street in Douglas, Arizona.  Catered refreshments on site will follow the dedication ceremony.
Please contact Instructor- Silas Griffin at the Douglas Campus of the Center for Academic Success High School for any additional information concerning this cultural and historical event.

Yours sincerely,  Robert Silas Griffin –
 Instructor of History and the US Constitution



Anza expedition to colonize California came through Los Altos Hills 

Sent by Lorraine Frain

Lt. Col. Juan Bautista de Anza began the Spanish colonization of California. When complete, the 1,200-mile hiking trail commemorating Anza's historic journey from Arizona to the Bay Area will pass through Los Altos Hills. 

If it wasn't for an expedition led by one man, we all might be speaking Russian.

California would be New Albion; we would be driving along Tzarskaja doroga, not El Camino Real; and on maps Los Altos would be Vershini. 

In 1775 Russian forces were slowly moving down the West Coast from Alaska to occupy Northern California, racing to outstrip other European powers in settling the North American West. 

But Lt. Col. Juan Bautista de Anza of Spain beat the Russians to it, reaching the San Francisco Bay before them.

In 1990 Congress mandated a 1,200-mile historic trail, the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail, for hikers and equestrians to commemorate Anza's historic journey from Nogales, Ariz., to the Bay Area. When complete, the trail will go through Los Altos Hills. 

Anza, the first person to establish an overland route to California's coast, had two objectives in making the journey: to open a supply route for settling California and to create a strategic military outpost for the Spanish on the San Francisco Bay. 

"Not only does the trail commemorate the people who came up to California from Mexico, but it is also a tool for us to look at its consequences on the Native Americans and the environment," said Stan Bond, national park service superintendent in charge of the project. 


Cuentos From My Childhood by Storyteller
Paulette Atencio

Since I was a little girl growing up in Penasco, New Mexico, I have been intrigued by storytelling, largely through the memorable experiences of listening to my mother's stories. As children, we would gather at her feet, with only the glowing light from the fireplace, listening attentively to the tales of comedy, romance, tragedy, and witchcraft. She could carry us to far-way places where people cried, laughed, played, and suffered. Some were clever, and other faced horrible situations that completely changed their lives. Our own travel experiences were so limited that it was necessary for us to use our imaginations to their maximum capacity. My adventures into the realm of make-believe were so vivid and exciting that they were forever imprinted in my memory. 

(Attention New Mexico Residents)  If you are interested in my storytelling services please contact:  New Mexico Endowment for the Humanities:  Contact Jessica Billings at 505 277-3705  or myself and request my services.  Your fee to the NMEH will be $100.00 application fee. The NMEH will pay for everything else.  This is an opportunity that can not be beat.  Call today and reserve your storytelling performance(s) today.For the out of state organizations, schools etc. who are interested in hiring my services please contact me at 505 756-2207  my fees will be negotiable.  I will be more than happy to work with you.  I am a hard worker who takes my responsiblities seriously and will do an outstanding job for you.  I am willing to travel anywhere in the United States and abroad.  I am bilingual and know over 200 stories.  Your efforts on my behalf will be appreciated.  Thank you for your time.  I hope that our paths will cross soon.

Photos of My Family
Photo was submitted to by Belinda Rose (Torres) Corre who writes:

This is a photo of my grandparents and their twelve children! It was taken in 1925. My dad, Guadalupe O. Torres, is the youngest of the twelve kids and is standing in front of his dad, Adrian Torres. has brought our very large family together and we love the website.
includes a variety of family oriented articles on how to cherish and save   family records, traditions, even recipes.  It is not dedicated to Hispanics, but the
3/12/2005 included three photos with Hispanic surnames.    

MyFamily Weekly: Family Heirlooms and Portraits, 3/12/2005  
Sent by

Concordia Heritage Association

P.O. BOX 3153 EL PASO, TEXAS 79923-3153

The Concordia Heritage Association was started to protect, preserve the Cemetery and most of all to preserve the history of El Paso. The founders and people of all walks of life who made El Paso what it is today are buried there. To accomplish this each spring and fall the "people of all walks of life" come to life in the actors who represent them in the Walk-Thru.

[[Editor: Many cemeteries have programs of this nature. 
A way to honor your ancestors is to participate locally, to re-enact an ancestor.]]

Thank you for joining us on a "WALK THROUGH HISTORY"

We wish to thank the many individuals and organizations who are participating in this event. It is through community involvement that our organization is able to bring this historical tour to you.


1. LADY FLO: A black woman who for many years was the common-law wife of Lord Beresford, an Irish aristocrat. Lady Flo, as she wished to be called, was considered the brains behind their successful ranching operations in Old Mexico, New Mexico and Canada. She lived in El Paso after his death.

PROTRAYED BY LEONA WASHINGTON - representative from the NAACP of El Paso and the Mccall Recreation Center. Leona is involved in many activities promoting black history of El Paso.

2. JOHN & MARY WOODS: ex-slaves from Richmond Va & Missouri. Mr. Woods was engaged in many different enterprises, such as serving as constable at various times, operator of a stage line to Chihuahua City, owner of a grocery store and owner of a saloon in Cd. Juarez. He owned the blacksmith shop that cast the first bell for St. Clement's Church.

PORTRAYED BY NICOLE DEDMAN & ED ADAMS - Nicole & Ed are active with Star Productions, Nicole is a UTEP senior & Ed is with the military and a writer.

3. DR. & MRS. HOGH WHITE: Dr. White was known as one of the outstanding surgeons in the United States. He became county physician in 1909 for $150. a month. He took charge of the county hospital & put in plumbing, concrete floors, operating room and a cremetory to rid of waste that had formerly been dumped into the river. His wife, Mrs. Ann Perrin White, was a lady of dignity. She came to El Paso in 1885 with her parents. Judge & Mrs. Wyndham Kemp. She taught school at Central High and San Jacinto Elementary.

PORTRAYED BY DAVID STRAIT RIOS & PATRICIA KIDDNEY -David is in private practice as a Certified Social Worker-Advanced Clinical Practitioner. Mrs. Kiddney is with People Lease of El Paso as Human Resource Director.

4. SIMEON H. NEWMAN: Publisher of the "Lone Star" newspaper from 1881-1886. One of the most belligerent editors in El Paso newspaper history. Because of his competition, the El Paso Times which was a weekly became a daily newspaper. He was a man that never admitted to error.

PORTRAYED BY JACK L. AUSTIN - Mr. Austin is retired from Civil Service and is involved in the Geneology Society & Concordia Heritage Association.

5. ALBERTHA SCHREFFLERi A pioneer woman who tired of paying $8.00 a month rent, took the family savings and with $25.00 in hand contacted a realtor who sold her the property at the corner of Brown & California. Her husband, a plumbing company employee got the news when he arrived home that night. They lived in a tent at the property with the only water to be obtained coming from a kiln located where El Faso High School now stands.

PORTRAYED BY MAUREEN GRAVES - Representing the Women's Department of the Chamber of Commerce. An organization dedicated to promoting civic programs in all areas of the community.

6. PARSON TAYS: Founder of St. Clements Church he was known as Padre Tays to his Mexican friends. Prior to coming to El Paso he was appointed to serve as chaplain to the Texas Legislature. His sermons sometimes so intense that his clothes were wringing wet from his efforts.

PORTRAYED BY RICHARD SKANSE: Mr. Skanse is a Leutenant with the El Paso Police Dept. He is active with Herman Sons Grand Lodge and an avid photographer.

7. CAPTAIN JAMES H. WHITE: At 15 he joined the Confederate Army and came to Texas in 1866. He was elected Sheriff and tax collector of El Paso County in 1883. In 1901 he was appointed Chief of Police. Capt. white ran for mayor in 1903 but lost the race to Charles Morehead.

PORTRAYED BY GARY THOMPSON - President/Owner of People Lease. Active with the John Hancock/Sun Bowl football team selection committee.

8. ALZINA ORNDORF DeGROFF: Widow of Lee Orndorf married Charles DeGroff, Tucson postmaster. She purchased the Vendrome Hotel in El Paso and renamed it the Orndorf (now known as Hotel Cortez). President of El Paso Civic League & first president of El Paso Equal Franchise League, forerunner of Women's Sufferage. She was the first woman named to the Board of Directors of Texas Tech.

PORTRAYED BY SALLY MOLINAR - Representative from the Emblem Club of El Paso, The organization is dedicated to assisting the Elks with thier endeavors, providing scholarships and assisting the needy. Mrs. Molinar is a mother and school teacher.

9. VICTORIANO HUERTA & PASQUAL OROSCO; Victoriano was a member of President Maderas cabinet. Pascual Orosco was a general under President Madero. During the revolution his troops occupied Juarez. Upset because he did not obtain a post with Madero's cabinet. Orosco convinced Huerta to join their troops and take over Mexico. Huerta took Orosco up on the idea and went to Mexico to shoot Madero in the head. He then installed himself as President.

DISERTATION BY IGNACIO ESPARZA MARIN & PORTRAYED BY CARLOS RAMOS: Mr. Marin is a Mexico & Southwest Historian residing in Cd. Juarez. Owner of Imprinta Lux. Mr. Ramos is a well known area muralist involved in various hispanic civic organizations.

10. FATHER CARLOS PINTO: Immigrated to U.S. in 1870 and arrived in El Paso in 1892. Pioneer Priest wrapped in the black cassock of the Society of Jesus. Father Pinto erected Sacred Heart Church, Immaculate Conception Church, Guardian Angel Church and Holy Family Church. Planned many other churches in the El Paso area and served as pastor.

PORTRAYED BY JACK REED - Jack is property manager with Viscount Property Management

11. JEWISH CEMETERY: Jewish settlers arrived in El Paso in the early 1800's. Attracted to El Paso for its trading status and temporary terminal for the transcontinental railroad, as well as the gateway to a foreign country. Became merchants with the military and Mexicans as their clients. The list of Jewish contributors to the history of El Paso is endless.


12. DONA JDANA ASCARATE de STEPHENSON; Mexican lady raised in a wealthy Mexican family that ranched and mined silver. Married Kentuckian Hugh Stephenson and together established Concordia Ranch. Respected throughout the El Paso community as the first woman settler in the "Pass of the North" and for her untiring concern for her fellow human beings. Died an early death by accident at age 46, on February 6, 1856.


13. JAMES P. HAGUE: Arrived in El Paso via stage coach at 21 years of age in 1871. He was El Paso's first district attorney. An aggressive lawyer, he was often paid in land instead of money. Mr. Hague had 30 acres running east and west in downtown El Paso which he deeded to the railroad for right of way in coming to El Paso. He gave his entire life to the making of El Paso.

PORTRAYED BY JOHN NELSON - Owner of United National Mesilla Valley Real Estate Co. is involved in civic and political activities in El Paso.

14. JAMES HENRY COMPSTOCK: A servant of his country for many years. He tried to do his duty. Born in Illinois, 1849. He was Sheriff of Menard co., Texas. Compstock helped the Texas Rangers track down the Peg Leg Gang. Came to El Paso in 1881 and was Deputy with Capt. James Gillett. He was assigned as city marshal in 1884 and became Chief Deputy Sheriff in 1898.


15. MORMON CEMETERY: The first latter Day Saint family to settle in El Paso was probably Isaac Washington Pierce who moved here from LDS colonies in Mexico in 1898. In 1912 the El Paso branch of the LDS was formed.

REPRESENTATIVE DR. WENDELL PIERCE - Retired physician and member of the Mormon community of El Paso.

16. CHINESE CEMETERY: In May, 1881, the southern Pacific Railroad brought the first Chinese to El Paso. Chinatown developed from Mills St to 4th St. and Stanton St. to El Paso St. Established laundries and other businesses. Funerals were not solemn occasions as fancy hearses and McGinty's band were sometimes hired.

REPRESENTATION & PORTRAYAL BY EL PASO CHINESE COMMUNITY AND.CARMEN CARRASCO - Ms Carrasco is with the El Paso Independent School System and active with various civic organizations.

17. JOHN WESLEY HARDIN: Born in Texas and raised in DeWitt County, he became a gunfighter at an early age. Arrested by a Texas Ranger in Florida, he was convicted and served 17 years of a 25 year sentence. After his release, he moved to El Paso as an attorney. He was considered a dangerous man and one who would cause trouble at the drop of a hat. He was killed by John Selman at the Acme Saloon August 19, 1895, by a shot in the back of the head.

PORTRAYED BY MIKE BERNSTEIN - Certified Public Accountant. Mr. Bernstein is a member of the El Paso Historical Society and active with The El Paso Art Museium Association.

18. ROAMING SALOON GIRL; South Mesa Street was known as Utah St. This was the area restricted to prostitution. Well known lady of the night was Hanna Burns. She was associated with James Henry Compstock. When a client of Hanna's had been robbed of $175. Compstock was assigned to the case. The "Lone Star" snickered and said. "His pleasant relations with the accused gave assurance that the search proceedings would be conducted with the delicacy due to the refinement and culture of the suspected Hannah".

PORTRAYED BY CINDY RAMOS - Vice President with the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce. Ms. Ramos is dedicated to the growth and tourist value of El Paso.

Concordia Heritage Association gives Thanks to Historian Leon Metz for sharing invaluable information on the historical figures buried at Concordia Cemetery.

For more information see the Concordia Heritage Association's website at

Sports can carry Hispanic athlete to new life 
By MaryJo Sylwester, USA TODAY, March 29, 2005
Sent by Howard Shorr

TUCSON — A recently added room at Jesus and Guadalupe Hernandez's house holds proof that their dream of giving their children a better life is coming true. The room is nearly empty except for shelves overflowing with gleaming trophies — at least a hundred, Guadalupe guesses.

The Mexican immigrants' four children have each added to the shrine with successes in high school and club teams for baseball, softball, soccer, volleyball or basketball. But the biggest accolades are still on the horizon, as the youngest, 16-year-old Anna, is poised to surpass them all.

A junior at perennial softball power Desert View High School, Anna is getting attention from NCAA Division I softball programs such as Princeton, Northwestern, Temple, Nevada and Purdue. And her high school coaches say Anna is the leader the team needs to win its second state title.

"She's a total package," Desert View softball coach Bert Otero says. "What she starts, she finishes. And if she can't do it well, she'll find a way to do it well. One of her bad days is a good day for anybody else."

Her success is unusual. Few Hispanic girls, particularly those with immigrant parents, even play high school sports, let alone reach Division I or professional levels. In Hispanic culture, girls are often expected to help with the family after school.

"My dad always told me that as long as you're in school, I'll give you everything you need," Anna says.  And they've done just that.

Difficult beginning

Jesus Hernandez, 47, said he made a promise to his wife that their children wouldn't have a tough life like he did. Starting at age 6, he carried milk on a mule from his family's farm into Agua Prieta, Mexico, every morning. After school, he shined shoes.

In 1982, he became a migrant worker, harvesting lettuce at farms throughout Arizona. Six months later, Guadalupe, now 45, and their two oldest children joined him in Tucson. They have since gained legal immigrant status but are still working toward citizenship.

They are reluctant to talk about the difficulties, particularly in those early years, except to say there were many 5 a.m. workdays and weeks or months when Jesus moved from place to place for jobs.
Jesus speaks little English, and Guadalupe is more fluent but often relies on her children to translate.

By the time the two youngest, Jesus Jr. and Anna, were born in the late 1980s in Tucson, the family had moved into their current home, a modest, single-story brick rambler with wrought-iron fences. Jesus got a more stable job as a road construction worker, and Guadalupe got a food service job at the newly opened Desert View High School.

Jesus and Guadalupe have been relentless in doling out love, encouragement and lessons in hard work and dedication. "They've always been really supportive of what we want to do," says Anna's oldest brother, Jaime Hernandez, 27, who works as a corrections officer and volunteers with the Desert View baseball team.

"But they've always made us commit to anything we wanted to do," Anna quickly adds. Jesus says he's "proud every day" of his children, but his face glows just a little more when talking about his youngest.

Multifaceted athlete

Anna has an unassuming demeanor that matches her petite, 5-2 frame. Her long brown hair with blond highlights and soft voice make her seem more like movie star Jennifer Lopez than U.S. softball player Lisa Fernandez.

On the softball field or the volleyball or basketball court she is the first to dive for a ball. One of the many trophies on the shelf is for "Ms. Hustle."

In softball, she can play any position, including pitcher. Last year she was second on the team in hitting, with a .401 batting average; she also had a .982 fielding percentage. Her strong suit is center field. "She just runs down every ball that's hit out there," assistant coach Raquel Guevara-Allen says. "You don't have to tell her to do something twice, and she'll do it 110%."

In the classroom, she's equally impressive, bringing in grades that put her in the top 10% of her class. She also sings and plays a vihuela, a Spanish guitar-like instrument, in the school's mariachi band.

American idol

Anna's attraction to softball was not unexpected since her father and older brothers all played baseball. Her sister, Lennis, who is nine years older, was a standout softball pitcher at Desert View but passed up a chance to play Division I.

"I remember watching her play, and I wanted to be just like her," Anna says. Lennis, 25, a single mom with four kids, smiles at Anna and says, "She's my idol. She's good at everything. ... I tell my sister she better not mess up 'cause I'm going to fulfill my dream through her."

Although Anna also plays basketball and volleyball, she is most at home on the softball field. She also plays during the offseason on an Amateur Softball Association club team.

"When I'm out there — it's an unexplainable feeling — like I'm confident," she says. "I'm out there thinking, 'Come on, give me the ball. I want to make a play.' That's where I'm most comfortable."

Anna learned to play from her siblings on their makeshift field in the front yard. A column on the front of the house and a pole on the fence were first and third bases, a tree was second base and home plate was any movable object they could find. 

As the youngest, Anna got the brunt of her siblings' teasing and harassment. In fact, it hasn't let up yet. "They wouldn't let me come inside until I caught the ball," Anna says with a hint of hurt in her voice, which quickly gives way to laughter. Now she realizes they were the best teachers she could have — they never let her give up.

If Anna goes to a Division I school and graduates, as expected, she'll be the first in her immediate family to get a four-year college degree.

High expectations

She'll also be in elite company among Desert View graduates. School officials say they can count on one hand the number of students who have gone on to play Division I athletics.

Desert View, which has about 1,500 students, is predominantly Hispanic. School officials say participation among Hispanic girls has improved in recent years as more youth programs have become available and the school has promoted the idea of athletics as a steppingstone to better education. The success of the softball team also has generated interest.

Since the school opened in 1985, the softball team has a 401-163 record and has made state tournament appearances every year. It has one state title and two second-place finishes.

Anna is the recognized leader of this year's team, which is comprised mostly of freshmen and sophomores. They've struggled since the season started in early March and have a 5-4 record, but assistant coach Guevara-Allen expects that will change as the players gain more confidence.

Because she saw former Desert View athletes at the highly successful University of Arizona program, Anna initially thought she could play there and not have to leave Tucson. Moving away from home seemed "scary," she says.

"I'm just so used to always having my mom there. Whenever I need something, she's always there."
But last fall the letters of interest started rolling in from Division I schools, mostly on the East Coast.

"I didn't take it seriously at first 'cause I didn't think I could do it," Anna says. "But my coaches are always telling me I can. Now I am really taking it into consideration. I can leave. Now it's not if I'm going to leave, but when ... and to where. It'll be hard."

When asked about the possibility of Anna leaving, Guadalupe says, through an interpreter, "For me, it's going to be hard, but she is going to decide where she's going to go. It's going to be good for her." 



"Fund the Cure" U.S. stamp
Black Migration, Both Slave and Free                 
Slavery in Colonial Mexico
History Celebrated
Rich Information from the Emigrant Savings Bank 
Link to Rumba in New Jersey


US Postal Service recently released its new "Fund the Cure" stamp to help fund breast cancer research.  The stamp was designed by Ethel Kessler  of Bethesda, Maryland.

Instead of the routine 37 cents for a stamp, this one cost 40  cents. The additional 3 cents will go to breast cancer research.  A  "normal" book costs $7.40.  This one is only $8.00.  If all stamps are  sold, it will raise an additional $35,000,000 for this vital  research.   This is something that we all can do easily. . . The notion that we could  raise $35 million by buying a book of stamps is powerful!

Sent by Cathy Robbins  & Rosemarie Salmon

Black Migration, Both Slave and Free

Source: Heritage Newsletter

By Felicia R. Lee

The extraordinary range of African-American migrations - from the earliest Africans who arrived to the recent movement of blacks back to the South - is the focus of a new Web site and an exhibition of recent research that could redefine African-American history, said scholars involved with the project, which was announced at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, "m Motion: The African-American Migration Experience," a three-year project that cost $2.4 million, is probably the largest single documentation of the migrations of all people of African ancestry in North America, said Howard Dodson, director of the center, part of the New York Public Library.

The exhibition at the Schomburg Center's Exhibition Hall, showcases many of the images, maps and music assembled for the project. But the project's 16,500 pages of essays, books, articles and manuscripts, as well as 8,300 illustrations and 60 maps are also available on the center's Web site ( and could encourage a national conversation on the very definition of African-American, Mr. Dodson, a historian, said in an interview.

The project is chock full of illuminating facts. It shows that in recent years, twice as many African-Americans have moved from the North to the South as from the South to other regions. From 1995 to 2000 approximately 680,000 African-Americans moved to the South and 330,000 left, for a net gain of 350,000.

And for the first time, all the elements of the African diaspora - natives of Africa, Americans whose ancestors were enslaved Africans, Afro-Caribbeans, Central and South Americans of African descent, as well as Europeans with

African or Afro-Caribbean roots -can be found in the United States.

The project's scholars represent a range of mostly American universities, including the University of Chicago, Columbia and the University of Delaware. They were commissioned by the Schomburg, and most expanded on research that had already yielded scholarly material.

The money for the project, Mr. Dodson said, came in part from a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, a federal agency, through the efforts of the Congressional Black Caucus and Representative Charles B. Rangel, Democrat of New York.

The research topics included the movements of blacks out of the United States to places like Liberia, Trinidad, Canada, Haiti and Mexico; the 19th-century migration north of both free and enslaved blacks; the migration of blacks in the West and even the journeys of runaway slaves. Some said their findings were surprising or at least tweaked conventional theories.

Loren Schweninger, a professor of history at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, said his research on runaways showed that many more fled to other parts of the South than made it North. Of the 50,000 or more slaves who ran away each year, perhaps only 2,000 made it North; it was just too difficult, for one reason. "And that tells you a lot about slavery," he said. Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company

Los Angeles Family History Center New Hours of Operation

Tues-Thurs: 10 am to 9 pm Fri-Sat: 9 am to 5 pm Closed Sun & Mon

By John P. Schmal

The Marriages of Slaves in Mexico

The majority of slaves brought to the shores of Mexico were male. With a lack of female Africans, most of these men eventually chose Indian or mestizo women as spouses. The long-established Siete Partidas laws of Spain granted slaves the right to select their spouses. Slave masters were thus forbidden from intervening in this decision.

Professor Martha Menchaca, the author of Recovering History, Reconstructing Race: The Indian, Black, and White Roots of Mexican Americans, observed that "this legislation was of monumental importance because it became the gateway for the children of slaves to gain their freedom.

Due to the lobbying efforts of the Catholic Church the children of Black male slaves and Indian women were declared free and given the right to live with their mother." With laws that granted freedom to the children of a slave who married into other racial classifications, it is very obvious to see the motivation of this class to seek outside partners.

The Spanish practice of classifying people by race was utilized in the Catholic Church records of Colonial Mexico. While doing extensive genealogical research into Colonial Mexican church records from the 1600s and 1700s, this author has spent a great deal of time exploring the marriages of slaves in various parts of Mexico. In areas such as San Luis Potosí, Zacatecas, Aguascalientes and Guanajuato, I have frequently seen church records that documented the marriages of males slaves to mestizas, Indians, and mulatas. It is likely that the offspring of these marriages would have been free individuals.

The Caste System in Mexico

While the Spaniards and Europeans living in Mexico "enjoyed the highest social prestige and were accorded the most extensive legal and economic privileges," those persons classified as Indians, mestizos and mulatos brought up the other end of the social spectrum.

The social classification of afromestizos – persons of mixed Indian, African and Caucasian blood – was allocated a position in the lowest rungs of Mexican society. "Because they were of partially African descent," states Professor Menchaca, "…they were stigmatized and considered socially inferior to Indians and mestizos… afromestizos were subjected to racist laws designed to distinguish them from mestizos and to impose financial and social penalties upon them."

Eventually, the Wars of Liberation during the first three decades of the Nineteenth Century brought an end to Spanish slavery of Africans in Mexico. Dr. Palmer has estimated that the total number of African-born slaves brought to Mexico from the earliest years of the Sixteenth Century to the day that the institution was abolished (1827) numbered about 200,000.

Although 200,000 individuals seems to be a large number, in comparison to Mexico’s overall population through the colonial period, it is quite small and statistics indicate that the African and Black population of Mexico never reached more than two percent of the total population at any given time. But in some portions of eastern Mexico, it is evident that the African presence has left a cultural influence. Patrick James Carroll, in Blacks in Colonial Veracruz: Race, Ethnicity, and Regional Development, is one of the few authors who has discussed the African influence in this context.

While exploring Mexican colonial census and church records, this author has been given a better understanding of the genetic and economic influence of the African in Mexico. In various cities throughout Mexico, epidemics would wipe out large numbers of Indians. At times like these, the percentage of the Black population would increase significantly. The smaller pool of workers thus contained a greater number of Africans, who moved into fill the labor vacancies created by the loss of the Indians.

As one example of a strong African presence, the City of Zacatecas in 1803 had the following population numbers: 11,000 Spaniards and mestizos; 9,500 Indians; and 12,500 Negroes and mulattoes. Figures such as these are a testament to the value of the African in providing essential services (through labor) to the Mexican colonial economy.


Aguirre Beltrán, Gonzalo. La Población Negra de México, 1519-1810. Mexico, 1972: 2nd edition.

Bennett, Herman L. Africans in Colonial Mexico: Absolutism, Christianity, and the Afro-Creole Consciousness, 1570-1640 (Blacks in the Disapora). Indiana University Press, 2003.

Carroll, Patrick James. Blacks in Colonial Veracruz: Race, Ethnicity, and Regional Development. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1991.

Harring, Clarence H. The Spanish Empire in America. New York: Harbinger, 1963.

Menchaca, Martha. Reconstructing History, Constructing Race: The Indian, Black, and White Roots of Mexican Americans. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2001.

Mörner, Magnus. Race Mixture in the History of Latin America. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1967.

Palmer, Colin A. Slaves of the White God: Blacks in Mexico, 1570-1650. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1976.

About the Author: John Schmal is a student of Mexican history and a specialist in Mexican genealogy. He has coauthored a book about the indigenous and African roots of a Mexican-American family in The Indigenous Roots of a Mexican-American Family, available through Heritage books at:

History Celebrated 
by Page Johnson
Church News contributor

There is something bittersweet about discovering the name of one of your relatives listed on a bill of sale as a piece of property, said researchers of African-American history during the Washington D.C. Temple Visitors Center's annual observance of Black History month.

Church News, 
Week ending March 12, 2005

Held each weekend during February, the event featured varied musical performances, lectures and exhibits. Many participants, largely people of other faiths, expressed a sense of being "at home" on the beautiful grounds near the temple.

More than 1,600 people, including ambassadors and other dignitaries, attended the evening events that kicked off with a fireside featuring Darius Gray, past president of the Genesis Group, and Margaret Young, a BYU professor of creative writing who collaborated with Brother Gray on a trilogy about black Mormon pioneers, "Standing Promises."

Rich Information from the Emigrant Savings Bank 
 – Juliana Smith 
Sent by Janete Vargas

They were the shouts heard ‘round the world--or at least around my neighborhood. The first shout rang out when I found out that had posted a database of images of the New York Emigrant Savings Bank records online as part of its immigration collection. That shout was followed by a series of frenetic clicks as I began plugging in family names. 

The next shout was as I called to tell my mother that this new database had taken our research halfway ‘round the world! (The doctors expect the ringing in her ears to stop soon.) 

Lest you think I'm being overly dramatic, let me share with you what I found. Here is one of the records I found for my fourth great-grandfather James Kelly: 

Nov. 19, 1857 
Account #15751 
James Kelly 
Occupation: none, infirm 
Address: 34 John St. 
Native of Glackmore, Coy. Donegal & arrived at Halifax 30 yrs ago 
Wife dead Bridget McLoghlin & ch. James, Mary, Jane & Elizth. With the exception of the names of his children and the first name of his wife, this was all new information! 

A Closer Look
So now you know what all the shouting was about. Let's go back and take a closer look at these records. 

Opened in 1850, the Emigrant Savings Bank was established by members of the Irish Emigrant Society following the huge wave of Irish immigration that resulted from the Irish Potato Famine. While most of the depositors were of Irish descent, the Savings Bank was not restricted to those from Ireland. I also noted several English and German entries in my browsing, and I'm sure there are other nationalities included as well. 

Four kinds of records are currently available in this database: 

Index Book: The bank kept an index of all individuals recorded in their volumes, and the index books include the name and account number. 

Test Books: These books cover the years 1850-68 and information that may be found in this set of records includes the date of the record, the name of the depositor, his account number, occupation, residence, and other remarks, which could include names of other family members, immigration information, or birth or residence information in Ireland. 

