Wednesday, December 28, 2016

New Mexican Patriots or Horse Thieves and Murderers in August of 1847

This post is about the drumhead court martial incident that came to be known as The Las Vegas Affair or the Battle of Las Vegas, which  was a battle associated with the Taos Revolt and fought in July of 1847 in and around Las Vegas, New Mexico. It was initiated by American troops against New Mexican insurgents at the town of Las Vegas during the Mexican-American War.

Some information can be found at the web links below:


and at this one below. At this last location scroll down to page 60 otherwise you have to go through the whole magazine.

Several men were hung as a result, the ones hung in Santa Fe on the 3rd of August of 1847 are listed below. Note: The three (3) Martín brothers executed were my relatives.

Jose Tomas Duran also known as Tomas Duran Y Chavez who was married to Maria Donicia Blea. Tomas was the son of Juan Jose Duran and Juana Francisca Montoya and left one small child as well as one on the way that his wife would give birth to on the 8th of November of 1847.

Note that Maria Donicia Blea and the three Martín brothers noted below were first cousins, all four grandchildren of Juan de Jesus Blea and Maria Matiana (Mariana) Moya.

George Rodriguez, I have not bumped into any information on George.

Manuel Saens, some information on Manuel, but nothing that I can substantiate at this time.

Pedro Esquipula Martín was baptized on the  16th of  December 1817 in San Miguel del Bado, New Mexico by his padrinos Jose Maria Romero and Antonia Corina de los Angles. His parents were Santiago Martín and Paula Blea. Pedro married Maria Getrudis Trujillo on 02 October 1842. Her parents were Juan Antonio Trujillo and Rafaela Ocana.

Pedro Esquipula Martín left a very young widow. He himself was just shy of his 29th birth date when he was tried, found guilty and executed by the Americans.

Jose Policarpio (Carpio) Martín was born and baptized on the same day, 26 November 1818 in San Miguel del Bado, New Mexico. His padrinos were Jose Rafael Baca and Maria Guadalupe Gallego. His parents are identified as Santiago Martín and Paula Blea.

Carpio, as he was known, was either single as I have found no marriage record nor other records that would indicate that he was married. He was just shy of his 28th birth date on the fatefull day of his hanging.

Jose Dionicio Martín was baptized on 11 April of 1845, his padrinos were Jose Duran and a woman named Gertrudes, last name unknown. His parents are identified as Santiago Martín and Paula Blea, He was not married that I know of and was just past his 22nd birth date when he was executed along with his two brothers and Tomas Duran who was married to his first cousin.

Monday, December 5, 2016

The Old New Mexico And Our Ancestors, Caught In A Time Warp

Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Baca. Andres Dorantes de Carranza, Alonzo del Castillo and Esteban de Dorantes started the journey through time in New Mexico in the late 1530's. They were the futuristic Spanish explorers in the vanguard of the new world exploration.

They were soon followed by Fray Marcos de Niza and once again Esteban de Dorantes in 1539. In 1540 Francisco Vasquez de Coronado followed de Niza north into New Mexico and beyond.

Vasquez de Coronado came to New Mexico and points north, east and west into what is now the American states of Texas, Kansas, and Arizona. A whirlwind of activity, exploration, battles and disappointment until he left in 1542.

A few other Spaniards and Spanish expeditions in the following years penetrated into New Mexico for various reasons. But the settlement and the end of the futuristic expeditions was initiated by don Juan de Onate in 1598. New Mexico was entering the time warp without even knowing it. 
In the he Onate era and the following 212 years, through 1810 or so, New Mexico and New Mexicans slipped further and further back in time to the point that they adapted to and adopted much of the Pueblo Indian way of life. Abandoned by Spain in the northern most province of the Spanish Empire with no access to the sea and thus no real access to the outside world. New Mexico was landlocked with no access to new technology or ideas.

In the 1810 to 1846 era the future started arriving in the form of traders and fur trappers trappers first from France then from the new nation of the United States. It was slow at first and exploded into the open with the expulsion of Spain from the New World and especially New Spain which included New Mexico.

In the late 1820's the Mexican Republic was born and its northern most province, New Mexico, opened its borders to the future in the form of traders and trappers from the United States. The future came rushing in.  By ones and twos at first and soon whole trains of Americans. It was not good or bad, but it was the future and the rush was on.

Then 248 years after the entrance into the time warp by don Juan de Onate came August of 1846 and the future in the form of the American Army of the West was here. General  Stephen Watts Kearny took possession of New Mexico in the name of the United States.
The rest, as they say, is history. The struggle of the Onate Colonists and their descendants to adapt, this time to the future. Mind you, there are a few more details and individuals in the interim. But for all intents and purposes, this is it.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

¿Quiten se las como puedan?

