by Shalane J. Sheley-Cruz

February 2002


1. Sebastian Cruz

2. Jose Luciano Cruz

3. Antonio Joseph de la Cruz

4. Francisco de la Cruz

5. Sebastian de la Cruz

6. Maria Antonia Maes

7. Juan Manuel Maes

8. Salvador Antonio Maes

9. Maria Barbara Vigil


Sebastian Cruz was born to Jose Luciano Cruz and Barbara Vigil around 1827 in New Mexico, along the Rio Chama, a tributary of the Rio Grande (Rio Arriba County). Although I have not found a baptismal record for Sebastian, his marriage license states he was a native of Chama, and gives Luciano and Barbara as his parents. In the 1845 Mexican census, Sebastian's father, Luciano, was living in the Abiquiu, NM district with 3 sons, ages 23, 18 and 06. In the 1860 census one brother was older and one was younger than Sebastian which would make him the middle son in 1845. Thus his birth year is established to be around 1827. The 1860 census lists his age as 30, which would give credence to that birth date, understanding that census ages rarely are accurate.

A search of the 1850 New Mexico census of Rio Arriba (and Taos) areas fails to find any of the Cruz family. At one point the family moved from the Abiquiu/Rio Chama area north to DesMontes. Perhaps it was during this time period when they moved. It is definite that they had moved by 1854.

At the approximate age of 27, Sebastian Cruz married Maria Antonia Maes, (about 28), on October 30, 1854. The records are at Nuestra De Los Dolores Catholic Church, Arroyo Hondo, New Mexico. Arroyo Hondo is just north of Taos. The Cruz family was named as residents of DesMontes.

Marriage Record of Sebastian Cruz and Maria Antonia Maes Oct 30, 1854

In the parish of Taos on the 30th day of October 1854, I, the parish priest, Antonio Jose Martines, previewed the matrimonial information and orally examined the two witnesses named in the matrimonial claim of Sebastian Crus, single legitimate son of Luciano Crus and Maria Barbara Vigil, native of the parish of Chama and resident of DesMontes of Sangre de Cristo with Maria Antonia Maes, single legitimate daughter of Juan Manuel Maes and Maria Polonia Giron, native of Abiquiu and resident of DesMontes of Sangre de Cristo. Banns to be read three feast days on the 19th, 22nd, and 29th, with previous confession and communion in the presence of the sponsors Jose Ramon Vigil and Irenea Trujillo, residents of the DesMontes with present witnesses Pedro Valdes and Jose Rafael Trujillo, residents of the Plaza of Our Lady of Guadalupe with firm evidence (certainty). (S) Antonio Jose Martines

Padre Antonio Jose Martinez was the parish priest at Ranchos de Taos at the time of the Rio Arriba rebellion in the late 1830's. The rebels "horrified Padre Martinez by burying a corpse at the chancel steps of the church." See LeCompte for a full record and a photo of Padre Martinez.

Sebastian and Antonia had at least five children:

  1. Juan Cristoval
    - born July 8, 1856, probably DesMontes, NM

  2. Preciliano
    - born around 1859, probably San Luis Valley, CO
    - married 1st 29 Nov 1884 Maria Carmel Lucero, Walsenburg, CO
    - children:
      Dionisia 08 April 1886, Walsenburg, CO
    - married 2nd 13 Nov 1887 Agustina Pacheco, Walsenburg, CO
    - children:
    1. Ursula born 14 April 1889, Walsenburg, CO married Jose Bertran 27 Nov 1916
    2. Epifanio born 26 February 1891, Arenoso, CO
    3. Emilia born 27 February 1893, Arenoso, CO marriedTeofilo Espinosa 25 Oct 1911
    4. Antonio Jose born 11 October 1895, Rouse, CO married Juana Trujillo 19 Sep 1921
    5. Ramona born 07 September1898, North Veta, CO
    6. Margarita born 24 February 1901, St. Clara, CO
    7. Juan Francisco born 04 October 1903 (Juan de la Cruz Pineda & Catarina Rodriguez, padrinos) married Antonia Sanchez 08 Oct 1923
    8. Julio born 20 March 1906 married Isabel Cordova 09 May 1925
    9. Ma Estela born 28 April 1908, Bear Creek, CO (Juan de la Cruz Pineda & Ma de la Cruz Pineda, padrinos) married Daniel Garcia 02 Oct 1922
    10. Leonardo born 10 December 1910
    11. Secundino born 08 April 1913 (Jose & Fabiana Galvan, padrinos) married Adelaida Medina 28 Dec 1935
    - died 1917, Walsenburg, CO

  3. Nicolas
    - born around 1863, probably San Louis Valley, CO

  4. - married 11 Jul 1885 Deluvina Arellano, Walsenburg, CO
    - children:
    1. Pedro Jose born 23 Oct 1885 Walsenberg, CO married Felicitas Gallegos 16 May 1911
    2. Telesfora born 5 Jan 1888, Walsenberg, CO
    3. Genoveva born 9 Apr 1890, Arenoso, CO married Juan Tafoya born 16 Jul 1906

  5. Maria Juana
    - born 17 November 1864, San Luis Valley, CO
    - married 27 Dec 1894, Jose Pantaleon Garcia

  6. Juan Bautista
    - born around 1867, probably San Luis Valley, Colorado (possibly Huerfano County)
    - married 10 Oct 1888 Juanita Abila Cordova, Walsenburg, CO
    - died 6 Oct 1896, Walsenberg, CO

Juan C. probably died in childhood as he is not listed in the family after the 1860 census. The dates of his brothers are approximate as I only have census records and they are not reliable.

