NOTICE All data and photos on this website are Copyrighted by Karen Mitchell. Duplication of this data or photos is strictly forbidden without legal written permission by the Copyright holder.
Scanned by Dick Chenault
Edited by Lydia Corona
Interviewed by Lucia Martinez
Name Julia Roybal
Parents - Juan de Jesus Cardenas, Pavlita Maestas
Paternal grandparents - Philomeno Cardenas, Nina Quintana
Maternal grandparents - Brigido Maestas, Juanita Archuletta
Julia: The Archuletta Family, they were (all) related in some way. I think through the grandparents. The grandfather of mama was Antonio Archuletta and he had so (many children). Have you heard about Antonio Archuletta? He is the father of Lupe Archuletta and of my uncle Benino Archuletta. Then my uncle Benino and my uncle Lupe had only one sister that was the mama of mama. She was named Juanita Archuletta. She then married Brigido Maestas, he was my grandpa. They had three in the family, my mother Pavlita the oldest, then Esequiel and then Elvira. But my gramma died early in life because she had a verguella (?) in one eye, my mother said. She probably caught cancer, because in those days they didn't know what cancer was. She died, she was the first teacher. I came from a line of teachers. There was supposed to be six, (teachers) in our family but.----------------- but mama Juanita was the first teacher of the family.
Another person who could tell you many things is Savino Archuletta. He lives here in town. He is the one that knows the most about the family. He is the oldest now of the Archulettas. If I could bring him up here or go to,———— but it is possible that Celestina doesn't want to (go). She is from La Cucharas. Oh, he knows about the grampas and old Antonio that would be his grandfather. Well, anyway what was I saying? I come from the family of Brigido Maestas and Pavlita Maestas. Those are her parents, Juanita Archuletta and Brigido Maestas, they were married and they had three children, my mother, my uncle Esequiel and my aunt Elvira. My uncle Esequiel never did get married. My aunt Elvira is the mama of John Rodriquez our county, I mean our director? Oh John? Yes, John is from Pass Creek. Also that is where (his) family is from. Through his mother's side he is related to the Archulettas too, like my mother's family is to the Archulettas. My dad comes from the family of Cardenas's and Quintana's. I have a paper written, but where it is I don't know, unless maybe I could look for it. My sister could start a family tree, (with what) we have, because I want to know who were the grandparents of those (people). But any way my Dad's parents were Cardenas, he was papa of my papa and his mama was Nina Quintana. They got married and had 12 children. My dad being the oldest one, (his name was) Juan de Jesus Cardenas. My grandpa was named Philomeno Cardenas. They had 12 children. They spread out and, and had families, (of their own). And mama and papa were married, I think about in….? (They had both been married before.) Papa married one…….from here. She lived below this place.
But it wasn't that papa didn't ask mama, (to get married) first. But mama didn't want to, and she told him, why weren't you rich, why were you so poor? The Archulettas were rich and I am so poor, for this reason no, (I can not marry you). So later mama married a Gallegos (man). Juan Gallegos, and (with him) had a baby boy. Later this Juan Gallegos died before a year of marriage, and mama stayed in a family way, waiting for the baby to be born. It was a boy, (and) I think mama said she thought that he; (the baby) had pneumonia. In those days there were not many doctors, maybe one doctor, (in the whole area).
Well, anyway mama coming from the Archuletta and the Maestas families, married into the Gallegos (family). This Gallegos is the uncle of Scholastica. (But) then that is another story, about the Vasquez. Have your heard about the Vasquez? The mother of the Vasquez was also from the Gallegos (family). (She was) the sister of the husband of mama. Soon after Juan Gallegos, the husband of mama died, the (first) wife of my papa died, she was expecting when she died. About three or five years after that mi papa asked mama to marry him again, this time she said yes. She had a little boy to raise and no job, and she was doing all the hard work of the family for my uncle Benino and his family and (also) for my uncle Lupe. She was like a maid. She said there was no income in those days and no welfare to go to or nothing. So she decided to marry my dad.
Somehow, I don't remember the story real well but anyway I think he, (my dad) had twenty cows, or were the cows hers and daddy had the property, little bitty property, over there where Andres Valdez and Lucia are living. There is where my parents lived in the 1900's, and they had a small house, maybe about four rooms. Soon after they were married the first daughter was born, Feliciana, my sister, and 11 months after came Esperanza and then 14—15 years later I was born.
Well, little by little with those twenty cows, (the family prospered). Both my parents were very intelligent, they started to (accumulate many) animals I don't know, (how many). There were cows, sheep, pigs, horses and then bought a little more land. At last they (were able) to build the house that is
—— east of here. It was a house of three story home that was where I was born. That was a beautiful home but they moved in 1938 to Bernalillo, N.M. (By that time) I was already married. (They) sold everything here and went over there and bought a place in Bernalillo and they had sheep that grazed on the Sandia Hills. It seems to me that they took their sheep from here. I was told that there was about 500, something like that. But they did real well together, (my parents). And then I got married in 1935 before they moved.
Lucia: Why did they want to move to New Mexico?
Julia: I don't know papa was very ambitious he wanted more and more trade and sell and make more profit. And since we were all married, he didn't have (anyone). He didn't have anyone, only (mama) and lived more than a mile away, (from us). He liked very much a place in New Mexico because it had so much fruit that could be sold, that place near Bernalillo had much fruit, (trees). (It was) near Albuquerque, 17 miles east of there. I was there once and saw all the sheep and saw that mama didn't like it there... In 1938 they came back here. Yes, it was 1938 they came back from Bernalillo, so they must have left when Josie my daughter was about 2 years old. I (would) say that they left in about 1937, (something) like that. They weren't even there for a year, cause the heat was too much for my mom. They left in December when they moved out here. We went to visit them in July and right away mama started packing. She said she wasn't going to stay here anymore.
So like I say, going back to me, coming from the family of Cardenas and Maestas and a family of three daughters. Sonny, my stepson, died in 1930 and the girls from my sisters got married pretty young. She was about l5, (when she got married) to Gaspar Montez. So we go into the family of Montez now. He was the son of the Commissioner.
Lucia: I know that Gaspar had a lot of land, is that not so?
Julia: They still have the place. My nephews are still taking care of this big property that they have there. I would say about 1000 acres, near Gardner and further going to Westcliff. That's their property, which, (belongs) to Charlie Montez and Joe Montez and Stella Montez. Stella lives in California but she owns property here, and my niece, Mary Montez also has a place here. That was Gasper's family; it is a long story, the families, the way that they spread out. My second sister Catalina Montez, she is the oldest. Following her was, Esperanza, we call her Hope, so if I talk about Hope and Esperanza it's the same party. She married a coal miner, Sam Bellah.
Lucia: Oh, then the Bells worked in the mines?