Transfer, Signature, and Test Books: These books existed from 1850-83 and were used primarily for recording changes made to an individual's account information. Examples of such a change could be a new signature, a change in address, or a change in the account holder. Information that may be found in this set of records includes the signature of the account holder, the date of the record, the account number, the individual's residence, occupation, year born, birthplace, and family relations. 
Deposit-Account Ledger: These records are arranged by account number and contain an account history for each individual, recording typical transactions such as deposits and withdrawals. Tips for Searching This database includes fields for first and last name, account number, record type (as described above), birth year, birth country, other birth location and transaction date. Of these fields, first and last name (with Soundex searches available), account number, birth year, and record type can be specified in your search. 

Despite James Kelly's common name, I went with just the first and last name. The above entry was the ninth of 155 hits (all of which I have now checked!). Looking at the first page of hits, it was important to note that only 16 of the 40 hits included a birth year, so unless you're looking at a really huge number of hits, you might want to leave the birth year search option blank. Here are some other tips for searching this database: 

When you click on the name of the individual in your search results, you'll be taken to a page with that individual's index details. On that page is a link that says, “View other records associated with this account number.” This is something you definitely want to do. Displaying the results by account number can turn up entries that were indexed with different spellings. As I searched for another relative, John Pyburn, I found only an index book entry. However, when I clicked on the link to search by account number, I found a test book entry, which due to poor handwriting, had been indexed in the database as John Pylman. The test book gave his address, occupation, and year of birth and stated that he was born in Co. Cork and that he had arrived in this country in 1851 on the ship “Margaret Evans.” It also listed his wife's name as Mary Ryan. 

Another reason to search by account number once you've located an entry is that I've seen a number of instances where the Transfer, Signature, and Test Books don't list a name in the “signature” field. An example of this can be found by searching for account 70346. Despite the lack of a name, this entry still lists the street address, occupation, year of birth, county of origin, immigration year, ship name, and both parents' names. 
Don't stop your search if you find one entry for an ancestor. I found multiple accounts for several of my Kelly ancestors. 

Search for everyone in the family. Because of the varying degrees of information in the accounts, details not found in your direct ancestor's account may show up in a sibling's account. (Ex: Parents' names, mother's maiden name, year of arrival, ship name, town of origin as opposed to only a county, etc.) In addition, for the siblings who were born in Ireland, I'd like to see if their birthplaces are the same as that of their father. It's possible that they moved within Ireland before emigrating to the United States. 

For extremely common names, try a search from the main immigration page, specifying the county name in the keyword field. The database will return a maximum of 2,000 hits. When I searched for all the Kelly's, there are over 3,000 hits. Since I now have a county of origin, I can look for collateral relatives by including “Donegal” in the keyword field. Not all the indexed entries will list it as a birth location (even in some cases where it is listed in the account entry), but it was in enough for me to take a chance and see if I'd get lucky. 

As with any index, particularly those that depend on deciphering what can be pretty bad handwriting, check for variant spellings. I found several “look-alike” mis-indexed entries, such as Helly and Relly, instead of Kelly. 

Also search using initials and abbreviations. I saw quite a few abbreviated names including Chas for Charles, Cathe for Catherine, Margt or Mgt for Margaret, Jas for James, Jno for John, etc. In some of these cases, a wild card search (which only requires the first three letters) would locate alternate entries, but in cases like James or John, several searches will need to be done. 

This database is a good place to look up sponsors, neighbors, and other suspicious characters that keep reappearing in records with or near your ancestors. Because of the relationship information and the fairly consistent inclusion of mother's maiden names, you may find that information in this database will finally link these folks to your family tree. 

I was surprised that although I've found accounts for several Kelly family members, I still haven't been able to locate one for James Kelly (son of the James Kelly I mentioned earlier). I've printed out the index listing of all the James Kellys in the database, and included variant spellings (like Kelley) as well. On this index print, I'm making notes about the entries as I go through them. I have quite a collection of Kellys from city directories that I compiled over several trips to the Family History Library. (More on this is found in this article) Using the addresses found in this database, I can now rule out many of the directory entries and this may help me to zero in on related families. Knowing their exact location year to year can help me to locate church records and may help me to tie in other Kelly family members that I'm unaware of at this time. 

In Summary

If you're still with me, I admire your perseverance. I've been hard pressed to get anything else done this past week and have spent most of my free time exploring the various books. It's really easy to get caught up and what you find really gives some interesting insights into the times. I found it fascinating to see how much money my ancestors had in their accounts at various times and how this immigrant family grew their fortune in their new home. 

In browsing I noted many who signed with his or her “mark,” while others signed their full names. In the entries during Civil War years, you'll see a lot of soldiers' accounts. In the Test Books for 1865, image 77 includes the accounts of four soldiers, with their regiment and company listed as their residence. The relations field for three of these entries gives instructions for payment "in case of death." 

There is a wealth of information waiting to be uncovered, some of it spelled out and some not as obvious. For family historians with ancestors included in this database, this is one of the richest banks in the world. Best of luck with your searches! 

Juliana Smith is the editor of the Ancestry Daily News and author of The Ancestry Family Historian's Address Book. She has written for Ancestry Magazine and Genealogical Computing. Juliana can be reached by e-mail at, but she regrets that she is unable to assist with personal research. 

Copyright 2005,




The Washoe Tribe of Nevada and California
                                             Barbara Benge - Native American Research Online class   
Native American Research Class
alifornia Native Americans Map
American Indians Look to DNA Tests to Prove Heritage
D-Q University Tribal-college students taking another stand


Legal advocacy for the protection of indigenous peoples’ human rights, cultures, and
traditional lands so that Indian tribes and nations may flourish for generations to come


  In February 2005, the Mohawk Nation Council of Chiefs (a traditional Haudenosaunee government), the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe, and the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne signed an agreement with Governor George Pataki to resolve their historic claim to lands in Northern New York.

  Represented by the Indian Law Resource Center, the Mohawk Nation Council of Chiefs approved the agreement only after years of vigorous advocacy to ensure that the deal adequately protected the interests of their community and of future generations of Mohawks. "Through a lot of hard work at home and at the negotiating table, the Council of Chiefs has forged an agreement they can be very proud of," said Indian Law Resource Center attorney Alex Page.

  The settlement agreement resolves legal claims first filed in federal court nearly twenty-five years ago. Those claims site repeated violations of a federal treaty confirming Mohawk land rights. Under the settlement, the Mohawks will receive lands and monetary compensation, as well as the opportunity to further expand their territory through purchases from willing sellers. The agreement does not include casinos or taxation, two issues the Mohawks successfully fought to keep separate from the land claim.

  "The Akwesasne Mohawks are a truly unique community of people who have united to cooperatively end this divisive litigation," Governor Pataki said. "I am very pleased that our collective efforts will achieve a fair resolution of the land claim, while protecting the interests of local governments, landowners and taxpayers in Franklin and St. Lawrence counties. We look forward to working together with the Legislature and Congress to implement this agreement."

  The Mohawk community of Akweasne straddles the US-Canadian border and is governed by three Mohawk councils. The Indian Law Resource Center has represented the Mohawk Nation Council of Chiefs for more than twenty years.

Recommended by Johanna De Soto
Indian country today - The Nation's Leading Native American Indian News Source
Native America Calling Airs Live  Monday - Friday 1-2pm EST
To participate call 1-800-996-2848, that's 1-800-99NATIV

Barbara Benge - The Expert online class, $29.95 and

Native American Research class with Barbara Benge. Native American ancestry is one of the most difficult heritage lines to trace. Learn about Native American migration patterns and traditions, how to use maps to determine possible tribes, what records are available, and so much more. Barbara will cover all of the U.S. Tribes including the Five Civilized Tribes, the First Americans of Canada, and the Metis. Don't delay, this class will fill up fast. Prerequisite: A working knowledge of computers. 
Background and Experience
Barbara Benge has been researching genealogy for nearly 15 years. She is currently working on her third book on Native American Genealogy. She also works for AOL Genealogy Forum, and she lectures on genealogy.

Barbara's specialty is Native American, Five Civilized Tribes (Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek, and Seminole). She also researches other American tribes and the First Americans of Canada. Benge offers help for those seeking their Indian Heritage through a Native American Genealogy website.

Both Barbara's husband and her family are of Cherokee descent. Barbara's husband's ancestors were very important members of the Cherokee Nation. These ancestors include John Benge and Peter Hildebrand who were both wagon masters on the Trail of Tears. Her genealogy addiction started after watching the documentary, How the West was Lost, which featured the Benge Trail. After that, Barbara began helping her husband's Aunt Rosie work on the Benge Genealogy.

1880 Cherokee Nation Census Indian Territory (Oklahoma). Heritage Books Inc., 2000.
1890 Cherokee Nation Census Indian Territory (Oklahoma). Heritage Books Inc., 2002.

Barbara Benge's Message:
"Millions of people throughout Canada and the United States share a Native American Heritage. Have you been putting off your search because of the difficulties of Native American genealogy? Join us to learn about the information that is available to you, and how to use that information once you obtain it."

    Lesson 1: Getting Started
    • Introduction
    • Five Steps to Take Before Beginning Native American Research
    • Non-Indian Records
    • Princess and Indian Chief Tradition
    • Using Maps to Determine Possible Tribes
    • Migration Patterns and How they Fit into Indian Research
    • Degree of Indian Blood
    • Indian Names
    • What Information is Available through
    • Assignment

    Lesson 2: The Five Civilized Tribes
    • Who are the Five Civilized Tribes?
    • Original Area of Lands Covered for these Tribes
    • Background Information on the Five Civilized Tribes History
    • Removal-the Trail of Tears
    • Freedmen Records-Black-Indians
    • Old Settlers vs Immigrants
    • Eastern Cherokees
      • Why Were Some Allowed to Remain in the East?
      • The Misconception of those who Escaped the Trail of Tears
      • Other Records for the Eastern Cherokees
    • Assignment

    Lesson 3: The Dawes and the Guion Miller Roll
    • The Dawes Roll
      • What is it?
      • What were the Requirements
      • What Information Can We Gather from the Dawes?
    • The Guion Miller roll
      • Goldmine of Genealogical Knowledge
      • Direct and Indirect Evidence
      • If Someone was Rejected Does that Mean they are Not Cherokee?
      • Other Tribes that Applied to the Guion Miller
    • Assignment

    Lesson 4: The National Archives
    • Using the 1920 Census for Native American Research
    • National Archive Records
    • Indian Census Records
    • Indian Boarding Schools
    • What Information Can I Gather from a Treaty?
    • Special Censuses
    • Assignment

    Lesson 5: The Plains and Central United States Tribes
    • Tribes that Make up the Plains Indians
    • What is the Difference Between a Tribe and a Band?
    • Who are These Tribes?
    • What Material will Help Me in my Genealogical Research?
    • Assignment

    Lesson 6: Early Eastern Tribes and Small Tribes including those of California
    • Interrelationship with Other Tribes of the Area
    • Taking Another Look at Maps and How they Can Solve Your Problems
    • Searching for Small Bands that may have Been Absorbed into Other Tribes
    • Using the Draper Manuscript and State Papers
    • Checking to See if they have Been Absorbed into Another Tribe
    • Assignment

    Lesson 7: Tribes of the Pacific North West
    • Why the Tribes of the Pacific North West Fared Better then Others
    • What is a Confederacy
    • Using Land Allotments to Find Families
    • Why were Different Tribes Allowed Allotments not on their Reservation?
    • Assignment

    Lesson 8: The Metis and First Americans of Canada
    • Researching the United States and Canadian borders
    • Early Indian Traders
    • The Canadian Archives
    • Metis Scr
      ipt-- What this Information Can Do for You
    • Assignment


31 Reservations
About 140 Tribes

Enrollment: 1928-1933

Applications and final enrollments; please write:

National Archives Textual Research (NNR1) 7th & Pennsylvania Ave, NW Washington, DC 20408 (202) 501-5395

The National Archives-Pacific Sierra Region has these records on microfilm (provided by the Bureau of Indian Affairs); please write:

National Archives—Pacific Sierra Region 1000 Commodore Drive San Bruno, CA 94066 (415)876-9018

Enrollment: 1948-1955

Applications and final enrollments at both:

Bureau of Indian Affairs 2800 Cottage Way Sacramento, CA 95825 (916)979-2600

National Archives-Pacific Sierra Region (see address above)

Enrollment: 1968-1972

Applications only, unindexed at the National Archives—Pacific Sierra Region (no final enrollments). Please call the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Sacramento for the folder number and final enrollment, and then call the National Archives—Pacific Sierra Region with the folder number for the application..

National Archives—Pacific Sierra Region (see address, above)


American Indians Look to DNA Tests to Prove Heritage
By Adam Tanner 
Sent by John Inclan

   SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - The United States has treated its indigenous people
   poorly for much of its history, yet today thousands of people are anxious to show
   their Native American heritage and are turning to DNA testing for help. Some white
   Americans have long claimed distant ties to Cherokee princesses or other legendary 
   figures among those explorer Christopher Columbus mistakenly called Indians when
   he thought he had arrived in South Asia. 

Now Indian heritage -- which can make a person eligible for federal assistance programs or a share of tribal casino profits or just satisfy curiosity -- can be determined through genetic testing. Advances in DNA screening have provided new tools to document Native American ancestry, although some say such data is open to be interpretation. 

"If you are interested in determining your eligibility for Native American rights or just want to satisfy your curiosity, our ancestry DNA test is the only method available for this purpose today," one firm, Genelex, advertises. 

Although U.S. citizens typically know the broad outlines of their ancestry, for Native Americans the exact fractions of their heritage can take on heightened importance. 

Nineteenth-century treaties obligate the U.S. government to provide education, health care and other services to many tribes. Indian sovereignty also means tribes can set up casinos on reservations, and Indian casinos now generate $18 billion annually and the numbers are growing. 

Many tribes set as a membership standard that a person must have at least one Indian grandparent or one great grandparent. Others among the 562 federally recognized tribes require links to members on a tribal membership roll in past generations. 

With individuals seeking to affirm membership in recognized tribes and dozens of unrecognized tribes seeking federal acknowledgment, commercial firms have in the last two years stepped up marketing of genetic ancestry tests. A positive test result is not sufficient to enable someone to claim Indian benefits because they must prove a link to a specific tribe. 

"Nobody else in this nation has to prove their ancestry except for American Indians," said Ken Adams, chief of the Upper Mattaponni Tribe in Virginia which is not recognized by the U.S. government. "It's so ironic because we were the original ones." 

Since Genelex started offering the test more than a year ago, 600 people have paid $395 to learn the degree of their Native American heritage, said Kristine Ashcraft, director of client relations. 

Firms such as Genelex offer three types of tests: on male ancestors, on female ancestors, and a third to determine a percentage of Native American, East Asian, Indo-European and African heritage. 

A Sarasota, Florida company DNAPrint processes that third test, and has done it for 12,000 to 13,000 people since 2000, said firm director Richard Gabriel. DNAPrint uses data from South American Indians as a genetic reference point, he said. 


Mark Shriver, an anthropologist at Pennsylvania State University who helped develop the DNAPrint ancestry test, cautions its results without family history prove little. 

"Just simple belief in a test without considering all the other data is, you know, foolish," he said. "The science is not simply true and objective...It is one clue in the picture." 

He cited one of his graduate students from France whose test found a 14 percent Native American heritage. He said that number was likely the result of intermixing following the 13th century invasion of Europe by Mongols, who hailed from the same region of Asia as the forefathers of Native Americans. 

The DNA tests are also unable to differentiate between Indian tribes. 

The issue of who is an Indian also hangs over future generations. For members whose tribes share revenues from casino operations, marrying outside the tribe could have major financial implications. 

As in many cultures, some parents encourage children to marry within the tribe, but some, especially in smaller tribes, see the request as very limiting. 

"Everyone in the tribe is a distant cousin," complained one 18-year-old Indian woman who works at a casino in the Pueblo of Acoma, New Mexico. She hoped to marry outside the tribe. 

As important as identity is in Native American culture, for some the motivation for a DNA test is just curiosity. 

"It's growing in popularity much faster than any of our expectations," said Terry Carmichael, vice president for sales and marketing at GeneTree, whose advertising asks "Do you have Native American DNA?." 

"A lot of people out there primarily want to find out if they have Native American ancestry, not for purposes of claiming rights to a casino but more for their own understanding," he said. "They want to be able to understand their ancestry a little bit more." 

Introduction to 
DQ University loses accreditation
by James May, Today staff 
Posted: January 28, 2005
Indiana Country online 

DAVIS, Calif. - The Thursday before classes were to begin for the spring 2005 semester, DQ University faculty and students gathered for what they assumed was to be a standard orientation. In fact, the assembled group had no idea what was going to hit them since everything seemed normal as the proceedings began with a traditional drum opening and a Cherokee prayer. 

When it was time for DQ University President Victor Gabriel to take the microphone, instead of the usual orientation pep talk, he somberly informed the assembled group that the school's accreditation had been revoked. 

''I was hoping to have different news, but our accreditation has been taken away,'' said Gabriel to the stunned crowd. 

The Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) had only informed Gabriel and the top DQ University staff the previous day that the school's accreditation had been revoked. The action leaves the future of the institution in doubt. 

The 50 or so students in attendance were shocked. Stunned silence gave way to simmering anger as the news began to sink in. Students questioned where they would go to school this semester and what would happen to financial aid that they had already factored into their budget. 

Founded in 1971 on surplus government land, DQ University is California's only tribal college. The school has struggled for years to remain an accredited institution. Though officially designated a tribal college, the school is around half Latino and also has a smattering of white students. Twenty-four students at California's only tribal college for American Indians are defying orders to leave the campus after the school was shut down last month.


D-Q University Tribal-college students taking another stand
Yola County

The students at D-Q University, about 20 miles west of Sacramento, have defied eviction threats and survived on donated food as they battle to reopen D-Q.

Their persistence is reminiscent of the effort that led to the school's creation: In 1970, student activists jumped the fence of a closed U.S. Army Communications Center to demand that the space be turned over for a tribal college.

Art Apodaca was one of those student activists. He remembers casing the perimeter of the shuttered communications center in the wee hours of a foggy morning. "Then I threw my peacoat over, the barbed wire and helped everyone hop over. Next, we had to slide the poles and the canvas over to put up the tepee."

By sunrise, Army officials and local law enforcement were on the scene. But after several weeks of negotiations, the activists prevailed: The federal government agreed to turn over land for use as a tribal college.

"It's a neat old story, but it won't count anymore if we let D-Q down," Apodaca said.



Una Entrada al Arbol de la Vida
Sephardic Jews in the Caribbean
Epoca de Oro de los Sefarditas
Father Symeon Clemente Carmona


Una Entrada al Arbol de la Vida, 
escrito por 
el Rabino Philip S. Berg

En el prologo este Rabino escribe sobre el decreto que dictaron los Reyes Catolicos,  donde expulsaron  a los judios y arabes musulmanes que no quisieron convertirse al Cristianismo, este libro esta editado tanto en español como en ingles, hay mas libros de este autor en ingles, que en español. es de un Rabino  Esoterico, no un Judaismo Tradicionalista. sino , Gnostico, donde se da la Cabala , La Numerologia, La Astrologia, y todas las Ciencias Ocultas. 

Por lo que he estado encontrando sobre los Sefarditas, yo pienso no aseguro  que somos descendientes de LEVI, el 3er hijo de Jacob  de las 12 Tribus de Israel. Si los Sefarditas perdieron  Israel 586 A.C. Y estaban en el Templo de Salomon cuando Nabucodonosor lo destruyo, y huyeron como los Fenicios y algunos terminaron en lo que ahora es España. los Levitas eran los encargados de los templos Judios.salen del templo huyendo y en Mexico en tiempo de la Revolucion se cantaba una cancion que hasta la fecha aveces se escucha donde dice soy soldado de Levita, y ser Levita quiere decir que desciendes de Levi. 
              Edna Yolanda Elizondo Gonzalez

Sephardic Jews in the Caribbean

by Peter E. Carr

At the time of the first voyage of Columbus, there were several crypto-Jews on his expedition. Certainly by the later ones, other Jews came as well.

However they had to do so in secrecy because by this time Jews in Spain and its holdings either had to convert to Catholicism or be expelled. In fact, after the Jews were expelled from Spain in 1492, many went to live En Portugal.

However, by 1497, they were expelled from Portugal/ too. Many went to live in friendly European places such as Holland. In Holland, they were still under the Spanish Crown until 1581 when The Netherlands gained its independence and religious tolerance was established. Some Jews went as far afield as the Portuguese colony of Brazil. Although they were forbidden to practice their faith, the Jews in Brazil prospered and maintained their faith secretly, hence the term 'crypto-Jews'.

Holland again enters the picture when in the 1630s, they entered the harbor at Recife in northeast Brazil, and claimed it for themselves. By 1642, there was a sizable Jewish community from Amsterdam, The Netherlands in the Recife area which numbered well over 3,000 members.

In 1654, Portugal attempted to regain control of the area from Holland. By 1664, the reconquest had taken place. Once again the Jews were expelled from the area and !eft aboard 16 ships. Many Jews returned to Amsterdam. Among these was Isaac de Fonseca who would later become the first rabbi on the North American mainland.

Others settled in the Caribbean islands of Curasao, Jamaica, Barbados, and Martinique as well as Surinam. Some of the Sephardic Jewish names in Curacao are reflected m census records of the early 18th century. These are: Curiel, Correa, Henriques, Alavares, Fonseca, Nunes, Salas, Gomes and others

At the time the Jews arrived in 1665, Surinam was a British colony. The Jews had been lured to settle here by the British government by being given 10 acres of land, British citizenship, and recognition of the Sabbath.

When in 1667 Surinam came under Dutch control, the Jews were once again in customary friendly hands. However, many moved to the British colony of Barbados in order to retain their British citizenship.

For over half a century, Surinam prospered under Dutch control and Jewish plantation management. Though the Jews in Barbados prospered and enjoyed freedom starting as early as 1660s and for a long time, resentment appeared among other settlers. Restrictions on Jewish trade were put into effect.

It was not until 1802 that all restrictions were once again removed. As far back as the early 1650s, a Sephardic synagogue had been established in Barbados and named Nidhe Israel, meaning the Dispersed Ones of Israel. Some of the headstones from the 1660s are still readable and in good shape.

By 1671, Jews in Jamaica were being asked to leave by the newly-arrived British settlers. Though not successful, a special tax on the Jews was passed in 1693.

In 1703, Jews were barred from using indentured Christian servants. Through all this, the Jews remained on Jamaica. There is a list dating from 1754 of Jewish landholders in Jamaica which includes such names as Fertado, Alvarez Fernandez, Gutteres, Gabay, Mendez, Henriques, Israel, Lousada, La Cruz (surprisingly as this may seem), Perera and various others.

On the French colony of Martinique as well as other French colonies, King Louis XIV ordered all Jews expelled in 1683. There were other smaller Jewish colonies on some of the smaller Caribbean islands. The larger islands, like Cuba, did not have any sizable Jewish settlement until well into the 20th century.

From these islands, many Jews would trade with mainland Spanish colonies such as Venezuela, Honduras, and even Mexico, though for the most part trade restrictions by the Spanish Crown did not allow easy contact or interchange between Caribbean Sephardic Jews and those on the mainland under Spanish control.

Epoca de Oro de los Sefarditas

Esta epoca de Oro de los Sefarditas comprende del año 711 a 1492 que fue el año en que los Reyes Catolicos  Fernando e Isabel de España  dictan un decreto en donde todo aquel que no se convierta al Cristianismo  seria expulasado de España. Muchos Sefarditas salen de España hacia Portugal y luego llegan a America otros se van al Medio Oriente, tanto Arabes como Sefarditas.

Edna Yolanda Elizondo Gonzalez
For more on this subject:

Father Symeon Clemente Carmona
Remnants of Crypto-Jews Among Hispanic Americans
by Gloria Golden

I realized my heritage in my pre-teens. The incident, in which 1 found out, took place by having an argument or fight with other kids in which we were called strange names. Coming home and telling my mother of it, she told me to go to my great-grandfather and tell him exactly what had happened.

My grandfather took me out to sit beneath a large cottonwood tree that grew in the yard. He proceeded to speak of the Old Testament and the Jewish people. As he spoke, I interrupted him, and I asked, "What does that have to do with us?" It took a few seconds, and he answered me, hugging me at the same time, "But, my child, we are the people in the Old Testament. We are Jewish. You are a Jew." And he continued on for an hour or two, telling the history of the family, who we were and how we came to be in this place, New Mexico.

In our home, for instance, all the men ate together from the youngest male to the oldest male; and then the females ate, after the men would eat. The mother, in whose home the dinner was served, always served the first-born male first and then the other males. Before eating the meal, the oldest male in the house would bless bread with a special prayer and bless a glass of wine of which everybody at the table partook a little. We were taught, for instance, to recite the psalms in Latin, usually done by the first-born son who was made to study different languages from his very earliest years, such as Spanish, Ladino, English, Latin, and a little bit of Hebrew. One of the interesting parts in this was that he was taught to recite everything from memory so as to not leave any incriminating evidence to the church. Other things remembered as a ritual that the women did: At the beginning of every month they would symbolically wash their hands in a bow! of water that was placed at the so-called family altar and dry their hands with green grass or leaves. They would drop a silver coin into the water and leave it there. I finally realized that this was a woman's purification ritual and the coins represented the coin given to the priest after the purification. The purification was for the monthly menstrual cycle.

Yes, I feel connected to Judaism and the Jewish people in a great way, first, realizing that the faith I now hold came from the Jewish people, that it has the same ritual laws, rules, and regulations. Also, now that I am a priest monk, members of the Marrano community come to me to seek counsel about whether to return to Judaism fully or remain, as we are, a dying dinosaur in this place and time. They bring their children sometimes for me to bless them in the Jewish way, by laying of hands and reciting Ladino prayers over them. I believe that I am one of the very few persons in this world that can come through the door of time, and on either side, will be my family, my people, my joy, my all.


Youth Honoring their Ancestor
Honoring Founding Families of Laredo
We are Americans!!
Turns out those Top Ten students do awfully well
Biography of  Captain Jose de Urrutia
Awards Show Celebrated the History and Legacy of Tejano Music
Jose Maria Serrano's Report On Election Return
Liberating Truth From Myth: Author of Sleuthing The Alamo
Web County Seeks Descendants of Laredo's       Founding Families 
Tejanos' presence in revolution called 'major' 
Angel of Goliad Francisca Alvarez Family Reunion 
Descendents of Angel of Goliad honor historic figure


Youth taking pride in the history of their ancestor: 
 The Angel of Goliad
Click to articles



May 15, 2005


Sent by George Gause
for Margarita Araiza  

Highlighting the 250th celebration of Laredo’s founding, the Webb County Heritage Foundation will kick off Founders’ Day week-end with a luncheon honoring the descendants of Don Tomás Sánchez and all the founding families of this historic community on Saturday, May 14, 2005 at12 noon in the Student Center Ballroom of Texas A&M International University in Laredo. The event is open to the public and all descendants of founding families are encouraged to contact the Webb County Heritage Foundation in order to be recognized that evening. 

The event will include local, state, national and international dignitaries as well as musical entertainment and a short video presentation. 

The newly named President of the Republic of the Río Grande will also be introduced. In addition, presentation of the annual Heritage Awards recognizing outstanding commitment to historic preservation will be featured. 

For more information and calendar updates on the 250th Celebration, contact the Webb County Heritage Foundation, Margarita Araiza, Executive Director at  or   (956) 727-0977  All events are open to the public.

Below please find an updated Calendar of Events sponsored by the Webb County Heritage Foundation for the 250th Celebration and Founders' Day in Laredo, Texas:
Saturday, May 14, 10 a.m., 810 Zaragoza St. -- Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Villa Antigua Project's Border Heritage Museum.
Saturday, May 14, 12 noon, TAMIU Student Center Ballroom -- Founders' Day Luncheon honoring descendants of Laredo's founding families. Contact the Webb County Heritage Foundation for more information and reservations.
Sunday, May 15, 7 p.m., Laredo Community College Martinez Fine Arts Theater -- "Bordertown - Now Playing: Botas, Guaraches and Carne Asada" a multi-media live theater performance celebrating Laredo's history and heritage. Contact the Webb County Heritage Foundation for more information.
Thursday, May 19, 6-8 p.m., Laredo Center for the Arts -- Reception for the "History of Transportation in Laredo" exhibit. This exhibit features photographs, documents, and artifacts recounting the development of one of Laredo's oldest industries. A special exhibit of never displayed artifacts from the last archaeological excavation on San Agustín Cathedral grounds will also be featured. Note: This is a month-long exhibit open from May 4 - May 27.
All events are open to the public. For more information contact the Webb County Heritage Foundation at (956) 727-0977 or 




Chapter 17 from the
 "Continuous Presence Of  Italians & Spaniards In Texas As Early As 1520" 
by Alex Loya

Author Loya sent a request to include this chapter in Somos Primos because: "I would want for every original Texan, every one of us whose ancestors have been in Texas since its Spanish Colonial Period, to read, understand and assimilate. I believe it is vital and crucial for us original Texans to realize, understand and  internalize the information in this chapter." 


