The Baca / Douglas Genealogy and Family History Blog

04 July 2008

Estanislao V. Chavez and Family

Sometimes people ask me why I am into genealogy. It seems like such a lonely hobby in which you spend countless hours compiling names and dates from crumbling documents and microfilm. Well, that's not true. There are many interesting ancestrial stories out there.

Another complaint about genealogy is that genealogist are only interested in their own families. Well, that not true. Although I do spend a considerable amount of time researching my own family, I also love to read about other families, too. So when Jeannette from Hawaii sent me stories about her late husband's family, I was intrigued. I asked her if I could publish it on my blog in order to share it with my readers. She agreed.

Below is from an e-mail that she sent me yesterday, in response to a NMGS eNewsletter that I sent out:

My husband’s maternal grand father, Estanislao Vito Chavez was born in Socorro in 1862, and there are many Baca’s in his line as well. Miguel Laris, my spouse, passed away last July, but I am still into Genealogy. Too bad I live so far away, as I’m always interested in information to pass down to our family about Socorro and the surrounding area. We did visit there some years back and spent a lot of time researching his line. The following is written up on Grandpa Chavez as he was fairly prominent, during his time. My husband’s mother was from his 2nd marriage to Ellen Olsen, whose sister Clara was Private Secretary to 9 New Mexico Governors. Miguel’s mother was Henrietta Chavez, stage name Conchita. She met Miguel’s father in Los Angeles, where both were Opera Singers during the 1920’s.

Aloha from Jeanette in Hawaii

Source of information from:

ILLUSTRATED HISTORY of NEW MEXICO Containing a History of this important section of the great Southwest, from the earliest period of its discovery to the present time, (1895) together with glimpses of its auspicious future:

Hon. Estanislao V. Chavez, of Socorro, figures prominently as a member of the bar of New Mexico. Mr. Chavez dates his birth in the city where he now resides, June 15, 1862. He is a representative of the distinguished family of Chavez, of New Mexico. His father, Jesus M. Chavez, F. Franco Chavez and Felipe Chavez, are cousins and are among the most prominent members of the family.

Estanislao V. Chavez received his education at St. Michael's College in Santa Fe, read law in the office of Judge Ira E. Leonard, and May 4, 1891, was admitted to the bar. Immediately after his admission to the bar he entered upon the practice of his profession in his native city, where he rapidly gained a lucrative practice, and now has the reputation of being one of the most successful and talented young lawyers in the Territory.

In 1883 Mr. Chavez was married to Miss Frances V. Martin, a native of Marshall, Texas, and a daughter of Captain Robert Martin of that State. They have two Children, Estanislao Robert and Cosette, both born in Socorro, they being the third generation born in this city.

Mr. Chavez being an ardent Democrat and a talented and popular young man, it was natural that his party should choose him to fill places of honor and trust. When only twenty four years of age, he was honored with a seat in the Territorial Legislature, where he served with credit alike to himself and to his party. At that time he was the youngest member of the House. Later, when brought out as a candidate for Probate Clerk of Socorro County, and against a very strong opponent, he was elected by the largest majority ever received by any candidate in the county, and this office he filled for six years. In 1892 he was elected Mayor of Socorro, and he was also elected a delegate to the last Democratic national convention and aided in the nomination of Grover Cleveland for President of the United States, an act for which he has since had deep regret. His friends earnestly urged him to accept the position of Secretary of the Territory of New Mexico. This honor, however, he declined in order to give his whole time and attention to his rapidly increasing law practice. Mr. Chavez is a man of fine personal appearance, is in every respect a true gentleman, and it is fair to predict that still greater honors await him in the future.

From Socorro County Historical Society, Vol. III, Publications in History:

Estanislao V. Chavez

Estanislao Chavez was born June 16, 1862 in Socorro. He was educated at St. Michael's College in Santa Fe. On May 4, 1891, he was admitted to the bar and opened a practice in Socorro. In 1882, Mr. Chavez married Miss Frances v. Martin. They had two children.

Politically, Mr. Chavez has held a seat in the Territorial Legislature, was Probate Clerk of Socorro County, and in 1892 was elected Mayor of Socorro.

From The Mountains to the Sea: page 405

Estanislao V. CHAVEZ, a prominent Los Angeles lawyer, has spent all his life in the Southwest, and before coming to California was prominent in the law, public affairs and the Democratic Party in New Mexico. He is descended from a very prominent family of New Mexico, and those especially prominent were: Francisco Javier Chavez, governor of the province of New Mexico in the years 1822-23, and the first governor under the Mexican government: Antonio Jose Chavez, who was governor in 1828-31: Mariano Chavez, who was acting governor in 1835, and Jose Chavez, who was acting governor in 1845.

Estanislao V. Chavez was born in Socorro County, New Mexico June 15, 1862, a son of Jesus Maria and Luz Torres Chavez. He attended public schools, St. Michael's College, conducted by the Christian Brothers in Santee Fe, and at the age of twenty-one became chief deputy under his father, who was county clerk, clerk of the Probate Court, county commissioner and ex-officio county assessor At the age of twenty-four, Mr. Chavez was elected county clerk to succeed his father. In1892 he was elected a member of the Territorial Legislature of New Mexico, serving two years. He was also territorial delegate from New Mexico to the Democratic National Convention at Chicago when Cleveland was nominated. Mr. Chavez read law in the office of Judge Ira E. Leonard at Socorro, and in 1902 was admitted to the bar. He practiced one year at Socorro and then at Albuquerque, where he was attorney for the Santa Fe Railroad until 1907. In that year he came to Los Angeles, and is still one of the attorneys of the Santa Fe System. In 1912 he was admitted to practice in the United States Supreme Court at Washington, D.C.

Mr. Chavez again represented New Mexico as territorial delegate to the Democratic National Convention at St. Louis in 1904. He is a member of the City Club, Knights of Columbus and a Catholic. At Socorro, New Mexico, In October, 1883, he married Fanny V. Martin. Mrs. Chavez passed away in January, 1897. They had three interesting and talented children: Estanislao R., who was recently discharged from the army: Cosette special talents are as a scenic painter; Felipe D, is now serving as official clerk of the Judge Advocate Court of the United States Forces at Vladivostok, Russia. Mr. Chavez was again married in September, 1897 to Miss Ellen M. Olsen of Wisconsin. The one daughter of this union is Henrietta Conchita, who is a student of vocal music under the widely known Professor De Lara.

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