In September 1855, relatively soon after Barbara (the mother of Francisco, Sebastian, and Mariano) and two of her daughters died, the Cruz family (the brothers, at least one sister, their families, and probably their father Luciano) moved northward from DesMontes. This was sometime between July 1856 and February 1857 when Sebastian would have been about 30 years old. Their destination was the Sangre de Cristo land grant, in the Culebra district of the San Luis Valley in the Territory of New Mexico, which is now Costilla County in Southern Colorado. The date is pretty firm because Sebastian's oldest child was born on the first date at DesMontes and his brother Francisco's son, Cecilio, was born on the latter date at Culebra. The brothers always appeared close together in the census and families tended to move together.

The northward migration goal for the Mexican families in northern New Mexico was the San Luis Valley. The reason for the migration was scarcity of irrigatable land and the "struggle to survive on farms subdivdided among generations of male heirs" (Abbott, p. 40). That was the push. The pull was the vast land grants (which included the San Luis Valley as part of the Sangre de Cristo grant) issued by the Mexican government to a handful of fortunates whose responsibility was "to settle permanent colonies of loyal citizens in order to hold the territory for Mexico" (Abbott, p. 41). Basically it was free land to live on (but not own).

Although earlier settlers were forced back to New Mexico by Indian raids, permanent settlements were made by the 1850's:

In 1850 the Utas accepted the terms of the United States Treaty, and colonists from New Mexico started coming into the Sangre de Cristo area, settling in small plazas. Since the colonists were either relatives, or had known each other in their villages in New Mexico, they tended to build homes together. In 1842 Juan Manuel Salazar and Julian Gallegos, and two others tried to settle in the area called La Culebra, but the Indians drove them out. However, on June 21, 1851 they returned and founded the town that bears the name of San Luis, in honor of the Fiesta de San Luis which falls on June 21, and is said to be the oldest town in Colorado. Tushar, 1975.

The initial move of the Cruz family around 1851-1854 was from Abiquiu to DesMontes where they settled for at least two to seven years. Although I cannot prove it, I believe that the San Luis Valley was their initial goal. But for some reason, they stayed for a few years in DesMontes (which is on the East Fork of the North Branch of the Old Spanish Trail to San Luis Valley). It could have been for lack of funds, but I believe someone in the family was ill. It was a family that stayed together. There were other Cruz families in the DesMontes area during that time: Salvador, Felipe, Preciliano, Desiderio, Jose Ramon (see Taos baptismal records). How long they stayed (or didn't stay) or their relationship is unknown.

The following is a quote from Abbott (p. 43) and describes their life in the San Luis Valley:

These Hispano pioneers re-created as closely as possible the culture they had left behind. As with Anglo-americans who moved west, New Mexico's frontiersmen ventured into a new land to build a more prosperous version of the society that they had left behind. In the San Luis Valley, the earliest settlements such as Costilla were built for protection in the form of a plaza or enclosed square. Increased population often brought the addition of corrilleras, or terraces of houses flanking the road to the plaza. A further extension was the "line village," an arrangement adopted in the Rio Arriba whenever the danger from Indian attack seemed small. Individual farmsteads -- a two- or three-room adobe house, garden, shed, and corral -- strung out like beads along a river or irrigation ditch, fifty or a hundred yards apart. Each farm extended in a long, narrow strip from the stream into the hills behind, with fields of grain and gardens of beans and chilies close in and with grazing land stretching behind for five or ten miles.

In the 1860 census, the family was enumerated in the La Culebra district of the Territory of New Mexico (now Colorado). Sebastian's occupation was given as a farm laborer and he had a personal estate worth $196 (a value of $3,550 in the year 2000) which probably included a few animals. So he wasn't in great poverty (or wealth) by 1860 standards.

Sebastian's brothers were close by and the occupation of both were farm laborers, but their personal estates were much smaller: Francisco's was $75 and Mariano's was $89. Their father Luciano was not found in this census.

While the family lived in San Luis Valley, Sebastian was a witness for the marriage of Donaciano Pineda, resident of La Culebra, and Maria Benigna Atencio, resident from La Culebra, on 11 Oct 1862 (Our Lady of Guadalupe records).

They were still in San Luis Valley in 1864, when Sebastian and Antonia's daughter Juana Maria was born. But it was getting crowded:

The flow of Hispano population from the Chama Valley and Mora into the San Luis country continued in the next decade, as Anglos in New Mexico joined the competition for scarce land. Costilla and Conejos counties held 4,200 people by 1870. (Abbott, p. 41)
So by 1870 the whole family had moved on to Huerfano County:

North from New Mexico came convoy after convoy of fathers, sons, brothers, and cousins, with families and distant kinsmen, armed men or horses, and burros, cattle, hogs, sheep, and goats in separate herds trailing more than a mile long, with creaking wagons full of household goods struggling to keep pace. Ninety percent of the 6,400 residents of Las Animas and Huerfano counties in 1870 were either New Mexican natives or the children of New Mexicans. (Quoted directly from Abbott, p. 43.)

The 1870 census gave Butte Valley as the Post Office for the Cruz family, which is in north central Huerfano County, but there were only three post offices in Huerfano County at the time. More than likely they settled at the base of the Spanish Peaks, on or near Bear Creek at the southern part of the county where other Spanish-American settlers had been settling since the 1850's (see Sporleder, p. 15). There Sebastian was a farmer with a farm worth $175 (year 2000 value would be $3,150) and a personal estate value of $100 (year 2000 value would be $1,800). No doubt he sold most of what he owned back in San Luis Valley, except for his animals, before moving his family over the Sangre de Cristo mountains.

The Bear Creek settlement was a few miles southwest of Walsenburg, which was first called "Plaza de los Leones." Louis Sporleder gives a glimpse into the lives of the people of that time in his book Romance of the Spanish Peaks:

Fred Walsen came to the Plaza de los Leones in 1870 and open[ed] a trading post.... Amusements were not wanting in the plaza. Much dancing was done to the music of two violins and a guitar. A little quarrelinig and sometimes fighting enlivening these dances, once in a while ending in tragedy. Cock fights took about the same position as films do today Much gambling was practiced. Mexicans and Indians indulged in "monte," the few Americans preferred poker. (Sporleder, p. 24.)

