The Baca / Douglas Genealogy and Family History Blog

26 March 2009

Elfego Baca: Socorro County Sheriff

A friend of mine once told me that he could find no proof that Elfego Baca was a Socorro County Sheriff. This is important because some of Elfego Baca's more colorful stories have to do with him holding this office. I believed my friend, since I think that much of what Elfego Baca said was self promotion, and untrue or at least exagerated.

Well, we were wrong. The 1920 Albuquerque City Directory has a list of state officials. Elfego Baca is listed as the Socorro County Sheriff. (1)

That's why you never believe anyone until you confirm the information yourself.

1. 1920 Albuquerque City Directory (Hudspeth Directory Co., 1920) p. 91.

Searching for Estevan Zimmerly in Albuquerque, 1920

Yesterday, I posted a census record that showed Estevan Zimmerly and his family in Albuquerque in 1920. (Link) Today, I went to the Albuquerque Special Collections Library to see if I could confirm this information.

I checked the Albuquerque City Directories for Estevan Zimmerly and Vicente Pino (his housemate). I thought that the census record had them living at 901 1/2 South Second St. Well, the 1920 directory showed V C Pino as living at 901 1/2 South Third St. (1) Estevan Zimmerly was not in the directory. He was not listed in the 1919 directory, either.

I mentioned that in the census record, Vicente Pino is listed as a merchant. The directory confirmed that there was a business at 901 S. Third St.: City Grocery Co. (2) A cross reference in the same directory shows Vicente Pino as the property owner of City Meat Market & Grocery at 705 Granite. Additionally, both Vicente C. Pino and Manuel A Pino are associated with City Grocery Co. Manuel A. Pino was living at 620 N. 6th St. at the time. (3)

I could not find a 1921 directory in the library. The 1922 directory no longer showed Vicente Pino living at the Third St. location, nor was there a listing for the grocery.

It would be interesting to find out more information about these Pino men. They are probably related, maybe brothers. In my family tree database, I have a listing of a Vicente Pino from the Socorro area, but he appears to have died before 1911. The Socorro Vicente Pino also had a father and son by the name of Manuel Pino. Are the Albuquerque people related to these Socorro people? Did Estevan Zimmerly know them before moving up to Albuquerque? It would be interesting to find out.

1. 1920 Albuquerque City Directory (Hudspeth Directory Co., 1920) p. 174.

2. Ibid, p. 174.

3. Ibid, p. 439.

25 March 2009

The Obituary of Pedro Antonio Baca

The following relates to my March 21st presentation on Maria Guadalupe Torres. Pedro Antonio Baca was the husband of Guadalupe. Although he has the same surname as I do, he is not directly related to me, although he is probably a distant cousin.

I was originally going to publish this in a genealogical journal, but I decided to post it here instead. The reason for the change is because I want to see if I can find more information about this man and his family. The suggestion for this type of post comes from Genea-Bloggers' "Weekly Genealogy Blogging Prompt # 12”, which can be found on Facebook

If you are related to Pedro Antonio Baca, or have any information about his family that you wish to share with me, please send me an e-mail at

Thank you.

The Obituary of Pedro Antonio Baca

Transcribed by Robert J. C. Baca

The following transcription is of an obituary that I found in the 12 November 1887 Socorro Bullion newspaper. The obituary was published in English. Many of the facts mentioned in article are accurate, although a burial record for Pedro Antonio Baca indicates that he died on 7 November 1887 rather than on the 5th as mentioned in the obituary.[1]

Source: Pedro Antonio obituary, Socorro Bullion, Socorro, New Mexico, 12 November 1887, page 3, column 3, microfilm.


Editor Socorro Bullion:

Be kind enough to allow me the use of your columns to make a brief sketch of the life of one of our most prominent citizens, lately departed from amongst us.

Don Pedro Antonio Baca, who died on the 5th instant, was born at the old town of Belen, in the county of Valencia, on the 21st day of May, 1804, his parents being Don Juan Dionisio Baca and Doña Maria Rita Pino, both descendants of the most ancient and well known families in this Territory. From Belen he came with his parents to Socorro, when the town was re-settled in 1816. Here he married his surviving wife, Doña Guadalupe Torres, in 1834, their union being blessed with eight children, five girls and three boys, of the former but one is living, while two of the later survive, on Don Juan Jose and the other Don Severo A. Baca, both well-known business men in this community.