As I went through the process of writing this book, there were so many wonderful things that I came to realize! One of the most precious things I came to realize is something that every descendant of original Texans, those of us whose ancestors were there since the Spanish Colonial Period of Texas, really needs to know. You will recall how in chapter 3 of this book I shared a little bit of history that, although critically important to the history of the United States, is not widely known, that Texas and Texans played a major role in the American Revolution. 

Briefly, as a reminder, Texas, as well as Louisiana belonged to Spain at the time of the American Revolution, our ancestors were subjects of the King of Spain. In 1779 the King of Spain declared war on England and ordered his subjects to fight the British wherever they could find them. 

Consequently, Governor Bernardo de Galvez of Louisiana, who had previously been a Lieutenant of the Spanish forces in Chihuahua and had led in numerous incursions against the Apaches, effectively linking our area with Louisiana, since part of West Texas was part of Nueva Viscaya also known as Chihuahua, mustered up an Army and Navy to fight the British. 

In what is known as the Galvez Expedition for American Independence, Governor Galvez, who corresponded with Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson etc., defeated the British in battles all over the South, from Baton Rouge and Manchac in Louisiana, Natchez in Mississippi, and Mobile, Alabama, to Pensacola, Florida. Spanish forces under his command also defeated the British in battles as far North as St. Louis, Missouri and St. Joseph, Michigan along the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers. 

There were Texans in this army, plus Texas also aided with money, prayers and thousands of heads of cattle to feed Galvez' army, and hundreds of horses for his cavalry and artillery. It was then that the original Texans naturally became emotionally, practically and even spiritually invested in the birth of the United States before the Republic of Mexico was ever conceived. It was then that the sense of destiny many original Texans had of being part of the United States and enjoying the freedoms they had fought for was naturally engendered. 

Governor Galvez effectively opened a third front in the American Revolution setting George Washington's Continental Army free to fight in the East without fearing an attack from the South. Louisiana and Texas and the other provinces of Northern New Spain played such a huge role in the war, that were it not for us, it is entirely possible the 13 British Colonies would not have been successful and the United States of America would never have been born. All men between the ages of 14 and 60 had to join the militia in the Spanish provinces, so that all male ancestors would have been, if not soldiers, militiamen.

As I thought about this, what I had been realizing became crystal clear! It is such a terrible mistake when original Texans think of themselves as a separate people from the United States, who were forced to join the U.S. through shame and defeat just because our land was part of New Spain in colonial days and became a part of Mexico for only 14 years! 

Remember, it was in the same ceremony on Nov. 30, 1803 in which Spain formally transferred the Louisiana Territory to France that the announcement was made that France had sold the territory to the U.S., so that in their hearts, as in the eyes of Texas and the world, the 90,000 inhabitants of Louisiana went from being citizens of Spain to being American in one day. One day! 

Yet the many Spaniards in Louisiana do not have a problem calling America home. And Spaniards our ancestors were, or Italian Spaniards and Hispanicized French-Italians for some of us. Think about it, Texas belonged to Mexico for only 14 years. Only 14 years! Truthfully, those 14 years were only a step in the process of the formation of this country at a time when all countries in the Americas were being formed. Think about what this means. 

As I mentioned before, my great great grandfather Arcadio Loya was born in Texas in 1817, four years before Mexico, which had begun its struggle for independence in 1810, actually gained its independence from Spain in 1821 after 11 years of not a continuous struggle but a series of confrontations, he and certainly his father before him were born subjects of the King of Spain. Arcadio Loya's son, Gabino Loya, my great grandfather, was born in 1847, within the border officially claimed by the United States, which had been claimed by the Republic of Texas. It is no surprise that Gabino Loya's family considered themselves Spaniards, as the obituary of Pilar Escontrias Loya, my grandfather’s half sister, indicates, and as the oral inheritance my own father passed down to me agrees. 

None in that line were born under fully Mexican jurisdiction, they went from being born citizens of Spain and subjects of her king born in Northern New Spain during troubled times, to being born American. Being called Mexican Texans to them was not the truth as the truth was what they considered themselves to be, Spaniard Texans, especially since the degree of intermarriage with Indian tribes in Northern New Spain, for the various historical reasons I mentioned, was nowhere near the degree that it occurred to the south. The so called "mestizaje", the intermarriage of Spaniards, or any other Europeans, with Indians, just did not happen in Northern New Spain to anywhere near the degree that it occurred in the south. It just did not happen. 

They were Spaniard Americans just like the ones in South Louisiana... and so it was with many if not most of you, as, indeed, the faces of the El Paso County Commissioners and the Spaniard Founding Fathers of Texas clearly show!

We are Americans! We have been part of it all along! From the very start! We have been here from the very beginning of the United States! We are descendants of the very first Europeans to settle on American soil, who fought the Indians and were pioneers in the land! We fully participated in the formation of this country from the very start! We celebrated the very first Thanksgiving on what would be the United States of America before the Pilgrims did on Plymouth Rock, yet together with the Pilgrims and their Thanksgiving, we effectively established this country as a Christian land at its foundation, from end to end! 

We fought and prayed and gave money and cattle for the American Revolution against England, we fought together in 1812. We stood like brothers alongside Bowie and Travis at the Alamo and with Sam Houston we defeated the Mexicans at San Jacinto, because they like brothers had selflessly joined us in our battle and our cause. We fought during the Civil War, some Union, some Confederate, and in San Elizario the town voted unanimously to join the Confederacy. Captain Garcia, and Telesforo Montes and Arcadio Loya and all of them, every single one of them, voted to join the Confederacy so that of all people we know the Confederate Flag is truly about heritage and not hatred. 

A year into the Civil War, however, San Elizario was occupied by the Union Army, bringing the war effectively to an end in West Texas, and, evidently conscripting some of the young men to serve in the Union Army, whose cause to set a whole race of people free and preserve the Union was a better cause. We fought the Indians in the Indian Wars, we suffered in the trenches of WWI, we shed our blood in WWII. We fought in the bitter cold of the Korean War, we poured blood, sweat and tears in the jungles of Vietnam, we liberated Kuwait in the Persian Gulf, we fought to set 50 million people free from the yoke of cruel and vicious tyrants in Afghanistan and Iraq, through the years wearing the boots of an American fighting man!…And even as I write this we are doing so! We are Americans! If anybody is an American, we are Americans! And we have fully participated from the very start! Do not think of yourselves, as some original Texans do, as a dispossessed people, we are not! We are an American people, who actually achieved the victory of our cause when Texas became part of the United States! And we were there with those who came after from a little more to the north in Europe, side by side, shoulder to shoulder, weapon with weapon, together as a single people, as brothers, fighting a common enemy, with celebrations of Thanksgiving making this a Christian land, and we have been so ever since. So fully embrace this American nation and its culture you were a foundational part of! Wear your cowboy hats and sing your country music, eat your Thanksgiving Turkey and, indeed, celebrate the Fourth of July, after all, there probably would not be any such celebration without us! We are Americans!



Turns out those Top Ten students do awfully well
By Lasso | Friday, April 15, 2005
Sent by JD Villarreal

The Austin editorial page today reports that kids entering the university in Austin under the top ten percent rule do better than the kids who are admitted in the old-fashioned way:

Critics complain that top 10 students from Brownsville, Dallas or rural East Texas are less deserving than non-top 10 students from Plano, Highland Park or Eanes. Therefore, they argue, Texas is losing its brightest and best students because top 10 students are filling up so many seats that there aren’t any left over for other gifted students who don’t graduate in the top 10 percent of their class. 

But UT-Austin’s own figures show that top 10 students stay in college in greater numbers and graduate faster than non-top 10 students. It’s true that top 10 students are taking a greater share of seats at UT and A&M. But there still are plenty of seats available at those institutions for others, because thousands of students who are admitted don’t enroll.

[[ Editor: When I commented that the "top-ten percent" rule in California was being criticized. JD responded: ]]

I'm certain you do (have criticism). In Texas, something has to give, either the Texas government or University of Texas. The infrastructure is such that it can not handle the rapid growth of both. I believe it is University of Texas that will have to limit its growth and in doing so will have to raise its entering requirements or standards. Articles coming out of U.T. Austin recommend lowering enrollment from 56K down to 48K. To compensate for the lose of revenue, higher tuition cost are now in place. It is more expensive for minorities to attend U.T Austin when tuition ranges around 15K per year not including summer.

One solution for the U.T. system is to construct a much needed Law School, Pharmacy
School, and upgrade it graduate schools in the different branches throughout the state. I know the Rio Grande Valley is now big enough and merits to have such branches constructed in South Texas, be it Pan Am or Brownsville.

With the rise in tuition cost at major universities in Texas, an increasing number of minorities are opting to stay close to their hometowns and attend community colleges at least for their first two years.

Just an observation and opinion on my part.  Have a great day. J.D. 

[[Editor: By JD response, I asked if he was in education and he sent the following, which I share by permission and with a sense of  pride in JD's accomplishment and caring .]]

I teach history in Rio Grande City High School. This is my 28th year with the school district. Ever since I graduated from U.T. back in 76, I returned to my hometown to try to help out other kids who were going the same road I was. As a migrant I attended about 14 different schools throughout West Texas over a four year period. I loved meeting new students, but life was hard. My dad use to work in road construction and was employed by Border Construction Co. from Laredo. The company took bids on roads going to El Paso by way of Del Rio and also by way of San Angelo.

I live in what the census labeled the 2nd poorest county in the United States., which also happens to be Gen. Ricardo Sanchez hometown. It's a small town but well known for its politics. It also happens to be the crossroads to much illegal activity, sorry to say. 

My aim has always been to point out the positive side of our region rather than the negative. Our children hear much of the bad news everyday and wonder if living in our area has anything positive in life. I feel for them and the elderly for they are the ones that suffer the most.    J.D. 



Biography of
Commander of the Royal Presidio of San Antonio de Bexar

© By John D. Inclan
Edited by Bernadette Inclan


Mexico became a country when it gained independence from Spain in 1821. However, for almost three hundred years it is New Spain and its citizen’s Spanish subjects. In 1835, the Mexican State of Tejas declares independence from the new nation of Mexico. Nonetheless, to this day, Spanish roots are deeply entrenched in the histories and composition of both Mexico and Texas. The political, military and powerful elite families from New Spain begin this history and this story.

Much data and legends exist on the Oil tycoons and the cattle barons of Texas. Nevertheless, these men are mere latecomers in Texas history. Under the leadership of the Silver Magnate, Governor Juan de Oñate, Spanish Colonization of what is now the United States began in 1598. Nine years before the English established the first settlement at Jamestown and twenty-two years before the pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, this early trailblazer used his immense wealth to finance an entire entrada into New Mexico. This expedition included his son, Cristóbal de Oñate, then eight-years old and a commissioned lieutenant governor and captain general, the two Zaldivar brothers, Juan and Vicente, and Oñate’s nephews. Ten Franciscan priests carrying crosses fronted 400 men, many with their families. The encumbered cortege entered New Mexico, via El Paso, with two luxury coaches, belonging to Oñate, eighty-three wagons and seven thousand heads of livestock. Dressed in full armor plate, these first Europeans that settle New Mexico shape the destiny of what is now the American Southwest. Eighty-two years later, the descendents of these colonies flee the Albuquerque area in what history calls the Pueblo Revolt of 1680. The refugees settle in El Paso and Monterrey, Mexico. The families of Duran y Chavez of El Paso, and, generations later, San Antonio, Texas, and the De Las Casas of Monterrey, New Spain, are portrayals in this flight. Of these two families, later generation ally by marriage to the Urrutia family. In addition, through the intricate web of allied families of Monterrey one finds numerous descendents of the Onate-Zaldivar family in the genealogy of the Captain’s descendents of the lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas.

By the late 1600’s, Florida, Texas and the Southwest belonged to the vast empire of Spain. José de Urrutia and Diego Ramón, governor of Coahulia, New Spain from 1691 to 1698, exemplify the "movers and shakers" of this new land. These two influential men and their families settled in the region of Coahulia.

Captain José de Urrutia was born in the province of Guipúzcoa, Spain, on or about 1678. He and his brother Toribio came to the Americas before 1691. Little information exists on their early years in and about New Spain, but by 1691, Jose, a mere youth, accompanies Dón Domingo Terán de los Ríos, into an expedition into Texas. Terán had been in the Spanish service in Peru for twenty years. In 1681, he came to Mexico as a deputy of the consulate of Seville. Because of his successes in quelling Indian disturbances, his instructions included establishing seven missions among the Tejas Indians. At this time the Spanish military established a garrison near the Neches River, a boundary stream forming the county lines in what is now East Texas and the Louisiana border.

In the winter of 1693, the Tejas Indians turned hostile which forced the garrison into a tortuous withdrawal from Texas. It was on this fateful date that José de Urrutia met with an accident on the San Marcos River, (but which scholars now believe to have been either the Colorado River or the Navidad River). The San Marcos River flows southeast for seventy-five miles, forming the boundary between Gonzales and Caldwell counties, before reaching its mouth on the Guadalupe River, two miles west of Gonzales. Forced to remain among the friendly Kanohatinos, Tohos, and Xarames Indians that inhabited this area, Captain Jose and four soldiers remained for an extended period. He soon gained the respect of these tribes by quickly learning their languages and becoming intimately acquainted with their customs. This earned him the title of "captain general" and soon afterwards, he oversaw the activities of all the nations hostile to the Apaches Indians. Under his leadership, he conducted several extensive campaigns against the fierce and hostile Apache.

By the early 1700’s a band of "nomadic hunter and gatherers", the Comanche, began migrating south and they showed up in the Texas panhandle and in New Mexico. It was this migration that would drive the Apaches out of the High Plains. Only after their arrival on the Plains did the tribe come to be known as Comanche, a name derived from the Ute word Komántcia, meaning "enemy". This fact alone tells the reader a great deal about these warriors. Like the Spaniards, the Comanche were a new addition to Texas. They came from Wyoming and had once been part of the Shoshone Indians. (The Comanche and the Shoshone share a common language). Historical data says that the Comanche acquired their first horses around 1680. It is interesting to note that in an ironic twist of fate, the Spaniards, in an earlier century, introduced the horse into the Americas. Once the Comanche had horses they learned to use them, thereby enabling this nomadic tribe to be more mobile in hunting and in warfare. As their migration continued, the Comanche used their skill with horses to strike swiftly and overcome their opponents. The numerous accounts of the depredations and murders inflicted by the Comanche on the local Indian population as well as on the Spanish featured prominently in the every day life of the settlers of San Antonio and its missions. The Comanche have distinguished themselves as the finest light cavalry in the world with the exception of the Cheyenne Indians, which out classed them. Even today, one can well imagine the Indian war cries that terrified my early ancestors.

By his own statement, Captain Jose claims to have lived amongst the Indians for seven years. When Captain José rejoined his countrymen remains unknown, but by 1696, he had returned to New Spain. There he held a prominent military position with the Spanish government.

To promote trade with the local Indians and the Spanish of New Spain, in 1714 a French cavalier, Lieutenant Louis Juchereau de Saint Denis, established a trading post that grew into the town of Natchitoches, Louisiana. It was a short time later that several overland highways met at Natchitoches, including the Natchez Trace from the east and the Camino Real (The King’s Highway) from New Spain. Natchitoches, recognized as the oldest permanent settlement in Louisiana, plays a major role in the histories of both Texas and Louisiana, and given notoriety by the filming of the movie "Steel Magnolias". St. Denis presented himself to the Indians of East Texas and revealed his plan to go into Mexico. The Indians asked St. Denis if he would seek their beloved "captain general". This illustrates how completely Captain Jose endeared himself to the Indians. St. Denis did go to Mexico and found himself under a "pleasant house arrest" while Spanish officials awaited instructions from Mexico City on what to do with "a foreigner bearing goods banned by Spanish mercantile restrictions." The Spanish Crown enacted an order prohibiting entry of foreign traders or their merchandise into any Spanish territory. St. Denis, however, used this occasion to court and wins a promise of marriage to the Doña Maria Manuela de Sanchez Navarro. The beautiful Manuela, as referenced in numerous accounts, is the granddaughter of Dona Feliciana Camacho y Botello, and the step granddaughter of Major Diego Ramon. The union guaranteed St. Denis a successful outcome with the Spanish Viceroy, who later appointed him conductor of supplies for the planned Ramon expedition to Texas. In 1721, St. Denis became the commander of Fort St. Jean Baptiste, located near the mouth of Bayou Amulet. When Manuela died, April 16, 1758, the annals of Natchitoches record that she was the wealthiest woman in Louisiana. Northwestern State University of Louisiana now occupies the property of her estate. Throughout the parishes of Louisiana, the genealogist can find the descendants of the union between St. Denis and SanchezCaptain

José married twice. The first occurred on January 7, 1697 to Doña Antonia Ramón. Doña Antonia was the daughter of Governor Dón Diego Ramón and the Doña Feliciana Camacho y Botello. The marriage ceremony performed at the parish church, Santiago Apostol, in the silver mining town of Monclova, in the state of Coahulia in Mexico. Captain José and Antonia had one daughter, Antonia, who later married Dón Luis Antonio Menchaca. The Menchacas settled in San Antonio, and in 1753, Don Luis earned the appointment and title of the commander of San Antonio de Bexar. They left their own unique mark in Texas history.

After the death of his first wife during childbirth, Dón José married the Doña Rosa Flores y Valdez; the daughter of Dón Juan Flores y Valdez and Doña Josefa de Hoyos y de la Garza Falcon. Dona Rosa’s families are descendents of the original Conquistadors of Coahulia and Nuevo Leon in New Spain. This marriage most likely took place in Saltillo. From the union they had four daughters and six sons, including a son named Turbico de Urrutia, who would later succeed him as captain of the presidio de Bexar. Their children, Rosa Micaela, married Dón Pedro Jose de Godoy; Cathalina, married Dón Jose de Plaza; Juana married Dón Ignacio Gonzalez de Inclán. When widowed, her second marriage was to Dón Pedro Mariano de Ocón y Trillo; Ana Gertrudis Josefina, married Dón Antonio Nicolas de Treviño Gutierrez; Captain Toribio de Urrutia, married Doña Ana Maria de Farias y Flores de Abrego and Doña Maria Josefa Flores de Valdez; Joaquin married Doña Maria Josefa Hernández Longoria; Pedro married Doña Gertrudis Flores y Valdez; Manuel died young and never married; Ignacio Cayetano married Doña Rosa Sánchez Navarro y Gomez; Miguel married Doña Clara Cantu.

On March 1, 1700, the new Governor of Coahulia was Dón Francisco Cuervo de Valdez a knight of the Order of Santiago. (He would later serve as the Governor of New Mexico). To help establish the Mission San Francisco Solano, Cuervo de Valdez commissioned Dón Jose’s father-in-law, Major Diego Ramón, now the former Governor, the commander of the presidio de San Juan Bautista del Rio Grande. Major Ramón commissioned other frontiersmen and together they enter the regions of Texas. This mission, the predecessor of the Alamo, was later relocated and renamed.

On July 23, 1733, Dón José now had forty years experience with the Indians of Coahuila, Nuevo León, and Texas. He earned the commission as the Captain and commander of the presidio of San Antonio de Bexar. This post suited him well, for Dón José was the most knowledgeable on Indian affairs of all the New World Spaniards. His new residence was the old Comandancia that today is known as the Spanish Governors’ Palace in San Antonio, Texas. Of note: The Governor never resided there. This building always served as an administrative office or for official ceremonies.

From 1734 to 1738, a succession of Apache raids resulted in a great loss of lives and livestock. Situated in a volatile area, the inhabitants of Bexar lived in constant fear and some families moved into the boundaries of the city. The situation worsen to the point that in the winter of 1739 Captain Jose led a campaign against the Apache Indians in the San Saba region (now known as located in the Texas "Hill Country" and boasts the title "Pecan Capital of the World"). He reached in this campaign the same point that years earlier another Spaniard by the name of Dón Juan Antonio Bustillo y Ceballos had reached in 1732. This campaign momentarily defeated the Apache and brought a short period of peace and stability to the area. It would not be long after that the Apache and the Spanish would find themselves warring with the Comanche. In 1743, the first report of the Comanche was sent to the viceroy.

Captain Jose’s many connections in Coahulia, Nuevo Leon, and New Spain’s capital city Mexico (Mexico City) are acknowledged by the fact that he was a friend and confidant to the powerful Marquis of San Miguel de Aguayo, Dón Joseph Ramón de Azlor y Virto de Vera and that he had a business venture with the merchant, Dón Juan de Angulo of Mexico City. On September 25, 1735, Captain Jose and Juan drafted a contract or a power of attorney (POA) where Jose had the authority to collect 350 pesos a year from 40 of his men’s salaries. Juan in turn would supply them with their necessary needs. This POA document, of particular interest to a genealogist, contains the roster of the soldiers that were garrison in San Antonio. An enthusiast can find housed in the Spanish Archives Collection at the Bexar County Courthouse a copy of the POA.

The San Fernando Catholic Church records of February 18, 1738 note that Captain José gave 100 pesos towards the construction of San Fernando Church. This church was named after the thirteenth century Spanish monarch, Ferdinand III. At eighteen years of age, the young king led his army to defeat the Moors and reestablished Christianity worship in Castile, Spain. In 1671, Pope Clement X canonized King Ferdinand III a saint. When founded in 1731, San Fernando church was the first Christian church west of the Mississippi River. The secular clergy administered the sacred rites under the jurisdiction of the diocese of Guadalajara, in New Spain. The monastic Franciscans administered prior spiritual care from the local mission, San Antonio de Valero. This new parish served the religious and civic events for the civilian and military populations. It became known as San Fernando Cathedral in later times.

Captain Jose’s property included holdings in Coahulia as well as in Texas. In San Antonio, Texas, Captain Jose and his family received a Royal Land Grant from the King of Spain. The land grants included water rights that went with the land and was measured by the number of days in which water could be used. The water was derived from the San Antonio River and one day of water was equivalent to 117 acres. (Even by today’s standards, this is quite a track of land). This grant was near what is now Military Plaza, between Houston and Commerce Street in San Antonio. A son-in-law, Dón Ignacio Gonzalez de Inclán, a native of Milan, Italy, (a duchy under Spanish domain) a soldier and cashier under the Captain’s command owned the property across the street from the Comandancia. On June 10, 1739, Dón Ignacio received his land grant (Spanish Deed #704 Bexar County Courthouse) located on the northwest corner of West Commerce and Flores streets. His widow, Doña Juana de Urrutia would later sell this property to Dón Diego Ramón Jr. This land with its adobe house would later pass to a kinsmen, Dón Luis Mariano Menchaca. Upon his death, the property passed to his widow, Doña Maria Concepcion de Estrada, and on her will of March 21, 1815, she bequest the property to her son, Dón José Maria Rodríguez. On her will was a clause which provided "one day of water" to be sold to defray her burial expense and the balance to be applied for masses to be said for her and her deceased husbands souls. This one story adobe landmark stood for two centuries before giving way for a commercial building that stands there today. The site remains as an abandoned five and dime store.

The Captain’s last will and testament is dated July 4, 1740, San Antonio, Texas. His will was witness by the Notary Public and Secretary, Dón Francisco Joseph de Arocha, and father-in-law to his granddaughter, Doña Maria Ignacia de Urrutia. He died in San Antonio on July 16, 1741. As mentioned previously, his son, Turbico de Urrutia succeeded him as commander.The sons and daughters of the Urrutia and Ramon clans married and settled in Coahulia and Nuevo Leon, Mexico, Texas and Louisiana. Later Generations also contributed in shaping the new Republic of Texas.

The flags from Spain, Mexico, the Republic of Texas and the Unites States have flown successively over Texas. Likewise, the intricate web of allied families of Coahulia and Nuevo Leon, found in Texas, comprise an interwoven community that irrefutably credits the Spanish conquests in providing the Hispanic origins.

 ReferencesBarnes, Thomas C, Nayor,Thomas H., and Polzae, Charles W. Northern New Spain A Research Guide. Tucson, Arizona The University of Arizona Press, 1981.

Chabot, Frederick C. With the Makers of San Antonio. San Antonio, Texas Artes Graficas Publishers 1970  

Chipman, Donald E. Spanish Texas, 1519-1821. Austin, Texas, University of Texas Press, 1992.

De Zavala, Adina. History and Legends of the Alamo and other Missions. Houston, Texas Arte Publico Press, University of Houston . 1996

Foster, William C. Spanish Expeditions into Texas 1689-1768. Austin, Texas, University of Texas Press, 1995

Gonzalez de la Garza, Rodolfo. Mil Familias III. 1998Hogan, Paul. Great River The Rio Grande in North American History. New York, Rinehart & Company, Inc. 1954  

Abstract: Awards Show Celebrated the History and Legacy of Tejano Music
Sent by John Inclan

San Antonio, TX--(HISPANIC PR WIRE)--March 24, 2005--A sold-out crowd of over 4,000 witnessed exciting performances by Tejano Music stars at the 25th Anniversary Tejano Music Awards held recently at the Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino Entertainment Complex in Eagle Pass, Texas. The show celebrated with great success the history and legacy of Tejano music and also included a musical tribute to the late Selena Quintanilla Perez. 

“The 2005 Tejano Music Awards was certainly one of the most exciting shows ever!” stated Mr. Robert Arellano, Chairman of TTMA. “Hundred of fans traveled from throughout the state of Texas, the United States and even Mexico for this milestone event that served to applaud and support our artists. The Kickapoo Lucky Eagle Casino Entertainment Complex served as the ideal venue for the Awards Show as our show was even carried “live” and world-wide to the troops in Iraq via BNet one of our major Media Partners.” 


   Dec. 21, 1822

Source : Bexar County Archives, Roll 73, # 0780, Translation. 


                    Dn. Jose Gil,---- ------------------ ----Don Francisco Cadena. (10 votes).

Dn. Antonio Mancha, -------------- ---Don Francisco Cadena.

Dn. Francisco Calvillo, ------------ ----Don Francisco Cadena.

Don Santiago Dias, ------------------ --Don Jose Maria Gil. (one vote).

Don Mariano Suniga -------------------Don Francisco Cadena.

Don Ylario Montolla,---------------- --Don Francisco Cadena.

                    Don Salvador Flores --------------- ---Don Antonio Conde, (one vote).

Don Vartolo Esparza,----------------- -Don Francisco Cadena.

Don Gerardo Ernandes,---------------- Don Francisco Cadena.

Don Antonio Vasques,---------------- -Don Francisco Cadena.

Don Jose Maria de la Garsa, --------- -Don Francisco Cadena.

                    Don Jose Mariano Serrano, ------------ Don Francisco Cadena.

By order of the Mayor, Don Gavino Delgado.

Jose Mariano Serrano.

By John Q. Leal Hidalgo of Texas Ex-Bexar County Archivist This 9 day of Nov. A.D. 1993


TeatroFEST is a new annual festival hosted by the Guadalupe Cultural Art Center that celebrates the Latino voice in American theater. In its inaugural year, TeatroFEST: Tejano Vision will focus on Latino/a solo performance artists and theater companies from Texas. Opportunities for performance are available June 23 - 25, 2005 for both individuals and companies in two venues: our Guadalupe Theater and the new intimate 40 seat Teatro Space.

To request an application, please contact the Guadalupe Teatro office at (210) 271-3151 ext. 26.
Postmark deadline: Friday, April 22, Location: Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center
1300 Guadalupe St.
San Antonio, TX 78207

Additional Info: Looking for Latino/a theatre, poetry, performance art, multi-disciplinary projects, puppet, performance for children, solo, group, original, new, etc. The Guadalupe will provide:-A performance stipend (a share of box office receipts). Ticket prices will range from $5 to $10.-Technical support including cueing, solving technical problems, and running the lighting and
sound during the show. Additional crew members, if needed, must be provided by the artists. -Press, marketing and publicity -Joint events, such as workshops, meetings and mixers

Marisela Barrera, Director
(210) 271-3151 ext. 26
Sent by Elvira Prieto 

Liberating Truth From Myth: Author of Sleuthing The Alamo
March Event at Trinity University
Sent by Loretta Martinez Williams latejana@houston.rrcom
Source: Larry Kirkpatrick
[[Editor: Although this is about a presentation in March, I thought the information would be of interest to many.]]
SAN ANTONIO - James E. Crisp, a Texas-born historian who drew the wrath of many for supporting a Mexican officer's account of Davy Crockett's death at the Alamo, will share his detective work into the history of Texas independence during a presentation at Trinity. Dr. Crisp will speak on "Sleuthing the Alamo: Davy Crockett's Last Stand and Other Mysteries of the Texas Revolution" at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 8, in the Chapman Auditorium. The event is free and open to all.

Dr. Crisp, an associate professor from North Carolina State University, has spent more than a dozen years trying to glean the truth from the myths surrounding the Texas revolution from Mexico. His efforts are the subject of his latest book, also titled Sleuthing the Alamo. In the book, Dr. Crisp writes about one of his most controversial findings: he uncovered evidence to support the authenticity of a diary by Jose Enrique De La Peña, a Mexican officer during the conflict. The diary became infamous for a short passage that stated American hero Davy Crockett didn't die during the 
Alamo battle and instead was executed after the fighting had ended. Although many declared the diary a forgery, Dr. Crisp went to original sources and stumbled upon a rare document to show the validity of De La Peña's papers.