In the 1880 census Sebastian's occupation was laborer and he and his family were listed in the household of his brother, Francisco who was tending sheep. Next door was their brother Mariano whose occupation was farmer. I assume that Sebastian had run into some hard times because he is living in one brother's household and probably working for the other brother next door. Real estate and personal estate values were not recorded. For what it's worth, a D for divorced was recorded in the marital status column for Francisco's daughter, Dolores, age 17. She was married in 1876, divorced by 1880, but she gave birth to two children, one in 1883 and one in 1887 according to St. Mary's Baptismal records in Walsenburg.

Also given in this census is the location where the family lived which was "Oso's Settlement," where nine families lived. It may have been near Bear Creek since Oso is the Spanish word for bear. From the description in Hiram's story quoted earlier, Oso was near "Sand Arroya." Assuming it was the same as Sand Arroyo and close to the cemetery (aka Chavez Cemetery), Oso was located on Sand Arroyo Road, seven miles southwest of Walsenburg off Highway 160.

In the 1885 census, Sebastian once again was listed as a farmer, presumably owning his own farm, but estate values were not recorded. His brother Mariano lived next door and Francisco lived four doors down, next to his son Cecilio.

Although the 1845 census indicates Sebastian was 18 and potentially born in 1827, his age varies in the census records throughout his life. In 1860 his age was given as 30. In 1870 his age was given as 35 (when he was closer to 43) then in 1880 as 56 (not bad - he was probably 53 then), and in the 1885 census clearly as 78 when he was only around 58!!! Maybe he felt old so he (or his neighbors) told the census taker what age he looked like. Yet the age of his older brother Francisco was given as 58 and Mariano's as 54.

Sebastian Cruz died sometime between 1885 and 1900, as he was not found after the 1885 census. Because his age was given 20 years older than his actual age in the 1885 census, I think that he might have been very ill at the time and may have died soon after the census. It is assumed he died in Huerfano County. Because he lived in Oso's Settlement in 1880, near what is now Chavez cemetery, it is quite possible he was buried there in a grave that has long disintegrated.


- father of Sebastian Cruz

Jose Luciano Cruz was born around 1799 to Antonio Cruz and Maria Gertrudes Archuleta, at Rio Chama, New Mexico in what is now Rio Arriba County, New Mexico. No record of his birth has been found and no record may exist. In the book, Santa Fe: History of an Ancient City by Noble it is stated that

During the Mexican period only five to eight secular priests remained in New Mexico, far too few to administer sacraments to all the people. No bishop visited New Mexico between 1760 and 1833. Confirmations all but ceased for half a century, baptisms decreased in number, and couples lived together without benefit of marriage. (pp. 88-89)

On October 3, 1821 Luciano married Barbara Vigil:

Jose Luciano Cruz, 22, single son of Antonio Cruz, deceased and Maria Gertrudes Archuleta, espanoles, and residents of Rio Chama, married Maria Barbara Begil, 16, daughter of Aparicio Begil and Nicolasa Sanches, espanoles and residents of the same place. Witnesses Pasgual Martin, 32, Marcos Naranjo, 40, and Jose Miguel Camdibeo, 36.

Abiquiu is located in Rio Arriba County just northwest of Santa Fe between Chama and Santa Fe along US Highway 83 on the banks of the Rio Chama River near the Abiquiu Reservoir and the Santa Fe National Forest.

Jose Luciano Cruz and his family were in the 1845 Spanish and Mexican Colonial census in Abiquiu. He was listed as "D. Luciano Crus," age 58. The "D" was not a first initial, but a common abbreviation for Don, the Spanish word for "Sir." This would indicate (but not prove) that he was a landowner. It was in this census where Luciano and Barbara had seven children: 3 sons, ages 23, 18 and 06; and 4 daughters, ages 17, 14, 9 and 4.

Barbara and Luciano had at least seven children The following lists those seven children, plus any grandchildren and great-grandchildren that I have located.

  1. Francisco Antonio born about 1822, Rio Arriba, NM
    - married Bonafacia Trujillo (probably 1852)
    - children
    1. Maria Manuela born 16 Feb 1853
    2. Jose Dario baptized 30 Mar 1854
    3. Francisco Antonio baptized 26 Mar 1855
    4. Siestro Cecilio baptized Feb 1857
      -married Ma Rosenda Valdez 24 Jan 1878
      1. Juan de Dios born 8 Mar 1879
      2. Manuel Antonio born 1 Jan 1881
      3. Eulalia Valdez-Cruz born 23 Feb 1883
      4. Eduardo born 27 Oct 1885
      5. Delfina born 3 Aug 1888 married Almindro Valdez 14 Jan 1905
      6. Abel born 24 Mar 1891
      7. Maria de la Cruz born 3 May 1892
      8. Joseph Gabriel born 18 Mar 1896
      9. Salomon born 23 Jul 1899
      -buried 05 Mar 1912
    5. Maria Dolores born 15 Aug 1861
      -married Jesus Maria Gallegos 10 Dec 1876 (divorced per 1880 census)
      -children - No father is listed for these children born to Dolores Cruz:
      1. Bernardo de Jesus Cruz born 13 Feb 1883
      2. Agapita Cruz born 20 Sep 1887
    6. Mariana (Ana Maria) born 1867 (1870 Census)
      -married Leonor Deaguero 30 Oct 1881
      NOTE: The marriage record only shows the name "Maria Cruz." So
      there is doubt if it was Mariana and not another one of Francisco
      and Bonafacia's daughters who married Leonor.
      -children - No father is listed for these children born to Mariana Cruz;
      1. Salomon Cruz born 20 Oct 1888
      2. Juan Pedro Cruz born 29 Apr 1891
      3. Palmira Cruz born 25 Jul 1892
      4. Antonio Maria Cruz born 8 Sep 1894
      5. Gaspar Cruz born 18 Jun 1901
      6. Maria Irene Cruz born Nov 1903
      7. Ma Felicitas Cruz born 25 Apr 1906
      8. Jacob Cruz born 25 Apr 1909
    7. Jesus Juan born 1869 (1870 census)
    8. Antonia born 8 Oct 1876 (mother Josefa Pacheco)
      NOTE: Since the oldest son Francisco Antonio was never listed in
      the census and presumed died in childbirth, I am attributing
      this child to Francisco Senior, as I found no other Francisco Cruz
      in Huerfano County.
    9. Rafaela baptized 15 Jun 1876
    10. Maria Rosana born 1872 (1880 census)
      -married 1st Marcelino Duran 28 Jan 1889
      -married 2nd Jose Eleno Sandoval 21 Nov 1910
    11. Elias born 01 Apr 1883
    12. Juan Manuel born 15 Apr 1894