Soon after the organization of the Territory under the American government Mr. Baca entered the ranks of Democracy, which political faith he followed as one of its stanch adherents throughout his life without fear and scrupulously favoring none in detriment to his principles. He was elected for the first time probate judge of Socorro, when this county embraced the whole of Valencia, Lincoln and Doña Ana counties, in 1851. At other different times he was elected to fill the same position, serving in all four terms, until in 1868 his friends desiring to elected a certain ticket, compelled him, against his will to accept the nomination for probate clerk, to which office he was elected by the largest majority ever before or since polled by any candidate for the office of this county.

Mr. Baca followed the mercantile business all his life, amassing a considerable fortune, and being distinguished in all his dealings for his honesty and fairness toward everyone, rich or poor. Of late years, on account of old age, he could not attend to business, but was content to live on hard won savings of his past.

With Mr. Baca disappears the last remaining link that bound us to the early history of our town, and the last of the original grantees of the much abused Socorro grant. He was indeed one of the most prominent landmarks of this county, historically as well as politically speaking. By his native neighbors and acquaintances he was looked up on as a common counselor and adviser, being regarded, as by right, their arbitrator in family and other disputes, as his opinions and decisions were always full of wisdom, consciencious (sic) and upright. He was indeed like unto a kind father to his people, who one and all this day mourn his loss.

Mr. Baca was more than anything else, a thorough Christian gentlemen, in every sense of the term, being always foremost as a devout and pious Catholic in every religious ceremony. He was zealously assisted by Rev. Father Lestra up to his last moments and died a firm believer in the teaching of his Church and in the future reward of heavenly bliss, promised by our Lord to every true Catholic. He breathed his last surrounded by his numerous descendants and a host of sorrowing friends and acquaintances, beloved of all, hated of none and at peace with the whole world as might truthfully be said. The deceased became a member of the Catholic Society known as the Knights of St. Michael, about one year after its organization, the society took charge of the funeral ceremonies, which were very impressive and well attended by many people from the city, as well as from neighboring towns. The band of the society and all its members , preceded by their standard, and in full regalia, took a prominent part of the procession, from the residence of the deceased to the Catholic Church, wherein the remains were deposited with all the usual splendor of the Catholic Church on such occasions there to await the last Judgement day where the first blast of Gabriel’s trumpet, we shall all come forth to answer for our good or bad deeds to the Supreme Judge of all. R.I.P.

A sorrowing friend

[1] Socorro, New Mexico burials; Archives of the Archdiocese of New Mexico; microfilm # 1930433.

Estevan Zimmerly in Albuquerque - 1920

I was searching the HeritageQuest Online census database when I came across an interesting fact: My great-grandfather Estevan Zimmerly and his family were living in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1920!

It appears that they lived on 901 1/2 South Second St., or South Lucent St., maybe - I have difficulting reading it. Their housemates were a Vicente C. Pino and his family.

Estevan's family were: Estevan, head, male, white, 30 yrs old, married; Adelfina, wife, female, white, 27 years old, married; Pablita (my grandmother), daughter, female, white, 9 years old, single; Guadalupe, daughter, female, white, 7 years old, single; "Gertruditas" (Gertudes), daughter, female, white, 5 years old, single; and Estevan, son, male, white, 3 9/12 years old, single. Estevan is listed as a laborer at a saw mill, while his housemate Vicente Pino is a merchant. I think that the house probably belonged to Vicente Pino since he was a merchant and because Estevan didn't live in Albuquerue for very long. Maybe the store that the Pinos owned was in the house.

I'll have to check this information against the Albuquerque city directory. I'll probably go to the library tomorrow to check it out.


Estevan Zimmerly household, 1920 U.S. Census, Bernalillo County, New Mexico, population schedule, city of Albuquerque, enumeration district 20, supervisor's district 211, sheet 7B, dwelling 230, family 271, HeritageQuest Online , retrieved 25 March 2009.

24 March 2009

Photos of Estevan Zimmerly

My aunt Judy sent me these photos of my great-grandfather Estevan (Steve) Zimmerly.