Julia: A-ha! When she married Sam, he worked in…. on the other aide of the mountains. Sam Bellah was a little German as was his father, his Mama was an Archuletta. The older Bellah married an Archuletta; she was from the other Archuletta family that I told you about. Do you know that Archuletta family? They were Alfredo Archuletta and Daniel Archuletta from Redwing. They are related through my dad. She was the sister of papa (and the) mama of Alfredo y Daniel.
What I am trying to say is that Mrs. Bellah was Archuletta. She was the sister of the papa of those other Archulettas, not Savino's family. Savino was the cousin of Uncle Philippe, who was the papa of Daniel.
Lucia: Oh! Then those Archulettas and..... were not blood relatives?
Julia: Yes, they were blood relatives but distant.
And then Sam got married with my sister and they thought they were related but their relation was too far, because my mother coming from the Archulettas and the mama of Sam was Archuletta also, they were like third cousin's, mama and Doña Alisa. Well now my sister and Sam, Hope and Sam, (that is) were like forth or fifth cousins. But this is a long ways from our business, (discussion). So any way they had their children, which were Bobby, Cleo's husband and Archuletta.....Bellah. Cardenas and Bellah, but they came from the Archuletta family. (Correct interpretation of previous sentence very confused and hard to read)
The older Bellah I believe came from Missouri somewhere. I never forget this joke about the older Bellah. He used to be a carpenter for daddy at the ranch and he was building something, roofing a house or something, and the poor old man didn't know anything about the Mexican language, and you know that there have always been jokes so it's going to be a bad joke. So you erase it, (if you wish). The poor guy couldn't pronounce the Spanish words very good. The way that he said pass the Quhatha, Bobby, he said to Bob Bellah. He said “Pasa me la Quanhatha, me gusta mucho la cagada.” (Pass me the Quahatha (Cottage cheese like) because I like the feces.) (This joke would only be funny if told in Spanish). This was only a joke that people have always told and gotten along real nice.
Well, anyway it's a big story on how the county got started. In my book I didn't start to really know until I went to school, that I remember my first teacher, Laveta Springer and this must have been about the time of kindergarten.
My sister Hope use to go on Sunday's to sew. She used to have like a 4-H you know, like that for the girls, years ago and I must have been about five but I used to like to go with my sister on Sundays up there. Then in the wintertime she used to teach at Chama and the school was made of adobe. I have pictures of it but I don't have (them here) how. Laveta was like my first teacher and then for my other grade, Mr. Wyatt, Michey Wyatt, he lives right here opposite the school. Lawrence Wyatt his papa was a teacher in Chama.
Lucia: What kind of a guy (was he)?
Julia: He was a very short man, real pleasant looking, he looked like Michey (his son). Mickey Wyatt that was his name. I don't remember what the teacher was called but it was Mr. Wyatt, is the only way we called him. One was Lawrence? First was Lawrence or this was Lawrence? He lives opposite the school.
Lucia: I heard that he was (fuerte?) at one time.
Julia: Maybe he was, I don't remember that, but he was a teacher in Chama.
Lucia: Did the people like him?
Julia: Well they liked him and they didn't like him. I remember that he hit me very hard on the head with his fist. When we arrived (at school) a little late when the bell rang in the noon hour, we were greeted by a knock on the head as we entered the door. One day I told my school companions that today I am going to faint when the teacher hits me on the head, and to teach him(a lesson) you all will say that my father is the Director,(of schools) “Good, Good Julia” they told me. Well he hit me and I fell at his feet and the (other children) yelled “goodie, goodie, they said, you killed Julia and there going to fire you. Her daddy is the director.” The poor man treated us so nice after that we could come late and go out through the window and he wouldn't do anything. See how the kids are? So anyway, don't remember about the people firing him. He, I don't remember, I was just in the second grade, and very young. But he hit me hard on the head and I fainted for a while, so he changed his ways with us. Then after that, who was my other teacher? Margaret Furphy.
Lucia: Was it Furphy or Lawson?
Julia: A sister of the Furphy's, Lawson is not a Furphy at all. He took over the Furphy Mortuary, but kept the name Furphy. See all my relations have always used the Furphy Mortuary, ever since I remember. But anyway what was I saying?
Lucia: About the school.
Julia: The school, oh, Margaret Furphy, not Margaret Furphy, yah, she must have been Margaret Furphy, but not the sister, a niece to Herbert Furphy, was our teacher out there. I think she was only there about a year, teachers didn't last long. You had school 8 months, from October to May or April. We didn't have 9 months like now. And then we had good luck they hired Martha King and Josephine Aragon. They were just very good friends, but then Josephine married Martha King's first cousin, Tommy Aragon. And they used to go live over there during the week. That's the only time that we learned something (with Josephine and Martha). Because we had them for 4 or 5 years, I remember I had Martha, no, yah, I had Josephine in the 4th grade and Martha the rest of the year from 6th to the 8th.grade. We we're lucky to have Martha there for about 5 or 6 years, and then we had Josephine. Then we came to High School. I remember that I didn't have from the 4th grade or from the 5th grade, there were such few kids, you know in each grade, there were such few kids you know in each grade that they were jumping from one grade to another and (would) skip one. So I don't remember having 6th grade, so from the 5th, I went on to the 7th. I skipped one grade and then I was about 12 then I came to high school in Gardner, because of the idea of skipping. They would skip the third grade and go into the 4th, but you did part of the work somehow, which could be now called individualized teaching. That's what she did (Martha) in those days. And after that I didn't have anymore teachers in Chama, when I finished the 8th grade with Martha King. My husband also finished the 8th grade with Martha King.
Lucia: Oh, those were the Abilas with lot of land.
Julia: Yeah, now the Abilas, Cerio, have brought the property that my father owned at one time, (that was) owned by the Archulettas before my father. So nice that it stays in the family. Of course Cerio has been selling to the hippies, but he will keep (most) of the land I'm quite sure he'll always keep it. He is my nephew thru my first husband. He was his (Cerio's) half uncle, because Cerio's father Porfirio and my husband were half brothers. So anyway that is the way it started up there.
Then, let me see, I came to the Gardner School that is where we had our first two (??) teachers. We had four rooms in the Gardner school. Mrs. Frost I believe was the name of one of our teachers, and the other one was Bahagen or something like that from Alamosa. Those are the first two high school teachers that we had. We only had English, I guess, and typing. I don't remember if I had any Spanish. Maybe we did. This was in the thirties. And what else did we have that I remember? Math, Algebra, but between the two teachers they taught about 20 high school students. And then (I) got married in thirty-five, and raised my two children.
Lucia: Over there also?