  2. Sebastian born about 1827, Rio Arriba, NM (see above)

  3. Maria Ascencion, baptized 5 Jun 1832 (residents of Plaza de San Antonio), Rio Arriba, NM -married 19 March 1859 Henry Samuel Valentine (of New York)

  4. Mariano born about 1839, Rio Arriba, NM
    -married Maria Dorotea Ariano (Arellano) 7 March 1859
    1. Antonio de Jesus born 30 Mar 1860
      -married 1st Ma Encarnacion Gallegos 22 Nov 1883
      -married 2nd Juana Medina 12 Mar 1892
    2. Juana Maria born about 1863/64 (1870/1880 census)

    3. -married 2nd Eleanor Deaguero 13 Nov 1886
      (This is the same man her cousin Maria married in 1881.)
      -childJose Benito Deaguero 27 Nov 1887
    4. Ma Esquipula born about 1866 (1870 census)
      married Jose Antanasio Martinez 22 Dec 1878
    5. Jose Benito born about 1867 (1870/1880 Census)
      -married Narcisa Duran 26 Oct 1885
      1. Telesforo born 2 Jul 1891
      2. Telesfora born 7 Feb 1894 married Arminio Pacheco 07 Feb 1912
      3. Elias born 2 Jul 1896 married Maria Modesta Pineda 15 Nov 1913
      4. Elvira born 3 Apr 1898 married Refugio Gallegos 16 Aug 1917
      5. Sabino born 24 Feb 1900 married Florencia Roybal 09 Apr 1921
      6. Jose Celestino born 7 May 1902 married Florencia Roybal 12 Jan 1929 (This is the same woman his brother married.)
      7. Teresina born 1905 married Reymundo Vigil 15 Nov 1924
      8. Margarita born 27 Mar 1907 married Ezequiel Duran 10 Nov 1930
    6. Juan MG born about 1869 (1870 census)
    7. Juana Maria (Maria AP or Apolonia) born 11 Jun 1870
      -married 1st Julian Martinez 10 Jan 1884
    8. Dionisia born 11 Mar 1872
    9. Paula born 4 Jul 1874
      -married 1st Juan Trinidad Pacheco 01 Dec 1888

    10. -married 2nd Arturo Moya 24 Oct 1910
    11. Gavino born 2 Dec 1878 died 6 Jul 1885 smallpox (1885 census)
    12. Alejandro Fidel born 16 Nov 1880 married Delfina Vigil 22 Dec 1902 died 08 Jun 1910
    13. Maria Elfida born 7 Mar 1883 died 1 Jul 1885 smallpox (1885 census)
    14. Gabino born 4 Apr 1885

  5. Nestora, born about 1840, Rio Arriba, NM
    - child:
    1. Donaciano born 4 Oct 1855 (father unknown) married Maria Lucia Sanchez 08 Feb 1875
    - died 13 October 1855, DesMontes, NM

  6. Maria Paula born about 1840, Rio Arriba, NM
    - child:
    1. Maria Clara baptized 29 March 1855 (father unknown)
    - died 10 October 1855, DesMontes, NM

  7. Nicolasa de la Cruz born 13 Jul 1842, at Abiquiu, Rio Arriba, NM
    - married 8 January 1858 Juan de la Cruz Maes

Barbara Vigil Cruz died (or was buried on) 17 October 1855 in DesMontes, NM. Her daughter Maria Paula died one week earlier on the 10th at the age of 15. Paula had given birth seven months earlier. It is unknown whether the child survived. Barbara's daughter Nestora gave birth to a son Donaciano on the 4th of October and died nine days later on the 13th. The baby survived to adulthood.

1855 was a very traumatic year for the Cruz family. In March of that year was the birth and likely death of a grandson Francisco Antonio (he was never listed in the census record in his father Francisco's household). Also in March, the birth and possible death of another grandchild, Maria Clara, the daughter of Maria Paula. Then the disastrous month of October, with the deaths of the daughters/sisters Paula on the 10th, Nestora on the 13th and the mother, Barbara, who was only 56 at time, on the 17th.

It's possible there was some type of epidemic and those who were weak succumbed. Perhaps it was just fate - many babies died at birth and as small infants; many mothers died from childbirth or later complications; and mothers with such loss died of broken hearts. I suspect it was Barbara who was the one in ill-health when they had to settle in DesMontes on their trek from Abiquiu to San Luis Valley. If so, the loss of so many of her loved ones at once would have been more than she could bear in her weakened state.

As stated earlier, the family moved on to San Luis Valley within a year or two of these tragic events. Life goes on.

Luciano wasn't found in the 1860 census. In 1870 he was living in Huerfano County Colorado, near his sons: two doors down from Francisco and three from Sebastian. He was listed as a separate family in the census, but in the same dwelling as Manuel Lucero, age 70, and Isabel Lucero, age 30, a housekeeper. I suspect they were family, possible brothers-in-law.

Luciano's age was given as age 99 in 1870, when, according to the 1845 census, he was around 71. Maybe neither he nor anyone really knew his real age and maybe he just looked so old and shriveled that someone told the census taker he must be almost 100. The census indicates that he was blind, so maybe that added to the older age perception.