Aunt Judy believes that the first photo was taken at my great-grandparent's house on Mt.Carmel. I know this house - I've been in their many times. My great-grandmother Delfina lived there until she died in 1978.

The photo says "Steve Zimmerly, Ida's father". That is in reference to my great-aunt Ida (Zimmerly) Manning, my grandmother's sister. Aunt Judy borrowed this photo from her cousin Elaine, Ida's daughter.

The second photo may have been taken outside that same house. The woman standing behind my great-grandfather is most likely my grandmother, his daughter, Pablita (Zimmerly) Baca. It sure looks like her. Aunt Judy believes that the child on Estevan's lap is my uncle Jimmy, but we are not sure. I'm not sure who the girl to his right is.

23 March 2009

Charles E. Zimmerly found in 1930 Magdelena Census

1930 U.S. Census record showing Charles E. Zimmerly, son of Ricardo and Eloisa (Stackpole) Zimmerly

I was searching, page by page, the 1930 Magdelena, New Mexico Census records when I came across a record showing a Charles E. Zimmerly, lodger in the household of Lulu Gooding (?). I believe this is a son of Ricardo and Eloisa (Stackpole) Zimmerly, since the lodger is 24 years old in the 1930 census record. Charles Zimmerly was born 7 November 1905.(1) Later, he married Hilda Bateman(2), and he died on 17 November 1961(3).

Charles E. Zimmerly is shown as a telegrapher for Western Union. Other lodgers in the record include Ralph Clark, and Robert V. Boyle. (4)


1. Anonymous, "Zimmerly Family in Socorro for 100 Years," Defensor Chieftan, Socorro New Mexico, November 17, 1996.

2. Interview: Charles Arthur Zimmerly (Charles Zimmerly's nephew)

3. Anonymous, "Zimmerly Family in Socorro for 100 Years," Defensor Chieftan, Socorro New Mexico, November 17, 1996.

4. Lulu Gooding household, 1930 U.S. Census, Socorro County, New Mexico, population schedule, village of Magdelena, enumeration district 27-9, supervisor's district 4, sheet 8B, dwelling 198, family 201; HeritageQuest Online <>, retrieved 23 March 2009. Although the household is shown at the end of the page, it does not continue on to the next page.

22 March 2009

Some notes on my March 21st NMGS presentation

Meeting a Torres relative

Yesterday, I did a presentation for the New Mexico Genealogical Society titled "Maria Guadalupe Torres: One Woman's Life in 19th Century Socorro, New Mexico". The program was presented at the El Camino Real International Heritage Center, 35 miles south of Socorro, New Mexico. There were about 35 - 40 people who attended, many from Albuquerque. Interestingly enough, only one couple was there from Socorro.

One of the Socorro residents, Barbara, attended my presentation on the off-hand chance that she was related to my subject. Maria Guadalupe Torres sounded familiar to her. She was right. She is related to the subject of my presentation, and, of course, related to me. When we discussed our relationship, it ended up that she is my 1st cousin, twice removed. She is my grandmother's cousin. Her father Jose Epitacio Torres, Jr. was my great-grandmother Delfina (Torres) Zimmerly's brother.

When I showed her a list of Maria Guadalupe Torres' descendants, she noticed that her father was not listed. He should have been listed as a son of Maria Guadalupe's granddaughter, Maria Guadalupe (Padilla) Torres. Barbara mentioned that he was shown in a photo taken on my great-grandmother Delfina's wedding day. In that photo, Delfina's family are shown standing in front of her father's home. In photo her mother is holding a baby. The baby is identified as "Jose (Joe) Torres". Since I did not have him in my database, I decided to do a little more research. (Photo Link.)

It turns out that Jose Epitacio Torres, Jr. was most probably not in that photo. The was taken on my great-grandparent's wedding day, 22 April 1908. I went back to look at the 1920 United States Census record of my 2nd great-grandfather Jose Epitacio Torres' family. I already posted this record online (link). Joe E. Torres, Jr. is listed as being 7 years old in the record. He is not listed in the 1910 Census (link). This means that he was born circa 1913. He was born after the photo was taken. I'm not quite sure who is the baby in the photo. According to my information, Jose, Jr.'s next older sibling is another Maria Guadalupe Torres. She was born on 4 February 1906, which would made her nearly two years old when the photo was taken - definately not a baby.