During his presentation, Dr. Crisp will recount how his research added fuel to the volatile subject of Crockett's death and how he received hate mail for it. He will also examine anti-Mexican attitudes that pervaded much of Texas history during the 20th century, and he will tell of his discovery of 
the secret slashing of the most famous historical painting in Texas - a painting he says changed the story of the Alamo.

For more information contact the history department at (210) 999-7621.


Sent by George Gause  and Elsa Pena Herbeck 
Source:"Christina Davila" via Roberto Calderon/ University of North TX 

Laredo, Texas -- The Webb County Heritage Foundation is seeking descendants of this community's founding families to complete a database that will be used for the organization's Founders Day activities in May. The year 2005 marks the 250th anniversary of Laredo's founding by Don Tomás Sánchez who, along with three other families, arrived in this area on May 15, 1755. These families were soon followed by additional settlers from nearby Dolores and Revilla (old Guerrero). 

Descendants of these early families are asked to contact the Webb County Heritage Foundation at (956) 727-0977 or and list your name, complete mailing address, email address (if possible), and which original family you descend from. The Foundation would like to issue invitations for the May festivities to as many descendants as possible. 

A Founders' Day Luncheon honoring these descendants will take place on Saturday, May 14 at the Texas A&M International University's Student Center Ballroom. 

A database already containing tens of thousands of descendants' names from past generations has been compiled by local genealogist John R. Campbell who is assisting the Heritage Foundation with a display of names that will be featured at the Founders' Day Banquet on May 12. Campbell, who has been researching family trees of the original settlers for several years, is requesting that descendants with the following surnames please come forward and be counted: Aguilar, Aguirre, Arispe, Ayala, Barrera, Benavides, Botello, Bruni, Caballero, Camacho, Canales, Cantu, Cardenas, Cavazos, Chapa, Cuellar, De la Garza, De Leon, Diaz, Dovalina, Elizondo, Escamilla, Farias, Fernandez, Flores, Fuentes, Garcia, Garza, Gonzalez, Guerra, Gutierrez, Herrera, Hinojosa, Juarez, Leyendecker, Lopez, Lozano, Martin, Martinez, Mendiola, Ochoa, Ortiz, Puig, Paredes, Peña, Perez, Ramirez, Ramon, Ramos, Rodriguez, Saenz, Salinas, Sanchez, Santos, Serna, Tijerina,
Treviño, Uribe, Vela, Vidaurri, Villarreal.

"As is obvious from the list of surnames, most Laredo families are descended from the original settlers and we're happy to extend the invitation to join the celebration of our community's 250th birthday to these and all Laredoans and visitors," said Margarita Araiza, Executive Director of the Webb County Heritage Foundation. "This is a great occasion to teach our community's history, foster an appreciation of our ancestors' courage and determination, and wish Laredo a Happy Birthday." 

For more information on the Webb County Heritage Foundation's Founders' Day activities or on the 250th Celebration calendar of events, please see  or the City of Laredo's website.

Contact: Margarita Araiza, Webb County Heritage Foundation, (956)727-0977

Tejanos' presence in revolution called 'major'
Scott Huddleston, Express-News Staff Writer , 03/28/2005
Sent by Yolanda Patino
With the wide-eyed wonder of a 10-year-old, Timothy Miranda entered the hallowed, dimly lit church of the Alamo. 

It was in the venerated shrine that his great-great-great-great-grandfather, then a 13-year-old and named Juan Losoya, is said to have watched his older brother, José Toribio Losoya, die fighting for Texas independence in 1836. 

"I saw a bunch of cool stuff here," Timothy said, reflecting on his first visit to the Alamo. 

It was a well-timed adventure. Timothy has been studying Texas history in his fourth-grade class in Houston and found out just last year that he had ancestors at the Alamo. 

He saw last year's movie "The Alamo" and thought it, too, was "cool." But he wasn't sure if he saw Juan or Toribio. "I wish there had been more on them" in the movie, he said. 

Usually, extras have played Tejanos — Hispanic Texians — in films about the Alamo. That has long bothered Robert Garcia, a local historical researcher and former president of Los Bexareños Genealogy Society. 

"We're just sittin' against a wall," he said. "It shows us there, but we're just sittin'." 

A new 180-page genealogical reference gives a different view. 

Citing state records, "Tejano Participants in the Texas Revolution of 1835-37" names 325 Hispanics who served in that war with Mexico, more than twice the 150 or so that historians have estimated. 

Because the total Texian force is thought to have been about 2,000, the research suggests Tejanos made up at least one in six Texian troops, said Garcia, who co-wrote the book with his wife, Sylvia Jean de Jesus Garcia. 

The book, on sale since Feb. 26, was written for Hispanics who want to study their family history, but lack a computer to access records on the Internet. Garcia and others believe it's a breakthrough because few have tried to count how many Hispanics fought with Davy Crockett, Ben Milam, Sam Houston and other Anglo heroes of Texas. 

"Historians don't talk about this. They go into events," said Garcia , 58, a retired school district financial manager and descendant of Trinidad Coy, a scout in the revolution. 

"Now we have this to look to and say, 'We were there, too.'" 

Andres Tijerina, an Austin historian who's written books and articles on the Tejanos, agreed the new research quantifies them as "a major element" in the revolution. 

"And it clarifies questions about the reasons behind the revolution," he said. "While many have characterized it as an Anglo American vs. Mexican conflict, this supports the argument it was about principles and ideologies." 

Tijerina also agreed there could have been more than 500 Tejanos in the war. 

In the 1840s and '50s, the Congress of the Texas Republic refused to give land grants to Tejano participants unless two Anglos gave supporting statements of their involvement. 

"I found (records of) one Tejano who said, 'You know, you can keep your land,'" Tijerina said. "If the research suggests the Tejanos have been greatly undercounted, then I agree." 

He hopes the research also will encourage non-Hispanics to research their family history, to better define other ethnic groups, such as Irish or German Texans who had a "major role." 

Citing records of the Texas General Land Office and Texas State Library and Archives Commission, the new book lists 142 Tejanos given land entitlements in exchange for service in the war, and 112 who personally or through survivors were granted annual pensions authorized by the state in 1870. It mentions 18 listed on rosters of the Texian army or registered militias, and 53 whose names were in pension affidavits, volunteer company roles or witness accounts. 

Garcia said it was hard for Tejanos in the early days of the war to get land grants or pensions, because few rosters were kept. Some Tejanos died before the pensions were created, didn't know about them or were unable to find witnesses. 

The book is at Borderlands Book Store, at Wurzbach and Evers roads. Proceeds from each $25 sale of the book will aid the nonprofit genealogical society, which helps Texans trace their roots. 

George Farias, the store's co-owner and a member of Los Bexareños, said he wants to shed light on Texas history without dishonoring Anglo heroes such as Crockett, Houston and Milam. 
"What this book does, really, is gives you more knowledge of the Texas revolution. "Typically, it's been one-sided," Farias said. 

Garcia, a volunteer docent at Mission Espada, has helped Texans uncover links to history to pass on to their children, and he hopes to help others find uplifting portals to the past.  "You should see how happy they are when they find out," he said. 

No one questions Toribio Losoya's role as an Alamo combatant who, at 28, fought and died in the church. Names of his mother, Concepción, sister Juana and brother Juan appear on some lists of survivors at the Alamo, but not others, including the Alamo's official Web site. 

Annette Losoya-Mahl, another Losoya descendant, is writing a children's book about the Alamo, from young Juan's eyewitness perspective. 

Though it's known that the Losoyas lived at the Alamo — Juan's grandfather had been given a house at the southwest corner, for service to the mission — she believes the story of the Losoyas has been lost in Alamo lore. "They weren't just in the Alamo, but they lived in the walls of the Alamo," she said. "They were born in the walls of the Alamo." 

Richard Buitron, 74, learned only a few years ago that he was a Losoya descendant. 
Friday, he watched his grandson, Timothy, walk the grounds of the Alamo, which has 2.5 million visitors annually, for the first time. 

"I hope he understands the importance of this," knowing his family aided a cause that shaped history, Buitron said. Timothy also saw a statue of Toribio Losoya firing a pistol, and the boy read a plaque marking the spot where his ancestors lived. 

To him, it was cool. That's good enough for a boy who's 10. 

Angel of Goliad Francisca Alvarez Family Reunion April 3, 2005  
The Angel of Goliad Francisca Alvarez Family Reunion was held in Goliad, Texas on Sunday, April 3,2005. The Officers of the Angel of Goliad Descendants Historical Preservation organization sponsored this most memorable event where nearly 160 plus Alvarez attended. After a brief presentation and the laying of the wreath at the statue of the Angel of Goliad with banners flying representing the children descendants of the Angel, the Alvarez clan united at the Immaculate Conception Hall in Goliad.  After an opening prayer and introduction of our honored guests the Honorables Mayor William Schaefer and Judge Harold Gleinser, the Alvarez descendants enjoyed a most delicious BBQ Chicken Dinner catered by Fred Hayes Empresario Restaurant of Goliad.

 As the descendants of the Angel arrived  and were greeted and registered, I could not help but think of how very proud our great ancestor must be smiling from Heaven above along with all the deceased Alvarez. As I watched the little children playing, running, and shouting , I could not help but think they too are sharing and are a part of this grand, courageous lady who saved so many lives from death on that fateful Palm Sunday in March of the year 1836. They carry within them the qualities of self sacrifice, courage, and self giving passed on to them from one of the very few Hispanic Texan heroine Francisca (Panchita) Alvarez. 

After a few remarks from our President Rudy Ramirez , two descendants of the Goliad Massacre survivors related their stories of the part Panchita played in their families lives. A slide presentation of our website was presented by our Webmaster Manuel Munoz with the assistance of Gilbert Alvarez from Plano, Texas. As I watched the faces of all my cousins flash by and all the deceased who could not be with us, I could not help but think the parts that they played in their lives. For many of my cousins served in the military, others were counselors, teachers, nurses, ranchers, police officers, firefighters, dispatchers, singers, artists, and so on each giving of their lives serving the community and fellowman. What greater gift than to serve fellowman and to think each one of us has the Angel of Goliads' bloodline. 

After a brief genealogy of the Alvarez given by Ray Alvarez from Austin, Texas ,a moment of silence was honored in memory of our Pope John Paul II the Great and all the deceased of the Alvarez family. Then  Rebecca Ramirez Shokrian and Ray Alvarez gave an introduction to the current song Angel of Goliad in Spanish and English. The Angel of Goliad was written  by KR Wood a noted songwriter, historian and singer of Texan History Ballads. Our organization has adopted this song as our theme song. Rebecca Valadez from the Jacinto Alvarez clan sang the song for us all. She is a three time Grammy Award winner and was a back up singer for Janet Jackson. She has also appeared in Star Search   . Applause and a standing ovation rang throughout the Parish Hall. Her beautiful voice captured the theme song of a grand lady who risked her life to save others. To say goodbye to all the cousins was the hardest part of all of this most memorable reunion. It is our hope to meet more often and share our gifts with one another and continue serving mankind. From the silent camp grounds of Goliad if one listens quietly, we can just imagine Panchita Alvarez , a great Hispanic Texan heroine shouting to the Mexican soldiers not to kill the young Texan soldiers. ISCARIOTES HASTA LUZBEL....Malditos soldados, Mi Dios, Mi Dios. Ayudalos.     

This excerpt  from the introduction I gave at the reunion says it all:   

Tu nombre Francisca (Panchita) Alvarez sera puesto en letras de oro. Entre todos los angeles quienes a partir del tiempo, han sido delegado por un poder mas grande para borrar las tristezas y otorgar felicidad a los corazones de los seres que la rodeaban. Tu nombre y tu vida tendran un lugar muy especial en la historia y en los corazones de los seres que la rodeaban. Tu nombre y tu vida tendran un lugar muy especial en la historia y en los corazones de orgullosos Tejanos del pasado, presente, y futuro. Panchita Alvarez, un angel de merced, puso de por medio su bienestar, su vida y corazon para EXTENDER SUS BRAZOS MISERICORDIAMENTE  PARA dar auxilio y dignidad a los soldados heridos de FANNIN. Su humanidad no le permitio el mal trato a los presos TEJANOS . Ella salia por las calles gritando a los soldados Mexicanos que no mataran a los joven Tejanos. Su grito todavia se puede escuchar en el silencio del campo de Goliad: ISCARIOTES HASTA LUZBEL malditos soldados!!! Mi DIOS, MI DIOS, Ayudalos, Ayudalos. Tenga Piedad.                                         

Sincerely,,, Rebecca Ramirez Alvarez de Shokrian a direct descendant of the Angel of Goliad from San Antonio, Texas   Please feel free to visit our Angel of Goliad website. Click Angel of Goliad. The Angel of Goliad Descendants Historical Preservation section.

Descendents of Angel of Goliad honor historic figure
by Robert Wilcox, April 4, 2005, The Victoria Advocate - 
Sent by Becky Shokrian
GOLIAD - After a celebration honoring the Angel of Goliad earlier on Sunday afternoon, members of the Alvarez family were sung a special song by a three-time Grammy Award winner and a fifth-generation descendent of the woman honored, Francita "Panchita" Alavez. 

Rebecca Valadez's sweet harmonic voice filled the Immaculate Conception Parish Hall as 150 family members, guests, friends and descendents of Francita Alavez listened to her rendition of the "Angel of Goliad."  Everyone in the packed hall jumped up to give Valadez a standing ovation as she finished.

The clapping and yells moved Valadez to a teary-eyed thank-you. It was the first time the she had sung the song publicly.  The song, which was written by songwriter K.R. Woods, chronicles the Angel of Goliad's efforts to save members of the Texas militia from execution.

History has documented that Alavez ran through the streets pleading with the Mexican Army to spare the Texians. The Handbook of Texas Online credits Alavez with saving more than two dozen lives and she is commonly referred to as a heroine of the Texas Revolution. 

Goliad County Judge Harold Gleinser and Goliad Mayor William Schaefer, watched as Valadez - who has appeared twice on Star Search, was a Star Search finalist in 2003, and has toured with Janet Jackson - sang the song in both Spanish and English.

Valadez, who is temporarily living in San Antonio, told what attending her first family reunion meant to her. "There are so many people here today (at the reunion) that wouldn't be here except because of her," Valadez said, referring to the Angel of Goliad's struggle.

"I now know that my family was part of this wonderful woman who tried to do something for the troops," Valadez said. "She gave so much for them and I've discovered that is in my family."
She talked of her great grandfather, who "gave houses to poor people and he ended up dying with nothing" and said that she wanted to continue the family tradition of giving to others.

In memory of Pope John Paul II, who died Saturday, Valadez said, "I saw the pope when I was about three years old and am now beginning to grasp what he has done in this world. He (the pope) brought us into the 20th century. I'll miss him as much as my grandfather."

A moment of silence was urged for the pontiff by Becky Shokrian, who was one of the reunion organizers, and an Angel of Goliad descendent.  Shokrian read an account of the Angel of Goliad's actions in Spanish. Group historian, Ray Alvarez's, read the account in English.

Shokrian's brother, Rudy Ramirez, who is the group's president, spoke about the descendents.
"We have people in the family who have been FBI agents, to teachers, to members of the military, and even law enforcement," said Ramirez proudly.

Alvarez family members also invited Texian families of two of the survivors of the Goliad Massacre to attend their annual family reunion.  Linda Austin, a direct descendent of survivor David Moses, accepted the invitation with her husband, Larry.

"Moses was one of seven survivors who escaped from the battles," said Austin, who decided to move to Goliad several years ago. "My great-great-great-grandfather was a survivor and I began to learn more about it after Newtown Warzecha invited us to the reenactment," referring to the reenactment of the Battle of Coleto Creek, and Warzecha who is the director of Presidio La Bahia.

The Handbook of Texas Online also states that the surname of the Angel of Goliad is not known for certain, and has been written in several ways. Alavez also has been given as Alvarez and Alevesco, while her first name has been given as Francita or Francisca with nicknames of Panchita or Pancheta. 

Judge Gleinser encouraged the Alvarez family to continue making the reunion part of Goliad, while Mayor Schaefer encouraged the young people assembled to carry on the family legacy.

More information about the Alvarez family can be found on the family's Web site

Robert Wilcox, reporter for the Advocate. Contact him at 361-580-6514 or



Select Websites for Louisiana Research 
Gathered by Paul "Skip" Newfield III

Please note that some sites are in Spanish.  You can use this website -
- for translations, however please note that this is simply a translation engine, and not very accurate.  It is simply a way for you to try to read the content in some way.

Index of deaths from the Baton Rouge Gazette 1820-1853 -

Paul Newfield's Brass Cannon Site -

Genealogy index of the Falcon family -;m=N;v=falcon

An article detailing the many varied repositories and sources that are available for researchers in the Canary Islands. (En Espanol) -

Genealogy index for the Terrebonne parish genealogical group.  Many Canary Island names are indicated -

A beautifully written story of one of the ancient heroes of the Canary Islands, a chief named Doramas, and how his name has come down to us in the 21st century.  The site also includes genealogical charts for the Doramas family. (En Espanol) -

Brief history of the Canary Islands migration to Spanish America along with ship passenger lists -

Information about Spain's involvement in the American Revolutionary War, including information about Galvez and the Canary Islanders in Louisiana. -

Information on Captain Joseph M. Gonzales, grandson of an Islenos soldier at Galveztown -

An article about the history and ways of the Islenos by a man in the St. Bernard area -

History of Lanzarote -

Louisiana historical timeline for the year 1779 -

This shows the flag of the Louisiana Infantry Regiment, used during the Spanish period.  It would have been our ancestors' regimental flag -^1779.html

Somos Primos - An online publication dedicated to past and present articles, events and information concerning Hispanic heritage issues -

A list of Spanish language manuscripts in the Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley collections of LSU libraries -

Documents from the Diocese of Louisiana and the Floridas (1576-1803).  Contains information on some Islenos. -

Information about the Archivo General de Indias -

Regiment of Louisiana Flag & Uniform  -

Information on the Nunez History Lecture Series, including a schedule of upcoming lectures -

Canary Islanders Descendants Association (St. Bernard) -

Tenerife News -

Flags of the Canary Islands -

Pictures of the Canary Islands - lots of great pictures

A link to a Canary Islanders Heritage Society in Puerto Rico (En Espanol) -

State Archives Online Multimedia Archives -

Friends of the Canary Islands - Canary Islands heritage Society in San Antonio, Texas -

©2005 Canary Islanders Heritage Society of Louisiana




Eighth grade class from Clinton, WI, visit the Iwo Jima Memorial
8th Annual Hispanic Heritage Art Competition

Florida Land Grant
Link to Rumba in New Jersey


    Iwo Jima memorial
Sent by Lynette Chapa

Each year I am hired to go to Washington, DC, with the eighth grade class from Clinton, WI, where I grew up, to videotape their trip.  I greatly enjoy visiting our nation's capitol, and each year I take some special memories back with me.  This fall's trip was especially memorable.

On the last night of our trip, we stopped at the Iwo Jima memorial.  This memorial is the largest bronze statue in the world and depicts one of the most famous photographs in history -- that of the six brave soldiers raising the American Flag at the top of a rocky hill on the island of Iwo Jima, Japan, during WW II.

Over one hundred students and chaperones piled off the buses and headed towards the memorial.  I noticed a solitary figure at the base of the statue, and as I got closer he asked, "Where are you guys from?"

I told him that we were from Wisconsin.  "Hey, I'm a cheese head, too!  Come gather around, Cheese heads, and I will tell you a story."

James Bradley just happened to be in Washington, DC, to speak at the memorial the following day.  He was there that night to say good night to his dad, who has since passed away.  He was just about to leave when he saw the buses pull up.  I videotaped him as he spoke to us, and received his permission to share what he said from my videotape.  It is one thing to tour the incredible monuments filled with history in Washington, D.C, but it is quite another to get the kind of insight we received that night.

When all had gathered around, he reverently began to speak.  (Here are his words that night).

"My name is James Bradley and I'm from Antigo, Wisconsin.  My dad is on that statue, and I just wrote a book called "Flags of Our Fathers" which is #5 on the New York Times Best Seller list right now.  It is the story of the six boys you see behind me.

"Six boys raised the flag.  The first guy putting the pole in the ground is Harlon Block.  Harlon was an all-state football player.  He enlisted in the Marine Corps with all the senior members of his football team.  They were off to play another type of game.  A game called "War."  But it didn't turn out to be a game. 

Harlon, at the age of 21, died with his intestines in his hands.  I don't say that to gross you out, I say that because there are generals who stand in front of this statue and talk about the glory of war.  You guys need to know that most of the boys in Iwo Jima were 17, 18, and 19 years old.

He pointed to the statue) "You see this next guy?  That's Rene Gagnon from New Hampshire.  If you took Rene's helmet off at the moment this photo was taken and looked in the webbing of that helmet, you would find a photograph of his girlfriend.  Rene put that in there for protection because he was scared.  He was 18 years old.  Boys won the battle of Iwo Jima.  Boys.  Not old men.

"The next guy here, the third guy in this tableau, was Sergeant Mike Strank.  Mike is my hero.  He was the hero of all these guys.  They called him the "old man" because he was so old.  He was already 24.  When Mike would motivate his boys in training camp, he didn't say,  'Let's go kill some Japanese' or 'Let's die for our country.'  He knew he was talking to little boys.  Instead he would say, 'You do what I say, and I'll get you home to your mothers.'

"The last guy on this side of the statue is Ira Hayes, a Pima Indian from Arizona.  Ira Hayes walked off Iwo Jima.  He went into the White House with my dad.  President Truman told him, 'You're a hero.'  He told reporters, 'How can I feel like a hero when 250 of my buddies hit the island with me and only 27 of us walked off alive?'  So you take your class at school, 250 of you spending a year together having fun, doing everything together.  Then all 250 of you hit the beach, but only 27 of your classmates walk off alive. That was Ira Hayes.  He had images of horror in his mind.  Ira Hayes died dead drunk, face down at the age of 32 ten years after this picture was taken

"The next guy, going around the statue, is Franklin Sousley from Hilltop, Kentucky.  A fun-lovin' hillbilly boy.  Franklin died on Iwo Jima at the age of 19.  When the telegram came to tell his mother that he was dead, it went to the Hilltop General Store.  A barefoot boy ran that telegram up to his mother's farm.  The neighbors could hear her scream all night and into the morning.  The neighbors lived a quarter of a mile away.

"The next guy, as we continue to go around the statue, is my dad, John Bradley from Antigo, Wisconsin, where I was raised.  My dad lived until 1994, but he would never give interviews.  When Walter Cronkite's producers, or the New York Times would call, we were trained as little kids to say, 'No, I'm sorry, sir, my dad's not here.  He is in Canada fishing.  No, there is no phone there, sir.  No, we don't know when he is coming back.'  My dad never fished or even went to Canada.  Usually, he was sitting there right at the table eating his Campbell's soup.  But we had to tell the press that he was out fishing.  He didn't want to talk to the press.

"You see, my dad didn't see himself as a hero.  Everyone thinks these guys are heroes, 'cause they are in a photo and on a monument.  My dad knew better.  He was a medic. John Bradley from Wisconsin was a caregiver.  In Iwo Jima he probably held over 200 boys as they died.  And when boys died in Iwo Jima, they writhed and screamed in pain.

"When I was a little boy, my third grade teacher told me that my dad was a hero.  When I went home and told my dad that, he looked at me and said, 'I want you always to remember that the heroes of Iwo Jima are the guys who did not come back.  Did NOT come back.'

"So that's the story about six nice young boys.  Three died on Iwo Jima, and three came back as national heroes.  Overall, 7,000 boys died on Iwo Jima in the worst battle in the history of the Marine Corps.  My voice is giving out, so I will end here.  Thank you for your time."

Suddenly, the monument wasn't just a big old piece of metal with a flag sticking out of the top.  It came to life before our eyes with the heartfelt words of a son who did indeed have a father who was a hero.  Maybe not a hero for the reasons most people would believe, but a hero nonetheless.

We need to remember that God created this vast and glorious world for us to live in, freely, but also at great sacrifice.  Let us never forget from the Revolutionary War to the Iraq War and all the wars in-between that sacrifice was made for our freedom.  Remember to pray praises for this great country of ours and also pray for those still in murderous unrest around the world.  STOP and THANK GOD for being alive and being free because of someone else's sacrifice.

8th Annual Hispanic Heritage Art Competition

Washington, DC – The District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) and the Mayor’s Office on Latino Affairs (OLA) are partnering with Latino Art Beat, Inc., a national nonprofit arts organization, supported by General Motors Corporation to provide scholarships to local 11th and 12th grade students through the 8th Annual Hispanic Heritage Art Competition. Similar contests are being held in the cities of Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, and Miami.
All currently enrolled DCPS juniors and seniors are urged to apply their artistic ability to showcasing the importance of Hispanic heritage and its contributions to the fabric of our nation’s capital.
DCPS students may submit a drawing or painting, which should be mounted or matted, depicting his or her artistic interpretation of the competition's theme, "What Hispanic Heritage & Culture Means to Me". The artwork should be no larger than 30" x 36". This year students can also participate in the "Don Quixote" Special Competition Category with a separate art entry. The same general guidelines apply.
All artwork entries should be submitted to the student's high school art department or art teacher no later than 3:00 p.m. on Friday, May 20, 2005, together with the fully completed entry form. Each high school then transfers the artwork to a central location within DCPS for storage, processing and judging.
Cash scholarships will be awarded: 1st Place - $3,000, 2nd Place - $1,500 and 3rd Place - $500. A national winner will be selected from the local winners, who will qualify for an additional cash scholarship of $10,000 to attend the institution of higher education of his or her choice, anywhere in the USA.
All artwork will be judged locally under the supervision of DCPS, OLA, and Latino Art Beat. All local winning artwork will then be forwarded to Latino Art Beat in Chicago by June 17th, 2005 for the national judging. 
A national winner will then be chosen from all the local first place winners, who will receive an additional $10,000 cash scholarship. The national winner will be selected in Chicago between June 20th and 30th, 2005 and announced during the 2005 Hispanic Heritage Month celebrations.
Last year's national winner was Anna Pamasa from Lane Technical High School in Chicago, IL. Anna received a $13,000 scholarship from General Motors and Latino Art Beat and an additional matching scholarship of $20,000 from Columbia College Chicago. Anna's winning piece, titled "Maria", was featured across the nation in the Latino media as part of General Motor's promotions for Hispanic Heritage Month. This creative piece was also featured on the 2005 National Commemorative Hispanic Heritage Art Poster Calendar issued by Latino Art Beat with the mayor’s offices of the participating cities. Miami Mayor Manny Diaz and Don Rossi Nuccio unveiled the commemorative poster in January 2005 in Washington, D.C., at the United States Conference of Mayors.
In addition, Latino Art Beat and the Latin Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, Inc., invite local 11th and 12th grade students, as well as freshmen and sophomores currently enrolled in DC colleges or universities, who are US citizens or legal residents, to compete in the 6th Annual Latin GRAMMY® Awards Poster Competition. Submitted work should reflect the influences of Latin music upon the artist’s vision while incorporating the Latin Grammy symbol (a left-facing gramophone). Submissions with their respective entry forms should be delivered to OLA no later than 3:00 p.m. on Friday, May 20, 2005.
Competition inquiries may be directed to Latino Art Beat by telephone at 773-291-6901 or by e-mail to Locally, questions from interested individuals may be directed to OLA at 202-671-2825 or to DCPS at 202-442-5181.


By:Robert de Berardinis

The complete Spanish Archives collection t'rom the Florida State Archives is now available at Clayton Library thanks to the Clayton Library Friends. Not even the Family History Library in Salt Lake City has all the microfilm and microfiche comprising this important record group. The Florida State Archives also gave permission to Clayton Library Friends to collate, edit, and republish all their available and disparate indexes and calendars concerning this record group. One bound volume will be found in the Florida section, and two spiral bound with tabs will be available on the microfilm floor in the finding aids section.

The collection consists of the following titles (microfiche titles are underline, the remaining titles are microfilm):

1. S 990. Confirmed Spanish Land Grant Claims. 1763-1821.

2. S 991. Unconfirmed Spanish Land Grant Claims. 1763-1821.

3. S 992. Memorials and Concessions. 1786- 1821.

4. S 993, Memorials for City Lots in Saint Augustine, 1764-1821,'

5. S 994, American State Papers (Duff Green Edition), 1789-1834,

6. S 995, Minutes of and Testimony Taken Before the Board of Land Commissioners for East Florida, 1823-1821,

7. S 996, Memorials for Town Lots in Fernandina, 1808-1821,

8. S 997, Concessions for New Settlers, 1791-1821,

9. S 1001. Record Books. 1773-1828,

10. S 1022, Protocols, 1804-1819,

11. S 1023, Miscellaneous Spanish Florida Land Records,

12. S 1232, Surveys of Spanish Land Grants, 1791-1836

13. S 1235, Memorials and Concessions Not Acted Upon,1804-1821, and

14. S 1439, Concessions for Services, 1815-1821.

The only item in the Florida State Archives not available on film are Surveys of Private Claims, 1827-1853(859).

Researchers should note that translations in full or in abstract are available for the Confirmed and unconfirmed Land Grant Claims. They are the five volume, WPA authored Spanish Land Grants in Florida. Tallahassee, Fla.: State Library Board, 1940-41. CLF has also photocopied these volumes and spiral bound them for use on the microfilm floor.