Luciano Cruz wasn't found after the 1870 census and is presumed to have died between 1870 and 1880 in Huerfano County.


- father of Jose Luciano Cruz
- grandfather of Sebastian Cruz

Antonio Joseph was baptized 16 September 1770, son of Francisco de la Cruz and Teresa Romero at Santa Cruz, NM. (Teresa was born to Pedro Romero and Maria Atencia on 15 Oct 1731 at the San Juan Pueblo, NM) His baptismal record gives his middle name as Joseph and not Jose. The only record indicating that Antonio was the father of Luciano was Luciano's marriage record

Jose Luciano Cruz, 22, single son of Antonio Cruz, deceased and Maria Gertrudes Archuleta, espanoles, and residents of Rio Chama...
Antonio's marriage record shows that at the age of 22 he and Gertrudes Archuleta were married in 1792:
30 September 1792 Antonio Jose de la Cruz, son of Francisco de la Cruz and Teresa Romero, deceased, married Maria Gertrudes Archuleta, daughter of Marcos Archuleta and Cathalina Martin, deceased. Witnesses Domingo Balerio and Antonio Torres and Juan Thomas. (Translation from Karen Mitchell.)
Antonio and Gertrudes had three children for which records have been found:
  1. Maria Concepcion born 3 Feb 1794, Rio Chama, NM
  2. Luciano born around 1799, Rio Chama, NM.
  3. Andrea Dorotea born between 1793 and 1802, Rio Chama, NM.
  4. married 13 Nov 1814 Francisco Antonio Gonzales.
Although records state "Rio Chama" as a residence, I'm more inclined to believe that Abiquiu was the closest town and they simply lived on the Rio Chama nearby, and thus were "residents of Rio Chama."

Sometime between 1799 and 1803 Gertrudes died as Antonio remarried in 1803:

8 December 1803 Antonio Jose de la Cruz widower of Maria Gertrudes Archuleta with witnesses of Santiago Tafoya and Jose Antonio Ortega, married Maria Francisca Torres, single daughter of Antonio Torres deceased, and Maria Gertrudes Mestas, with witnesses of Jose de la Cruz Quintana and Lorenzo Valdes, also residents. Padrinos Jose Ysidro Trujillo and Ana Maria Martin.
The marriage record of his son Sebastian in 1821 indicates that Antonio was deceased, so he died sometime between 1803 (his marriage to his second wife Francisca Torres) and 1821 presumeably in Rio Arriba County.

ARCHULETA NOTE: No birth or death record has been found for Maria Gertrudes Archuleta. But according to Milligan, she was born to Nicolas Marcos de Archuleta and Caterina (or Cathalina) Martin. They were married 02 Mar 1759 at Abiquiu, NM. The parent of Nicolas Archuleta were Asencio de Archuleta and Lugarda de Quintana. She died 10 Jun 1749, Santa Cruz, NM.


- father of Antonio de la Cruz (5)
- grandfather of Jose Luciano Cruz (4)
- great-grandfather of Sebastian Cruz (3)

Francisco de la Cruz was born to Sebastian de la Cruz, year unknown, but possibly 1720 if he was 20 when he was married. His mother is unknown. The only record which gives the name of his father is his marriage record.

He married Teresa Romero on 7 October 1743 at San Juan Pueblo, NM. Born to them were the following ten children, with all baptisms recorded at Santa Cruz, NM.

  1. Maria de la Encarnacion baptized 29 March 1746
  2. Juana baptized 30 January 1748
  3. Francisco Antonio baptized 04 September 1750
    -married Maria Francisca Gonzalez
    1. Jose Mariano born 22 Feb 1798
    2. Agustin born 3 Sep 1801
  4. Manuela Gertrudes baptized 08 January 1753
  5. Ysabel baptized 20 April 1755
  6. Maria Guadalupe baptized 02 April 1758
  7. Bartolome baptized 21 (or 31) July 1763
  8. Pedro Antonio baptized 22 December 1765
    -married Maria Barbara Fernandez
    1. Jose Cayetano born 21 Nov 1798
    2. Guillermo born 24 Jun 1801
    3. Antonio Jose born 7 Mar 1804
    4. Maria Antonia 8 Sep 1808
    5. Jose Maria born 20 Aug 1811
    6. Maria Candelaria born 12 Aug 1814
    7. Juan Antonio born 27 Aug 1818
    8. Maria Encarnacion born 1 Apr 1820
    9. Jose Maria born 16 Jul 1823
  9. Antonio Joseph baptized 16 September 1770
Francisco did not live to raise all his children as he died on 2 January 1771 at Santa Cruz, NM, when Antonio was three months old.


- father of Francisco de la Cruz
- grandfather of Antonio de la Cruz
- great-grandfather of Jose Luciano Cruz
- great-great-grandfather of Sebastian Cruz

Although the only record we have that Sebastian de la Cruz was the father of Francisco de la Cruz is Francisco's marriage record, because the mother of Francisco was not listed, the proof is not solid that the Sebastian I describe in this section is indeed Francisco's father. Assuming Sebastian was 20 when he was employed by the Spanish government in New Mexico (see below), when Francisco born around 1720 (pure speculation from his marriage date), he would have been 60 years old, an age not unheard of as a biological father. So it's possible.

However, I cannot rule out the possiblity that there is another generation between Sebastian and Francisco, but I have no records to prove it one way or another. Or even that they are related. But because of the similarity of the family names, it is likely it is the same family/lineage.

Very little is known of Sebastian de la Cruz. According to the Spanish documents in Revolt of the Pueblo Indians of New Mexico and Otermin's Attempted Reconquest 1680-1682 by Hackett (Vol. I, pg 116), on 14 Sep 1680, Sebastian de la Cruz was the town "crier" (or announcer of public decrees and documents) for Francisco Xavier, the Secretary of Government and War at Fray Cristobal in southeast New Mexico. This is where the Spaniards had retreated at one point after the initial Pueblo Indian uprising, on their way to safety in El Paso, in what is now Texas.

