The Baca / Douglas Genealogy and Family History Blog

30 April 2011

Looking for a Spanish translator

My Spanish is not very good. Which is a problem because I have a few documents which I wish to translate.

I don't have a whole lot of money, but I would be happy to barter. If you can translate 18th and 19th Century New Mexico Spanish into English, I would trade for research hours. I can research on; New Mexico baptismal, marriage and burial records; Spanish Archives records; New Mexico newspapers; New Mexico death certificates prior to 1940; and other records pertaining to New Mexico. I'd be happy to copy any of these records as a PDF or JPEG and email them to you - or create a family history report for you.

I have two documents that I wish to translate: the first one is from the Spanish Archives of New Mexico, is from 1727 and is 14 pages long. Below is a JPEG of the the first page of the document. Click on the document to see if you can translate it.

The second record is a transfer of land from 1841. It's only two pages long.

I can send you PDF files for both documents.

If you think that you can help me out on this, send me an email at Thanks.

Socorro History Articles

For some years now, Paul Harden has be writting articles in the El Defensor Chieftain about local Socorro history. I've linked some of his articles that have been published on that newspaper's website. However, what is published on the El Defensor Chieftain's website is only text; photos are not included.

Yesterday, I discovered that some of his articles with photos are published on the El Camino Real International Heritage Center website. These include articles on Socorro county churches, ghost towns, La Llorona, Las Posadas y Las Pastorelas, and Socorro family names.

Click on this link to read these articles.

17 April 2011

Saturday, May 14, 2011, at 10:30 am

2nd Floor of Main Library
501 Copper NW,
Albuquerque New Mexico (505-768-5131)

(Click here to view map.)

The New Mexico Genealogical Society,
the State Historian's Office, & the Special Collections Library

David Snow


The well-known feud involving Lamy’s Vicar General, Machebeuf and Padre Gallegos, the pastor at San Felipe de Neri, is revisited by David Snow from the State Historian’s Office. Much of the controversy surrounded Gallegos’ relation-ship with Dona Maria de Jesus Trujillo who elicited a variety of opinions

• An independent woman from Santa Fe’s upper crust society per Janet LeCompte

• Was called a prostitute by Padre Antonio Martinez

• Thought by Angelico Chavez to be Mexican-born and so her behavior should be excused!

• Referred to as "Dona de mala vita" & "that damned female" by Machebeuf

Emotions have always run high concerning this ménage á trois but Snow gives us a long-overdue, unbiased overview of the genealogy and history of Trujillo as well as a factual account of her involvement with Gallegos, Machebeuf, and San Felipe parish.

David Snow is an historical archaeologist living in Albuquerque who has written numerous articles and books regarding New Mexico historical sites & personalities. His works include, New Mexico’s First Colonists & History and Archaeology of San Felipe Church.

• Educated at UNM and Brandeis University

• Former staff archaeologist at Museum of NM Laboratory of Anthropology

• Owned Cross-Cultural Resource Systems – a resource management company

• Former history curator at the Palace of the Governors

This program is free and open to the public.

A summary of this presentation is available here.

14 April 2011

Francisco Xavier Garcia Jurado and the founding of Socorro, NM

I have researched the Socorro Land Grant extensively, and have discovered that many of my ancestors appear to have been among the familes who settled Socorro early in its history - in 1815 and beyond. There are few records that tie specific families to this early settlement, other then a number of baptismal records that are found in the Belen church that name children born in Socorro. Ronaldo Miera, the current president of the Hispanic Genealogical Research Center, identified in his article "Who Were the Settlers of the Socorro Town Land Grant?" who he believed to be the probable first families of Socorro.

There is no existing document that specifically grants lands to the people of Socorro. It was claimed that the actual title of the Socorro Land Grant was destroyed in a fire. A document that purported that the last Mexican Governor of New Mexico, Manuel Armijo, validated the grant was found in court to be a forgery.The only documents that indicate that a grant was requested do not actually confirm that a title was given to the grant.