Researchers should also note that S 990, Confirmed Spanish Land Grant Claims, 1763-1821 is available online at

The introduction to the new CLF guide to this collection also contains helpful research aids and other resources available for complementary use in Clayton Library. It is reprinted here:

Introduction:  This finding aid is designed to go along with the microfiche and microfilm collection of the "Spanish Archives" series of land records (now here at Clayton) from the Florida State Archives. This finding aid is in the order of the fourteen sub-series that comprise this record group. Of equal importance to this finding aid is the companion five volume set of WPA translations of selected documents, Spanish Land Grants in Florida (Tallahassee, Fla.: State Library Board, 1940-41), on the Clayton shelf and newly available as a microfilm finding aid at FLA 975.9 H673. This will allow the researcher who is not fluent in Spanish (or French), or who is unfamiliar with abbreviations of the period or Spanish units of measurement to access most of the data contained in the first two sub series.

In addition to the translations, there is also the companion set, [U.S. Congress], American State Papers, Public Lands, 9 vols. (1994 reprint; Greenville, S.C.: Southern Heritage Press, 1832-61), on the Clayton shelf at USA 333.10973 U 58 and its various indexes, e.g., Philip W. McMullin, ed., Grassroots of America : A Computerised Index to the American State papers: Land Grants and Claims (1789-1837) with Other Aids to Research (Government Document Serial Set Numbers 28 through 36) (1990 reprint; Conway, Ark.: Arkansas Research, 1972) on the Clayton shelf at USA 333.10973 U 58 or USA 973 M168. Of further use will be the listing of patents found on the CD-ROM, [Bureau of Land Management, Eastern States Office], General Land Office Automated Records Project. Florida: prel908 Patents: Homesteads, Cash Entry, Armed Occupation Act & Private Land Claims; Cadastral Survey Plat Index, 1824 to Present (Springfield, Va.: U.S. Dept. of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management, Eastern States, 1997) in the computer section at Clayton as [CD-ROM] I 53.57:F 66/2. 1\vo additional works at Clayton will also aid the researcher in the area of what is today the state of Florida. The first is [District of East Florida Land Office], 1830 Private Land Claims in East Florida (Signal Mountain, Tenn.:

Institute of Historic Research, 1997), on the Clayton shelf at FLA 975.9 E34. The second is [U.S. Department of the Treasury], Spanish Claims to Land in Florida, 1835 (1994 reprint; Signal Mountain, Tenn.: Mountain Press. 1835), on the Clayton shelf at FLA 975.9 U58.

Although many of the West Florida records have been lost forever, many claims may be "reconstituted" using the "Cuban Papers," the Papeles de Cuba. The document bundles (legajos) concerning West and East Florida have been indexed by the University of Florida P. K. Yonge Library. This index is found in the Florida microfilm section as P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History. Calendar of the Papeles Procedentes de Cuba, 1781-1821. 10 rolls. (Gainesville, Fla.: P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History, University of Florida Libraries, 1984). Additionally, researchers will wish to consult The Pintado Papers found in the USA microfilm section and the survey book of Carlos Trudeau, found in the Louisiana microfilm section. There are two other microfilm publications available on interlibrary loan that will also be useful. The first is [U.S. National Archives and Records Administration], T 1212, Records of Special Agents for Securing the Florida Archives, 1819-1835,6 rolls. The second is [Library of Congress], L110013,EastFloridaArchives, 175 rolls.

Digging back into the English colonial period (1762-83) records, researchers should consult the following PRO records found at Clayton in the PRO microfilm section from CO 5/540635. For East Florida, the records of particular interest are:

CO 5/54234…..References for Petitions for Lands, 1767,

CO 5/548……..Correspondence, Original-Secretary of State,1746-67

CO 5/562……..Reports of Commissioners for East Florida Claims,1787-89, and

CO 5/56364…..Commissions, Instructions,etc.,A,1763-80;B, 1780-82

For West Florida, the records of particular interest are: 

CO 5/581………Correspondence, Original -Board of Trade, 1781-82,

CO 5/582………Correspondence, Original-Secretary of State, 1712-65,

CO 5/59798……Military, Pt 1, 177881; Pt 2, 1779-83,

CO 5/ 599600…Commisions, Instructions, etc., A, 1763-69; B, 1769-82,

CO 5/60102……Grants of Land; Mortgages, Conveyances, etc., 1764-68; 1765-67,

CO 5/60304……Grants of Land, Instructions to Surveyors, Certificates, 1765-68,

CO 5/605………Grants of Land, Mortgages, Conveyances, etc., 1768-72,

CO 5/606……….Grants of Land (Printed), 1772-70,

CO 5/607……….Grants of Land, 1772-78,

CO 5/608……….Grants of Land (Printed), 1772-80,

CO 5/609……….Index to Vol, 608,

CO 5/61011…….Grants of Land, Townlots, 1777-79; 1778-80

CO 5/612……….Mortgages 1770-79

CO 5/613……….Powers of Attorney, Bills of Sale, etc., 1771-79, and

CO 5/61417…….Conveyances, 1772-73; 1773-74; 1776-81; 1777-80

There are, of course, many more records of which a researcher may make use. The purpose of this introduction is to aid in the land and property research for the family historian.

Unfortunately, for the French colonial period, the only available records are those of the French Superior Council (of New Orleans, available on Family History Library microfilm) and the two correspondence series, Colonies B and Colonies C ". There is an index to the translated abstracts that appeared in the Louisiana Historical Quarterly. It is Marion McCarley, comp., French Superior Council Records of Louisiana, 1717-1763: An Index to Abstracts in 'the Louisiana Historical Quarterly, Robert de Berardinis, ed. (Ville Platte, La.: Provincial Press, 2002), on the shelf at Clayton as LA M 478, There is also an incomplete personal name index on microfilm from the Louisiana State Museum to the French Superior Council records found in the Louisiana microfilm section. For the latter two correspondence series, there are superb subject, personal name, and geographical name indexes with calendars. They are respectively (on the shelf in the France section):

Etienne Taillemite, Inventaire analytique de La. correspondance generate avec les colonies. Depart, serie B, deposee aux Archives nationales (revised edition; Paris: Ministere de La. France d'outre mer, service aux archives, 1983), FRANCE A 673, and Mane-Antoinette Menier, Etienne Taillemite, and Gilberte de Forges. Correspondance a Varrivee en provenance de La. Louisiane. 2 vols. (Paris: Archives Nationales, 1976), FRANCE A 673,

It is worthwhile, however, to note that the first three series, Confirmed Land Claims, Unconfirmed Land Claims, and Memorials and Concessions, may contain documents attesting to prior ownership or sales of land.

They may also contain documents attesting to inheritance and providing evidence of legal possession of the land. Almost equal in importance are the land surveys as they will give evidence of neighboring properties and their owners. With the availability of the Spanish colonial, French colonial, and English colonial ship lists available for this period (to 1791), researchers should definitely make use of the documents in Concessions/or New Settlers, 1791-1821, and Concessions for Services, 1815-1821 a definite read.


Personajes de la historia/Gobernadores de Zacatecas
Los Vidaurre
La Conquista de México
Descendants of Bartolome Vasquez Borrego
Laguna Grande o San Miguel de la Laguna
Hacienda Santo Domingo
Familia de doña Maria González Hidalgo y Treviño Maya


Personajes de la historia / Gobernadores de Zacatecas
José León Robles de la Torre
Sent by Mercy Bautista Olvera


General don Victoriano Zamora

Lic. don José María Castro

General don Victoriano Zamora, comandante militar y Gobernador de Zacatecas, Interino, en 1855 y Constitucional en 1857. Foto Oficial de la Galería de Gobernadores en Palacio de Gobierno de Zacatecas.

El General don Victoriano Zamora, “que había sido –dice Elías Amador- militar desde 1828 y tenía el grado de Coronel (después General) de las milicias del Estado, se puso al frente del movimiento con la ayuda de varias personas caracterizadas y de muchos ciudadanos patriotas y resueltos, quienes distribuidas en grupos sorprendieron intrépidamente las guardias el Cuartel de Santo Domingo, de Palacio, de la Ciudadela y de otros puntos donde había tropa”. 

“Los soldados de Pavón (Francisco G.) opusieron alguna resistencia y se entabló un combate de algunas horas, pero al fin fueron dominados por la multitud que ayudaba a Zamora y se rindieron los puntos principales, dispersándose o huyendo una parte de las fuerzas de Pavón. Éste y muchos oficiales suyos fueron hechos prisioneros y tratados con benevolencia, Pavón quedó preso en Palacio, ‘bajo palabra de honor’ y sus oficiales en el Cuartel de Santo Domingo”. 

“El diez de agosto de 1855, el Coronel Victoriano Zamora, se hizo cargo de la Comandancia Militar y del Gobierno Zacatecano, hasta el 25 de noviembre de 1856. 

Luego de elecciones, el Congreso lo declaró Gobernador Constitucional de Zacatecas, tomando posesión el 1º. de junio de 1857. Mientras esto ocurría, al promulgarse la Constitución Federal de 1857, Aguascalientes (era Departamento de Zacatecas) que estaba inconforme agregado a Zacatecas, fue declarado Estado Libre y Soberano. Se promulgó la Constitución de ese nuevo Estado y fue su primer Gobernador don José María Chávez Alonso. (Aguascalientes ya se había segregado de Zacatecas, antes, y vuelto a integrarse). 

Al hacerse cargo del Gobierno de Zacatecas el General Zamora, el 17 de agosto de 1855, lanzó un manifiesto a los habitantes del Departamento de Zacatecas (en esas fechas funcionó como Departamento), y en parte dice: 

“Zacatecas: el sol de la libertad ha vuelto a brillar sobre nosotros. Un hombre distinguido por su patria, encumbrado a un inmenso poder y árbitro de hacer la felicidad de sus compatriotas, en vez de corresponder a tan elevada confianza, se ocupó sólo de esclavizarlos, de saciar su codicia, de prepararse un solio, donde la tiranía se entronizase, hundiendo a su país en la desgracia... Y finaliza: “Zacatecanos: ayudadme francamente, pues se trata de salvar vuestros más caros intereses y derechos; ayudadas para esta obra grandiosa, en que la República se halla empeñada, de restablecer el imperio de la ley, de la justicia y la moral; resuelto me hallo a reprimir cualquier tentativa que nos perturbe, el pa posición ventajosa sí, porque ella nos hace entrar en esa lucha heroica que la Nación ha emprendido, para asegurar sus derechos y su felicidad, Zacatecas, agosto 17 de 1855. Victoriano Zamora”. P. 584.
Lic. don José María Castro, Gobernador de Zacatecas por el año de 1858.

Gobernadores de Zacatecas: Lic. don José María Castro, ascendió a la Gubernatura del Estado, nombrado por el Congreso local, en virtud de haber renunciado a ese cargo el General don Victoriano Huerta, el 18 de marzo de 1858. El Lic. Castro era el Presidente de la Diputación Permanente del Estado, y al ser designado como Gobernador, tomó posesión el día 20 del mismo mes y año. 

El país estaba en plena guerra entre liberales y conservadores, por lo que los puestos se movían en las ciudades de acuerdo como se tomaban o evacuaban las plazas. 

A principios de abril de 1858, el General Miramón Tarelo (Miguel), poderoso jefe de las fuerzas conservadoras, se dirigía rumbo a Zacatecas, por lo que el Gobernador con sus cortas fuerzas tuvo que abandonar la ciudad de Zacatecas. Veamos cómo describe este episodio el profesor Salvador Vidal, en el Tomo III del Bosquejo Histórico de Zacatecas, continuación de la obra de Elías Amador. Pág. 9. 

“Habiendo tomado Guadalajara las tropas reaccionarias, el General Miramón se dirigió para esta capital de Zacatecas, llegando el seis de abril a la ciudad de Aguascalientes, con una fuerza de cuatro mil hombres y 18 piezas de artillería. 

“El señor Gobernador Castro, acompañado de varios empleados, del Jefe Político Teniente Coronel don Antonio de Santiago y del Coronel Aramberri, evacuó esta ciudad el día nueve de abril, dirigiéndose a Salinas del Peñón Blanco, a fin de unir sus tropas con las de Nuevo León. El día diez nombró al señor Aramberri, jefe de la Guardia Nacional del Estado, y el día 15 puso a disposición y bajo sus órdenes del Señor Coronel neoleonés Juan Zuazua, a las fuerzas, armamento y demás pertrechos de guerra, salvados del fatídico Miramón. 

“Ya unidas las fuerzas del Gobernador Castro de Zacatecas a las del General Zuazua de Nuevo León, volvieron rumbo a Zacatecas para retomar la ciudad. El General Antonio Manero se fortificaba en la Bufa y tenía distribuidas fuerzas en la Ciudadela, Santo Domingo, etc., pero los liberales de Castro y Zuazua se llegaron hasta Guadalupe, Zacs., y de allí encaminaron sus fuerzas para atacar a los conservadores de Manero. Hubo combates muy reñidos y al final el día 27 de abril de 1858 Zuazua atacó con furia a los de la Bufa y cerca –dice Vidal- de las ocho de la noche en medio del vivísimo fuego del enemigo, haciendo prisionero al mismo General en Jefe, don Antonio Manero, que en persona mandaba aquel interesante punto”. 

El 29 de ese mes de abril, el General Zuazua rindió el parte de triunfo. “Al General Manero y al General Landa se les puso presos en el hotel Francés; al siguiente día 28 de abril, dichos jefes, en unión de los oficiales superiores, Aduna, Gallardo y Drechi, practicada breve Sumaria, fueron condenados a muerte y encapillados en el Instituto Literario, ejecutándose esta sentencia el día 30 a las 12 del día, en el lugar llamado Las Peñitas a espaldas de Santo Domingo. P. 20”. 

El día 29 de abril de 1858, quedó restablecido el Gobierno con su titular Lic. José María Castro, quien estuvo hasta el 1º. de octubre de ese mismo año, cuando abandonó la ciudad. 

En la primera salida del Gobernador Castro, el día diez de abril de 1858, al entrar el General Manero a Zacatecas, convocó a una junta en palacio el día 11 y de allí se nombró Gobernador Interino, de las fuerzas conservadores, al Lic. don Vicente Hoyos, quien tomó posesión el día 12 de abril de ese año.

Los Vidaurre

De Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, Tamaulipas & Texas

Written by 
Anita Rivas Medellin


The Vidaurres of Mexico and Texas were a political dynastic family; it was a family that spawned five Acaldes (Mayors) and three Governors. Most genealogists fail to give this family it’s due. In other words, not much is said about them yet they cover the pages of Mexican and Texas history. Los Vidaurres were a family that amassed a great legacy only to erode over a period of time due to family arguing, the annexation of Texas into the United States and the execution of their shinning star. In my humble opinion Los Vidaurre were an enigma, even to themselves.

During my research and quest of my family genealogy I understood that there were four arranged marriages that took place to ensure the growth and prosperity of the family. Thus, cousins would end up marrying cousins.

The first Vidaurre to enter the state of Coahuila, sometime before 1741 was my 6th great grandfather, Don Juan Antonio de Vidaurre. Don Juan Antonio had political aspirations and not only did he establish a ranch ", San Bartolome," but he also married Dona Manuela Vasquez Borrego, then the only daughter of el Capitan Don Jose Vasquez Borrego. I compare my family to the Kennedys of Massachusetts, since Don Juan Antonio was a cut out version of the modern day Joseph P. Kennedy. Both men shared the same vision for their families; only one family would have to endure and live through an execution and the other assassinations.

It is said that Don Juan Antonio de Vidaurre was a natural child of a man named Joseph de Vidaurre from Saltillo. We have yet to locate Don Juan Antonio’s baptismal record. It is suspected that he was born in 1728 in el Districto Federal. The marriage between Juan Antonio and Manuela was a match made in heaven, for Juan Antonio was a politically inclined young man.

Don Jose Vasquez Borrego, my 7th great grandfather and Capitan Tomas Tadeo Sanchez de la Barrera (de la Garza y Falcon) were the first two to arrive at what is now known as the city of Laredo, Texas. Don Jose was in charge of the city’s political future and Don Tomas of the city’s military faction.

Family oral history tells us that in a sense Don Juan Antonio had made a pact with the devil; he agreed to allow Don Jose to raise his first male offspring, Jose Fernando. He also agreed to follow his father-in-law to Hacienda Dolores, a land grant that was issued by the Count of Sierra Gorda, Jose Escandon.

La Hacienda de Dolores was founded on August 22nd, 1750. Don Jose brought thirteen families and fifty other people; Don Jose began the settlement at his own cost. He also had the settlement augmented to include his son in law Don Juan Antonio de Vidaurre.

At that time it was known to be the largest land grant to have been issued. The property spanned from the outskirts of Laredo to the present day San Ygnacio. The land grant was well over 300 thousand acres. My 7th great grandfather already owned several haciendas on the Mexican side of the border that would become the land that his other children would inherit.

It is said in history books that Don Jose was a very strange man. Based on family oral history, I could say that Don Jose preferred his son in laws to his own sons. It is safe to say that if he had any weakness it was his daughters and any offspring that they would have. Don Jose adored his only daughter and her children.

Dona Manuela had died young and the remaining Vidaurre children went off to live with their grandfather. I must mention that Don Jose had remarried and that his 2nd marriage produced another daughter named Josefa Borrego. It is her lineage today that still carries the old mans political aspirations for his family.

Today if you look onto the Texas oil map, you will still find the land grant called by its original name, The Vasquez Borrego y Vidaurre land grant. The property now combined after the marriage between Juan Antonio and Manuela spanned four of the Northern states of Mexico, this is why the family is known as Los Vidaurre de Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, and Tamaulipas y Texas.

Don Juan Antonio and Manuela had twelve children that have been found through the paper trail of baptismal records, however that is inconclusive since Juan Antonio’s last will and testament has yet to surface. The names of their children are: Jose Fernando, Ramon Macario, Jose Ygnacio, Rita Lizarda, Joseph de Jesus, Jesus Maria Lorenzo de San Jose, Rita Ana Veronica, Jose Maria Margil, Veronica Mariana, Francisco, Maria Binencia, and Josefa.

The second Vidaurre to make the next marriage that would ensure the family’s political and financial future was Jose Fernando Vidaurre y Vasquez Borrego, Juan Antonio’s and Manuela’s oldest child. His grandfather had raised Jose Fernando and it was not until his marriage to Dona Alejandra Sanchez de la Barrera y Uribe, the daughter of Capitan Tomas Tadeo Sanchez de la Barrera (de la Garza y Falcon) and the widow of Don Bartolome Borrego that he found out his real surname was Vidaurre and not Vasquez Borrego.

Jose Fernando due to family oral history had felt betrayed by both his grandfather and father. It took a whole year for Don Jose to convince his heir to come home. The rift however between father and son never mended, for Jose Fernando never felt close to the man that did not raise him nore the mother he hardly knew. I speculate that Jose Fernando never felt close to his many brothers and sisters. As a result I believe this being the reason why his offspring ended up selling their shares of the land grant to outsiders and not family members.

Jose Fernando followed in his father’s footsteps and become Acalde of Laredo for two consecutive terms: 1777-1778. Jose Fernando was also a generous man and left each of his eleven children equal portions of the land grant. I believe that this was the first step towards the families decline; Most of the Vidaurre descendants chose to live in the city and had no interest in the farming of the land. However, it took several more generations for that to actually happen, first Juan Antonio through Jose Fernando had a 2nd great grandson Atanacio L. Vidaurre become Acalde of Laredo in 1875 as well as a lieutenant in the confederate army in the war between the states, and a 3rd great grandson Atanacio C. Vidaurre become Acalde of Laredo in 1899.

Jose Maria Margil, the 8th child of Juan Antonio and Manuela became Acalde of Laredo in 1814. Jose Maria Margil was the third Viduarre to make his marriage alliance; he married Josefa Borrego y Sanchez, the daughter of Don Bartolome Borrego y Alejandra Sanchez de la Barrera y Uribe. Their daughter Juana Maria Vidaurre y Borrego entered into the most important marriage of all, she married her cousin, Don Jose Santiago Vidaurri y Valdez. Don Santiago was the son of Pedro Jose Vidaurre y Borrego, the natural son of Francisco Vidaurre y Vasquez Borrego, my 5th great grandfather and the 10th child of Juan Antonio y Manuela.

Don Santiago was the most feared and respected of men from 1850 –1867. He was known as EL Caudillo del Norte, "The War Lord of the North". Don Santiago was Godernador de Coahuila Y Nuevo Leon from 1855-1864. Don Santiago was instrumental in the denouncing of Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna and helped with the plan labeled " Restaurdor de la Libertad." Don Santiago captured Monterrey in 1855 and was quickly proclaimed governor and military commander of Nuevo Leon. His army then quickly gained military control of Tamaulipas. He also annexed Coahuila into Nuevo Leon in 1856. Thus comes his title, "El Caudillo del Norte."

It is my belief that Santiago was interested in protecting Northern Mexico because its future was so unsettled. He was also protecting his realm, his family legacy and his heritage.

Don Santiago Vidaurri was in a quandary; he wanted to keep Northern Mexico independent. The Mexican Border States were so far away from the capital that it was more economically profitable to do business dealings with the United States directly, and protect the Mexican Northern states more effectively. Don Santiago signed with the French in the hopes that Emperor Maximilian would allow him to continue to govern the Northern Mexican states.

However upon taking a title role in the politics of the French Imperial Government Santiago had to move to central Mexico where he awaited for the opportunity in which he could return to his beloved Coahuila y Nuevo Leon. This never took place because the French Empire collapsed in 1867. Don Santiago fled to Nuevo Laredo because of the decree issued out by Porfirio Diaz. The decree stated that anyone

Who had aided the French should surrender within twenty-four hours or face execution; Santiago was captured and executed without a trial. His last words were, " Let my blood be the last that is spilled and let Mexico be happy."

After the execution of my tio Santiago, it became the Milmo Vidaurris that would end up with what was left of the Vidaurre Borrego Legacy. Don Santiago and Juana Maria had several children. It was their daughter Prudencia that married Don Santiago’s business partner and friend, Patricio Milmo. Don Patricio was a prominent Irish born merchant and financier. Patricio and Prudencia’s daughter Prudencina Milmo Vidaurri married Albrycht Wojciech Radzwill, a polish prince in New York City circa June 1st, 1896.

Don Francisco Vidaurre y Vasquez Borrego my 5th great grandfather also made a good marriage. He married Dona Maria Angela del Carmen Villasenor and through the paper trail of baptismal records, we located five of their children, all male: Juan Jose, Jose Antonio, Francisco, and Pedro Jose y Juan Antonio de la Trinidad. My family link comes from my 4th great grandfather, Don Jose Antonio Vidaurre Borrego y Villasenor.

Through Francisco my 5th great grandfather, Don Juan Antonio de Vidaurre had two grandsons also carry the title of Governor of Coahuila Y Texas: Juan Jose Vidaurre Y Villasenor and Francisco Vidaurre Y Villasenor (1834). However the one that transformed and possessed all of the family’s political ambition manifested into my tio Santiago, Don Juan Antonio’s great grandson and the 2nd great grandson of Don Jose Vasquez Borrego.

Close to the end of the 19th century, the influence of the Vidaurre family in Texas was near its decline. Sometime after the annexation of Texas into the United States, and by 1915 the remaining Vidaurre men who still worked the land awoke one morning to having lost what was their heritage by right. The remaining Vidaurre men who still held on to their family heritage were not men of letters, but farmers, cattlemen, and ranchers. They did not speak English, thus were unable to protect themselves against the Anglo settlers. I would like to believe that would not have happened if Don Santiago had not been executed. It is interesting how one mans death could cause such destruction within one family.

The Vidaurres of Musquiz, Coahuila had been hit hardest after 1867. They stopped drawing attention to their illustrious surname and began to use their surname of Borrego. They feared political persecution and ceased all political aspirations. However, even with the decline of the family, my 2nd great grandfather Don Santiago Vidaurre Borrego y Vela still had some political clout. My mother recalled a family oral story that she had heard through out her childhood. The rumor is that my great aunt Maria del Carmen had entered into a marriage with a very abusive man, legend claims that great grandfather Santiago had made his son in law disappear. My great grandmother Maria Daria had high hopes for her children and tried to make good marriages for them.

My grandmother Maria Antonia had a made a love match against her mothers wish’s. Our family oral history, as retold to me by my mother states that great

Grandmother gave grandmother six months in which to change her mind, during those six months my grandmother had to do all of the household chores, the cooking, cleaning and washing to prepare her for a life of poverty. Great grandmother even made my grandmother sew her own wedding trousseau ~ Even with the threat of being disinherited my grandmother defied her mother and married my grandfather. Great grandmother true to her blue blood still gave my grandmother away in a proper wedding befitting a Vidaurre, and kept her word and disinherited my grandmother.

After the death of the elders and my great grandmother, the rest of the family stopped talking to each other and about their legacy. The younger Vidaurre children had lost an interest in their heritage, in the managing of the haciendas and the grocery stores, and little by little they began to sell off what was left of their family legacy.

It is also the Azcarraga Milmo Vidaurretta family today that owns all of the Television and Radio stations in Latin America. Don Santiago’s 3rd great grandson, Emilio Azcarraga Milmo Vidaurretta, led the empire. He transformed the name Azcarrage Milmo into one of the top telecommunications monopolies in the world.

The characteristics, physical traits of a Vidaurre are a round face, big forehead and fierce eyes that can command from a room without words. The complexion is fair or a very light olive, tiny ears and small lips, with delicate small hands. The stance is regal, with an innate sense of dignity verging on entitlement. However, it is all a genetic code that plays out like Russian roulette.

I remember calling my aunt Maria in Mexico to ask her the name of my 2nd great grandfather and she said with pride: Santiago Vidaurre and I thought to myself what kind of a name is that? I can’t describe the emotions I had upon entering his name into Googles Internet search engine, I was humbled. Growing up I had no idea who and what my family legacy was. My sisters and I were brought up to be honest and hard working, to take pride in everything that we did and to never make a gain at the expense of another.

I saw more then just names and dates; I saw men and women of flesh and blood that had lived so that we could step forward into the future. I saw my family. I still get tears in my eyes when I think of them, and now they are with me in everything that I do, I just want them to be proud of me. I write this because I want the whole world to know that Los Vidaurre de Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, Tamaulipas y Texas existed and that we continue to exist.

" Los Vidaurre de Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, Tamaulipas Y Texas" by Jose Felipe de la Pena Vidaurre.

Texas Handbook online " Capitan Don Jose Vasquez Borrego".

Texas Handbook online " Don Santiago Vidaurri ".

Verbal conversations W/ Miguel Munoz Borrego on family oral history of "Los Vasquez Borrego ".

Verbal Conversations W/ Jose Felipe de la Pena on " Los Viduarre".

Edición 14 de abril de 2005 de Odiel Información

La Conquista de México

Hace pocos días ha caído en mis manos el libro de Hugh Thomas, “La Conquista de México”, que describe con mucha minuciosidad el historiador inglés. Es un libro de estos que impresionan nada mas verlo, pues es un volumen considerable y cuando lo tienes en tus manos sabes que tardarás en estudiarlo, por su grosor.

Creo que es un libro que deberíamos leer todos los onubenses, porque en muchísimas de sus páginas se refleja la importancia que tuvieron los muchos hombres y mujeres de nuestra tierra que fueron clave en aquella aventura.

Nombres como el de Antón de Alaminos, que se convirtió en el piloto imprescindible para cualquier expedición de importancia que se emprendiera por aquellos lugares. Otro fue Gonzalo Guerrero, de Niebla, superviviente del naufragio de 1510, apresado por los mayas, que enamorado de la hija del jefe de la tribu,   tuvo con ella varios hijos y se adapto tanto a ellos que decían que muchas de las estrategias que empleaba esta tribu en combate con muy buenos resultados, eran dirigidas por el iliplense. También Diego de Huelva, que asociado con Manuel de Mederos y José Treviño, y en tierras donadas por Luis de Carvajal fundaron la Hacienda de San Juan Bautista.

Hubo otros que murieron en aquellas tierras, como Francisco de Cortegana, que falleció en Antequera de Oaxaca, Francisco Moreno, de Paterna del Campo, que perdió la vida en Chiapas o Luis Lusardo que lo hizo en México en 1563, donde también murió Bartolomé Rodríguez, de Moguer.

Hay en toda la historia de esta conquista muchos nombres de personas procedentes de Huelva, que dejaron aquí familia, pero que al adaptarse a la tierra descubierta y al sistema de vida que allí había, se asentaron entre los nativos y no volvieron.

Pero hay algo que siempre me ha llamado la atención, fueron y partieron de Huelva desde la primera expedición y sin embargo, entre las muchas poblaciones que se fundaron en la tierra conquistada, no he visto ninguna con el nombre de algún pueblo de nuestra provincia. Tan solo recuerdo una que se llama Almonte, pero está en Canadá y  no fue fundada por ningún almonteño. 

                                                        Angel  Custodio Rebollo


Descendants of Bartolome Vasquez Borrego

Generation No. 1

For more research by compiled by John Inclan, go to:

1. BARTOLOME VASQUEZ3 BORREGO (JUAN JOSE VASQUEZ2, VASQUEZ BORREGO1) died Abt. 1764 in Hacienda de Dolores. He married MARIA ALEJANDRA SANCHEZ1,2 August 12, 1759 in Revilla, Guerrero, Tamaulipas, Mexico, daughter of CAPTAIN SANCHEZ and MARIA DE URIBE. She was born March 05, 1742 in Lampasos, Rcho S. Matias, N.L. Mexico2, and died Abt. 1806 in Laredo, Texas.