¿Quiten se las como puedan? The true meaning lies somewhere between "tough, you figure it out" or "that is the way it is". It means you are alone to figure out your problem. There is no help to be had. It was an old New Mexican saying from antiquity.

People are looking for meaning in their lives, looking for assistance from someone, anyone. Or so it seems. They look to religion, they look to government, they look to religious or governmental institutions to alleviate their search for meaning in their lives. They look anywhere and everywhere and seem to find other like minded individuals to form some kind of a group. Looking for fellowship or some other synonym.

Being alone or having idea(s) that only you seem to have is uncomfortable for most. So we look for others who seem to share our joyous or miserable condition(s).

The quest will never end......

Saturday, November 26, 2016


Adios Fidel

Friday, October 7, 2016

Buying into New Mexican History

You want to buy into New Mexican history, marry a New Mexican or someone with New Mexican roots. That is all it takes. New Mexicans are intricately tied to the history of the area by the blood relationships that developed with living in near isolation from 1598 to 1846. That is 248 years folks, by comparison New Mexico and what was then new Mexico has only been part of the United States since the occupation by the Americans in 1846, that is only 168 years. A small population isolated for that long a period of time become tied together in all sort of ways.

Every hero and every crook of the pre American period is related to us. Related by blood, a bit distant maybe, but all related. Even the "old" Anglos, the trappers, early soldiers and traders as they all married into the New Mexican families. We all know who they are. Their names are salted through New Mexico like pepper on an egg white.
Some folks may not want to be a part our history, some may want to deny it. But in all reality it is there, like it or not. And, this is a big AND.... It is interesting.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Como Se Llama La Cosa Mala?

The names of evil in Mew Mexico, at least as I recall them! 

Como se llama "la cosa mala"?

Satanas? Satan? The name was used regularly.

El Diablo? Very much used, some odd folks were actually called Diablos or Diablitos.

Asmodeo? Ascually a name for the second in command in the nether regions. Was a character in the play of "Los Pastores".

La Cosa Mala? Literally the "bad thing". I don't really know why this was used as much as it was. It used to give me the creeps.

El Angel de la Muerte? The angel of death. Usually had a dark hoodie on. Came around on occasion, the folks he took always were delivered to heaven. He was the delivery man for St. Peter.

El Demonio Colorado? Literally the red demon. Remember the "Demons" in Santa Fe? The Santa Fe High School Demons. The St. Mikes Horsemen and the Santa Fe Demons were traditional rivals. Funny if you think of the whole name "the city of holy faith demons".

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Historical Writing, From Cuneiform And Cave Drawings To Facebook. Why Was It Written As It Was And/Or Is?

Ask yourself the question! Why was it written? What was the objective of the writer? What were the writers goals. Actually these questions can be asked of novels and historical novels and even just plain articles, webposts and Facebook posts. Some publications can be deciphered pretty quick as to motives for having been written, others not so mush. Especially when written as "serious history"!
So why were the publications listed below written?

Commerce on the Prairies? It was meant for publication. Why does that make a difference? Well Josiah Gregg had a reason for writing the book. All you have to do is read it and seriously ask yourself the question.

Sears and Roebuck catalog? Was or is it historical? It is used as a historical publication on occasion. Both Sears and Roebuck had their reasons for publishing the catalog. Sales, profit in their pocket was the reason.

Blood and Thunder? The "role" played by Kit Carson in the conquest of the Navajo. Why was it written? To make Kit Carson and his story heroic and maybe make it into a movie.

Cave drawings? You think the person drawing them was looking for fame or hero hood? I think not.  The individual was just bored and drawing something that came into his mind. Don't let the archaeologists fool you, they do not know any better than you or I why they were drawn.

The Lost Pathfinder? The travels in the southwest by Zebulon Montogomery Pike. A pretty good historical account of Pike's travels in the area. Remember it was written by someone else using his dispatches back to the American government.

Decision Points? Written about George W. Bush about George W. Bush. Take a wild guess as to why it was written.

My life? Written by Bill Clinton about Bill Clinton.... Take a guess about the reasons for this "historical" account.

Rousseau and Revolution? Written by Will and Ariel Durant. Read it and find out.

Death Comes to the Archbishop? Written by Willa Sibert Cather. She wanted to destroy the heroic image New Mexicans had of Padre Jose Antonio Martinez. Sad to say she did a bang up job of it too.

Modern day newspapers? Take a guess why they are written the way they are.

Facebook posts? Puckered lips and all, like some crazy teen?

Well I hope you get the picture. Books in general and historical books in particular are written for a reason. Most times, the truth be told, there is an ulterior motive, sometimes sinister or injurious to someone or something.