Julia: There is where I was married. Because the ranch of my papa end the ranch of Juan Santos Abila, my father—in—law, was just about ½ mile over the hill from us. (In those days) you would only have one boyfriend, you (could) like others but still you had one boyfriend, because your family liked him. My mama liked the Abilas a lot because my father-in law liked the Archulettas. He didn't have any relations, (in Colo.) and he wanted to come from New Mexico and they needed sheep herders and they needed people to work on the farm, my uncle Lupe and my uncle Benino. So my papa Juan Santos worked with the Abilas. He later married a niece of the Archulettas and that is where Porfirio came from. Porfirio Abila. They later had two daughters, (so) Porfirio had two sisters, Carmelita and Keno Abila. The first wife of my papa died and he married Cruz Rodriguez, who is my mother-in-law, the mama of my husband. This Cruz Rodriquez was the aunt of Francisca Salazar. Aunt Lena. Now what (else) can I tell you about this family?
After my papa Juan Santos y mama were married they had three children. They (actually) had four but one was killed, he was killed by a 22, (rifle), who knows how it happened. They had Jacobo the oldest, and then Jorge who is still living in Boulder and (then) Eloy. The first Eloy was the one that was killed (then they named the youngest Amelo but they called him Eloy). And that is how the Abila family started.
Now for our family, Esperanza, my father named us for the three faiths. Faith, Hope and Charity. Fedelina, Fedelina was Faith, Esperanza was Hope and I was Catetha, but they called me Julia. I never did like the name Catetha. I was always Catetha and still my name was Julia. I think that I have already
told you that Fedelina married Gaspar Montez and Esperanza married Sam Bellah. I married my neighbor, the only boyfriend I ever had, Loy Abila.
Lucia: In those times, when you got married, did you have a ceremony and all?
Julia: Ooh! What barbarism, what suffering. Well I was so young, like I tell you I was (only) sixteen.
Lucia: Oh, you were young.
Julia: I just barely finished high school in May and he asked for my hand in about October, he asked for my hand. Well Loy had to come here because we were (not allowed) to have dates. We saw each other in the school or we saw each other at the store unless we got together on Sunday. Because the older people did not want us to go out with boys alone, they were very strict in our family. Oh, we could go to the dances and dance with them but we went with an aunt or an uncle. I went with Uncle Solomon who is the father of the wife of Jacobo Archuletta, my uncle Solomon. We went to the dance and I was dancing a lot with Loy, because I liked to dance a lot. After about an hour of dancing, he said lets go Julia. I said I am not going. I am going to dance. I didn't want to go. “I am going to tell your papa.” We just got here in the car and right away he wanted to return. So I stayed and I went home with one of my aunts. Aunt Maria. This Aunt Maria is the aunt of me papa. She was the mama of Jose Adan Manzanares. My relations are all over I couldn't possibly have married anybody else but the Abila. My father-in-law was raised with the Archulettas but no relation. And my mom knew that my father-in-law lived well because she was raised with them. Naturally my mom liked my boyfriend, Loy real well because she knew his papa and he is a very good person and he will make a very good husband and will treat you very good. O.K., but my father was a Republican. There have always been jokes----about the parties. And papa Juan Santos was a Democrat, so when the Abilas asked my father for my hand in marriage, he didn't want me to marry a Democrat, there was the joke he didn't like Democrats that were Republicans and so forth. He was trying to tell me not to get married. Well I did, (anyway). Well one night Loy told me one day when he met me on the road that he was going to ask for me. There weren't engagements (as such) in those days, they asked for your hand and gave you a month or so, (until the marriage). Well he was going to ask me if I wanted to marry him. Then say yes if not then say no. But in that way were very sociable, you know what I mean? Everybody, except the older folks didn't care.
One night here comes two cars. I remember that I had cleaned the board floors very clean, because mama Cruzita, the mama of Loy was very clean. Everybody knew that there was nobody cleaner than that woman in the whole territory over there in Chama. Well I scrubbed the floor; I think I used lye, because I had my hands raw, because I never did much to help my mom. We had a little maid, who was from here. The story, (on her) was that she was the wife of Benito Cruz. Her name was Isabel. So naturally she had to do work for us because mama used to help daddy out in the fields. Anyway she had done everything very good and all but I wanted to clean the floor because it was very white around the? We had a house with 8 rooms, it was the house where we lived with mama and papa and it also had a basement. Well I knew that the Abilas were going to come this night and I told my mother, that they were going to come and ask for my hand this night. Who knows if your father is going to be mad or not, you know how the old folks are. Well but she knew the Abilas, because she likes my father-in-law very much. Here come the two machines and I was on the stairs, the upstairs, cause we had an upstairs in my house, and I was hiding there when my papa asked “who is that?” He opened the door and there stood Don Juan Santos Abila in the door way. He said I have come with my family to visit, he didn't; say anything about asking for me or anything. I remember that we had a kitchen; they entered through the kitchen not through the reception room. The reception room was white and all that and that room had a big fireplace. They came through the kitchen and I thought how stupid for them to come that way. There come papa, Juan Santos and mama Cruzita, Porfirio, Benidita, Jacobo and Niebes the wife of Jacobo and Jorela and Rosita. There were 4 cars; I mean there were 2 cars full. Well his brothers and their wives came in.
I don't remember if there were other people there or not. They entered the living room; it was our sitting room and part dining room. Well there I was listening and listening at last papa Juan Santos stood up to give a speech, to honor the house and spoke on and on and on, and O.K. at last they gave them coffee and cookies or whatever they had. And I was still hidden there. At last my papa said to me “Come here, come down here and talk to these people.” So here I come stumbling, (down the stairs.) I was very young (only) 16, my goodness. And so then it took Daddy about two weeks, (to give an answer) because it seems to me that was the custom to give calabasa. Calabaza is what they say when they do not give permission to marry, because papa didn't want a Democrat for a compadre, but he changed his mind. I think he gave permission in two weeks, and so there it stood. I think he wanted to say yes all the time. Mama didn't want to give me up any way; I was the only one at home, besides Isabel y Benito. Those are the people that used to help my folks. Like a maid and butler, not a butler but he use to help outside Benito, (that is). My papa and my oldest sister Fedelina y Gaspar went to give me. Well Loy was listening there when my dad came. He was getting nervous, because my dad had given two weeks, and they were expecting calabazas, but I had already told Loy, (what my answer would be). I had met him some place, you know. Poor boy they made him suffer a lot. Respect, my husband never kissed me, could you believe that, until the day that we went to take pictures, after we were married. That is the truth, (there was that) respect in the house, my papa Juan Santos raised a good family and so did my family also. My papa was a Penitente, don't remember that papa Juan Santos was also a Penitente or not.
Anyway through dad, my husband joined the Sociadad de Penitentes, they were beautiful, I liked it. Anytime they say anything about the Penitentes they hurt me, so that was beautiful, that they were both together, my dad and my husband.