Fray Angelico Chavez, a noted historian of the Spaniards in the New World, states that Sebastian was also known as Nicolas de la Cruz, herald of the Governor of New Mexico. A Nicolas de la Cruz was also given as a crier to Secretary Xavier in the early Spanish records on 18 October 1681 in San Lorenzo of what is now New Mexico. So it is probably the same person.

Both Nicolas and an unnamed crier (possibly Nicolas/Sebastian also) on the 24th were said to have made the announcements "in a loud and intelligible voice." (Hackett, Volume II pgs. 157 and 182) So he was good at what he did.

The ethnic origin of Sebastian de la Cruz is unknown. However, my suspicions are that he was of Native American origin, probably of the Plains Indians. From the listing of all criers in Hackett's book on the Pueblo Revolt, either no origin was given, or in two cases, Indian, and in one, a Negro. Negros in New Spain was not uncommon as Noble states "When New Spain began importing African slaves to work the mines and do other labor, blacks also began to contribute to the developing genetic pool." (p. 71)

This leads me to believe that the position of town-crier was one that no self-respecting Spaniard would occupy. All the reading I have done indicates that they were a very proud, even haughty people - which inevitable got them into trouble, ultimately with the local Pueblo people when they revolted and overthrew their Spanish oppressors in 1680 for 12 years.

There were Spaniards in Mexico in the 16th century with the surname of "de la Cruz," most noteably, Juan de la Cruz from Catalan, Spain (see Chavez). But there were also a couple of Cruz men living in New Mexico in the 17th century (pg. 23), who were identified in early records as Indian servants (charged with murder, by the way).

According to the History of New Mexico:

Both Spanish settlers and Pueblos survived generations of nomadic Indian raids through alliances that included intermarriage--which lends New Mexico its unique mestizaje culture--and through trade fairs, common by the 1790s from Taos to El Paso. One of the fairs' major functions was to ransom Spanish settlers abucted in Indian raids or to buy servants, usually Indians captured by other Indians. These freed Indians, known as genizaros, were Christianized and could, within three generations, totally shed the stigma of slavery.
Noble (pp. 72-73) also states:
In New Mexico, the term genizaro, used differently in the rest of the Spanish colonial world, meant a full-blooded Indian who had been captured at a young age by warring Plains Indian tribes and sold to Spanish colonists. Genizaros benefitted the colonists economically, for they represented cheap labor in a labor-intensive society. These children, raised as criados (servants) in Spanish households, took the names of their Spanish families and went on to start their own families under those names. Well-to-do and poor families alike had criados. The Franciscan friars advocated the purchase of these young people to bring them to Christianity.

In order to have been a town-crier, especially a good one, Sebastian de la Cruz would have to had learned Spanish at an early age, even from birth. But since I don't believe he was a Spaniard by birth, it is my belief that he was raised in the household of a Spaniard, either captured as a small child in an Indian raid and purchased by the de la Cruz family as a household servant, or his mother was and he was born into a Spanish household.

To further support the idea that Sebastian was of Native American origin, his son Francisco married Teresa Romero at the San Juan, NM pueblo, where Teresa was born. The San Juan pueblo were Indians Christianized by the Spaniards. However, this is not proof in itself as there were 2,915 non-Indians living in San Juan in the 1837 census.

The only record that indicates any origin of this Cruz line is from the marriage license of Luciano Cruz and Barbara Vigil, which states that they were "espanoles", even with Indian heritage. Since the History of New Mexico states that genizaros could lose the slavery stigma within three generations and Luciano was the fourth generation from Sebastian, it is quite feasible that they were considered "espanoles." Especially since Luciano was probably a land owner. As stated earlier, he was listed in the 1845 census as "D. Luciano Cruz" which would show some status and status could mean land ownership.

The fact that Luciano was listed as living in Abiquiu in the 1845 census adds to the possibility (but not proof) of the Cruz' originally being genizaros, as the History of New Mexico continues:

They [genizaros] soon became so numerous that the Spanish built them villages at Abiquiu, Santa's Fe's Analco neighborhood, San Miguel del Vado, Ojo Caliente and elsewhere. As the buffer between Spanish and Pueblo settlements and the raiding nomads, genizaros and their descendants, mostly stockmen and farmers, led the last great Hispano territorial expansions. They founded such towns as Las Vegas and Anton Chico, spreading as far north as present-day Antonito and Trinidad, Colorado, into the Texas and Oklahoma panhandles and west into east-central Arizona.

Sebastian de la Cruz would have originally lived in Santa Fe, a strictly Spaniard settlement. His son Francisco was married in San Juan, which mentioned previously, was (and still is) an Indian pueblo, but buried by a priest from Santa Cruz. Santa Cruz was another Spanish village as it was originally known as Santa Cruz de la Canada, established by the Spaniards as a second villa of the New World in 1695 (Santa Fe as number one). (See Williams, pg. 98). Antonio (son of Francisco) was baptized at (or by a priest of) Santa Cruz. But he and his son Sebastian were both married in Santa Clara, which was (and still is) an Indian pueblo (no non-Indian population was given in the 1837 census for Santa Clara). Santa Juan, Santa Cruz and Santa Clara are all on the Rio Grande, in that order, all within 10 miles of each other. The Rio Chama branches off in a northwesterly direction near San Juan and Santa Cruz. (See AAA atlas.)

Abiquiu (where Sebastian was listed in the 1845 census) is 20 miles upriver on the Rio Chama, a western tributary of the Rio Grande. There is a Catholic church in Abiquiu. However, a note in the LDS Abiquiu records states that the Abiquiu church was built expressly for the Indians who were living in the area, which explains why no Cruz records were found there. Even if the origin was Indian, being "espanoles" would have been important and likely they only associated with churches (and padres) of their ancestors.