The bottom line is look for the motive behind the writing, it is there. You do not need to be a Sherlock Holmes to figure it out. But you do have to look for it.

Friday, September 16, 2016

What Is In A Name?

Maria Preciliana Telesfora de Jesus Maria y Jose Salazar. Quite the moniker if I do say so myself. Preciliana, as she was known was born the 4th of January in 1827 in Tome, New Mexico to Jose Antonio Salazar and Maria de la Luz Jiminez.

Her baptismal or given name even had two (2) Maria's.

Preciliana married a man by the name of Jesus Maria Luna, the son of Jose Enrique Luna and Juana Maria Gabaldon. Preciliana and Jesus had one son, Patrocinio Luna born on the 9th of November on 1843. Jesus Maria Luna died right around the time his son was born as Preciliana was remarried on October 26 1845 to husband number two, a guy named Jose de Jesus Romero with whom she would have at least an additional four (4) children.

So she Married 1) Jesus  Maria Luna and 2) Jose de Jesus Romero.

Notice that she and her first husband shared two names Jesus and Maria. With her second husband she shared another two names Jose and Jesus.

This naming of folks after the "holy family" and especially the "savior" himself really upset Americans as they started the occupation of the New Mexico. The Protestant  religious leaders that came in as the occupation took hold saw this as sacrilegious. This was especially true if the guy was named Jesus and was an idiot, or worse, some type of a criminal.

Everyone, or so it seemed, was named either Jose, Maria, Jesus, Juana or all of the above.

Time wise, we are a ways from that now that everyone is assimilated to the degree that we are. I do not think we will see anyone like Preciliana anymore.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Another Genizaro, Named Francisco Valdez.

By the time Francisco came into Hispanic New Mexico, the term Genizaro was no longer used. More than likely the softer term "criado" was used. The term Genizaro was banned for use to describe individuals after New Mexico passed from Spanish control to Mexican control. The Mexicans did not appreciate the caste system which had developed under the Spanish. Mind you the effect and the situations were identical. To the individual it mattered little what term was actually used.

We know what happened to Francisco, we don't know exactly where he came from. The best information we have is that he was Apache born in the Navajo country. He may have been Navajo. He was purchased, or somehow ended up in the family of Antonio Jose Valdez and his wife Maria Antonia Quintana originally from Taos but later from Rayado in Colfax County, New Mexico. The best information I have is that Antonio Jose Valdez and his wife, Maria Antonis Quintana had twleve (12) children of their own.

So Francisco's children are 1/2 Native American and his grand children at least 1/4. As to what tribal group Francisco was taken from we can only guess. Family information has it that Francisco knew he had a sister, whom he never saw again after being taken form his family and homeland.

We know that Francisco survived the ordeal and actually thrived. He has many descendant around today in Northern New Mexico and Colorado.

Some Descendants and Families of Francisco Valdez

1. Francisco Valdez  was born about March 1858 in Navajo Country. He died on 22 December 1927 in Miami, New Mexico. He was buried in Agua Dulce (Miami), New Mexico.

Francisco married Marina Coca  on 26 November 1880 in Cimarron, Colfax County, New Mexico, the daughter of Isidro Coca and Refugio Lucero. Marina was born in January 1861 in New Mexico. She died about 1897 in Blanco, New Mexico.

They had the following children:

+ 2 F i. Benina Valdez  was born in Deccember 1881 and died about 1969.

+ 3 F ii. Salome Valdez  was born on 22 October 1883.

4 M iii. Guillermo Valdez  was born on 10 February 1887 in New Mexico and died on 11 May 1972 in New Mexico.

Guillermo married Cecelia Sanchez .

5 M iv. Jose Damian Valdez  was born on 18 November 1890 in New Mexico.

Jose Damian married Adela Aguilar, the daughter of Aurelio Aguilar and Carolina Ortega on 8 November 1910 in Springer, New Mexico. Adela was born in 1895 in Springer, New Mexico.

6 M v. Pedro Jose Valdez  was born on April 1892 in New Mexico.

7 F vi. Adelaida Valdez  was born on March 1895 in New Mexico.

8 M vii. Francisco Valdez  Jr. was born on 22 September 1897 in Rayado, New Mexico. He was buried on 12 November 1988 at the Fairmont Cemetery in Raton, New Mexico.

Francisco Valdez Jr. married Maria Soledad Aguilar  daughter of Aurelio Aguilar and Carolina Ortega on 7 October 1918 in Springer, New Mexico. Maria was born on 14 March 1899 in Rayado, New Mexico. She was buried in 1991 in the Fairmont Cemetery in Raton, New Mexico.

9 M viii. Jose Gabriel Ventura Valdez  was born in July of 1899 in New Mexico.

Jose Gabriel Ventura Valdez married Magdelena Montoya  in Springer, New Mexico.