Well after the calabasas, this happened about Octobre, when they asked for my hand, and Papa Juan Santos wanted the wedding (to take place) soon. And my papa was the opposite, he didn't want it until June, weddings are more beautiful in June. There is a saying, things done too soon. Oh, what is that saying? If you delay something it will be better. Or if you do something too fast it will be badly done, or something like that. Finally we talked about it so let's get married for Christmas. So then we went to buy the (Donas). You know what the “donas” are don't you? Your outfit, your wedding outfit. So his brother Jacobo and his wife Nieves were very (nice to me) since she married him. She was from there at Yellowstone from the people of Jose Ramon Martinez that lived in Gardner, was the sister of Nieves. Someday through another family you will find out about Jose Ramon, very nice people. I liked her very much because she always used to talk to me, even when I was single and (always) kind of close to me. Maybe she figured she would be my sister-in-law. We got along just like sisters, God bless her.
They came for me when we----set the date for December 26th, the day after Christmas. So about a month before that we went to buy the “donas” and the “Bavle”. The “Bavle” is your trunk. Well they bought it for me. I tried on so many dresses, and I bought a two piece outfit and the prettiest veil (that) I found. None of the old folks came with us, only the madrina and the padrino. So the flowers we bought made of paper. That was the wedding, we would not be able to go for fresh flowers and get our hair done and all that the day before the wedding. No, she did my hair, the day before the wedding and she fixed the tunic, and the tunic had pearls here, and was (made of) velvet. It already had the cape, but it was very pretty. I remember one of these days when we were shopping with Loy I got very embarrassed, about something. I don't remember, when they told me that I was going to need bloomers also. Oh, I was embarrassed, you see because this is the respect. And she told me that I was going to need bloomers and you're going to need a bra, and I didn't want Loy to hear anything like that. So, anyway when she put the b1oomers, Loy had moved away and went with Jake to look at the suits. She was really a nice person. I can say what I know I learned through her, such as to bake bread, my mother-in-law too. Cause I didn't know anything (about being a wife). I remember washing only about one time before I got married on a washing board, because there were no machines.
We bought the suit and the “Bavle” and I took them to my house. I brought my suit and, came home in, what kind of a car did Loy have? Must have been a 35 Model A or something like that, and we went home, it was in the night time and I left my suit there, and he took his suit to his house. Well finally the wedding came in December, but before that we had the vespers of the wedding, which were the same day as the wedding. Pretty soon it will come to me. Well the first day of the wedding is the day of the bride. The first day was the banquette and the dinner of the parents of the bride and the parents of the groom. My padrinos at my baptism were Isabel Garcia y Francisco Garcia, but (Francisco) had died but my madrina, (Isabel) made the banquet for us. She was a very good cook, of pies and so forth.
Julia: Old man, what do they call the day before the wedding, do you remember before we had the wedding?
Ralph: El Prendorio?
Julia: El Prendorio is the first day. My madrina Isabel made the dinner, the chilies, the empanadas and I don't know what else, I don't remember. The next day is the day of the wedding that is the day of the groom. This day the parents of the groom make a fiesta. Then you get married and you go with your husband.
The honeymoon. In mine we had a wedding dance after the whole day of fiesta, for two days. The parade when arriving to the wedding, you walk and the violin and the guitar played so pretty.
I slept at home that night with my husband, but it was like sleeping with my sister, he was on his side and I stayed on my side, (of the bed), not like now, there was a lot of respect in those days.
Then the next day we came to our little house, you see I had a lot with my folks. I could buy anything I wanted to and this and that. I married into, not a poor family, but into a lower, (class). The reason is that they had the way, Lucia, but they knew how to use their money, they knew the value of a dollar. I had my room already; this was my house, one room. My mother-in-law had four or six rooms and one room was for us. There I had my bed, the cupboard, the closet, the stove, and the table. That was the beginning of my married life. Everything there was all paid for, there was no bills, no financing, (in those days). There wasn't a honeymoon, (trip). So in my little room there is where we got started, for one year we lived in one little room. We got married in December and then my daughter was born the next December, on the 9th, just a few days before our 1st year anniversary. And then we got another room. My father-in-law built (on) more rooms so they gave us another room, which made it our bedroom. When my girl was born I bad two rooms. So you see little by little people do what they can. If I had been, (a modern girl) I could have said lets go with my folks, we would have a lot of room. But in those days the wife didn't have much to say. The man was the boss you know, (and) I obeyed him. I don't obey Ralph like I had obeyed, (Loy), but the differences of time you know. We had a beautiful time.
So after that, I (would) say about four years after, he built two more rooms. So that gave us four rooms and a big porch. But we always lived next door to my in-laws, which to me was OK, because we got along fine. She was very moody but we knew how to get along and I always got along fine.
When he, (Juan Santos) retired his three sons took over running the ranch. We had a place in Mosco Pass for pasture in the summer for the sheep. Then Jake decided to move to Boone, (Colo.), because he got a job at the Ordinance, (Plant), but George and Loy continued with the ranch. Then came 1945 the polio epidemic and he, (Loy) was the first person that got polio and he died within three days. It started like a cold, he was very sick, all his glands swelled up, you know like the mumps and then they got worse, they went to the lower glands. We brought him to the hospital and they found that he had polio, so they transferred him to the old St. Mary's in Pueblo and he died in three days. Was very disappointed, I was with my two kids, and dad was with me all the days. So then I, but I had already started teaching that year before. I substituted for a teacher that had died. Mr. Torres had died and I substituted for him. There weren't many teachers during the war, so then I started. Good thing that Miss Nelson was the county superintendent in those days. And she was my guiding light, like a guardian angel.
I moved in with Hope here, sold the sheep to my brother-in-law and they sold the property later on. The Mosco Pass (property) I sold later on to Ben Garcia. We had 160 acres. This is where I started going to school during the summer after he died, and I lived with my parents.
There was a big Chicano foundation, called ------Americano or something, years ago in the 40's there was help for the people that needed help. So she,(Miss Nelson) had a chance to sent two people to college, so he asked me and told me that I should (go) because what was I going to do with my two Children? So I talked it over with my parents, because still you asked your parents what would be the best. Dad and mom thought that was a wonderful idea for me to go back to school in 9 years that I had been married. There was another girl who was that----- got the other scholarship. So we both started at Adams State with this scholarship that Mrs. Nelson got from some Chicano Organization.
My folks used to take care of my kids in the summer when I was to go to college. It took about 10 years to get a degree but we got it. I didn't stop and in the winter time I took extension courses at the school and continued my education to get a degree. Mrs. Nelson's guidance helped me a lot, but another friend Susie Trujillo gave me a lot of help too. Susie Trujillo was born in Malachite; up there and then she was working for the welfare. When I used to go to school, she used to help my kids with a $49.00 check each month, which I'm not ashamed to bring in because my kids were on welfare at the time that I was getting my education. When I sold the animals and part of my place up there, I couldn't use all of the money you had to put some away to take care of the children when they became of age. Mrs. Nelson was the person to take care of my kids, and I could only use half of the money you know for bills and to live. Things were not as hard as they are today, but the salaries were very low. I used to get $126.00 a month and we just barely make it. But it pays it's like saving for a rainy day that we say today. You will never learn it until you become older. I'm talking about education. You just learn and learn and it will pay off.