Bartolome was the Mayordomo of Dolores, a grant adjacent of Laredo, given to his uncle Captain Jose Vasquez Borrego; from general readings his father was named Juan Jose Vasquez Borrego[33LosLaredos-I(JMB)]


Baptized 3/13/1742 as Maria Alexandrina, 8 days old...; At time of marriage, the couple was at Hacienda de Dolores, New Spain, outside of present Laredo, Texas(JMB)


Christening: March 13, 1742, Santa Mission de los Dolores Lampazos, N.L., Mexico



i. MARIA JOSEFA4 BORREGO3, b. Abt. 1760, Candela, Coahuila, Mexico; m. JOSE MARIA MARGIL VIDAURRI; b. April 18, 1759, San Juan del Alamo, Coahuila??.


Aka Josefa Trinidad de los Santos (Reyes) Sanchez Borrego;


Christening: Lampasos, Naranjo, Nuevo Leon, Mexico


Mayor of Laredo in1814; Was baptized in Lampazos de Naranjo, N.L. on April 18, 1759; [Note: Jose Maria Margil Vidaurri was the brother of Fernando Vidaurri both sons of Manuela Borrego and Antonio Vidaurri; Josefa Sanchez Borrego, wife of Jose Maria Margil Vidaurri, was the daughter of Alejandra Sanchez and Bartolo Borrego; Alejandra's second husband was Fernando Vidaurri(JMB)

ii. FRANCISCO BORREGO, b. Bef. 1764; m. MARIA DEL REFUGIO TREVINO, November 27, 1792, Laredo, Texas; b. Abt. 1774.

1. Garmedia Leal, Guillermo: "Origen de los Fundadores de Laredo"., 58..

2. Garcia, Mickey: Lampasos Baptisms, 1702-47; "Bexarenos Journal December 1997., 209..

3. Esquibel, Jose Antonio: "Sanchez de la Barrera: A Genealogy History of a Frontier Family". (VSALGS-1998 Journal), 63..


Laguna Grande o San Miguel de la Laguna

Artemisa F. De Casas Molina



La parte mas importante del Municipio y de la Parroquia es el cuartel de la LAGUNA GRANDE o San Miguel de la Laguna, que es su primitivo nombre. Tiene 500 habitantes. Está situado al norte de Monte Escobedo y distante de este 18 kilómetros 855 metros, o sean 4y media leguas. Está en el corazón de una hermosa llanura, que comienza en Santa Bárbara y termina hacia el norte, en las cumbres del rió de Atoloac.

Carácter de sus habitantes

El carácter de estos buenos vecinos, es alegre, festivo, animoso, franco y hospitalario, y sobre todo;
muy amantes de emprender en todo lo que SIGNIFICA ENGRANDECIMIENTO Y PROGRESO de su tierra natal. Este sano provincialismo y bellas cualidades, supo aprovechar muy atinadamente provecho de la población, el Sr. Pbro. D. Telèsforo Carlos, como se dirá después.

El año de 1892, se erigió la Vicaría de Laguna Grande, siendo su primero y muy activo Vicario, el Sr. Pbro.  D. Benjamín Luna, que estuvo con tal carácter hasta el ano de 1896.

El año de 1897, obtuve del Ilmo. Sr. Portillo, que el P. D. Telésforo Carlos, fuese el Vicario de la Laguna Grande, y en Agosto de ese año, tomo posesión de su cargo. Durante su permanencia en esa, que fue hasta el año de 1919, se captó el corazón de casi todos los feligreses, y aprovechando las cualidades de que se ha hecho mérito, pudo en pocos años realizar las importantes obras materiales con que cuenta esa vicaría .

Lo primero fue el Camposanto, la capilla nueva de bóveda con cruceros, otra adyacente a esta en el
costado Norte y dedicada a nuestra Señora del Refugio. Otra frente al espacioso atrio del templo, toda de sillería tallada, con gracioso templete que ostenta a la reina de México pintada al óleo, encuadrada en dorado marco. Esta capilla con vitrinas en sus tres muros, está a la entrada del vestíbulo del templo. El templo tiene su torre en el centro de la puerta principal, dotado de su pararrayo, su sacristía, bautisterio y piezas para muebles. Hay además en el cementerio, dos salones para escuelas, y la casa del Vicario, otro amplio salón para escuela, no distante del templo hacia el oriente.

Se fundieron campanas, se alinearon callejuelas y se abrieron otras .

Estimulados los vecinos por estas actividades de su Vicario emprendieron nuevas fabricas, y se ensancho la población .

Todos los operarios que se emplearon en estas obras, hasta los pintores, se formaron allí mismo, por obra de su natural ingenio , estimulados más por el sentimiento religioso y patriótico, que por necesidad de la vida. Tan cierto es que en donde sanjan los cimientos de un Templo, allí surgen como por encanto las artes y las letras, porque la religión ha sido y es la inspiradora de todas las artes, de todo lo bello y la que alienta el progreso de los pueblos, como lo prueban los monumentos que la cristiandad ha levantado en todo el mundo.

Un nuevo templo

Hacia tiempo que se imponía la necesidad de un Templo capaz de contener los vecinos, y que correspondiera mejor al decoro de la religión, y fue el P. Carlos, quien acometió la empresa, alentado por mi y siempre como buen compañero y amigo, nos poníamos de acuerdo en todas sus empresas, a favor de ese vecindario que siempre tomé con grande interés.

El día 2 de enero de 1899, fue el día en que se rayaron los cimientos del nuevo templo, y se hizo la
bendición de la primera piedra, con los ritos del caso. Este espectáculo fue por demás conmovedor .
Habiase preparado de antemano mucha herramienta para ejecutar la primera faena, todos estaba instrumentos enflorados , y empuñados por su edad, como por su posición social. Todos ellos eran padrinos de la imponente ceremonia, y llevaban bandas de colores terciadas. Algunos de estos ancianos , no podían ocultar un fondo de tristeza, pensando que ellos o muchos de ellos, tal vez no verían la gloría de aquel templo, y las lagrimas corrieron por sus mejillas, lo mismo que a otros muchos emocionados por la alegría.  Desde aquel día, era de verse aquel entusiasmo y buena
voluntad con que todos los vecinos aprestan sus fuerzas y sus recursos para llevar a cabo aquella obra y las demás que al fin llevaron a buen término festejando la terminación de cada una de ellas.
La terminación del templo y su bendición, se hizo con mejor solemnidad y se organizó un día de campo para premiar a todos los operarios que trabajaron en la obra. Apenas habría familia que no pasara en aquella plácida reunión campestre desbordante de jubilo , de unión y concordia entre todos.

Laguna Grande tiene una inmensa deuda de gratitud , hacia el sacerdote que supo llevar a buen término todas sus mejoras materiales de que se ha hacho mérito y no ha sido ingrata , porque su memoria tiene buen recuerdo , y cuenta con el cariño de aquellos vecinos. Pero la obra moral de este sacerdote, es de más valor que la material; logró una reforma de costumbres casi general, se difundió la frecuencia de sacramentos, y la pureza de costumbres recobró su prístino lugar del que se había distanciado. Los niños tuvieron una enseñanza elemental y primaria y se preservaron de los peligros.

Solemne Recepción de la Imagen del Sagrado Corazón de Jesús el 16 de Noviembre de 1911

Poco tiempo después de haberse bendecido por mí la iglesia de Laguna Grande, D. Epifanio Meza tomó empeño venerara en ella a una imagen del sagrado corazón de Jesús, y al efecto la mande a hacer a León; pero D. Epifanio tenia la idea que al recibirse la imagen en la población, ya estuviese bendita en el campo, y tanto el P. Carlos como yo, no tuvimos inconveniente en acceder al piadoso deseo. Llegado el día de la recepción de la imagen, se le preparó un rustico y poético altar bajo la sombrea de los árboles , en pleno campo, en el bajío de la Candelaria, distante del pueblo como 5 Kilómetros. Todas las familias pasaron el día en aquel campamento que me parecía un campo israelita, custodiando el Arca Santa. Cerca de la imagen, se sirvió la comida campestre, tendidos
todos sobre la yerba. Me parecía que éramos las turbas alimentadas milagrosamente en el desierto por el Divino Salvador, en premio de estar pendientes de sus divinas enseñanzas. Y después de saturados y saciados, más con las armonías de la religión que producían aquellas circunstancias, que con el alimento corporal, y cuando el sol se había inclinado bastante, organizamos la Solemne Procesión, marchando todos a pié, cantando y rezando los misterios del rosario, hasta llegar a la Laguna, a atardecido, lo cual dio mas realce a la procesión, porqué ya las callejuelas estaba ¡n profundamente iluminadas y adornadas. La imagen fue colocada en el templo y prediqué la
divina palabra.

Esta fiesta dejo muy gratas impresiones del Sagrado Corazón, recibió los honores de su realeza soberana, en cuanto se pudo.

Situación Critica

Critica , angustiosa y además casi desesperada era la situación de la Laguna Grande, después de la división de los revolucionarios, en carrancistas y villistas. Una parte de éstos, dominaron por completo todo el municipio y Laguna Grande tuvo que sufrir mucho por parte de estos, sin tener seguir ni lo mas sagrado del hogar, por lo cual determinaron sus vecinos como medida extrema , armarse y constituir la defensa social, como en efecto lo hicieron, no sin grande arrojo y peligro, por los escasos armamentos de que pudo disponerse, y por la superioridad de los enemigos, pero el valor y el patriotismo no se miden en casos extremos, y esta bélica actitud de defensa, fue un reto de muerte que les decretaron los enemigos. Sufrieron por esto muchos ataques, y llego el caso de tener que conservar el fusil al lado de la mancera y del arado, para estar listos a toda emergencia, y de
esta manera lograron tener a raya al enemigo, no sin sufrir continúas molestias y la pérdida de algunos
vecinos en los continuos asaltos y luchas.

Salvados por un Repique

Un día, Laguna Grande estaba sin resguardo, sus habitantes estaban en misa, solo tres jóvenes se
hallaban también dentro del templo, cuando de repente se nota grande alarma: era que un numeroso enemigo se presentaba por el norte, intimando la rendición y entrega inciondicional de armamentos, etc., Bajo la pena de arrasar a sangre y fuego todo el pueblo. Los pocos defensores contestan, que tenían armas, soldados y parque, y que bien podían los asaltantes pasar a tomarlas por su mano. Instan que la rendición y la respuesta es la misma, y lanzan algún disparo cono si fuera señal de rompimiento de fuego y uno de los jóvenes defensores apeló a un ardid. Las campanas, dice : sirven para ahuyentar a los espíritus malignos, y para implorar la piedad del cielo en aciagas circunstancias. ¿ Por que no las sonamos? Y, dicho esto le echan vuelo: los enemigos piensan que les viene auxilio a los sitiados y emprenden precipitada fuga, dejando en el campamento a tres o cuatro muertos envenenados por estricnina, que para envenenar coyotes tenía algún vecino en su casa, que
robaron al pasar.

Solemne Bendición y Recepción de la Imagen de San Miguel Arcángel.

Era el día 28 de septiembre de 1920. En el centro de un hermoso llano, el potrero de las cruces, se destaca un grupo de añosos encinos a manera de un kiosco, en torna a el se encuentra una gran multitud de gante de todas edades , distinguiéndose grupos de niños. Se agitan en los aires muchachos estandartes y flámulas policromadas, y bajo la umbrosidad de aquellos encinos , se encuentra un altar que ostenta una gallarda imagen de un joven guerrero halado , blandiendo flamígera espada , hollando con su planta un fiero dragón, que retuerce impotente, rabioso y de centellantes pupilas. Es la imagen de San Miguel Arcángel , patrono primitivo de Laguna Grande, que se va a bendecir, para hacer luego su entrada triunfal al pueblo, que le aclamo mil veces en los muchos y
amargos días de tribulación que tuvo que sufrir por defenderse de las irrupciones de las hordas que por tanto tiempo le amargaron, y quiere pagaron tributo de gratitud a su protector insigne.

El padre D. Telésforo Carlos, que había ido expresamente para hacer la bendición, acompañado por
el padre D. Daniel Márquez, tomamos paramentos litúrgicos, y se precedió a la solemne bendición de la imagen. Acto continuo, se procedió a ordenar el desfile de la gran procesión rumbo a la Laguna. La tarde era primorosa, el cielo parecía que había escogido sus mas bellos cortinajes de nubes, y sus
mejores celajes, y los campos ostentaban sus mejores galas de sus variadas flores y la alegría se
manifestaba desbordante en todos los semblantes. Las calles de la población se adornaron con lazos de vistosos ropajes , y se iluminaron con farolillos de colores, no faltando los arcos triunfales y la música. La imagen fue colocada en la Iglesia, y al siguiente día fue la misa de la Fiesta Solemne, con el sermón que me fue encomendado y todo ese día, como el anterior, fueron de jubilo para el pueblo.

¡El glorioso batallador de las huestes infernales, sea en todo el tiempo el defensor de aquel religioso y
viril pueblo hermano nuestro!

Notas Complementarias

La antigua capilla, se bendijo en el año de 1846, dedicada a la Santísima Virgen del Patrocinio.
El nuevo templo se termino en 1909.

La capilla anexa de Nuestra Señora del Refugio, la bendije el 12 de octubre de 1901.

La capilla de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, el 31 de mayo de 1906.


Sent by Roberto Campos












Familia de doña Maria González Hidalgo y Treviño Maya
   Compilado por:  Carlos Martín Herrera de la Garza 
Aclaraciones y comentarios: 


1.- Maria González Hidalgo y Treviño Maya se casó en Monterrey, N.L. con Joseph Lorenzo de la
     Garza Falcón y Pérez de  León González hijo de José de la Garza Falcón Rodríguez Navarro y
     de Josepha Pérez de León y González Leal. 
1.1.- Francisca de la Garza Falcón González Hidalgo se casó con Juan Gómez de Castro Sánchez
         quien nació en 1695 en Linares, N.L. 
1.1.1.- Adriana de Jesús Gómez de Castro y  de la Garza Falcón nació en 1721 y murió en 1739
           se casó con Pedro Regalado Escamilla.
1.1.2.- Clara Gómez de Castro y  de la Garza Falcón nació en 1724 y murió en 753, se casó en
           Cadereyta el 29 de Enero de 1742 con Lorenzo de León  quien nació en Cadereyta, N.L.
           en 1722.
1.1.3.- Juan de Dios Gómez de Castro y  de la Garza Falcón nació en 1726 y se casó el 20 de
           Febrero de 1746 con Manuela de Torres y Gracia quien nació en 1730. 
1.2.- Isabel de la Garza Falcón González Hidalgo se casó con Manuel de la Garza quien nació en
1.2.1.- Maria Francisca de la Garza  se casó con  Joseph Gordiano Gonzalez 
1.3.- José de la Garza Falcón González Hidalgo nació en Cadereyta, N.L. en 1690 y se casó en El
         Pilón, Montemorelos, N.L. el 24 de Abril de 1718 con María Gómez de Castro Sánchez
         quien nació en 1701 en Rio Hondo, Aramberri, N.L. 
1.3.1.- José Anselmo de la Garza Falcón y Gómez de Castro nació en Villa Joseph, N.L. el 30 de
           Septiembre de 1729 y murió en Cruillas, Tamaulipas en 1796, se casó en Cadereyta, N.L.
           el 25 de Junio de 1753 con María Margarita Leal de León y Rentería de la Garza quien
           nació en 1735 en Cadereyta, N.L.  hija de María Gertrudis Rentería de la Garza de
           Monterrey y de Marcos Leal de León de Cadereyta, es decir nieta de Miguel de la Garza y
           de Gertrudis de Renteria. Blas María de la Garza y Leal de León nació en Cadereyta, N.L. en 1759 y murió en
              Cruillas, Tamaulipas en 1832, se casó con María Francisca  Cantú González Ochoa quien
               nació en Cruillas, Tamaulipas el 13 de Noviembre de 1779 y murió en 1834 en Cruillas,
               Tam. hija de José Cayetano Cantú y de Josefa González Ochoa. Andrés de la Garza Cantú nació en Cruillas, Tamaulipas en 1809 y  murió en Cruillas,
                 Tam., se casó con (A) Rafaela Cantú y tuvo segundas nupcias en Monserrat, Tamaulipas
                 el 26 de Abril de 1843 con (B) María de Jesús de la Garza de la Garza quien nació en
                 Cruillas, Tam. en 1828 y murió en Cruillas, Tam. hija de José Eleuterio de la Garza de la
                 Garza quien nació el 19 de Febrero de 1793 y de Rosalía de la Garza Cantú quien nació
                  en Cruillas, Tam. el 6 de Julio de 1804. Los hijos de Andrés con María de Jesús fueron: Genoveva de la Garza de la Garza se casó con Justo Peña Robles hijo de José María
                     Peña y de Mariana Robles. Consuelo Peña de la Garza nació en 1888 en Tampico, Tam y se casó con Fritz
                       Carl Muller quien nació en 1889 en Alemania. Concepción Peña de la Garza nació en San Fernando, Tamaulipas el 15 de
                       Diciembre de 1893 y murió en Denver, Colorado el 20 de Julio de 1956 se casó
                       con Israel Bird Sutton Jr. quien nació el 29 de Abril de 1884 y murió el 24 de Julio
                       de 1963. Justo Peña de la Garza nació en Tampico, Tam. en 1901 y murió en 1956 se casó
                       con Dolores Ravizé quien nació en 1907 y murió en 1996. Guillermo Peña de la Garza nació en Tampico, Tam. y era torero. María Peña de la Garza nació en Tampico, Tam. y se casó con José Boer quien
                        nació en Holanda. José de la Garza de la Garza Eleuterio de la Garza de la Garza murió en Monterrey, N.L. el 1 de Marzo de 1912 y
                     se casó en Cruillas, Tamaulipas el 20 de Julio de 1876 con María Trinidad Cantú
                     quien nació en Cruillas, Tamaulipas el 24 de Enero de 1859 y murió en Monterrey,
                     N.L. el 7 de Febrero de 1922. Carlos de la Garza Cantú nació el 7 de Enero de 1878 y murió el 17 de Mayo de
                       1961 se casó el 20 de Octubre de 1901 con Guadalupe Gómez Camacho quien
                        nació el 17 de Mayo de 1883 y murió el 4 de Abril de 1967 Eleuterio de la Garza Cantú  nació en 1884 y murió el 25 de Agosto de 1967 se
                        casó en Monterrey, N.L. el 11 de Septiembre de 1907 con  María Cantú Zozaya
                        quien nació en Villagran, Tamaulipas el 3 de Diciembre de 1886 y murió en
                        Brownsville, TX el 14 de Febrero de 1971 hija de Erasmo Cantú de la Peña y de
                        María Zozaya Rodríguez. María de la Garza Cantú nació en Brownsville Tx. en 1928 y se casó con Thomas
                           B. Dellinger. Fernando de la Garza Cantú. Rodolfo de la Garza Cantú. Emilio de la Garza Cantú nació el 14 de Mayo de 1885 y murió el 21 de Mayo de
                       1921 se casó con María Curcho. María de la Luz de la Garza de la Garza. Ana Constanza de la Garza de la Garza. Dolores de la Garza de la Garza. Alberto de la Garza de la Garza. Fulgencio de la Garza de la Garza. Epigmenio de la Garza de la Garza. Hortensia de la Garza de la Garza.  María de Jesús de la Garza Cantú.  Joseph Tomás de la Garza Cantú. Joseph de la Garza Cantú. José Toribio de la Garza Cantú. María Tomasa de la Garza Cantú. José María de la Garza Cantú. José Bartolo de la Garza Cantú. José Antonio de la Garza Cantú. Hermenegildo de la Garza Cantú. Ana María de la Garza  Cantú.
1.4.-   Lorenzo de la Garza Falcón González Hidalgo se casó con (A) María Josefa deQuintanilla,
           tuvo segundas nupcias con (B) Mathiana de Arellano y Cano 
1.4.1.- Maria Catarina de la Garza Falcón de Arellano y Cano se casó con  Joseph Antonio Leal
           de Leon. 
1.5.-   Josefa de la Garza Falcón González Hidalgo nació en 1698 y se casó en Cadereyta, N.L. 
           el 28 de Febrero de 1723 con Antonio de Quintanilla González quien  nació en 1684 y
           murió en 1761. 
1.5.1.- Francisco Quintanilla y de la Garza Falcón González. 
1.5.2.- Joseph Lorenzo Quintanilla y de la Garza Falcón González.
1.5.3.- Maria Polisenia Quintanilla y de la Garza Falcón González.
1.6.-    María de Jesús de la Garza Falcón González Hidalgo se casó con Pablo de la Garza. 
1.6.1.- Agustín Seferino de la Garza de la Garza se casó con Manuela Guerra Leal 
1.6.2.- Catarina Teodora de la Garzade la Garza  se casó con  Juan Joseph Tijerina 
1.6.3.- Ana Josefa de la Garzade la Garza  se casó con  Salvador Gomez de Castro  
1.6.4.- Maria Gertrudis de la Garza de la Garza se casó con Marcos Leal de Leon Maria Catarina Leal de Leon y de la Garza   se casó con  Felipe Gonzalez Hidalgo Maria Margarita Leal de Leon y de la Garza  se casó con  Joseph Eugenio Elizondo 
1.7.-     María Teresa de Jesús de la Garza Falcón González Hidalgo.



May 7 Raices Habaneras, Cuban dance troupe, Union City , New Jersey

The Hispanic Genealogical Society of New York, Inc.
Old Chelsea Stations, P.O. Box 474
New York, New York 10113

Lieutenant General Pedro Del Valle 
First Hispanic in the history of the United States Marine Corps to reach 
   the rank of Lieutenant General (three star general)

LaGuardia Performing Arts Center ’s “Performance Planet”

Music Series Features Rumba Troupe on May 7



Long Island City , NY —Rumba, the spirit and soul of Latin American music and dance, will be performed at the LaGuardia Performing Art Center ’s on May 7.  Raices Habaneras, a Cuban dance troupe based in La Esquina Habanera (Havana Corner) in Union City , New Jersey , will perform the different styles of rumba in its purest form without alterations and foreign elements.  


The concert will be held in the college’s Little Theatre at 47th Avenue and Van Dam Street in Long Island City . (#7 Train to 33rd Street, Long Island City).  The event begins at 7:30 p.m.    General admission tickets are $12; $7 for students and seniors.  To purchase tickets, please call the box office at (718) 482-5151.  For information on the other cultural events visit


The group is one of five contemporary international artists featured in “Performance Planet,” a multicultural concert series that celebrates the borough’s rich cultural diversity. The five-concert series’ finale is scheduled for June 14 when Kevin So, a Chinese singer/songwriter whose powerful music is a blend of pop, rhythm, blues, and hip hop, will perform. 


Since its creation in 1996, the group has performed every Sunday at La Esquina Habanera, a club in Union City .  Aside from playing every Sunday at the club, Raices Habaneras performed at the Fourth Annual Latin Grammy Performance, Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center , and the Calle 8 Festival in Miami .  The group also appeared in the PBS film, “The Cuban Americans,” The Ivan Acosta’s film “How to Create a Rumba,” which was shown at the Lincoln Center Movie Festival, and the Heddy Honnigman’s film, “Dame La Mano,” which was shown at the Gramercy Theatre of MoMA. 



If you are a Puerto Rican researcher and have not connected with 
The Hispanic Genealogical Society of New York, Inc. . . .  
you are missing a tremendous resource!!

Go online to request a free sample issue of their award winning newsletter:
All issues of Nuestra Herencia are now available on CD, in PDF format.  

The slogan that defines our vision is now our fashion statement. Support HGSNY by showing your family pride!  We have Tee shirts for men, women and kids; sweatshirts and hooded sweatshirts as well as coffee mugs and much more –emblazoned with the above logo. Go to our online store at:
 and make your fully secure online purchase now. 


Save the date!
OCTOBER 16, 2005
Family History Fair at City University of NY
34 Street and Madison Ave., New York, NY 

Research Trip to PUERTO RICO
October 22 - 29, 2005
We have scheduled another research trip to Puerto Rico this year, so please mark your calendars. We will keep you updated on details of trip. :: Check out ::THE PUERTO RICAN MESSAGE BOARDS  at our Spinoff Puerto Rican Site! 

Coming Soon!!! 
Enter our: "Writing Contest" "My unusual family history" and A family history "Photo Contest" 
Look for the details and rules in the next issue of our Nuestra Herencia newsletter. 

More NEWS::  Members of HGSNY have the advantage of access to the Puerto Rican Censuses on CD ROM! These cd's are now available at the Center for Puerto Rican Studies at New York's Hunter College of CUNY.

The Hispanic Query Boards  are back!
Use these boards to post messages, share information and get information for your family history search. You can post messages in the following boards: South America, Central America, the US Southwest, Cuba, Dominican Republic and Mexico.  For messages in the Puerto Rico Boards to our spin-off site PRRoots,com

Resource Links 
• Puerto Rico Vital Records Information
• SHHAR's March 2005 newsletter, SOMOS PRIMOS"
• El Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños
• Boletin de Genealogias Colombianas
• Researching your genealogy - Pasajeros a Nueva York
• How to Research the 1930 Census Microfilm
• Find Family in Puerto Rico's Telephone Directory! 
• Telephone Directory in Spain! 
• (Todo lo que necesite sobre recursos de formación cristiana y educación humanística.) News :: Nuestra Herencia wins Best Newsletter Award...
Nuestra Herencia, the HGSNY members newsletter, won first prize in The Family Tree 2004 Newsletter Contest.

.The Fall/Winter 2004 issue had a great article on the resources available at the University of Connecticut Libraries
369 Fairfield Road
Storrs, CT 06269
(860) 486-4637

Latin American Studies Microform Serials & Collections, Compiled by Darlene Waller
   Revised March 1999 with assistance from José Crespo
This is remarkable collection.

Example: Extranjeros. (Foreigners in Puerto Rico), 1815-1845 (Film Shelf #26B)
Reproduces Spanish royal decrees and papers of individuals. Each reel begins with list of names of individuals for that reel.

Legion of Merit medal


   Lieutenant General Pedro Del Valle 
   Born August 28, 1893 – April 28, 1978 in San Juan, Puerto Rico 

   Sent by Eddie Grijalva

   First Hispanic in the history of the United States Marine Corps to reach 
   the rank of Lieutenant General (three star general)

Del Valle received his primary and secondary education in San Juan. Upon graduation, he attended the University of Puerto Rico and was a member of its ROTC. After graduating with a Bachelors Degree, he was accepted in the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. Del Valle graduated from the academy in June 1915 and was commissioned a second lieutenant on June 5, 1915.

Pedro Del Valle helped the Marine Corps in the capture of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic in 1916 and was awarded his first Legion of Merit. In 1919, he participated in the surrender of the German High Seas Fleet.

In 1926, Del Valle served with the Gendarmerie of Haiti for three years and in 1928 when he returned to the U.S., he attended the Field Officers Course at the Marine Corps School in Quantico, Virginia.

From 1935–37, Del Valle was Assistant Naval Attache, attached to the American Embassy in Rome, Italy. In 1939, he was ordered to attend the Army War College in Washington, D.C. and after graduating was named Executive Officer of the Division of Plans and Policies.

On March 1941, Del Valle became the Commanding Officer of the 11th Marines, (artillery). Upon the outbreak of World War II, Del Valle led his regiment and participated in the seizure and defense of Guadacanal as part of the First Marine Division. In 1943, he served as Commander of Marine Forces overseeing Guadalcanal, Tulagi, Russell and Florida Islands.

On April 1, 1944, Del Valle, as Commanding General of the Third Corps Artillery, Third Amphibious Corps, took part in the Guam operation and was awarded a Gold Star in lieu of a second Legion of Merit. He then became the Commanding General of the First Marine Division and was awarded a Distinguished Service Medal for his leadership in the reorganization of Okinawa.

After WWII ended, Del Valle was ordered back to Headquarters Marine Corps, where he was named Inspector General, position which he held until he retired on January 1, 1948.

Among Lieutenant General Pedro Del Valle's decorations and medals were the following: Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit with a Gold Star, Navy and Marine Corps Medal, Ethiopia 1936-36, Presidential Unit Citation, Guadacanal 1942, Okinawa 1945, Expeditionary Medal with Bronze Star, Haiti 1916, Dominican Campaign Medal, Dominican Republic 1916, World War I Victory Medal 1918, Second Nicaraguan Campaign Medal, Nicaragua 1930, American Defense Service Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with five Bronze Stars, American Campaign Medal, World War II Victory Medal, Order of the Crown of Italy, Italy 1936, East African Medal, Colonial Order of the Star of Italy, Italian Bronze Medal for Military Valor, Cuban Naval Order of Merit second class, Cuban 1938, Ecuadorian Decoration of Abdon Calderon Star first class with Diploma and Ecuador 1942.

Lieutenant General Pedro Del Valle died on April 28, 1978 in Annapolis, Maryland.