One other thing - it appears that Jose Epitacio, Sr., and Maria Guadalupe (Padilla) Torres had another child - Felipe. He is listed in both the 1910 and 1920 censuses. It appears that he was born circa 1901.

I have updated my genealogy database to include both Jose, Jr. and Felipe Torres.

Clearing up the first name and surname confusion

* Maria Guadalupe Torres

In reading this post, you may have noticed that there are three women named Maria Guadalupe Torres. In fact, Barbara thought I was doing a presentation on her grandmother. However, what the speech was about is actually her 2nd great-grandmother.

1.) Maria Guadalupe Torres was born on 17 February 1812 in Los Garcias, a plaza of Belen, New Mexico. Her parents were Santiago Torres and Maria Barbara Ortiz. Guadalupe's husband was Francisco Antonio Garcia on 23 February 1825 in Socorro, New Mexico. He was the son of Francisco Xavier Garcia Jurado and Maria Josefa Sanchez. One of their children was Juana Maria Garcia, one of my third great-grandmothers. After her first husband's death, Maria Guadalupe Torres married her second husband Pedro Antonio Baca, the son of Juan Dionosio Baca and Maria Rita Pino. Guadalupe and Pedro were married on 24 October 1834 in Socorro, New Mexico. In all, Guadalupe had 11 children from her two husbands.

2.) Maria Guadalupe Padilla was born in April 1869. She was the daughter of the aforementioned Juana Maria Garcia and her husband Felipe Padilla. Maria Guadalupe Padilla married Jose Epitacio Torres on 25 April 1889 in Socorro, New Mexico. Jose Epitacio Torres was the son of Jose Valentin Torres and Maria Josefa Ortiz. In marrying Jose Epitacio Torres, Maria Guadalupe Padilla became Maria Guadalupe Torres.

3.) Maria Guadalupe Torres was born on 4 February 1906, the daughter of the aforementioned Jose Epitacio Torres and Maria Gudalupe Padilla.

* Two Separate Torres Families

One of the problems that I've come across in my research is that there are many surnames that show up again and again in my family. One of those surnames is Torres. I would like to clarify the confusion on two of those Torres families.

1.) As I mentioned above, Maria Guadalupe Torres (# 1 ) was the daughter of Santiago Torres and Maria Barbara Ortiz. Santiago was the son of Juaquin Torres and Isabel Chaves, who were born circa 1740 and 1754, respectively. I do not know who Juaquin's parents were. Some researchers have assigned certain people as his parents, but I have not found enough documention to make a conclusion. However, he is probably related to the Torres families who founded Belen, since he himself was a resident of Belen and commissioner of one of Belen's plazas.

2.) Jose Epitacio Torres (husband of Maria Guadalupe Padilla , # 3 above) is a descendant of Cristobal Torres. Cristobal was Epitacio's 4th great-grandfather. The lineage is shown below:

Direct Descendants of Cristobal Torres
1 Cristobal Torres b: Bet. 1665 - 1666 in New Mexico
.. +Angela de Leyva
.. 2 Diego de Torres b: Abt. 1692 d: Bef. 1758
...... +Maria Martin Serrano de Salazar m: Abt. 1712 d: Aft. September 1741
....... 3 Nicolas Torres b: 06 December 1731 in San Juan, New Mexico
........... +Francisca Padilla b: 08 December 1742 in Isleta, NM m: 07 February 1762 in Isleta, NM
............ 4 Agustin Torres b: Bet. 1776 - 1777 in Isleta, NM
................ +Maria Felipa Josefa Bonifacia Baca b: 01 May 1787 in Belen, NM m: Aft. 05 August 1806 d: 20 April 1838 in Socorro, NM
................. 5 Simon Torres b: Abt. 1815
..................... +Maria Monica Abeyta b: 16 May 1817 in Socorro, NM m: 27 March 1835 in Socorro, NM
...................... 6 Jose Valentin Torres b: 23 February 1836 in La Joya, NM
.......................... +Maria Josefa Ortiz b: 30 March 1837 in Santa Fe, NM
........................... 7 Jose Epitacio Torres b: 23 May 1858

Diego de Torres and his son Nicolas were founders of Belen. Nicolas' son Agustin was one of the first re-settlers of Socorro.