10 F ix. Refugio Valdez  was born about 1903 in New Mexico.

Refugio Valdez married Santiago Felipe Aguilar, the  son of Aurelio Aguilar and Carolina Ortega on 3 September 1920 in Springer, New Mexico. Santiago was born about 1902 in New Mexico.

11 F x. Delfina Valdez  was born about 1903 in New Mexico.

Delfina Valdez married Jose Isaiah Montoya .

Francisco's Grandchildren And Their Families

2. Benina Valdez  (Francisco) was born in December 1881 in New Mexico. She died about 1969.

Benina Valdez married Jose Ignacio Herrera  son of Juan Nepomuceno Herrera and Maria Cecilia Martín on 20 June 1900 in Springer, New Mexico. Jose Ignacio was born on 3 July 1871 in Santa Gertrudis, Mora County, New Mexico. He was christened on 10 July 1871 in Santa Gertrudis, Mora County, New Mexico. He died on 7 August 1935 in Cimarron, New Mexico.

They had the following children:

12 M i. Candido Herrera  was born about 1901 in New Mexico.

13 M ii. Santiago Herrera  was born about 1904 in New Mexico.

14 M iii. Juan Herrera  was born about 1906 in New Mexico.

15 M iv. Francisco Herrera  was born about 1908 in New Mexico.

16 F v. Marina Herrera  was born about 1910 in New Mexico.

17 F vi. Mary Ann Herrera .

18 F vii. Ramona Herrera .

19 F viii. Eloisa Herrera .

3. Salome Valdez  (Francisco) was born on 22 October 1883 in Springer, New Mexico. She was christened on 15 November 1883 in Springer, New Mexico. She died in Trinidad, Colorado.

Salome Valdez married Sabino Deciderio Casias  on 3 February 1906 in Springer, New Mexico. Sabino was born in October 1882 in New Mexico and he died in Colfax County, New Mexico.

They had the following children:

20 F i. Maria Ferminia Casias. born on 30 April 1905 in Cimarron, New Mexico. She died on 31 August 1964 in Denver, Colorado.

Maria Ferminia Casias married Pedro Alfonso Pina . Pedro Alfonso was born on 23 July 1891 in Trinidad, Colorado. He died on 27 January 1952 in Denver, Colorado. He was buried in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Denver Colorado.

21 F ii. Teodora Casias  was born on 4 May 1907 in Los Montecitos, New Mexico. She died on 7 March 1996 in Cimarron, New Mexico.

Teodora Casias married Felipe LeDoux . Felipe was born on 3 December 1899 in Agua Dulce (Miami), New Mexico and he died about 1950 in Trinidad, Colorado.

22 M iii. Pablo Casias  was born on 22 September 1909 in Agua Dulce (Miami), New Mexico. He died about January 1972.

Pablo Casias married Juana Gonzales  on 16 April 1933 in Springer, New Mexico. Juana was born in 1918 in Levi, Mora County, New Mexico.

23 M iv. Marcelino Casias  was born about 1911 in Cimarron, New Mexico.

Marcelino Casias married Linore Montoya  in Springer, New Mexico. Linore was born in Mora, New Mexico.

24 F v. Leonora M. Casias  was born about 1913 in New Mexico.

25 M vi. Desiderio Casias  was born on 7 November 1914 in New Mexico. and he died on 2 February 1983 in Trinidad, Colorado.

26 M vii. Eloy Casias  was born on 20 June 1917 in New Mexico. He died on 20 Oct 1990.

27 F viii. Elena Casias  was born about 1926 in New Mexico.

Here are additional posts on the matter of Genizaro's;

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Obituaries, Keep Them Sane

Obituaries, remembering the dead. Some observations as I pay attention to them more and more. Here is a doozie I was looking at the other day: 

He srved in the United States Army, was a pilot, a dedicated Christian and father, a family role model, a high school basketball state champion. 

Boxer/fighter, a mountaineer, a chef, a negotiator, a musician, a singer whom did it "My Way", an educator/teacher/tutor, a philanthropist, a savior for the poor children, an avid golfer, (two) hole-in-ones, and finally, simply a gem, He will be missed as he had a zest for life, yet will not be forgotten.

They forgot to add his walking on water.  He was not humble that is for sure, or those remembering him were very, very proud of his accomplishments! I assume that with all of these qualities he ended up at the pearly gates to find Jesus and his dad, St. Peter and Mary all clapping as he went through.

My advice is to keep it simple, the dearly departed is gone, we should in all reality leave the aggrandizement to others as they remember them. Like my grandfather used to say, "vive cuando vivo y cuando toca la muerte, muere te!" Live when alive and when death knocks, die!