Maria Antonia Maese was baptized 22 January 1826 at the Church of Santo Tomas de Abiquiu, daughter of Juan Maese and Apolonia Giron. Her paternal grandparents were Salvador Maese and Maria Juana Gertrudis Lucero, and maternal grandparents were Nicolas Jiron and Juana Paula Lucero. According to the records, they were living in Ojo Caliente, NM at the time.

The next record I have of her is her marriage at age 28 in 1854 to Luciano Cruz which indicates that her family were residents of DesMontes and originally from Abiquiu. She was rather old for marriage as girls usually were married by the age of 18. It's possible that she was married previously, but I have not found records which reflect that.

Antonia may have been rather sensitive about her age as in the 1860 census she gave her age as 25, three years younger than she was in 1854 when she got married. Perhaps she was young looking for her age. Then 10 years later in the 1870 census, she was STILL 25. By the 1880, she must have aged quite a bit as her age was given as 50, closer to her actual age of 54. Then five years later in 1885, she really got old as her age was given as 65, when she was only 59. She probably didn't know her actual birth date, so ythrough the years the ages were way off.

Antonia gave birth to at least five children and died sometime after 1885 in Huerfano County, location unknown.


- father of Antonia Maes

Juan Manuel Maes was born to Salvador Maes and Maria Juana Gertrudis Lucero, year unknown, probably in Rio Arriba, NM. The only records I found for him were the marriage record of his daughter, Antonia, and birth records for eight children. He married Maria Apolonia Jiron, probably in 1822, the year prior to the birth of their first child. The records of the births of most of their children report that they lived in Ojo Caliente, NM, which is around 15 miles northeast of Abiquiu. By 1854, they had moved to DesMontes.

They had the following children, according to Abiquiu baptisms:

  1. Maria Feliciana, born 9 Jun 1823
  2. Juana Paula, born 17 May 1824
  3. Maria Antonia, baptized 22 Jan 1826 (see above)
  4. Reymundo, born 16 February 1833
  5. Ana Teresa, born 16 May 1834
  6. Maria Martina, born 1 Jan 1836
  7. Jose Guadelupe, born 12 Dec 1837
  8. Jose Casimiro, baptized 8 Mar 1840


- father of Juan Manuel Maes
- grandfather of Antonia Maes

Salvador Antonio Maes married Maria Manuela Garcia, year unknown. The had the following children (all records from Abiquiu):

  1. Juan Manuel, married Maria Apolonia Jiron (see above)
  2. Jose Ysabel, born 5 Nov 1808, married Maria Juliana Villalpando
  3. Juan Francisco, born 6 Oct 1810
  4. Santiago, married Maria de los Reyes Martin
  5. Vicente Ferrar, married Maria Petrona Alarid



- mother of Sebastian Cruz

Maria Barbara Vigil was born 3 Jul 1799 at Rio Chama, NM. Her life is given in the section on her husband, Sebastian Cruz. I have done no research on my own on her line but have her ancestors from the book by Donald Milligan, which I will give in this section.

PARENTS of Barbara Vigil:

Mathias Aparicio Vigil born 2 Mar 1764, Rio Chama, NM
married 1 Feb 1784 Rio Chama, NM
Nicolasa Sanchez born 28 Dec 1758 Rio Chama, NM

PARENTS of Mathias Aparicio Vigil:

Francisco Montes Vigil de Santilana III
married 12 May 1748 Nambe Pueblo, NM
Maria de Jesus Mestas

PARENTS of Francisco Montes Vigil de Santilana:

Francisco Montes Vigil de Santilana II died 1731/1749 Santa Cruz, NM
Antonia Jiron del Castillo died bef 28 Jun 1744, Santa Cruz, NM

PARENTS of Francisco Montes Vigil de Santilana II:

Francisco Montes Vigil I
born 1665 El Real, Zacatecas, Mexico died 11 Sep 1731 Santa Cruz, NM
Maria Jimenez de Ancizo died 19 Nov 1745 Santa Cruz, NM
PARENTS of Nicolasa Sanchez:
Francisco Sanchez born abt 1731 died aft 9 Apr 1805
married 5 Nov 1754 Rio Chama, NM
Margarita Salazar died bef 9 Apr 1805

PARENTS of Francisco Sanchez:

Joaquin Sanchez born 1695
married 1725 Albuquerque, NM
Manuela Francisca G. Mora born Albuquerque

PARENTS of Margarita Salazar:

Juan Antonio de Salazar
born 23 Sep 1714 Santa Cruz, NM died 27 Oct 1780 Rio Chama, NM
married 2 Jul 1735 Albuquerque, NM
Barbara Muniz de Luna born New Mexico


1885 Colorado Census Huerfano County, Colorado, Page 37, ED 2, Household 393, line 25. LDS Film 929068.

1880 U.S. Census Huerfano County, Colorado, Precinct #10, Page 33, ED 60, Household 255, line 19 (Base Oso's Settlement). LDS Film 1254090.

1870 U.S. Census Huerfano County, Colorado, The Valley of the Cucharas River and Tributaries, Post Office: Butte Valley, Colorado, Page 17, Household 167, line 12. LDS Film 0545594.

1860 U.S. Census Taos County, Territory of New Mexico, Culebra Precinct, Post Office: Fernando de Taos, Page 316, Household 1927, Line 10. LDS Film 0803715.

St. Mary's Baptismal Records, Walsenburg, Colorado, 1870-1901. LDS Film 2791.

1845 Spanish and Mexican Colonial Censuses of New Mexico, 1790, 1823, 1845. Translated and compiled by Virginia L. Olmsted. Albuquerque: New Mexico Genealogy Society. c 1975, p. 201, Frame 400.

Translated by Shalane J. Sheley-Cruz and Karen Mitchell.

LeCompte, Janet. Rebellion in Rio Arriba. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. 1985. See pages 126-129.

Preciliano was buried in the Laguna Cemetery, Huerfano County. Information from Huerfano County Genealogical website located at www.rootsweb.com/~cohuerfa/lagunacem.htm.

