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.
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.