Middle Names

One of the questions that I got at the presentation on Saturday is "why do you use everyone's middle names when talking about them?" My answer, because every woman in New Mexico was a Maria, and every man was a Juan or Jose. They usually went by their middle names instead. Therefore, my grandmother Maria Pabilita (Zimmerly) Baca went by Pablita, not Maria.


Here are a few links that refer to the families mentioned above:

* Crespin Torres and His Aunt Guadalupe - this discusses how Maria Guadalupe Torres raised my 2nd great-grandfather Crespin Torres. That's another story that I discussed in my presentation.

* Researching Another Baca Family for This Month's Presentation - this discusses Maria Guadalupe Torres' family with her husband Pedro Antonio Baca

* Valentino and Jose Epitacio Torres Household Census Records

* Wedding of Estevan Zimmerly and Delfina Torres

* Jose Epitacio Torres posts on my blog - this list of blog posts was produced by searching for the name "epitacio" on my blog. Enjoy!

08 March 2009

Local Genealogy in Albuquerque Sunday Journal

If you came to this blog after reading the Albuquerque Sunday Journal article "Genealogy buffs root around through public records to find from whence they came" by Eric Billingsley, welcome! I wanted to point out one more link, and that is the link to the New Mexico Genealogical Society Blog at Please go visit it. It's a great blog site for New Mexico genealogy.

Former NMGS President Nancy Anderson, current President Robert Baca (me), and HGRC President Ron Miera are among the people quoted in the article. It's a good article. It even has a few link to important genealogical societies and libraries in the area.

07 March 2009

Researching Another Baca Family for This Month's Presentation

Today, I was at the Albuquerque Special Collections Library researching for the presentation that I will be giving at the El Camino Real International Heritage Center on March 21st. As you may know, it is about a woman by the name of Maria Guadalupe Torres. She was born in 1812, and was among the re-settlers of Socorro, New Mexico in the early 1800s. She married two men, Francisco Antonio Garcia in 1825, and then Pedro Antonio Baca in 1834. She had many children with both men.

I am descended from a child of her and her first husband. They are my fourth great-grandparents.

One of the children that she had with her second husband was a man by the name of Juan Jose Baca. He owned a large home and store that still stands in Socorro. Today, I found a few census records on the man in the library edition. I wish to share them with you.

Juan Jose Baca married Maria Francisca Miera on 14 February 1866 at the San Miguel Mission in Socorro, New Meixco. Logically, I decided to begin looking for this family first in the 1870 census. That is where I found them.

In the 1870 Census of Socorro, New Mexico, they are listed in dwelling 155, as family 140. Juan Jose Baca is listed as a 27 year old general merchant, with real estate worth $1,500, and personal property also at $1,500. His wife, 17 years old, was a housekeeper. Their daughter Guadalupe was 2 years old. A fifteen year old White male by the name of Crux (Baca) also lived in the house, although I'm not sure who he is. Rita (Baca), a 22 year old Indian woman, and Andres Castillo, a 23 year old White male carpenter also lived in the household. They may have been employees of the Bacas and/or borders, although I am not certain of their relationship.

The 1880 Census of Socorro, New Mexico, shows them in dwelling # 164, as family # 194. Juan Jose's parents are shown on the same page above them in dwelling # 163. This time Juan Jose is 37 years old and his wife Francisca is 30. Once again, Juan Jose is listed as a merchant. Their children as listed as: Guadalupe, 11 year old girl; Felipe, 9 year old boy; Dominicia, 7 year old girl; Salomon, 5 year old boy; Marie Isabel, 3 year old girl; and Juan Nepomuceno, 9 month old boy. In addition, Ignacio Sanches, 45, and Francisca Sanches, 30, are listed as servants.

Due to a fire, there are no 1890 census records for New Mexico.

In the 1900 Census of Socorro, New Mexico, the Juan Jose Baca household is found on two pages. First, the are on the bottom of the page, listed as dwelling # 266, family # 266. Each family members birth month and year are listed on the record, but I won't list them here. According to the record, 56 year old Juan Jose Baca, had been married to 48 year old Francisca for 34 years. She had 14 births, with only 11 children living. Their children living in the household included son Juan N., 19; son Emilio M., 17; daughter Angelina P., 15; and son Juan J., 11. The record continued on the next page.