La Iglesia Parroquial de Palos de la Frontera
El Piloto Antón de Alaminos  (Parts I and II) 
Bartolomé Lopez, de Manzanilla                                    


Esta es la Iglesia Parroquial de Palos de la Frontera, que desde el siglo XIV acoge al Patrón de la Villa, San Jorge.
Tiene un sencillo estilo mudejar, presidiendo una plaza que es un punto de referencia para la historia.
En esta Iglesia oró Colon antes de partir para el Convento de La Rábida y en ella celebró varias reuniones con los hombres sabios de Palos para explicarles su teoría del descubrimiento de las Indias y convencerlos sobre la colaboración que era necesaria para llevar a cabo la empresa.

Angel Custodio Rebollo

LIBRO - Library of Iberian Resources Online -

Publicado el 29 de marzo de 2005 en Odiel Información de Huelva.


A mi modesto criterio, Antón de Alaminos es uno de los personajes intervinentes en la aventura americana de los que menos se habla en relación con la importancia que tuvo en ella. Era natural de Palos de la Frontera y, como hay tantos nativos de esta población entre los que emprendieron el encuentro con América que Antón de Alaminos ha quedado un poco diluido en esa lista grande. No digo que no se hable de él en todo lo posible, pero considero que no se hace en proporción a la mucha importancia que tuvo.

Alaminos había nacido en Palos, unos dicen que en 1475 y otros 1482, y en el segundo viaje de Colón fue de grumete en uno de los barcos, lo que repitió en el tercero y algunos dicen que hasta en el cuarto. En uno de los últimos, se quedó residiendo en La Española y de allí pasó a Cuba, donde recorrió gran parte de su costa y ya como piloto participó en las mas importantes expediciones que se realizaron, como la de Ponce de León en el descubrimiento de La Florida, la de Juan de Grijalva en el Yucatán y la de Hernán Cortés en la Conquista de México.

Una vez que Hernán Cortés se estableció en Veracruz y formó su ayuntamiento, lo que le confería plena autoridad con total independencia del Gobernador de Cuba, Diego Velázquez, decidió en el mes de julio de 1519 enviar dos procuradores para que entregaran al Rey la denominada Carta del Cabildo, además de unos presentes para Carlos V y también unos regalos para Martín Cortés, su padre. Los procuradores eran Alonso Hernández de Portocarrero y Francisco de Montejo y el piloto que los llevaría a Castilla era Antón de Alaminos, que en este viaje descubrió la corriente del Golfo de México.

Durante el trayecto, Montejo convenció a Alaminos para que hiciese una parada en Darién, en la Isla de Cuba, lo que Cortés había expresamente prohibido. Cuando Diego Velázquez descubrió que los barcos estaban cerca de sus costas , envió dos navíos ligeros para interceptarlos, pero Alaminos con su probada pericia logró escapar y poner proa a Sanlucar de Barrameda donde llegaron en octubre de 1519. Al llegar fueron apresados y, al parecer, Antón de Alaminos murió en prisión.

                                            Ángel Custodio Rebollo

El Piloto Antón de Alaminos  (II) 

Publicado en Odiel Información en la
Edición 1 de abril de 2005

Hace pocos días, mi articulo estaba dedicado a Antón de Alaminos, el célebre piloto de Palos de la Frontera que tanta importancia tuvo en la época colonial americana y mi pequeño espacio  ha servido para que varias personas me preguntasen sobre la vida y obra del marino palermo.

La verdad es que yo creo saber poco sobre la vida de este hombre y mi reseña iba dedicada a resaltar un personaje que estaba un poco olvidado, como decía, por la larga lista de nombres de naturales y vecinos de Palos de la Frontera, que intervinieron en la aventura americana.

Pero, por lo que conozco de Antón de Alaminos era un hombre muy buen conocedor del mar y de la navegación y que se ganó a pulso un prestigio que lo hizo conocido en todo el Caribe, ya que fue considerado el mejor piloto de su época. 

Había ido muy joven como grumete en las expediciones de Cristóbal Colón y visitó muchos lugares cuando se descubrían por primera vez, aunque después creo utilizó esto como estratagema para decir que “allí habia estado antes”, aunque no fuera verdad, con el fin de transmitir a todos tranquilidad y confianza en momentos de peligro.

La verdad es que se lo rifaban para que fuera como primer piloto en las expediciones, como hizo Hernán Cortés, Ponce de León, Hernández de Córdoba, Juan de Grijalva y otros.

El misterio sobre este hombre es que una vez detenido cuando llegaron a Sanlucar, no está muy claro si murió en prisión, si murió en España o si volvió a Nuevo Mundo, pero no hay indicios que puedan confirmar una u otra teoría.

Algunos historiadores le atribuyen Huelva como su lugar de nacimiento, pero me inclino mas por Palos, ya que en algún archivo histórico,  al parecer  existe una carta de la esposa de Alaminos pidiendo al rey una ayuda económica para casar a su hija, ya que carece de posibilidades para hacerlo, y de su esposo no tiene noticias desde hace mucho tiempo. 

He revisado el callejero de Huelva y no he encontrado ninguna calle que lleve el nombre de este piloto, algo que podría variar en la primera ocasión, si pensamos que es mas lógico que nuestras calles tengan nombre de personajes conocidos que no los que a veces le asignan.

                                                    Ángel Custodio Rebollo



Edición 29 de abril de 2005  de Odiel Información, Huelva

La comarca denominada Condado de Huelva también aportó muchas personas a nuestro encuentro con el Nuevo Mundo, muchos aún siendo de nuestra provincia han quedado incluidos como de Sevilla, ya que al estar la Casa de Contratación en aquella ciudad, aprovechando la vivienda de un familiar o por otro medio, declaraban ser de aquella población con lo que a veces se aceleraban los tramites y se adelantaba la salida.

Del Condado era Bartolomé López, natural de Manzanilla, vecino de la jurisdicción de Guanajuato, hijo legitimo de Alonso Guillén y Ana Torres. En su testamento, de septiembre de 1628,  pidió que a su muerte le dieran sepultura en la iglesia del valle de Silao, en Nueva España, con misa cantada y ofrendas de pan, vino y cera, Posteriormente se oficiarían misas y novenarios por su alma. También donaba 100 pesos a Isabel Maldonado y otros 100 a Aldonza Guzmán. En casa de Aldonza vivía una española llamada Juana a quien dejó 40 pesos para que se comprara ropa. En Apasco, dejaba 200 para su prima Ana Franco, la esposa de Blas Sánchez Pichardo y 50 para cada una de sus hijas. A Manzanilla enviaba 500 pesos para sus hermanas Juana Franco y Ana de Torres, que según sus noticias estaban casadas y eran pobres, 100 para la viuda de Alvarado y sus dos hijas.

Como era un hombre al que los negocios que tenía por aquellas tierras le fueron bien, tenía en su poder algunos objetos que recibía como garantía de préstamos, como: un cintillo de oro del Licenciado de Guanajuato Agustín Márquez, otro de 45 esmeraldas de la mujer de Martín Montes y dos anillos de oro del ensayador de minas, Diego López del Campo. Estos objetos pedía en su testamento que se entregaran a sus propietarios cuando saldaran las deudas por las que lo había recibido en prenda.

Declaraba como bienes, un mulato criollo llamado Juan, natural de Nueva Galicia y dos negros procedentes de Angola, llamados Francisco y Miguel, a los que se concedería libertad el día de su muerte, con la obligación para Miguel de acompañar durante dos años a sus albaceas para indicarles quienes eran sus deudores, a los que conocía muy bien.

Nombraba como albaceas testamentarios a Francisco de la Puerta y Juan de Anguiano.

                                                      Ángel Custodio Rebollo




Rock of Gibraltar
CIFEC, Canary Island Descendents Networking with U.S. Descendents
Websites recommendation by Lorraine Hernandez 
Book: "The Canary Islanders of Louisiana"

Genealogical Research Foundation of Argentina
Ask Jeeves Preview, Internet Resources for Latin America
América Latina “conquista” Europa
Herrera Luque sique las huellas de los inmigrantes en Venezuela 

Rock of Gibraltar


Small city within Gibraltar with homes, shops, schools, and they even have a zoo.
 Marbella, a beautiful city,  growing  very fast. That's one place  we are going back to this year. 

Photos and text by Ed Barraza . . .
Spain was at war with England, the war was over the Rock, Spain owned the Rock and England wanted  the Rock and Spain would not give it to England so England and Napoleon and his men went to war and beat Spain to claim the Rock of Gibraltar. It's  all spinach but your once your in the Rock it all English. Oh bye the way you do need your Pass Port to enter and leave the Rock.  


CIFEC to build an organizational structure to network Canary Islands descendents in the Canary Islands with those in the USA.

CIFEC is building a network of Canary Islands Descendents and USA Canary Islands Descendents.  We will provide travel information 
for USA members, scholars, students and artists wishing to travel to the Canary Islands. 
We would like to enlist volunteer to be a CIFEC  representative for a city in USA.  We would like to have at least one, hopefully 2 representatives assigned per city. So far we have representatives in San Antonio, Miami, New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta. 

Not yet assigned but hope to get volunteers 
from Baton Rouge and Saint Bernard and New Orleans, please Louisiana historians help us get some brave volunteers !.

If you do not want to be a representative, but do want to receive CIFEC news, we welcome you.  CIFEC membership is free. There are no fees, 
no donations, nothing.. 
Among the benefits to CIFEC members are the  new friends which can be made around the country. You may submit news items to be 
posted in our bulletins, and information about your Canary Islands heritage from CIFEC.  
  Another thing we are trying to gather are the
  family records, stories, genealogical information,
  and  archives of documents pertaining to Canary
  Islands Descendents in US. Please share with us
  your family pedigree information and copies of

  I will try to ship cultural materials and books to
  you when we get them here at the US Office of
  the Canary Islands in Miami.

  We are in the early stages of planning a national 
   gathering for next year. Hope you will all be
   involved with us.  It will be a wonderful
   networking event.

  Please send your name and address to me, and  
  how you would like to be involved to me at:

  Thanks for your time, god bless you all,

  Alejandro Sanz, Drector
  CIFEC Foundation,
  Phone 305 779 4967  Fax 305 779 4976
  2655 Le Jeune Rd Suite 1016
  Coral Gables, FL, USA

Websites recommendation by Lorraine Hernandez,
Murrieta, CA

This first site is written in Spanish for those with Italian last names in South America it's very good. It also has some good how-to in Spanish for using
There is also a series of Spanish groups that have started in the last 2 years or so in Yahoo España
If one does a search in grupos with the name of the country you will find one
pretty much every country in Latin America has one.
I belong to the one for Central America,
and one general one for Hispanic Genealogy is an excellent virtual magazine on the internet, totally in Spanish, with some interactive qualities.  Its goal is to be "a vehicle for the transmission and international difussion of  the popular culture of the Canary Islands.
Recommended by Paul "Skip" Newfield III

Book: Gilbert C. Din  "THE CANARY ISLANDERS OF LOUISIANA" is listed in the LSU PRESS Spring book sale for $12.95 . Paper back,1999 ,180 pages, illustrated. Catalog #DICANP. You can contact them at:  or 1-800305-4416. A good reference book on the Canary Islanders history in Louisiana. Enjoy. 

Sent by Bill Carmena 



By Eloise Cadinha

                                     Source: Vol. XII, #2 Portuguese Ancestry July 2002

There were many reasons why babies were abandoned by their mother and fathers. Some of the reasons being; an illegitimate child, extreme poverty with too many mouths to feed, perhaps the death of the father, or just simply an unwanted child.

One can research the smaller villages and not find a single exposto in the baptism records. At least this has been my experience. In the larger towns and villages many expostos are found in the records, certainly many of those abandoned from the smaller villages. In years of famine or terrible earthquakes many more babies were left as foundlings. These abandoned children were left at churches, convents and at the door of many homes.

Many children were left at convents. In many of the convents throughout Europe there was what was called the "Wheel" or "Roda". This wheel served a purpose. It was a wheel that could spin from the outside of the convent to the inside. Goods or other articles for the convent were left on the wheel and usually there was some kind of bell to let the nuns know that something had been placed on the wheel. In time, desperate mothers and fathers left their babies on the wheel.

In reading some of the exposto baptism records in certain villages, the priest notes to which mother in the village the child was given. The child had to be given to a nursing mother, and usually one can check back a few records and find that nursing mother in the record. Sometimes the priest noted where the child had been found.

When an exposto (male) married he had already a surname or perhaps was given one at the time of the marriage. I wish I knew more about this. As for surnames of the exposto, they ran the gamut from Azevedo to Xavier. As for the 

exposta (female) I don't think she was ever given a surname on her marriage record, or at least I can't remember seeing one.

Many parents when abandoning their children believed it would only be for a certain period of time. When the child was left at the convent or at the church or the doorstep of some farm house, sometimes clues were left so that parents could later claim their child. Notes sometimes were left with the name of the child, or perhaps a certain type of clothing, or an embroidered blanket. These were the clues and apparently the church did keep a record of these clues.

Some years back a fellow researcher sent me the following 1861 baptism record of a foundling from a parish in Sao Miguel.

A baby girl had been left at the home of a proprietor (land owner). The lady of the house with her servant took the child to the public roda of the Vila. The child was number 312. The baby was dressed in a cotton white shirt, a rose colored dress, and had two ribbons, one white and the other yellow.

In all the baptism records of expostos that I have seen in the records, I never saw a record such as this one. I have often wondered what happened to this baby. There was no notation in the margin, as I had seen in a few exposto records. The child was given the name, Ricarda, certainly a common one.


Marino Montero 
    Genealogical Research Foundation of Argentina    
(a non-profit organization) 

Nada significa si fueron modestos o ilustres, obreros o paisanos, soldados o nobles. Ellos nos
dieron la vida y es nuestra obligacion encontrarlos y conocerlos; volver a conocer los lugares 
donde vivieron, sus profesiones o labores, las acciones que los distinguieron.
No es suficiente ganar dinero y buscar el bienestar economico es necesario tambien otorgar 
valor al nombre y a la tradicion de familia, proteger estos valores con cuidado y amor,
porque no se improvisan ni el nombre ni la tradicion, que son el fruto de siglos de una vida
intachable y representan una riqueza que hay que entregar intacta a los descendientes, tal
como nos la dejaron nuestros antepasados.  Estamos seguros que la felicidad esta en quererse y dejarse querer.
link para algunos censos realizados nas colonias Argentinas
link para entrada de navegações que traziam imigrantes para Argentina

Ask Jeeves Preview, Internet Resources for Latin America
Users may want to link to the Guide in order to get all updates. 
Name=Internet Resources for Latin America 
Sent by Janete Vargas


Since my first attempts to compile a list of Latin American resources on the Internet in May 1993, the quantity of information products and modes of access has exploded. It is no longer possible to know all, or list all resources; the best alternative is to point the new researcher to the best compilations and information servers now available in the Latin American "region" of the Net. Librarians tend to think in terms of genre (encyclopedias, handbooks, atlases, etc.) when describing information sources. This tendency has carried over into Internet guides where the genres used (gophers, WWW pages, FTP archives, WAIS indexes) actually describe different software tools or network services that enable the user to access the same universe of electronic information products stored in millions of files on computers all over the world that are connected to the Internet. In some cases, the same information product will be accessible in multiple ways, depending on the tools available to the user. Part 2 of this guide will point to specific information products and/or places that serve as gateways into the Latin American resources on the Net. Part 3 will mention a few of the hundreds of electronic conferences, email lists and newsgroups devoted to Latin America-related topics. A few carefully picked list subscriptions can be the best way to obtain information about new resources as they become available. Part 4 contains a very selected bibliography of published information. (NOTE: this section is VERY incomplete and will be updated in the future) I try to include some descriptive and/or evaluative information for most sites and lists in this Guide. Several other subject or geographic listings of internet sites are useful for finding Latin American Information on the Net. Geographical list from CERN, WWW Virtual Library Subject list from CERN, WWW Virtual Library Clearinghouse of Subject-Oriented Internet Resource Guides Latin American Network Information Center--Univ. of Texas Recursos de Internet en Espanol--Links to Spanish search engines and catalogs Directorio de America Latina-GlobalNet CIBER-CENTRO Hispanic Pages in the USA Mexico's Index Mundo Latino Pagina Latina/Espanola LatinWorld Commercial Latin America Internet Directory Yahoo--a searchable directory Yahoo--Regions--Latin America McKinley Internet Directory--Search over 20,000 rated sites The mercurial nature of the Net demands that this guide be updated and links checked frequently, however, accuracy cannot be guaranteed. Updated information, corrections, and comments are welcome. 

América Latina “conquista” Europa

El Nacional, 12/10/2004, Internacional y Diplomacia por Liza López
Enviado por   Roberto Jose Perez Guadarrama

Cada año, medio millón de latinoamericanos aterriza en el viejo continente en búsqueda de oportunidades. Es un fenómeno que ha aumentado vertiginosamente en los últimos cuatro años y parece ser imparable. Europa compite ahora con Estados Unidos por el primer puesto en destino migratorio, y desde el suelo del mundo donde ancló Cristóbal Colón hace 512 años, se está cultivando esta nueva colonización de sangre criolla y mestiza 

No viajan en barco, como lo hicieron aquellos colonizadores hace más de 500 años. Estos nuevos conquistadores emigran en avión, en la clase económica de los boeing trasatlánticos, y van en la dirección contraria: de América Latina hacia Europa. Son cientos de miles los que se están marchando del nuevo hacia el Viejo Continente y este fenómeno migratorio parece estar en su mayor auge.

Las cifras son más que contundentes:
cada año llegan a tierra europea alrededor de 500.000 latinoamericanos, y desde 2000, esta cantidad se ha más que duplicado. Hoy suman, en esa región al otro lado del océano, más de 2 millones y medio de extranjeros con el ritmo criollo en las venas. Allá se reencuentran con otros acentos que le suenan a una misma raza y la latinidad los une en esta conquista intercontinental.

Aunque Estados Unidos sigue siendo el primer destino de los inmigrantes de este lado del mundo (hay más de 13 millones de “colonizadores” latinos y caribeños), Europa está cobrando cada vez más protagonismo al convertirse en el segundo punto de llegada. Sobre todo por el gigantesco número de personas que ve a España como territorio de oportunidades.

Italia, el Reino Unido, Alemania y Francia también figuran entre los destinos prioritarios, pero el impacto migratorio no es tan fuerte como en la madre patria, donde vive casi 1 millón de latinos en este momento. El idioma y la afinidad cultural, por supuesto, han hecho que las nuevas colonias latinas busquen concentrarse en las grandes ciudades españolas.

Esta migración que atraviesa el Atlántico, claro está, no se compara con el número de europeos que llegó a la región latinoamericana.

Estudios del Centro latinoamericano y caribeño de demografía (Celade) revelan que entre el siglo XIX y fines del XX, más de 11 millones de los inmigrantes llegaron de Europa y estas varias generaciones de extranjeros contribuyeron en gran medida a formar la sociedad mestiza latina. En este siglo, las evidencias muestran que los papeles se han invertido.

Legislaciones individuales
Quienes han liderado este flujo migratorio trasatlántico proceden en su mayoría de Ecuador, Perú, Colombia y Argentina. Los venezolanos todavía no representan una colonia numerosa en Europa, a pesar de que en España o Francia (más en el primero) se consiga en los abastos el ron criollo y la harina de las arepas.

Jorge Martínez, investigador del Celade -ente adscrito a la Comisión económica Cepal de las Naciones Unidas- confirma que la mayor parte de los latinoamericanos que emigraron hacia suelo europeo lo han hecho en los últimos cinco años. “En España, a pesar de la dureza de las políticas del ex mandatario José María Aznar, siguió recibiendo inmigrantes.

Las medidas actuales son una transición, pero eso no necesariamente implica una apertura de fronteras. En Portugal hay un despertar como destino migratorio para los brasileños, y la cifra de latinos allá no supera los 100.000. En Italia hay muchos menos que en España, pues su legislación es muy estricta para los extranjeros. No existe un escenario posible para una política de fronteras abiertas en Europa, sólo para circular dentro de ella”.

Según este experto chileno en migración internacional, la ley de extranjería aprobada por el nuevo gobierno español para regularizar a los inmigrantes que llevan al menos un año trabajando en ese país, es apenas un primer paso para flexibilizar la situación.

Sin embargo, en el seno de la Unión Europea, como comunidad que agrupa una diversidad de países potenciales para la inmigración, todavía no existen políticas conjuntas para regir los flujos migratorios.

Lo que sí existe son legislaciones individuales, pues cada país ejerce su propia soberanía en la materia, es decir, cada país decide a quién y cómo le permite la entrada y eventual residencia.

Pero el flujo hacia el viejo continente también se ha acentuado gracias a la cantidad de latinoamericanos que tienen alguna ascendencia europea. Esto ha permitido que muchos recuperaran la ciudadanía de quienes emigraron a América Latina décadas atrás, lo cual les facilita un pasaporte sin restricciones.

Tierra prometida
Las adversidades que viven los países en América Latina, la falta de oportunidades laborales, la formación profesional y la reagrupación familiar son algunas de las causas para la migración hacia el viejo continente. Tal como precisan los estudios sobre migración de la Cepal, entre las repercusiones que tiene este fenómeno destacan la pérdida de recursos humanos calificados Argentina y Venezuela se distinguen en este punto) y el riesgo de no lograr una efectiva inserción en el país receptor.

Para el especialista en migraciones latinoamericanas de la Universidad de la Coruña (España) y actual investigador del Centro para estudios de migración de la Universidad de California, Antonio Izquierdo, el mayor “empujón” de este fenómeno en los últimos cuatro años ha sido la acentuación de la crisis de países como Argentina, Ecuador, Perú, Colombia y Venezuela. Europa, explica, decidió invertir en el intercambio económico con Latinoamérica para competir con Estados Unidos, y está abriéndose a los trabajadores con buen nivel académico.

“El intercambio de migración calificada no es muy voluminosa, pero tiene un efecto importante para América latina. En general, el nivel de estudios de los inmigrantes latinos es comparable con el de países como España”, acota.

Su colega chileno agrega una reflexión. “El impacto es negativo y preocupante para el país de origen cuando la migración es de profesionales de alta calificación.

Por eso en América Latina hay que crear ambientes estimulantes para el empleo, porque Europa está ofreciendo alternativas laborales productivas”, subraya Martínez.

Algunas oportunidades, efectivamente, son bien productivas, pero no siempre están a la altura profesional del inmigrante.

Sobran los casos de latinos que deben sacrificar sus profesiones para sobrevivir como mesonero, cocinero, niñeros, obreros de construcción, etc. Si existe una consecuencia muy positiva de esta “colonización” en Europa, es el dinero que los latinos envían a sus países de origen. Las investigaciones dan fe de la magnitud de esta ayuda para las economías de países centroamericanos (los inmigrantes envían más de 3,5 millardos de dólares por año) o de Colombia, donde las remesas representan el equivalente a la mitad de las exportaciones cafeteras.

Mestizaje del siglo XXI
Si hace 500 años, el mestizaje comenzó a cultivarse en costas tropicales con sangre procedente de Europa, actualmente, el viejo continente experimenta una mezcla cultural inusitada con la llegada del sabor latino. Para el sociólogo español Antonio Izquierdo, este intercambio está lejos de ser negativo.

“Tengo mis dudas de que sea perjudicial para América Latina, pues depende de cada país. Si es bueno para las personas, entonces hay que proponer que reciban un trato justo y acorde con sus derechos humanos. En Europa, los efectos no se sienten igual en una península italiana que en una española. La migración se concentra sólo en algunas ciudades o provincias, y donde no hay flujos migratorios, los impactos positivos y negativos se dejan de sentir”, señala Izquierdo.

Y enfatiza: “Desde el punto de vista cultural, pretender decir que la identidad europea peligra por 6% de extranjeros es una bobada.

La identidad de Europa está cambiando y debe cambiar, pues todos somos producto de una mezcla de identidades”.

La utopía de las fronteras abiertas
Aunque existan ciertas políticas que rigen para el conjunto de 25 países que conforman la Unión Europea, todavía no hay lineamientos comunes en materia de migración.

Hasta el momento, en el seno de la Comisión Europea -brazo ejecutivo de la UE, promotora de la legislación y políticas de acción- se han discutido algunas propuestas, pero aún no se concretan en la práctica.

En sus documentos, se plantea la regulación de la admisión y estancia de inmigrantes, la lucha contra la clandestinidad y la cooperación entre países para el retorno de ilegales.

Con relación a América Latina, al menos ya se sugiere establecer “un diálogo consagrado a los flujos migratorios” entre las dos regiones.

El delegado de la Comisión Europea en Venezuela, Denis Daniilidis, explica que por los momentos en la UE funciona un sistema centralizado de intercambio de información en los controles fronterizos, pero todavía la inmigración no es un tema prioritario como el comercio.

En un estudio de Adela Pellegrino publicado por la Cepal, se contrastan las políticas de libre comercio y circulación de mercancías con las limitaciones de movilización y la radicación de inmigrantes en la UE. Los países europeos, recuerda la especialista, han cerrado sus fronteras a la inmigración desde 1974 y los ingresos se limitan a quienes aspiran condición de refugiados o a quienes postulan por empleos con calificaciones específicas. “El resurgimiento de nacionalismos acompañados de expresiones de xenofobia han vuelto a tomar peso en las últimas décadas”.

El experto español en derecho internacional y en relaciones EuropaAmérica Latina, Fernando Laiseca, precisa que hoy en día “cada país controla los flujos migratorios con las normas que quiere”. Con el Tratado de Ámsterdam (vigente desde 1999) y el proyecto de Constitución Europea, apunta, se busca establecer políticas comunes en materia de asilo y migración todavía por definir.

Mujeres en la delantera
Las féminas latinas llevan una clara ventaja en la carrera migratoria hacia Europa. Los expertos en el tema bautizaron esta tendencia como la “femenización” de la migración y coinciden en que se ha convertido en todo un fenómeno característico de la región. El sociólogo e investigador de migración internacional, Antonio Izquierdo, explica que esta corriente se hizo más fuerte en la última década por un aumento de la independencia femenina y por una alta demanda de mujeres latinas en muchos sectores de la economía europea (profesionales de la medicina, enfermeras, oficinistas, empleadas domésticas, obreras textiles, meseras).

En términos generales, puntualiza, el perfil de los inmigrantes latinos es de estudios cualificados y de clase media o alta, con algunos casos como el de los ecuatorianos, cuyo estrato es más bajo.

Lo que motiva a las mujeres, resalta el sociólogo, son factores como la independencia, las aspiraciones personales, los estudios, la familia y la movilidad. “Ella es quien reagrupa a la familia, y ya no se trata de la clásica mujer que sigue al hombre. En el caso de los hombres, el motivo para emigrar es más laboral. Llama la atención que hay menos migración femenina clandestina”.

El investigador del Centro latinoamericano y caribeño de demografía (Celade), Jorge Martínez, comenta que los latinoamericanos suelen tener mayor nivel educativo que otros extranjeros que se instalan en Europa. “30% de la fuerza de trabajo inmigrante son profesionales. Es lo que se conoce como desperdicio de educación para sus países de origen”.

Francisco Herrera Luque sique las huellas de los inmigrantes en Venezuela 
El Nacional - Domingo 03 de Octubre de 2004
Enviado por   Roberto Jose Perez Guadarrama

Cultura y Espectáculos

La institución publicará un libro dedicado a los extranjeros que llegaron al país en el siglo XX, en el cual se abordan desde las implicaciones jurídicas y estudios históricos de cómo ha evolucionado el fenómeno de la inmigración en nuestro territorio, hasta relatos más íntimos de esos viajes sin regreso, narrados por sus protagonistas. 

Llanto, miedo, incertidumbre son algunas de las sensaciones que experimentaron los miles de inmigrantes que dejaron su patria para venir a este país, a bordo de un barco con destino a un sitio muchas veces desconocido.

Estos nuevos pobladores de las tierras venezolanas se instalaron aquí y se convirtieron, también, en venezolanos.

La Fundación Francisco Herrera Luque reúne las ponencias de varios profesionales en torno al tema de las VIII Jornadas Anuales de Reflexión Las inmigraciones a Venezuela en el siglo XX. Aportes para su estudio.

“Todos los años esta institución organiza jornadas de reflexión sobre temas de importancia para el país y después publica un libro” indica la directora de la Fundación, María Margarita de Herrera Luque.

Este año el directorio de la Fundación decidió tratar el tema de los inmigrantes por el interés que puede despertar en los venezolanos y también por lo que significó para Francisco Herrera Luque. Según la directora de la Fundación, el escritor siguió las huellas de la inmigración en el país y de su pasión por el tema derivó el libro Viajeros de Indias.

La selección de ponencias expuestas en las jornadas sobre la inmigración comprende unas dedicadas a la evolución histórica de este fenómeno, otras a las inmigraciones de nacionalidades más representativas, como los españoles, italianos y portugueses; los árabes y judíos, habitantes del Sur y el Caribe; así como también las inmigraciones que se produjeron por motivos políticos.

Se aborda su influencia en el arte y la literatura, y se evalúa el impacto que ha tenido en el ámbito alimenticio y socioeconómico.

En relación con los inmigrantes propiamente, el libro presenta las etapas de vinculación con la nueva tierra y el impacto emocional que representa salir del terreno conocido a uno incierto.