Who would have thought that when I was earning $126.00 a month at the beginning, it would go like today? Tomorrow is my payday, through the summer too, nine hundred and some dollars a month, like I say it pays off. If I can take it until I'm 7O. Well imagine, I'll bring in a thousand dollar check, one thousand five hundred a month. Mrs. Joseph told me “don't you quit until you are 70”. I'll try but no, really I don't think I'll stay that long.
Lucia: You were saying that your dad was on the board of directors over there?
Julia: Yes, years at the beginning, I don't remember who (else) served (on the board). I must have been about 10, in about 1928, see I was born in 1919. Mr. Wyatt (was my teacher) remember that I told you that they were going to fire him because he hit me? Don Quinon Archuletta also was a director when I was in school. Deseo Martinez and Felece Rivera were my compadres. Don Agustine Dow, I'm talking when I was a little girl, came when I was a little grown. When I entered the school there in Chama my compadres were Jerado Martinez and Benita Abila, she was the wife of Porfirio and the mama of Felece Rivera was a director and my husband was a director when I taught school there also before he died.
Lucia: All of your family were community oriented then?
Julia: Oh ya, we had meetings and were very active people. If you needed me for a program we had programs that lasted for three hours. The programs that Mrs. King put on were the kind that I did. I followed her ways of teaching and her ways of putting on a play. For the three hour programs, the people helped, they put up the stage, all one had to do was to tell them what to do.
Lucia: What kind of programs did you put on Julia?
Julia: We put on a variety. Beginning with something patriotic, you know at the beginning, then into dia1ogue and then came a skit, ------dancing, “put your little foot,” or a square dance and then we followed with more dialogue and recitation of poem and beautiful dialogue in Mexican, American and Spanish (languages). Not at the same time (of course) but there always seemed to have been Spanish along the way. I remember, because I taught a Spanish dialogue when I was teaching in Chama and in Badito and even in Pryor and also in Bandito? The learned a dialogue of the Cataloeones, and I had the same one in Primero also. We put Mexicans and Anglos so that they could have a dialogue.
Lucia: All this time that you were teaching and stuff, it seems that the directors were Mexicanos and the Spanish People were the ones that had the school going.
Julia: Well in Chama there were only Mexican people, there wasn't even one Anglo in the Chama district. It is possible that the Matins lived there. That was in Chama then they had a school in Redwing, and the directors were Anglo. Then there was Malachite and there were some Mexicano and some Anglos because there were Mexican ranches in the area. But in Chama there were only Mexican people.
Lucia: Each school had its director.
Julia: Enrollment was about 25 (children) for 2 rooms, like I have told you, I had two teachers. There was always two teachers in the school. The school (building) was in the shape of an “L”. The room that pointed to the East was the room for the small children, first to 4th grade then the other was 5th to 8th grade or 4th to the 8th. Then in 1937 or l936 the WPA started and then they built a school, it is the school here now, but now it is the house of Mr. Hoy, this was the school that they made. I taught there, in the new school. The WPA made it out of stone, they built two rooms, very big rooms, beautiful windows on both sides for the sunshine and we had the main room was converted into a stage, the stage was always there. When my husband died, I taught there the same year, and I lived in that little room. I had a stove and a bed. You have to do with what you have my child. We also had a tin tub to take baths, and we had to haul water. I was the janitor for the school; the one that came from Walsen Camp didn't know that I was the Janitor. We even had to haul the water for the kids. It was hard but I enjoyed every bit of it. If I cou1d only go back and turn overnight into the same person, I wouldn't change anything. I guess cause I needed the job so bad. I also worked at Safeway Stores also you know, in the Springs and in Pueblo, I got the training in Pueblo, to maintain the family. I used to take correspondence course also at the same time.
You know how it is; I don't have to tell you. I've always insisted that people that want to better themselves, continue working and working for something. Then my kids went to high school, my girl was going to high school, at Huerfano High School here and my son to St. Mary's in Walsenburg.
What else can I tell you? Two years in Chama when I became a widow, and then at Lower Badito, seven years there.
Lucia: Then when you were teaching it wasn't the county seat anymore?
Julia: What was the county seat, what are you talking about? Walsenburg has always been the county seat, of Huerfano County. I think what you are trying to ask me, the districts; there was not just one district, no no. The districts didn't I tell you, Chama, Malachite, Pass Creek, Upper Badito, Farisita, Gardner, Lower Badito. Upper Badito and Lower Badito were divided because of the river. Upper Badito was to the north side of the river. Lower Badito was to the south side of the river. Then there was the mining camps and their districts. In those days there were many mining camps, each camp, but not all of them.
There was Alamo, it was one district, then Tioga was another... Then Gordon and Toltec was next. Walsenburg was the district, and it was always a parochial school, St. Mary's. Then here below (Walsenburg) was Las Cucharas where Mrs. Nelson and (Mrs.?) Lucero used to teach up there in their younger days. Then there was Rouse, Mr. Blasi was the teacher in Rouse for a lot of years. Mrs. (?) that lives here across the street from me. There was another teacher, Mrs. Samples who resigned and moved to Pueblo, that's when I got a job in Pryor. So like I started, I taught 2 years at Chama and then 7 years at Lower Badito, one year at Upper Badito and then Dand. One year and then I went back to Chama again in 1954, I think it was, and I could see the difference of the children. Then I started to teach the kids that I had taught in the grade schools, they were already 8th graders or getting ready to go to high school.
In 1953, 54, or 55 they began to reorganize the districts. Not every district came into, the (new) district. We started with a few at a time I think.
The year that I went to teach at Chama, they wanted me. Augustine Garcia was the director at Gardner. I think Rachel was going to be transferred down here or something happened. Anyway, they wanted me to teach in Gardner. Augustine Garcia wanted me as a head teacher to teach the 8th grade. Well at the same time there was a salesman, Mr. Art Benine, the husband of Mrs. Benine who was the director here from Washington School. I saw him at the store one day and I told him that my family was going to High School here and I had to be away from them the whole week and they needed me to help them in their studies. He said to put in your application and I'll see what we can do for you Julia. I put my application in and right away about a weeks time he went to kind of supervise my teaching and I knew I had the job the minute he left, because he told me, “I think you'll be teaching in town”. I had applied and applied in town but I had never heard about my application, he couldn't say the reason but I knew why.