The top of the next page of the 1900 Census shows two more of their children: daughter Pabla, 7; and son Lucas C., 6 years old. No other children or occupants are listed.

By the 1910 census of Socorro, New Mexico, it appears that Juan Jose Baca was dead. They are listed as living in dwelling 236, and are family # 270. "Francisqita Baca", 59, is the head of the household. Many of her adult children live with her - they are all listed as single. The names are hard to read, so what follows are my best guesses: Nepomuseno, 28, son; Amelio, 26, son; Agustina, 23, daughter; Juan J., Jr., 21, son; Paubla, 18 years old, daughter; Lucas, 16, son. In addition, three grandchildren are listed - all with the surname Castillo - Juan, 19; Alfonso(?), 17; and Ignacio(?), 14; all boys. All but Ignacio were born in New Mexico: Ignacio is listed as being born in Texas. There is also one servant in the household, Victorina Martinez, who was born in Texas, and whose parents were both from Texas.
In this record, Francisquita is noted as having 14 births, with only 10 children living. Apparently one died between the 1900 census and the 1910 census.
Francisca is not shown in the 1920 or 1930 censuses.

One last thing: I want to point out that although this family's last name is Baca, they are only distantly related to me - and that is through my fourth great-grandmother Maria Guadalupe Torres. This Baca family may also be distantly related to my mother's Baca family, going back to families who came here from Belen in the early 1810s. If there is any relation to my father's family, it's even more distant going back to the 1700s or even the 1600s.

Zimmerly Family Folder at Albuquerque Special Collections Library

Back in July of last year, I did a presentation on the Zimmerly Family of Socorro, New Mexico. After the presentation, I gave the Albuquerque Special Collections Library copies of certain documents that I used in the presentation. Today I was at the library, and I noticed that the documents were finally put in a folder and placed in the surname filing cabinet on the floor. These records can now be accessed by anyone who chooses to look at them.

The documents in the folder include:

* Civil War pension and military records of Samuel Zimmerly
* Samuel Zimmerly's obituary
* Church marriage records of all 6 children of Samuel and Paubla (Torres) Zimmerly
* A couple of genealogy charts
* A Zimmerly family history that was pubilshed in the El Defensor Chieftain in the 1960s

You can find the family surname filing cabinet to the left of the front door as you walk in. If you have any questions, ask the librarian for help.

Please do not take the documents from the library. They are meant for researchers to use again and again. Instead, you may make copies of them. The copiers make copies at 15 cents per page. There is a change machine next to the copiers.

If you want to know the library's hours of operation, or if need any other information about the library, check out this link.

03 March 2009

Door Prizes at the March 21, 2009 NMGS Meeting

As mentioned before, the New Mexico Genealogical Society will visit the El Camino Real International Heritage Center on March 21, 2009. This museum is 35 miles south of Socorro, New Mexico, on I-25, exit 115. has generously donated two books as door prizes for the meeting: "The Official Guide to" and "The Source". NMGS will give out the prizes during the meeting. All who attend are eligible to win. Thanks to Krysten Baca (no relation) of for her donation.

In addition, NMGS will sell certain books pertaining to the Socorro area at a discount. You must attend in order to receive this discount.

For more information about the meeting, read below:

Saturday, March 21, 2009, 10:30 AM
El Camino Real International Heritage Center
35 miles south of Socorro, New Mexico
On I-25, exit 115

The New Mexico Genealogical Society Visits
The El Camino Real International Heritage Center

35 miles south of Socorro on I-25, exit 115

Featured Speaker
Robert J. C. Baca
President, New Mexico Genealogical Society

“Maria Guadalupe Torres:
One Woman’s Life in 19th Century Socorro, New Mexico”

From resettlement, to the Civil War, up until the brink of statehood: learn about early Socorro history through the life of one New Mexican woman.

Come with us to visit this unique museum. For more information, visit the heritage center’s website at For carpool arrangements, contact Robert Baca at (505) 299-7883.

There is a $5.00 Admission Fee.

For more information about our programs, please visit the New Mexico Genealogical Society website at