The very best obituary was for a distant relative Mela Romero, I posted about it at the weblink below. That was a tribute that is hard to beat. I never met Mela but can admire a woman who was so well thought of by others.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Brand Spanking New Information On The Assination Of Governor Charles Bent

Governor Charles Bent

Some interesting information my wife and I discovered while doing our research on my family.

The assassination of Governor Charles Bent on the night of 19 January 1847 was a complicated affair carried out by some New Mexicans and Taos Indians, heroes and patriots all of them. The actual killing was gruesome, as are all killings, but it was an assassination.  The guy, Governor Bent, ended up dead and it was called a murder, but he was assassinated by New Mexican patriots. Make no mistake about it.

The Buenaventura Lobato and Mrs. Juana Catalina Valdez-Lobato mentioned in the article by E. Bennet Burton, quoted below, and published in the book noted below are in all reality Buenaventura de Jesus Valdez, my 2nd cousin several generations removed, and his wife Juana Catalina Lovato.

Buenavuntura Valdez was born 31 Jannary 1789 in Pojoque, New Mexico to Pedro Antonio Valdez y Bustos and Maria Manuela Gonzales. 

Mrs. Juana Catalina Valdez-Lovato was in reality Buenaventura's wife. She was Juana Catalina Lovato, born circa 1798, the daughter of Antonio Jose Lovato and Maria Josefa Chavez. Juana Catalina Lovato was the mother of  Maria Paula Lovato born 28 December 1811 in Taos. The birth of Maria Paula occurred when Juana Catalina Lovato was single.  Juana Catalina Lovato's daughter Maria Paula later married Charles Hipolyte Trotier Beaubien and was the mother of Narciso Beaubien who was also killed that fateful night.

So a short explaination is in order, Buenaventura de Jesus Valdez who the article states that in a public speech, afterwards admitted his local leadership in the uprising was married to the aunt of Narciso Beaubien, Juana Catalina Valdez. It is fair to assume that if Charles Hipolyte Trotier Beaubien, Narciso's father and husband of  Maria Paula had been in Taos at this moment, he would have been killed too.

In a book titled "Old Santa Fe, A Magazine of History, Archaeology, Genealogy and Biography" Volume 1, 1913 - 1914 published quarterly by the Old Santa Fe Press, Santa Fe, New Mexico and edited by Ralph Emerson Twitchell on pages 176 - 209 there is an article by E. Bennett Burton in his paper "The Taos Rebellion" mentions a Buenaventura Lobato and a Mrs. Juana Catalina Valdez Lobato as follows;

The massacre at Taos was under the leadership of Pablo Montoya and Tomasito, a Taos Indian, the last named, with a murderous band, going to the home of Governor Bent and while engaging him in conversation through the closed door, fired, striking him in the chin and stomach. The door was then broken in and the Indians filled the body of the fallen man with arrows, three of which he pulled from his head and face as he lay prostrate. As the Indians were slashing his wrists and hands with their knives and axes, a Mexican named Buenaventura Lobato entered the room and seeing what they were doing, cried" "I did not tell you to kill him, but only to take him prisoner!" Lobato, in a public speech, afterwards admitted his local leadership in the uprising. Governor Bent was scalped before he died.

In the meantime, seeing that resistance was useless. Mrs. Boggs, the wife of Thomas Boggs, Mrs. Carson and Mrs. Bent, all members of the governor's household, began to dig a hole in the adobe wall of the room, using an iron spoon for the purpose, hoping to enable the governor to make his escape. Though too late to save him, they were able to make their own way into the adjoining house. They were pursued, and Mrs. Boggs and Mrs. Carson begged on their hands and knees that the assailants spare the lives of Mrs. Bent and her children. This the murderers permitted, and the three women and the Bent children escaped to the home of Mrs. Juana Catalina Valdez-Lobato, where they remained until the arrival of the troops from Santa Fe fifteen days later.

More information on Governor Charles Bent at Wikipedia below:
NOTE: If anyone is interested in the genealogical information or sources leave a note and email so I can respond.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Getting Lost In The Milieu

Define milieu: the physical or social setting in which people live or in which something happens or develops.

Getting lost in the milieu  happens all of the time, to a lot of people. It happens to a whole lot of people, this is where the "Heinz 57" label comes from for some folks when you ask them about their nationality or what their background is. It happens for several reasons:

Distance from home base, wherever it might be.
Not liking your background for one reason or another.
Persons actually working at changing their background.
Living in a different cultural environment. Can be close or far, it does not matter.

New Mexican Hispanics are the group I usually watch and see the changes coming and how they reflect on our community in the present, the here and now. 

In all reality is has never been static, not now and not ever.