In 1800, the Governor of New Mexico was ordered by his superiors to look into resettling Senecu, Socorro, Alamillo, and Sevillita. At the time, the governor did not have Socorro resettled because he felt it was impossible to defend.

On November 10, 1817, Xavier Garcia and Anselmo Tafoya, in the name of the Socorro grantees, petitioned the New Mexican governor to verify the Socorro grant. On the same day, Governor Pedro Maria de Allande, ordered the Alcalde of Belen to give them title. He did not.

On August 1, 1818, Xavier Garcia once again petitioned the governor. This time Governor Facundo Melgares sent the Alcalde of Pena Blanca to give the residents title. Tradition states that he did give them a title at that time.

Xavier Garcia, the man who petitioned the governors of New Mexico twice,  is most likely Francisco Xavier Garcia Jurado. He is my fifth great grandfather. His children would begin to show up in Socorro church records.

Francisco Xavier Garcia Jurado was born circa 1756, probably in the Belen area. He married three times.
1.) He married Juana Maria Torres, daughter of Cayentano Torres and Maria Manuela Feliciana Vallejos, in February 1777, in Isleta, NM. They had two children:
       a.) Maria Petra Garcia Jurado, born circa 1778, in Belen.
       b.) Maria Josefa Garcia Jurado, born circa 1780, in Belen
2.) He married Maria Josefa Sanchez on September 28, 1782, in Isleta, NM. They had four children:
      a.) Ana Maria Garcia, born between 1793-1799
      b.) Luis Maria Garcia Jurado, born circa 1799
      c.) Francisco Antonio Garcia, born circa 1800
      d.) Jose Desidero Garcia Jurado
3.) He lastly married Maria Luz Sisneros, no known issue.

Francisco Xavier Garcia Jurado's son Francisco Antonio Garcia was my fourth great-grandfather.

Francisco Antonio Garcia was the first husband of Maria Guadalupe Torres. They had at least four children, including Candelario Garcia. Candelario Garcia, the grandson of Francisco Xavier Garcia Jurado, would become the trustee of the Socorro Land Grant in 1892. But that is another story....

To read more about the grant, read J.J. Bowden's history of the Socorro Grant on the New Mexico Office of State Historian website.

Additional bibliography:

Ronaldo Miera, "Who Were the Settlers of the Socorro Town Land Grant", Herencia, volume 9, issue 3. July 2001.

A complete register report of the first 3 generations of Francisco Xavier Garcia Jurado's family, including citations, can be found on the Adobe Acrobat website at this link.

13 April 2011

Frieda Marie (Douglas) Roberts - 1923-2011

My wife's aunt died recently. Below is her obituary which I copied from the Journal Gazette and Times-Courier online.

INDIANAPOLIS - Frieda Marie Roberts, 88, of Indianapolis, passed away April 3, 2011. She was born February 4, 1923 in Hindsboro, IL to the late Ralph and Ethel Marie (Hanks) Douglas. Frieda was a self employed hair stylist for 60 years. She was a loving mother, grandmother, and sibling. Visitation will be held Friday, April 8, 2011 from 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. at Shirley Brothers Drexel Chapel, 4565 E. 10th St., with funeral services Saturday at 10:00 a.m. Graveside services will be at 2:00 p.m. EST in Hindsboro, IL. Frieda is survived by children, Charlene (Peter) Sherry , Charlotte Grippaldi, Cheryl Roberts, Chester (Beverly) Roberts, and Christopher Roberts; sister, Joyce Seitz; grandchildren, Shawn, Beth, Mark, Shonna, Shadrick, Todd, Heather, and Sean; and 10 great-grandchildren. Frieda was preceded in death by brothers, William, Leon, Jerald, and Robert Douglas; sister, Norma Goble; and former husband, James Leo Roberts. Memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer's Association , Greater Indiana Chapter, 50 E. 91st St., Ste. 100, Indianapolis, IN, 46240.

Published in Journal Gazette & Times-Courier on April 5, 2011