St. Mary's Church Marriage Records 1871-1957, Walsenburg, CO. LDS Film 2795.

Our Lady of Guadalupe Baptismal Registry. Conejos Colorado 1861-1868. Published by Genealogical Society of Hispanic America, p. 129. Information from Arleen Aguirre.

Baptismal records at our Lady of Sorrows, 1852-1869, Arroyo Hondo, NM LDS Film 16622.

La Merced Sangre de Cristo : El Valley de San Luis, Colorado, 1980, The Sangre de Cristo Land Grant. Chambra, CO: The Land Rights Council. c. 1980.

See map on page 7 of Ron Kessler's Re-Tracing the Old Spanish Trail-North Branch. Monte Vista, CO: Adobe Village Press. 1995.

Tushar, Olibama Lopez. The People of El Valle. A History of the Spanish Colonials in the San Luis Valley Pueblo, CO: El Escritorio. c. 1975.

Abbott, Carl, Stephen J. Leonard, David McComb. Colorado: A History of the Centennial State. Colorado Associated University Press. 1994.

Sporleder, Louis, Romance of the Spanish Peaks. Pueblo, CO: Riverside Printing Company. 1989.

From "The Inflation Calculator," http://www.westegg.com/inflation.

See www.rootsweb.com/~cohuerfa/sandarrcem.htm.

Luciano's age was given as 22 at his marriage in 1821. Santa Clara Mission Marriages 1726-1830 LDS Film 0016975.

Santa Clara Mission Marriages 1726-1830 LDS Film 0016975.

Noble, David Grant, ed. Santa Fe: History of an Ancient City. Santa Fe: School of American Research Press. 1989.

Marriage records at our Lady of Sorrows Church, 1852-1869, Arroyo Hondo, NM LDS Film 16622.

Information from Maria Martinez, San Pablo, Colorado, 2001, researcher of the Vigil line.

David Salazar's Abiquiu Baptismal Book, GSHA. From Karen Mitchell.

Nuestra Senora De los Dolores Church, Arroyo Hondo, NM baptismal records 1852-1869. LDS Film 0016622.

Nuestra Senora De Los Dolores Church, Arroyo Hondo, NM. From records extracted by Maria Clara Martinez. LDS Film 0016622.

The baptismal records for Francisco's first five children are from Arroyo Hondo, Our Lady of Sorrows Church. The baptismal records for the remaining four children (Maria Rosana excepted) are from Walsenburg, St. Mary's Church. And although a range of birthdates from 1853 to 1894, is suspect, the records do reflect that Bonafacia Trujillo was the mother in both years. It would seem that the gap between 1861 and 1876 is a result of records not found (by me) or lost to posterity.

Huerfano County Genealogical Web Site. St. Mary's South Cemetery. http://www.rootsweb.com/~cohuerfa/cemc.htm

The baptismal records for Mariano's first child are from Arroyo Hondo, Our Lady of Sorrows Church. The baptismal records for the remaining children are from Walsenburg, St. Mary's Church. The gap between 1860 and 1870 is probably because of lost or never found records.

Birth date extrapolated from Our Lady of Sorrows Church, Arroyo Hondo, NM burial Records (1852-1869 LDS Film 16622) indicating that she died at age 15 in 1855.

Our Lady of Sorrows Church, Arroyo Hondo, NM burial records (1852-1869) LDS Film 16622.


Santa Clara Mission Marriage Records 1726-1830 LDS Film 0016975.

Santa Clara Marriage Records Santa Clara, NM. LDS Film 0016975. Exact record is:

"11-13-1814 Francisco Antonio Gonzales son of Marcelino Gonzales and Ana Maria Rodriguez residents of Rio Chama married Andrea Dorotea Cruz daughter of Antonio Jose Cruz and Maria Gertrudes Archuleta, deceased, also residents of Rio Chama. Witnesses Bartolome Vegil and Miguel Lucero." Translation provided by Karen Mitchell.

Santa Cruz Holy Cross Church Records, Marriages 1726-1869 Santa Cruz, NM. LDS Microfilm 0016972.

San Juan de los Caballeros Church Records 1726-1956. LDS film 0016982.

Santa Cruz Holy Cross Church Baptisms 1732-1850, Santa Cruz, NM. LDS Film 0016971. Also Santa Cruz de la Canada Baptisms 1710 - 1860, Extracted by Thomas Martinez, Benito Estevan Montoya and Rosena Lasalle (nee Vigil). March 25, 1993.

Milligan, Donald, Editor, Karen Mitchell, Agent. Genealogy of Selected Hispanic Families of New Mexico and Southern Colorado, 1538 - 1990, 1990.

Holy Cross Catholic Church Records, Santa Cruz, NM. Deaths 1726-1859. LDS Film 16975.

Hackett, Charles. Revolt of the Pueblo Indians of New Mexico and Otermin's Attempted Reconquest 1680-1682. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. 1942. page 116.

Chavez, Fray Angelico, "Origins of New Mexico Families," 1992.

Settlements and Missions, 1606-1680 in New Mexico in Maps. Jerry L. Williams, Ed. 2nd Edition. Albquerque: University of New Mexico Press. 1986. p. 102.

Keegan, Marcia. Pueblo People: Ancient Traditions, Modern Lives. Santa Fe: Clear Light Publishers. 1999.

North America Road Atlas. American Automobile Association. Florida. 2000.

http://www.newmexico.org/culture/history.html May 02, 2000.

Abiquiu Baptism 1754-1870 Database entered by Thomas Martinez, 23 March 1993.


1845 Spanish and Mexican Colonial Censuses of New Mexico, 1790, 1823, 1845. (1975)

Chavez, Fray Angelico, New Names in New Mexico, 1820-1850, (El Palacio), vol 64 (Sept-Oct 1959).

Chavez, Fray Angelico, Origins of New Mexico Families. (1992).
© 1997 - 2012 inclusive Karen Mitchell - Colorado City, Colorado