This is where the Genizaros ( come from and this is where the Genizaro went.

This is where New Mexicans who have mixed have gone, to one degree or another.

Not that it really matters, it is just something that happens and is always happening.

The reason for this weblog is my attempt to inform and help some who might be interested.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

La Vregunza De Ser Nuevo Mejicano

The shame that some New Mexican Hispanos live with because of being Hispanic. There seems to be no end to the variations of racial pretensions on the part of some New Mexicans. They cannot seem to get far enough away from just being who they are without trying to be something else. It is hard for me to be able to tell when, what era, this started in or if it has always been this way. My best guess is it started when the Americans arrived in 1846 and they saw the whole population of New Mexico as made up of three separate groups, the Spanish, the Mexican and the Indian.

The identity rush was on.

Not much time goes by when I do not see or hear another cockamamie utterance on what this or that New Mexican thinks he or she is. There seems to be no end to us wanting to be something other than what we are. This has been going on long enough that those who come in contact with us are sometimes afraid to broach the subject.

Quoted in his book "The Spanish Redemption: Heritage, Power, and Loss on New Mexico's Upper Rio Grande" published in 2002 by the University of California Press and written by Charles Montgomery he quotes:

In 1930 Reyes Nicanor Martinez  speaking of his sisters, Cleofas Martinez,  wedding to Venesclao Jaramillo remembered their marriage as an example of how families of Spanish stock conserved their traditions and kept their blood pure. "Weddings like theirs he wrote "served to preserve unimpaired the refinement and culture of these families, which still distinguishes them from the rest of the population of New Mexico".

Maria Cleofas Martinez de Jaramillo herself described her idyllic life and wedding in her own book titled "Romance of a Little Village Girl" published by the Naylor Company in San Antonio, Texas in 1956 and again the University of New Mexico Press in 2000.

But those books and that particular family aside... the effort by New Mexicans to be who they are not is beyond adequate documentation in one post on this weblog. Suffice it to say, there are many, many instances and many, many different groups who New Mexicans try to identify with other than who the odds favor that they really are.

I tell you that is is an embarrassing situation when forced to confront and discuss it. Not a good subject to bring up as the conversation forces some serious introspection on the one part and a complete denial on the other.

One comment on the weblog a while back probably put it best, we ought to self identify as New Mexicans and when challenged we could then explain the tangled web our ancestors wove.

The final word on this will not come for many, many generations. We, New Mexicans, seem to have more than our share of people who will go to no ends to deny being who we are. It just does not seem enough.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Interacting With Spirits

Interacting with spirits sounds like witch craft and in all reality it is. It does not matter what spirits you are trying to interact with. Christian spirits are still spirits. Jewish spirits? Hindu 7 headed spirits? A priest praying to spirits? Billy Graham praying to spirits. A guy in a saffron robe praying to spirits?

You get the picture.

No better and no worse than the Voodoo guy cutting the head off of a chicken for some other spirit. No difference at all. No difference to someone praying to a buffalo skull.

The results will be similar.

It gives people comfort, weak people get some comfort weaker people get more comfort. They do not have the ability to deal with reality without some form of a spirit. The need for supernatural spirits to assist, to guide, to pray to and seek assistance from is very powerful emotion.

The preachers, the white collar folks, the saffron robe guys know this, they absolutely know it. They understand what it takes to motivate these individuals. What do you think they teach at their divinity schools. They know the human weaknesses, the frailties. They also know how to take advantage of them. Look at the churches and their placements in our cities. This gives us a glimpse of what they really think of us.

Bottom line is that interacting with spirits is expensive and sucks the ability to think critically from practitioners. They do not call it the opiate of the masses for nothing.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

More "Cowboy" History, This Time With A Religious Twist.

I do not think it is totally Sister Blandina Segale's fault that she ended up as a goofy historical footnote who will now have her own television series and who seems on her way to sainthood. Read about it at the site below:

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Santa Fe has opened a process to canonize Segale.

Letters that she would write to her sister back east were found and published in to a book titled "At The End Of The Santa Fe Trail"  in 1948 by the Bruce Publishing Company of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 
Click on this image to make it larger

In these letters Sister Blandina was bragging a bit, to say the least. But she was bragging to her sister. She never intended for her letters to be published almost a century later. But the American public, hungry for heroes and heroines and a good story ate this up. Now there are plans to make a television series about her exploits and she is well on her way to sainthood in part because of her bragging to her sister.

In the book it states up front on pages 11 and 12 "Nor did she quail when she asked Billy the Kid and his gang not to scalp Trinidad's four physicians, although Billy had come to Trinidad for the express purpose of killing these four men."