Se evalúan los aspectos jurídicos del fenómeno y los derechos humanos de los inmigrantes. Por último, incluye un estudio del aumento de la migración de venezolanos al exterior y se trata de explicar el porqué.

Los autores de los ensayos son Carlos De Sousa, María Ramírez Ribes, Marisa Vannini de Gerulewicz, Paulina Gamus, Oscar Rodríguez, María Pilar González, Eddo Polesel, Susana Benko, Susan Berglund, José Gabaldón Anzola, Simón Molina, Patricia Yáñez, Mazhar Al-Shereidah, Julia Sosa Escudero, Zelindo Ballen, William Niño, Miguel Bolívar Chollet, Samuel Hurtado Salazar, Rafael Cartay, Chi-Yi Chen, Eduardo Mayobre, José Antonio Gil Yepes y Roberto Lovera de Sola, quien además de escribir se encargó de coordinar la publicación.

Cada uno de los autores tiene una vinculación cercana con el tema seleccionado. Se destaca el hecho que cada uno de los ensayos dedicados a un país en particular fue escrito por una persona cuyos orígenes lo relacionan directamente con ese territorio.

“Esta iniciativa se deriva de la inquietud que siente el equipo de la Fundación Francisco Herrera Luque por lo que sucede en el país y representa un análisis de un tema que interesa a los venezolanos actuales” señala María Margarita de Herrera Luque, quien agrega que el proyecto de publicación del libro –disponible a finales de octubre– se llevó a cabo gracias al trabajo en equipo que vienen realizando y al patrocinio de la Fundación Banco Mercantil.


Los italianos en Venezuela

“Es difícil ser objetivo, cuando los sentimientos están presentes y afloran en cada nombre, en cada episodio. Es casi imposible hablar con perfecta imparcialidad de las relaciones entre dos países cuya cercanía física y espiritual modeló nuestra propia vida durante más de medio siglo y a los cuales estamos profundamente ligados.

“De todas las inmigraciones a Venezuela fue quizás la italiana la más fluida, la más indolora, la menos traumática.

“Los inmigrantes, en número cada vez mayor, se encontraron en un país que carecía de la infraestructura mínima indispensable para hospedarlos.

“Con tesonero esfuerzo y un indomable espíritu de superación, los inmigrantes italianos contribuyeron a transformar un país que apenas iniciaba el ascenso de la empinada cuesta del progreso.

“El italiano, conquistado por la belleza, la inteligencia y la ternura de la mujer venezolana, no dudó en unir a ella su destino.

Supo ver en ella cualidades y rasgos espirituales que pudieron complementar su deseo de afianzarse en la nueva tierra y aportar su sangre, además de su esfuerzo, a la forja de un país por construir”.

Marisa Vannini de Gerulewicz Siglo XX: Cien años de reencuentros entre Italia y Venezuela 

El desarraigo y la soledad

“El viaje supone, además de afrontar las condiciones y sinsabores del mismo, un espacio de transición, una suerte de rito de tránsito entre su condición de emigrante y la que asumen como inmigrantes al pisar la tierra de destino.

“A bordo del barco, la mirada nostálgica hacia atrás mantiene aún muy vivo en su memoria lo que dejaron y vuelta hacia el horizonte les devuelve la certeza y pesadumbre de un futuro incierto, pensamiento entretejido seguramente con las condiciones y por ende motivaciones que los llevaron a dejar su pueblo y con la esperanza e incluso ensoñación de encontrar en otras tierras el remedio a sus penurias. Este espacio-tiempo es posible que se dibuje como una suerte de limbo entre lo próximo-perdido y lo por encontrar. Además, supone también encontrar, conocer, mirar, conversar, convivir con otras personas en idéntica situación de nostalgia por lo dejado y de inseguridad frente al porvenir.

“Y así, comienza una historia de arraigo y desarraigo, de encuentros y desencuentros que no culmina ni siquiera a veces con el retorno, en el caso de que éste se produzca”.

María del Pilar González Lo vivido en su hondura: elo, soledad y desarraigo 

Y vinieron los españoles

“La historia de Venezuela es inseparable de la historia de la presencia de España en el país. Esa presencia no siempre ha tenido las mismas características, ni el motor ha sido el mismo, pero en uno u otro caso ha implicado una suma de valores a la trayectoria del siglo XX venezolano que no hubiera conquistado sus mejores logros sin los numerosos aportes de los españoles, que tanto en épocas pasadas como durante el siglo XX llegaron para quedarse y hacer de Venezuela su casa”.

“Soy personalmente uno de esos ejemplos. Mis padres me enseñaron a amar a Venezuela, incluso muchos años antes de haber puesto los pies aquí.

“En la vida venezolana del siglo XX son pocos los campos en los cuales los españoles no hayan estado presentes, como también deben ser pocas las familias que no han tenido a un español o española cerca que los marcara.

“La inmigración proveniente del exilio español fue la más substancial que recibió Venezuela durante esos años y sin embargo no fue todo lo numerosa que hubiera podido ser, no obstante marcó de manera imborrable la estructura y organización del país”.

María Ramírez Ribes La huella familiar de la inmigración española en Venezuela durante el S. XX 

© 2004. CA Editora El Nacional, Todos Los Derechos Reservados 




Enciclopedia Heráldica y Genealógica, now online index
Electronic Records Archive (ERA) 

A graphical history of the US
National database on the Civil War 

The US Library of Congress has recently made available an interactive on-line index to the more than 15,000 names included in the 88 volume work Enciclopedia Heráldica y Genealógica Hispano-Americana of Alberto and Arturo Garcia Carraffa. The index also encompasses the continuation work by Endika de Mogrobejo, and displays a list of the libraries in the US that have the Carraffa work in their collection. By using this search engine you can find the names, volume and page number where the names appear in the Enciclopedia. The index is located at: Index to the Enciclopedia Heraldica Hispano-Americana of Alberto and Arturo Garcia Carraffa. . We have added this information to our Lookup Your Surnames web page.

Electronic Records Archive (ERA) 

Electrifying Data Faced with the problem of preserving 'the federal government's zillions of electronic records in on obsolescence-proof format, the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has announced that technology and communication systems companies Lockheed Martin and Harris Corp will duke it out for a chance to solve that dilemma.

NARA's challenge for the two contenders is to design the Electronic Records Archive (ERA) - a system that will store information permanently so it's retrievable with whatever hardware and software ore available at the time. "ERA" promises to make finding records easy for the public and for government officials, and make delivering those records easy for the NARA staff.

Lockheed Martin already has subcontracted with Electronic Data Systems (EDS), the company that worked with Microsoft to design the country's first electronic-records preservation system for the state of Washington. 


A graphical history of the US
Sent by Janete Vargas To:

Huge, searchable national database on the Civil War -

Sent by Paul "Skip" Newfield III


Preserving Records for Family History Research
Facts & Genes from Family Tree DNA
GeoGene Newsletter  April 2005  
GENEALOGY-DNA-L Archives:  mtDNA of the Basques
Hispanic genealogy site (En Espanol)
Social Security Death Index (SSDI)
Ask The Computer Lady

"My grandmother Juana Leon with my mother and her two sisters, Eliana and Maria. I find it very funny that this picture was taken with a "fake" background; it was taken in Valparaiso, Chile, a port that has many places to take pictures with real boats and scenes alike. The picture was taken around 1932, because my mother was about seven. A few years ago, I saw a book about the famous Nobel Prize poet Pablo Neruda as a child, and he has a picture taken in the same studio with the same background! I bought the book."

Submitted by
Marcela Murri includes a variety of family oriented articles on how to cherish and save   family records, traditions, even recipes.  It is not dedicated to Hispanics, but the 3/12/2005 included three photos with Hispanic surnames.  

MyFamily Weekly: Family Heirlooms and Portraits, 3/12/2005  
Sent by

Preserving Records for Family History Research

Source: Church News

200 cameras in 44 countries gathering vital information

The Genealogical Society of Utah fills an important role in preserving and providing public access to records, said Wayne J. Metcalfe, director, Acquisitions Division of the Family History Department.

Speaking Jan. 28 at the conclusion of the library's weeklong open house, Brother Metcalfe, who is also vice president of the society, gave an overview of the collecting and value of international records, and spoke out in favor of public policy that allows public access to records of the deceased.

He said the Church goes to great lengths to acquire and preserve these records, and make them available to people in all places.

"Currently, the Genealogical Society of Utah manages more than 200 microfilm and digital cameras in 44 countries throughout the world," he said. "Each record is made available to family historians, genealogists and historians at our library here in Salt Lake City."

While some 750,000 visitors come to the library in Salt Lake City annually, more than 5 million visitors visit the 5,000 branch libraries each year.

"Now it is possible to have access to our microfilm collection in Budapest, Hungary; Cape Town, South Africa and Shanghai, China."

He said that the Church's Internet site, is provided at no cost to the user.

"All users, regardless of nationality, ethnic background, or religious affiliation, may access our databases, download information, and contribute their findings without cost."

After explaining policy related to the site, he noted that since the site was launched in 1999, there have been more than 15.5 billion hits on the site, or an estimated 192 million visitors from every continent on earth with the exception of Antarctica.

The site averages 14 million hits a day with an estimated 138,000 visitors per day, who view an estimated 4.7 million pages.

Some of the online databases viewed were compiled only with a tremendous effort, such as the Ellis Island immigration records that took volunteers 11 million hours to complete.

Such efforts between volunteers and the resources of the Church will help those who are seeking their family roots to be successful, he said.

"Information is a fragile thing," he observed. "Unfortunately, we are not always the best judges of what is important, particularly in the areas of what our descendants will want to know about us."

Regarding statutory, or legal, limitations, he called for finding a balance that will address both resource limitations, rights of privacy and "the rights of this and future generations to learn of their heritage and their ancestors."

Facts & Genes from Family Tree DNA

March 28, 2005  Volume 4, Issue 2
Sent by Tom Asensio Tom

Understanding your Results: Y DNA and Surnames

For a long time, people were just known by their first name.  

Surnames then began to be adopted in different countries at different times.  As society became more complex, a system was needed to distinguish one person reliably and unambiguously from the next person.  

A surname is defined as a hereditary name borne by members of a single family and handed down from father to son. Thus, surnames contrast with given names, which identify individuals within the same family.  It is characteristic of surnames that all members of a particular family normally have the same surname.  

In 1200 A.D., the world population is estimated to have been between 360 million and 450 million persons, depending on the estimate used.  

This estimate is close to the time frame when surnames began to be adopted.

On the whole, the richer and more powerful classes tended to acquire surnames earlier than the working classes and the poor, while surnames were quicker to catch on in urban areas than in more sparsely populated rural areas.

Occasionally, events impacted surnames.  For example, in 1465 legislation was passed that impacted Gaelic surnames in several counties of Ireland, most notably Dublin.  According to John D'Alton's "History of Co. Dublin", the following was enacted in 1465: 

"That every Irishman, dwelling betwixt or amongst Englishmen, in this county, as well as those of Meath, Uriell (Louth) and Kildare, shall go like to one Englishman in apparel and in shaving of his beard above the mouth and shall within one year sworn the liege man of the King and shall take to him an English surname of one town, as Sutton, Chester, Trim, Scrine, Cork, Kinsale; or colour, as white, black, brown; or art or science, as smith or carpenter; or office, as cook, butler, etc. and that he and his issue shall use this name under pain of forfeiting his goods yearly."

Surnames were adopted in different areas at different times. In many parts of central and western Europe, hereditary surnames began to become fixed from the 12th century forward.  The bulk of European surnames in countries such as England or France were formed in the 13th and 14th centuries.  In some places, the process started earlier, and in some places the process continued into the 19th century.  Overall, the norm is that in the 11th century people did not have surnames, and by the 15th century they did.

The process of adopting a surname was spread over time, and these surnames continued to evolve until the 1900's when spelling was standardized.

Surname variants occurred during the evolution of the surname. There was no guide to the spellings of names, and those who recorded events, such as the clergy and registrars, attempted to reproduce phonetically the sounds they heard. The great majority of the population were illiterate and had no notion that any one spelling of their name was more 'correct' than any other. 

Prior to the time surnames were adopted, men with the same values for their Y DNA were spread out over a geographic area due to migrations.  In addition, invasions and wars often significantly dispersed populations with the same Y DNA.  Once people began to adopt surnames, these widely dispersed men with the same Y-DNA took different surnames.

As the database of Y DNA results at Family Tree DNA grows, everyone will eventually have Y DNA matches with other surnames.  The primary reason for these matches is that multiple men with the same Y DNA result adopted different surnames during the time period when surnames were adopted.  These men could have been in the same village, or in the same county, or perhaps migration had taken them to different countries.

In addition, two men with different surnames may have matching Y DNA due to convergence.  Mutations are estimated to occur about once every N generations per Marker.  There are mutations in the Y-DNA, and when after several mutations we see a match or a close match, it is called convergence.  The larger the population with the same Y DNA, the more opportunity there is for convergence to occur.  Since Haplogroup R1b is the largest population group in Europe, matches with other surnames are very common.  These matches are due to the large population of this Haplogroup that existed when surnames were adopted.  Many different surnames were adopted, and convergence has occurred over time.

If we go back far enough in time, we are all related.  The surname is used to establish a boundary for determining whether two people are related.  If you match some one with a different surname, you are most likely related prior to the adoption of surnames.  

In some cases, you could be related after the adoption of surnames, due to one of the following events occurring:

1.  informal adoption
2.  extra marital event of either infidelity or illegitimacy
3.  adoption of a new surname, such as by preference or for inheritance

Even though these events have occurred in the past, they were not the norm.  

Pursuing a match with another surname should not be considered until both participants upgrade to 37 Markers to determine if the match still holds.  

At this point, if the match still holds at 37 markers, a decision can be made as to whether to pursue the match with another surname.  To avoid wasting time, there should be some evidence that one of the events above occurred.  In making this decision, the place to start is to evaluate the evidence.  Were the ancestors in the same location, at the same time?  Was there a marriage by a widow who had children?  Is there any evidence to support a match with another surname?

In most cases, there isn't any evidence to support pursuing the match.

A Surname Project is a very valuable tool for family history research.  The surname establishes the time period for determining if two people are related.  Surname Projects can provide tremendous benefit for those who are researching their family history.  DNA testing has a wide range of applications, from additional information to use in conjunction with the paper records for interpretation, to clues to find the ancestral homeland. 

In addition, as a long term goal, a Surname Project can determine the number of points of origin of the surname.  The Surname Project could also combine DNA results with the techniques used to research surnames, and identify the ancestral location or area where the surname was adopted.

As you research your family tree, eventually you have to stop, because the written records end, or are sporadic.  This could be the result of the destruction of records, such as due to a court house fire.  Or, this could be the result of reaching the time period prior to a the majority of written records.  For example, the time period before the adoption of Parish registers.  Often your family tree will stop before the start of Parish registers, because there is insufficient documentation to make a connection.

When your family tree ends, there is still a long period of time between then and the adoption of surnames.  For example, if your tree ends in the late 1700's due to insufficient documentation, there is still 400 to 500 years between then and the adoption of surnames, depending on your ancestral country.

DNA testing can fill this 500 year gap.  Imagine a situation years from now, where every family tree with your surname has tested.  The data would then be available to determine whether your surname had a single or multiple points of origin.  Combining this information with surname mapping, frequency distribution studies, and research in Medieval records would most likely enable the Surname Project to identify a geographic area as the ancestral homeland.

Our surname is a very important part of us, and DNA testing tells us about this surname.  For example, did one man take on the surname, and all the descendents today are related, except for descendents of an informal adoption, and descendents of an illegitimate birth? 

With DNA testing, we might also discover previously unknown variants.  This could be very helpful for research, especially when records can't be found, and later it is discovered that the records are actually there, but recorded with a previously unknown variant.

Surname dictionaries have been published and identify the origin for many surnames.  The authors of these books used the tools available at the time.  Never before have these experts or authors had the powerful tool of DNA testing available.   There are many discoveries to be made with DNA testing.  Most likely, DNA testing will prove that some long held beliefs about the origins of various surnames are incorrect.

By participating in a Y DNA Project, or sponsoring a participant if you are female, you are making a significant contribution to the knowledge about your surname.  Even when your tree ends, you can still discover information about your origin.

For more information, see the following articles:

Interpreting Results: Why is the Surname relevant?

Understanding Your Results: Matching Other Surnames

If you have fellow genealogists, friends, family members, or participants in a Surname Project who you think would enjoy receiving our monthly newsletter, send them the link below to register for a free subscription:

GeoGene Newsletter  April 2005
Editor: Zeena Eate  

Featured articles in this issue:
Queen Victoria's DNA 
Oldest human fossils identified 
Geography links with genetics 
Crick archive goes online
Hot topics in genealogy

GENEALOGY-DNA-L Archives:  mtDNA of the Basques 

A graph of the distribution of mtDNA sequence data showed that the Basques form one of the 'poles' on the major axis with Jordanians forming the other. Populations from regions fringing the Atlantic are the closest to the Basques, eg. Norway, Sweden, Ireland, France, Scotland, Wales and Galicia (the last two occupy almost identical positions on the graph).

However, while the Atlantic fringe regions have similar mtDNA makeup to that of the Basques, the Basques mtDNA mix is somewhat distinctive, probably due to their long isolation.

The study also found a high degree of sharing of localised haplotypes of mtDNA between Ireland, Scotland, SE England, Brittany and the Pyrenees area of Spain.

There is much further analysis of DNA patterns within Europe that I will not try to summarise here, but I recommend the paper to anyone interested in this subject.

Russell Stephen Smith
Bunbury, Western Australia

Hispanic genealogy site (En Espanol) -

An index of Spanish names with their coat of arms and a brief description (En Espanol) -
Sent by Paul "Skip" Newfield III

Social Security Death Index (SSDI)
RootsWeb Review, 6 April 2005, Vol. 8, No. 14  
Sent Janete Vargas

1a. Editor's Desk: SSDI Updated Through February 2005

RootsWeb now offers the most recent version of the Social Security Death Index (SSDI), which includes records through February 2005, and is happy to announce that thanks to this database is available and will be updated on a monthly schedule.

This database contains several important bits of information on the more 74,734,651 persons whose deaths are on file with the U.S.'s Social Security Administration, including: social security number, date of issuance, state of issuance, date of birth, date of death, and last residence of record.

The SSDI includes names of virtually all individuals deceased after 1962, the first full year records were computerized -- if the deaths were reported to the SSA. (A limited number of records from as far back as 1937 are also included.) The database also includes the names of legal aliens with social security numbers and some 400,000 railroad retirees, who may be entitled to collect Railroad Retirement Board pensions and benefits.

However, there are many reasons why a person might not be in the SSDI:

-- SSA might not have been notified of the person's death.
-- Person might have died before the SSA began putting its records
    on the computer in 1962.
-- Individual might not have had a Social Security number.
-- Information might have been reported incorrectly.
-- Person might have changed his or her name.
-- Person might have used a different spelling of his or
    her name.
-- Database has an estimated three per cent error rate.

The most frequent reason researchers are unable to find someone in the SSDI is including too much information in the search options. If you are searching for Joseph L. Benefield (as an example), he might be recorded exactly that way, or as J. L. Benefield or as Joe Benefield or Joe Lawrence Benefield. His surname (family name) might be spelled differently than you expect. His birth and death dates may differ from the information you have. You might believe he resided in Kansas when he obtained his Social Security number, and perhaps he did, but the SSA office where it was issued was in Oklahoma at the time.

If you are unsuccessful in finding someone, try searching with less information  -- and be flexible and creative.

Did you know that Social Security numbers (SSN) are not reused after a person dies? Even though the SSA has issued more than 415 million SSNs so far, and it assigns about 5.5 million new numbers a year, the current numbering system will provide it with enough new numbers for several
generations into the future with no changes in the numbering system.

See "Exploring the SSDI":

 Ask The Computer Lady
Written by Elizabeth Boston,
Subject  . . .Epson Scanner does slides/negatives

Sent by Lorraine Hernandez


Dear Computer Lady,

My family has probably 1000 picture slides of our childhood. The projector and the bulb is practically obsolete......   how can we got about transferring slides onto cd.... is it possible without
having to float a loan. Thank you for your time, Beth

Dear Beth,

Getting your old slides and photos onto CDs is possible as long as you have the right equipment. You will need a scanner that can handle slides (some will even scan negatives) and a CD burner.

I have a wonderful scanner that does both slides and negatives, it is an Epson Perfection 2450 Photo scanner. I purchased this scanner several years ago, and it was in the five hundred dollar range then. Now, Epson has a newer scanner, the 2480, on their website that does slides and negatives for just $99.

Once you have scanned your slides and saved them on your computer, you just have to burn them onto CDs to save them and share them with your family.  

Subscription Instructions:  FREE! visit http://www.stretchercom/menu/subscrib4.cfm
or send



Ancient Maya Entrepreneurs Made Salt, Study Finds
Introduction to AOL Research & Learn: National Geographic 


Ancient Maya Entrepreneurs Made Salt, Study Finds
By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Correspondent, Science - Reuters
Sent by John Inclan

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Ancient Mayan entrepreneurs working along the coast of what is now Belize distilled salt from seawater and paddled it to inland cities in canoes, all without government control, researchers reported on Monday. 

They found evidence of 41 salt-works on a single coastal lagoon and the remains of a 1,300-year-old wooden canoe paddle. 

Their study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, shows the extent of trade just before the Mayan civilization in that region mysteriously fell apart. 

"The discovery of the salt-works indicates that there was extensive production and distribution of goods and resources outside the cities in the interior of the Yucatan," they wrote. 

"To me the exciting thing is that, in addition to the paddle ... these salt-works that we have found in the lagoon indicate the importance of non-state-controlled production in pre-industrial societies," said Heather McKillop of the Department of Geography and Anthropology at Louisiana State University, who led the study. 

"I think at some point there was a complex system of production and trade that is only beginning to be figured out, including, probably, overland transport using human porters and also travel up and down river and lagoon systems using canoes," she added in a telephone interview. 

Although Mayan art depicts canoe traders, the discovery of the paddle fragment is the first wooden artifact from the period, McKillop said. 

McKillop and colleagues discovered the salt factories by snorkeling in the clear waters of the Punta Ycacos Lagoon on the coast of Belize. They date to between 600 and 900 AD. 

"They were abandoned about AD 900, at the same time as the inland cities were abandoned," she said. Ceramic pots at the sites suggest Maya workers boiled seawater to collect the salt. 

The trade clearly went both ways. In the salt-producing areas, McKillop's team also found artifacts that would have been made inland. 

"There are little figurine whistles and also some pottery with stamped decorations around the shoulders of jars and outsides of vessels," she said. 

Before her team's search, four other salt workshops had been found in the lagoon but the extent and details of the regional salt-making operations were unclear.

Introduction to AOL Research & Learn: National Geographic - 
Gene Project to Trace Humanity's Migration
Sent by Johanna De Soto

New DNA studies suggest that all humans descended from a single African ancestor who lived some 60,000 years ago. To uncover the paths that lead from him to every living human, the National Geographic Society launched the Genographic Project at its Washington, D.C., headquarters April 13.

The project is a five-year endeavor undertaken as a partnership between IBM and National Geographic. It will combine population genetics and molecular biology to trace the migration of humans from the time we first left Africa, 50,000 to 60,000 years ago, to the places where we live today.

Ten research centers around the world will receive funding from the Waitt Family Foundation to collect and analyze blood samples from indigenous populations (such as aboriginal groups), many in remote areas. The Genographic Project hopes to collect more than a hundred thousand DNA samples to create the largest gene bank in the world. Members of the public are also being invited to participate.

"Our DNA tells a fascinating story of the human journey: how we are all related and how our ancestors got to where we are today," said American geneticist and anthropologist Spencer Wells, the project leader. "This project will show us some of the routes early humans followed to populate the globe and paint a picture of the genetic tapestry that connects us all."




THE CODE OF THE WEST  by Pamela Blaine
Sent by
      As I child, I loved Saturday morning!
      This was the day that I looked forward to all week.  I would hurry through my morning chores, finish my bowl of Tony the Tiger cereal -- It's GRREEEAT! -- and turn on our family's newly acquired television set.
      Yes, it was Saturday morning in the late 1950s and life was good!
      There were a lot of good programs such as Annie Oakley, Wild Bill Hickok, Zorro, Hopalong Cassidy, Lassie, Rin-Tin-Tin, Sky King, The Texas Rangers, Gene Autry, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, just to name a few.
      Television was in black and white back then and sometimes it didn't come in very clear.  In fact, I thought that it snowed in the desert until we got a better antenna with a rotary dial.  I can still 
hear the steady "click-click" it made as it turned the antenna to the preferred direction.
      The remote control had not made an appearance in the 50s, so we had to actually get up out of our chairs and trek over to the television and change the channel manually.
      As I turned the dial, searching for a Saturday morning favorite, it didn't take long to check out all three of the channels that were available.  I wondered why they had all of those other numbers on the dial.
      I would immediately stop at the channel where I heard the familiar sound of the William Tell Overture as the announcer would say:

        A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust
        and a hearty hi-yo Silver.  The Lone Ranger!  With his
        faithful Indian companion Tonto, the daring and
        resourceful masked rider of the plains led the fight for
        law and order in the early west.  Return with us now to
        those thrilling days of yesteryear...
                       The Lone Ranger rides again!

       After the programs were over it was time to pretend.  Sometimes I would braid my hair like Annie Oakley, saddle my horse, and ride off down the trail.  At other times I would pretend to be Dale Evans, Queen of the West.
      My brother and I, along with the neighborhood kids, would imitate our heroes and call each other Kemo Sabe -- meaning trusted scout -- and make silver bullets out of aluminum foil.
      The programs on Saturday morning were mostly westerns and stories of rescue and heroism.
      Who can forget the Songbird flying through the sky as we heard, "Out of the clear blue of the western sky comes Sky King!"
      Whether it was Sky King, Lassie, or The Lone Ranger, the programs were wholesome and filled with a plot and a purpose. They taught us that crime doesn't pay.  The stories showed us through the heroic cowboys and lawmen that it was best to make good choices by having good morals and values.
       Our heroes gave us "The Code of the West" that all good cowboys and cowgirls followed:


    1.  The highest badge of honor a person can wear is honesty.  Be mindful at all times.
    2.  Your parents are the best friends you have.  Listen to them and obey their instructions.
    3.  If you want to be respected, you must respect others. Show good manners in every way.
    4.  Only through hard work and study can you succeed.  Don't be lazy.
    5.  Your good deeds always come to light.  So don't boast or be a show off.
    6.  If you waste time or money today, you will regret it tomorrow.  Practice thrift in all ways.
    7.  Many animals are good and loyal companions.  Be friendly and kind to them.
    8.  A strong, healthy body is a precious gift.  Be neat and clean.
    9.  Our country's laws are made for your protection. Observe them carefully.
  10.  Children in many foreign lands are less fortunate than you. Be glad and proud you are an


    1.  A cowboy never takes unfair advantage.
    2.  A cowboy never betrays a trust.
    3.  A cowboy always tells the truth.
    4.  A cowboy is kind to small children, to old folks,  and to animals.
    5.  A cowboy is free from racial and religious prejudice.
    6.  A cowboy is helpful and when anyone's in trouble he lends a hand.
    7.  A cowboy is a good worker.
    8.  A cowboy is clean about his person and in thought,  word, and deed.
    9.  A cowboy respects womanhood, his parents, and the laws of his country.
  10.  A cowboy is a patriot.


      I believe that to have a friend, you must be one.
      That everyone is created equal and that everyone has within himself the power to make this a better world.
      That God put the firewood there, but that every man must gather and light it himself.
      In being prepared physically, mentally, and morally to fight when necessary for that which is right.
      That a man should make the most of what equipment he has.  That "this government, of the people, by the people, and for the people," shall live always.
      That men should live by the rule of what is best for the greatest number.
      That sooner or later... somewhere... somehow... we must settle with the world and make payment for what we have taken.  That all things change, but the truth, and the truth alone lives on forever.
      I believe in my Creator, my country, my fellow man.



    1.  Be neat and clean.
    2.  Be courteous and polite.
    3.  Always obey your parents.
    4.  Protect the weak and help them.
    5.  Be brave but never take chances.
    6.  Study hard and learn all you can.
    7.  Be kind to animals and care for them.
    8.  Eat all your food and never waste any.
    9.  Love God and go to Sunday School regularly.
  10.  Always respect our flag and our country.

      Another aspect of many of the western programs was the singing cowboy.  A campfire wasn't complete without a cowboy singing a song as he strummed his guitar.  Gene Autry, Roy Rogers, and The Sons of  The Pioneers were just a few of the great cowboy singers.
      Throughout the years, the morals and values of our childhood heroes carried us through.  The children of the 50s are now grandparents who still believe in "The Code of the West" and it has 
served them well through troubles, illnesses, and wars.
      Roy Rogers' cowboy prayer still echoes in our hearts:

            Lord, I reckon I'm not much just by myself.
            I fail to do a lot of things I ought to do.
            But Lord, when trails are steep and passes high,
            Help me ride it straight the whole way through.
            And when in the falling dusk I get that final call,

            I do not care how many flowers they send,
            Above all else, the happiest trail would be for
            YOU to say to me, "Let's ride, My friend!"






                12/30/2009 04:49 PM