Well anyway when I taught in Chama that year and then I got hired in Walsenburg I told Augustine that I was sorry because I knew all the people there and all the people wanted me there. I was very sorry but I was closer to home with my kids here when they needed me at the time, you know how it is when they are in high school. So then I started teaching at Walsen Camp the mining camp. That's the year that they reorganized the district when I was up here at Walsen Camp. Then the next year, Filda was teaching at Washington School, first and second grades and her mother died in California. I started my second year at Walsen Camp and then Mr. Mowrey, was our principle in those days at Washington School. He asked me to come, he brought me from Walsen Camp, I lived in that district. I remember I only had one family, maybe three children, Spanish children and then my own two children, because where ever I taught I took my kids. I couldn't leave them with mama winter and summer, so wherever I went I took my kids.
In a way I sure wish (my kids) had had other teachers but they did have other teachers in high school, my girl had them in the 8th grade. She had Mrs. Blasi. When I was teaching in PRIOR, she was in the 8th grade. And she came good; she and another little boy got the highest grades in the county. She was Mexicana and the little boy Amedi was from Tioga, he was Italian. For this reason I tell you there were very few of us……. I don't know I've gotten along with people, Lucia maybe that is what makes me think that I don't see, I haven't seen very much discrimination. I think our Spanish kids have always been taught you know by Anglo teachers the best they can, really. Because we do have some smart kids, Spanish kids. Like now we have Donnie Martinez, that's his grandson, a straight “A” student for next year. He will finish next year.
To bad that they don't understand Spanish, because the Bilingual Program is a blooming program, but these children, (just) don't understand. I feel sad about it but like I say what's good for your children has to be good for you. What's good for my children has got to be good for your children. My children only had Spanish in high school and they have gotten along in this world very well. Not only because they are Spanish people. But they did understand Spanish at home my kids, through my parents. Like I told you we spoke Spanish at home, but our children say my daughter isn't going to teach her son Spanish. We didn't teach Spanish, Spanish the language is spoken at home with English, when I had my grandson being raised at home. So you see Spanish is going out.
Lucia: Yes it is going out because they don't have to.......
Julia: For that reason the program would be very good, to bring it (up) a little bit. One doesn't know anything as to what is going to happen, who the director will be or anything.
Lucia: No, I don't know. I heard that they were going to wait until July.
Julia: Somebody said that either you or Carlos.
Julia: (going back to a previous topic) I taught seven years. I taught two fami1ies, the family Pino, (was one family) they (helped) win the track meet one year, when my school of 11 children won over Washington and St. Mary in track. So we were really proud of all that, with just 11 of my kids.
The Pinos were directors or there were other directors. Juan Pino my compadre, Simon Pino, because I baptized one of my school kids too. When he was born, we baptized little Eddie Pino. Juan Pino, Solomon Pino and Mike Perrino were the directors there below, and the directors of the other district of Upper Badito was Bernardo Santistevan. Wasn't he related?
Lucia: Ya Esequiel Martinez was the brother of Rosanna Santistevan.
Julia: Who else was director? Montoya, Frank Montoya and Don? I don't remember the other but they were brothers. Those were the upper Badito. And at Farisita the directors were? Now, I don't remember, see how you are refreshing my memory of years ago? I may be right, I may be wrong in some of the things because like I tell you I suffered there when my husband died. Martin Archuletta, who was not related to us at all, was from Farisita and it seems to me also there was Cora Saiz, and I don't remember any others. From Gardner there was Augustine Garcia, they are very wealthy, they even have a plane there below Gardner. He supported a large family, they are all married now I think, but he is very intelligent.
Oh, when I taught in Pryor, Pat Michek, Joe Zubal and a Vezzani were directors.
Lucia: In other words, like here was Walsen and here was Gardner, and there was Pryor over there and since those were the Italianos and Slovenians and all, they had the power, but at the meetings it was different.
Julia: Well in Pryor they didn't realize that if they had found an Anglo teacher, I wouldn't have been hired, but this was during the war. But they treated me very nice. I can't say that I saw any signs of discrimination there. (From) those three directors and their families, but I only had Anglo children to teach. I don't remember if I did have Musio Manzanares' children or not. (Going back to another previous topic) I went to Washington School to teach there for awhile until Filda come back. It took Filda two month: to come back but then when she came back, they kept me at Washington and they placed her at Hill School. That's the way I started. I taught from 1955 at Washington School, until 1960 and then I met Mr. Roybal in 1958 and got married in 1958. So in 1960 we moved to Primero because he was a miner and was working out there and I worked at Primero 6 years. Then daddy died and you know how it is, mama was so lonesome because, one of the old folks had died and the other infirm from lonesomeness. So I asked if I could come back, finally I got hired to move back to Walsenburg. I started in remedial evaluating, and that is how I came back home,
Lucia: And your mama, she died too then or is she still alive?
Julia: Two years after she died, and I didn't feel good here and we had already bought a home, (in Walsenburg) so I asked for a leave of absence and landed at Primero. I wasn't going to teach but I figured I might as well be a substitute, because he was a miner. Nothing. I landed a teaching (job), they needed a teacher so I taught one year and then I figured what's the use of buying a home here and having a good home in Walsenburg and paying rent there, (in Primero). Lucky that the board hired me (back) again. I was really happy about that. All in all I spent most of my (teaching) life at Washington. I taught my children's' children, as they say. This year I'll be teaching my grandson, I think, and I better teach my great grandson when he starts, if he is here, and that will be the end of it. God only knows what he has in front of you. I don't know it's been real rewarding, I have enjoyed every moment of it.
Lucia: When you were teaching during all of these years it appeared that everybody got along good together.
Julia: Everything then was beautiful. I don't ever remember having a PTA meeting that people would be in disagreement. It seemed as though the people were always for the children and their education, really. I never seen differences like you see them now. If they didn't like you (the teacher) they would just tell you not to come back next year.
Lucia: Who were the first families' then that you have heard about in that whole valley of Gardner? In that whole area you were saying that the Archulettas were?
Julia: The first family that I heard about what?
Lucia: That came to that Valley that started.........
Julia: Oh, that was definitely the Archulettas, my mother's relations, yes it also could have been, let me think, I'm talking about way after Chama. Just like I told you it was my great-great grandpa, he owned most every piece of land up that way, his name was Antonio Archuletta. My great-grandpa was so rich that it was unbelievable. Later when my Uncle Lupe and Benino were grown, my Uncle Benino came from there (Chama?). I guess it was like days of old, I could read stories, they would settle and then they would put stakes you know, this is my property, like that I think. Maybe they did buy it from other people. He got a big property in Apache which Lee Archuletta is taking care of now. Lee Archuletta the son, the nephew of Savino. The father of Lee is the one that runs the Starlight. They came when the wife died, the boys and Paco. Those were the Archulettas. The Archulettas were the ones I remember.