Note that there is no credible proof, nor other writings, indicating that Billy The Kid was ever in Trinidad nor any place north of Las Vegas, New Mexico nor any of his "gang" raiding on the Santa Fe Trail as this book indicates.

There are several references to Billy the Kid in her book. But we must remember that these references were in letters sent to her sister and really never meant to be published.

From the publication The American Catholic come this bit of information:

"One of the many outlaws who terrorized the area was Arthur Pond aka William LeRoy, sometimes known as Billy the Kid, and who was celebrated as the King of American Highwaymen by the “penny dreadful” novelist  Richard K. Fox who released a heavily fictionalized biography of him immediately after his death, conflating his exploits with those of the more famous Billy the Kid.  (Sister Blandina in later life confused LeRoy with William H. Bonney, the more famous Billy the Kid, who operated in New Mexico a few years later.  Sister Blandina had known the outlaw only by his nickname and didn’t realize that there were two Billy the Kids, who died within months of each other in 1881.)"

Note: There is so much of this fantasy that passes for history in the United States it is hard for the average person not to swallow this stuff..... hook, line, and sinker.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Ridiculous "Cowboy History"!

The following paragraph, quote, comes from the Wikipedia link listed above.

"Chase Ranch Cimarron, New Mexico was founded in 1867 by Manly and Theresa Chase. As pioneers, from Wisconsin by way of Colorado, they crossed the Raton Pass in a covered wagon and establish a new home in New Mexico. Manly Chase purchased the land from Lucien Maxwell, part of the Maxwell Land Grant. The ranch is near the Ponil Creek, a mile north of the Cimarron River, not far from the Santa Fe Trail. The Ranch included the old Kit Carson homestead. Before pioneers the land near by was populated by Apaches and Ute people. Manly helped make the local Native Americans good neighbors, he provided them with beef."
Mountain Lion

This next quote comes from  pages 152, 153 and 154 of the book titled "The Chases of Cimarron" written by Ruth W. Armstrong and published by New Mexico Stockman, P.O. Box 7127 in Albuquerque, New Mexico and printed by Adobe Press in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1981. The emphasis in parentheses are mine.

"Suddenly as she (Theresa Chase) walked under a cottonwood tree a brindle-furred animal leaped on her. ( Mountain Lions are not brindle furred) With reflexes born of a lifetime of self preservation in the wilderness, (she was from Wisconsin) she turned to meet her assailant, raising her arms to defend herself. It was a wildcat, (Mountain Lion or a Bobcat) long and lean. Her hands closed around its throat. choking with a strength no one would have thought possible in this small, middle aged woman. The beast clawed and scratched viciously, ripping time and again through the flesh of her arms and face. She never relaxed her grip on his neck until he went limp, a heavy weight in her out stretched arms.  She dropped to the ground, still clutching the cats neck. Holding it to the ground with one hand, she picked up a stone with the other, and beat its head until there was no doubt it was dead. She rolled away from the cat, groaned and lost consciousness."
Bob Cat

"When she roused,  saw the bloody animal and her own bloody, torn clothing, a shudder rippled through her, but she got to her hands and knees, took hold of the wildcat by the tail. (Bobcats do not have tails) and began stumbling towards home. It wasn't far, but the last hundred yards seemed like an eternity. She was dizzy and weak, and was beginning to hurt, but she went on. There were a dozen men working in the fields and orchard, around the barn and corrals, but no one saw her, and she could not call out, Finally she got almost to the back door and fainted."

End of quotes

Needless to say the heroine survived and prospered. That my friends is the stuff of a great story, but hardly credible "history".  But this is what some would have us believe as they build written monuments to their loved ones and themselves. This is what passes as history for some around here. From one generation of "heroic pioneers" to their offspring. And we are expected to believe it!

Monday, July 4, 2016

Very Interesting Story Of Some Indians (Genizaros) In Some Spanish Households In Colonial New Mexico

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On the 27th of June of 1752 two (2) individuals, both identified as Indians married in Santa Fe, one identified as Diego de Sena and the woman as (Maria) Efigenia. These are most likely the same people identified without surnames when their daughter Maria de la Encarnacion was baptized. (See below)

Maria de la Encarnacion Sena, an Indian woman was baptized in Santa Fe on the 6th of June in 1751. She was the daughter of an Indian couple identified on her birth record simply by the name of Diego and his wife Maria (Efigenia?, see above). Their daughter is identified with the last name of  "Sena" because of her padrino Bernardo de Sena who baptized her along with Maria Guadalupe Lucero.

Bernardo de Sena was married to Polonia Casados, so we do not know, other than her name, the woman who was the madrina at the baptismal, Maria Guadalupe Lucero.  She could have been a relative or a neighbor or an acquaintance of some kind.

On December 10, 1804 when Maria de la Encarnacion was fifty three (53) she married a man known as Felis (Felis) Esquibel. Maria de la Encarnacion is noted on the marriage record as being from the "family of Lieutenant don Ygnacio Sotelo*". So by now she had left the household of her birth , Bernarddo de Sena's, household and was living in the household of the Lieutenant don Ygnacio Sotelo.

Felis and Encarnacion had two (2) sons that we know of. They were:

1) Juan Esquibel - birthdate unknown, but we know he was at least one half (1/2) Indian, Juan was a soldier stationed in Santa Fe:

2) Jose Manuel Esquibel who was born in Santa Fe the 5th of June in 1806 when Maria de la Encarnacion was fifty five (55) years old.

Anyway next we find Juan Esquibel marrying a Maria Conception Ortega on the 30th of April of 1829 in Santa Fe, New Mexico. In the marriage record Maria Conception is identified as the daughter of Antonio Lorenzo Ortega and Maria de la Luz Tafoya.

Maria Conception had been previously married to Miguel Martin, whom she had married at San Miguel del Bado, New Mexico on the 20th of January of 1816 where Miguel was identified as originally of "Las Gentiles Comanches" and recently baptized. So Miguel was known to be a Comanche but he had come over to the Spanish way of life and agreed to be baptized.

*Spanish lieutenant Ignacio Sotelo rescued  American Lieutenant Zebulon Montgomery Pike and his forlorn men, and sent them on to Santa Fe under fellow Lieutentant Barthome Fernandez. In 1803 Sotelo was a second lieutenant at Santa Fe. After his Pike encounter, he led a campaign in October 1807 against Apaches who'd recently attacked Zuni. The following year he reconnoitered the frontier looking for Americans. In November 1809 he led the annual caravan from Santa Fe to Chihuahua for supplies. In short, Sotelo was a competent and trustworthy Spanish soldier.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Genetic Testing For Native American Roots

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I have always questioned the validity of the DNA genetic testing. There are many unanswered questions related to DNA testing and determining a persona ancestry.

Nanibaa' Garrison is a bioethicist and assistant professor of pediatrics at Seattle Children's Hospital. A Native American, she earned a PhD in the Department of Genetics at Stanford, with a dissertation focused on ancestry.

Here  (in bold print) is what Ms. Nanibaa' Garrison has to say about DNA testing for "native American" ancestry:

"It's really difficult to say that a DNA test would be able to identify how much Native American ancestry a person has," Garrison said."
"That's because determinations of ancestry are based on "ancestry-informative markers" -- genetic flags that offer probabilities of the likelihood of certain ancestries. Most of those markers, AIMs, are "based on global populations that are outside of the U.S.," she said, "primarily people of European descent, people of Asian descent and people of African descent."
"Those three populations are not enough to determine how much Native American ancestry a person has." There are some companies that are obtaining DNA from Native Americans to fill that gap -- but that's almost certainly not enough information to make that identification."
Remember how genetics works. You are a mix of your mother's genes and your father's -- some from each. They are themselves a mix of their parents, who are a mix of their parents. That 1/32nd takes us back five generations -- to, literally, one person's genes in a potential pool of 32 pairs. Even a test that was fine-tuned to pick out Native American identity might not find any, because the requisite markers simply may not have made the cut over multiple generations.

Monday, June 20, 2016

New Mexicans Are All Connected

Like a huge ball of string that has been added to over the generations, we, New Mexican Hisapnos are all connected. Unravel the string ball and we would all be surprised at how and how many times we are connected.

When in my very early teens I was spending a summer in Denver and at a shoe shop/shoe shine stand across from and a few blocks east of the State Capitol building/grounds on East Colfax Avenue between the Pink Elephant Bar and the Cathedral. There was a huge ball of string on display. The guy who owned the establishment had a huge ball of shoelaces on display in the window facing East Colfax. I used to see/admire the ball every time I walked past. One day as I was walking past he was standing in the doorway and I asked him what would happen if you cut the ball in half. He replied that there would be a million pieces of shoestrings but that some would still be attached to others. He said you could not undo what it had taken him a lifetime to accomplish.

That ball of shoestrings is very much like our New Mexican family. It serves us well to remember that we are one huge family stretching back 400 years in New Mexico.

As newcomers came into the area, they too were incorporated into this huge family. Frenchmen, American fur trappers and merchants all got entwined in this huge family. The remnants of this is everywhere in evidence.

It has only been in the last few years, maybe 1900 or 1910, that others came in in sufficient numbers to avoid getting assimilated into the society that came in 1598 and still exists today. And even then, a lot did get assimilated. Just look around us today.

Reminds me of the Stark Trek Borg cube ship.... Resistance is futile, you will be assimilated...