Also, the Valdez's were there, you know. Elias Valdez, Don Tomas Rodriguez who was the granpa of John Rodriguez, my cousin John, first cousin and the Quintana's, the Cardenas, my dad. My relations are on both sides. Then from there to Malachite (came) the Garcia's, these are the people of my mama through her fathers side.
Lucia: It is very interesting because I have been talking to people.
Julia: Don't take only my word, but like I say if we could invite Savino to eat lunch and spend a whole two hours talking to him. He is about the eldest one that I know of my relations that would know more about the history.
Lucia: I would like that Julia.
Julia: I can arrange that because I know that with strangers he is timid you realize that. And then in Gardner, let me think who would be in Gardner. I have a cousin also, a far off cousin, Tomasita Espinoza that was the daughter of my uncle Leandro. My uncle Leandro was brother of my grama, the mama of papa. Tomasita could tell us a lot about the Gardner history. The one that could tell you a lot was my sister but she passed away. Lenore Cordova lived here but she went back to the ranch, she lives way at the end of Chama, towards the north, near the Morada.
Lucia: How many (Penitente) Moradas were there Julia?
Julia: There was one in Pass Creek, but it wasn't under the council. By council I mean, dad put (registered) this Morada to (with) the governor of the state. Oh, the other Moradas didn't like, (my Dad) because they were not under the constitution of the United States. It was a (ritual?) and all that. I have all of daddy's things. I have all his books and alabous (prayers) that his father and my dad wrote. This was the job of my dad. I told my kids, whenever I die “hijos, save these”. But if I become very sick, I mean these things I cannot give them to the public, Lucia. It isn't because it would be something for people to see but it was like a secret for my dad so it's got to (also) be a secret for me that nobody, (knows), its not a display. One time one of my cousins, daddy's cousin, he used to be a barber here years ago, moved to California, to Los Angeles, and years after he had moved he came back to ask daddy, in an interview like now because he wanted to make a movie, sell it to Warner Brothers or to Hollywood and dad said that that was very, very bad. Dad didn't give him very much information after that. He wanted (just) to make money on things that are secret. Oh I used to live in the Morada with my dad you know what I mean? In Holy Week it lasted from Monday till Friday, I think. We used to go and take food at noon and we went to the stations on Wednesday and Friday. There was one station in the church and we came on Monday in procession. Very early in the morning and in the night we could hear the prayers where they walked and sang. Especially very early in the morning I knew what was going on because I cou1d hear daddy talking to Loy afterward. It was a very secret thing and I believe with all my heart that what they did was really a sacrifice.
Lucia: Yes, I have heard and I have studied when they were in N.M. it was a (good?) society. The (pius) people, made sacrifices and put the culture ahead and it was a very responsible religion. Everything good, I have heard. For this reason when we finish this work, what we find wi1l put everything in a good light.
Julia: It would be a beautiful history of our county and of the people that served here and there. Like I say after you go through this and if you have any questions again I will try to get them corrected, maybe Savino can correct me in a lot of this because he is an old timer.
Lucia: Was he also a commissioner?
Julia: Ya, he was a commissioner. Well let me tell you, the papa of Savino was a commissioner for about 20 years or maybe more. Mi papa, Juan De Jesus Cardenas, run for representative. I have a card there, I don't remember what year it was I was just a little girl at the time and but he got defeated by Baron. You remember Judge Baron don't you?
We would come to town once a month, my papa in the horse drawn cart. They brought sacks of wheat to grind to flour. I remember that my papa took about 10 sacks at a time. Those sacks were enough to give us bran flour for the whole year. We killed pigs and made lard and meat for the winter. We made hams from the legs and bacon in the smoke house and stored them for the winter. The ham also lasted through the summer when it was salted. Later on some kind of treated salt was used, it had a seasoning to it, you know smoke taste and my father-in-law also had the habit of using corn husks to smoke the ham in a little house. We had chickens for eggs and meat and of course the cows, just a few cows would make enough food for the year, there was no cost being from the ranch. We also raised corn, beans, lettuce in the summer, cabbage for the winter and summer, carrots, red beets etc. I tell you we had it (all). (Today) is outrageous for me it's been a change of life; you know that it is very expensive.
Lucia: Then the depression didn't really affect you, or what happened?
Julia: The depression came about l928; I was a little girl around that time. My folks didn't feel it very much because like I say my mom and dad, the Cardenas and the Archulettas, gave them about 20 cows and to start with. My dad was a very, very intelligent person; he was always buying and selling. Well my folks and I didn't feel it very much because we had meat; you know we had cows, pigs, sheep, goats and all that. But I could see other families; very poor families (felt it). We planted a lot of beans and it would help. After the depression about ten years, the government jobs began, the WPA and I remember that the old folks got about $50.0O a month help. I believe that it was like Welfare, but that is not what they called in those days. They would say “here comes my check”, maybe $10 or $l5 and they would buy “punche” this is what they called cigarettes. It was very hard for people that didn't - - have it, and work was scarce, if you had a job you better keep it. There were some Dutch people that lived up there. Have you ever gone to Chappsdale fishing, up the Huerfano River? Well say about three or four (miles) west of Redwing Store there we used to have a big store there, now there isn't anything. Around there is where the Dutchmen lived, their names were Biggs. They used to hire about ten people maybe more to work for them. Those men only had cows to help them through. They would only have their jobs. I remember that very well. It was ----- Archuletta, the papa of Lee Archuletta that told me that, he used to work for one or those people. I remember now vividly. I don't remember who else worked for the Dutchmen. I know George Abila worked later on and that he used to come to work in the mines in Malachite.
Some way or another there is always a God, Lucia no matter where or what. The people could have been very poor, but they didn't die of hunger they found a way, if not you'll die and nobody wants to die, that way, of hunger. I remember in those days when my dad had sheep they used to shear sheep the first week in June and sometimes they couldn't sell the sacks of wool. They would consign them, in case that the price of wool would go higher later on. These people would hold the sacks here in Walsenburg in the warehouse there by Washington School. Remember where Ione had her music room? There were the rooms full of wool from the people that had sheep and they kept it there until the price of wool went up. Well in the meantime how was the people going to live, if you didn't have another way? With consignment, they gave maybe a little bit, say 6 cents a pound, or maybe 2 cents a pound, until the price would come up and then they would sell it and give the profit to the poor people for their wool.
Then here comes winter time, how are we going to make the wintertime? Selling the sheep, which they had raised all through the summer, for good money. And they would bring them to Tioga and put them on the train there. So there was always the wool, the sheep were very, very popular up this way because they would bring money two ways, whereas the cows only one way. In the fall the people had a chance to sell the calves, and keep the cows to produce calves for the next year.
Lucia: Then it was smarter to do the sheep?
Julia: Ya, that's why daddy and the Archulettas had so many sheep.
Lucia: What about, the man I've been hearing a lot about Juan Montez?
Was he a real politician? Some people say that he was the richest man over there in? Where was that?
Julia: In the colonia that is part of Malachite below. This was about the time that my sister Fedelina married Gaspar. Juan Muios Montez, I have a picture of him as commissioner. A lot of people used to say that he was very, very mean and other people said that he was not. This is all that I remember, the man died when I was very young, maybe I was still in high school. Anyway I believe that he did whatever he wanted, “vote for me or you will not have work”. I tell you this because that is what they were saying in those times.
I know my father and (Juan Montez) became compadres because of my sister's marriage. They were very good friends, they were both republicans, so naturally the political party protect (each other) just like now. Even now here Corsentino a democrat hired Italians and democrats, it's really something. When my Uncle Lupe was a democrat commissioner, he had Pete Cisneros, his nephew as a road supervisor, just like Savino, no, no, Savino when he..... See Savino became a commissioner when my Uncle Lupe died. He took over the office and served until I don't remember who took over. Then there was Brigido he was commissioner also. The office of the commissioner seemed to come down to a member of the family. My Uncle Lupe, then Savino, and then Brigido. Brigido was my first cousin, the son of my Aunt Elvira, who is Archuletta through her mom. So now Brigido has been a commissioner since 1960, they hold the office and they stay there. They don't have this that “I'm going to serve four years my term” and then let somebody else serve, they stay there and “hog” the job. Of course people must like them to keep electing them. It isn't like the tenure with teachers, which I never did believe in, if you are not a good teacher then you should be let go.
Lucia: Then this Montez was a commissioner in your time also?
Julia: He was a commissioner, he was how do they say, The Ruler, or in another word he bossed the county, that's what I heard, in which way he bossed the county I don't remember but I think Savino will be able to tell you.
Lucia: I've heard that he was really a rich man, and that he owned the Colonias. Was it his house or how was it?
Julia: No Colonias was just the name of the place, it wasn't like you say, he had his ranch and his house, his own little place.
Lucia: We were talking a little bit about Juan Munoz Montez, he was a republican?
Julia: He was a republican commissioner for I don't know how many years. Savino would know more, I can't recall who else can give us more information, old people that can still think, right? Savino is about the only one that I remember coming from up there. Denose? Montez is another that can tell a lot, but he was from Gardner but I think he moved to Pueblo. No if you get ho1d of him he is very well educated man, he is the nephew of the commissioner.
Lucia: The Colonias were another place that was there by Malachite?
Julia: It is a little below Malachite, a little to the northeast, there was some ranches there and they called it Colonias. There is where Señor Montez lives, I think, he had many sheep and cows I think, he was a rich man they say. When my sister was married they had a fiesta that lasted 2 days, so she had a very nice wedding. I don't doubt it at all, (that he was rich), but I do remember that he was very poor when he died. He lived in the house that belongs to Cleo Bellah; this is the house that my mama and papa bought when they moved from Bernalillo. They bought the house from Señor Montez, Jacobo Montez; he was the brother of Gasper, my brother-in-1aw, son of the commissioner Montez.
Lucia: Then the house in the Colonias...?
Julia: My sister lived in that house.
Lucia: Because we were going to take a trip to take pictures of all this. There weren't roofs on the Colonias, so I didn't know exactly what it was.
Julia: Oh they are already down. The houses that are left, people who have lived there, remodeled or built new houses in the area, but I know most likely where they lived, but the guide has to be Savino, he knows.
Lucia: Did you ever get to participate in the day of Santiago and all of that?
Julia: Yes, I had forgotten. I raced my pinto horse and we went and had a celebration on the celebration of Santiago, and there was a rodeo. I don't remember which came first the day of Santiago or the day of Santa Ana, it's the 25th and the 26th of July, they come practical1y on the same day. There were celebration booths, selling things, just like in the circus or the carnival. Then there was an arena where they had bucking horses and horse races. The kids would run races also and win prizes. The grandstand and the stands for the people to park around the horse racing and then a new hall for dances in the night. Big doings, all the people used to come like 4-H and bring cakes and all that too. It was beautiful.
Lucia: And the Sociedad of Los Hermanos came to the fiesta too, or when did they come?
Julia: The Sociedad de Los Penitentes you say? No they were only during Holy Week, families of the Hermanos made foods.
Lucia: What was the community that celebrated the fiestas of Santa Ana and Santiago?
Julia: I don't remember very well from where they brought the broncos that the boys rode. Now Homer Benson could tell us, but he is dead. He could tell us about the celebration of Santiago. Savino will maybe remember some of this he was a young man at the time, he wasn't married. He didn't get married until he became a commissioner.
Lucia: That is what Señora Celestina told me, that he was fairly old when he married.
Julia: In his 30's.
Lucia: Also Alfredo didn't marry until he was older.
Julia: Alfredo married a first cousin of his. Celestino was the son of my Uncle Lupe Archuletta and he married a Gallegos girl. This Gallegos girl is related to Scolastica Martinez. Celestino died end left three in the family Alfredo my first cousin, son of my aunt Marina, (who was the sister of my papa) was a bachelor. He was a terrible man when he married Sinforosa? We thought that Sinforosa would leave him, but she changed him. The women made the man that he is today. He is a very good man now, he has quit drinking. He used to be very ornery, but Tia Marina spoiled him and also she spoiled Dan. Alfredo lived here and Dan lived there on the hill, but they are doing well now. They only had one little girl, she grew up and got married and they get along fine. You see him in town, strictly on business. I admire him so much because he resembles daddy, when dad was a young man he looked like Alfredo, boots and all. Now he is a very nice man he treats his wife the best. She is a very good woman, a seamstress and a cook, they don't come any better than her. I never thought that she would marry another man because she lost a real good husband. I don't know how in the world she ever married Alfredo. She was lonely I guess. She married Alfredo in a very short time, maybe a year after her husband died; it really surprised the whole community up there. I was teaching up there when this happened. I didn't give her very much time to leave him but knowing her, she wouldn't have left him. No they raise animals I think and they have a house. You know where Alfredo lives, well the big house over here is, where my Tia Manina lived, she raised step—children cause she married my Uncle Phillipe. He is from the other Archulettas related to my Tio Lupe, first cousins, I think. She married Uncle Felipe and he had two daughters and two or three sons I think. Then she had a family that was with Alfredo, Cruz (he died), Daniel, Armelina, Barbara, Bessie and Filomena Cerda. Now she is another person that can tell you a lot of these things. She lives in Gardner.
Lucia: I interviewed Faustine.
Julia: The husband of her.
Lucia: I had very good luck. I want to interview Julia Roybal because I think very highly of her.
Julia: And I come from up above.
Lucia: I didn't know that
Julia: I told you I had been in Chama School.
Lucia: I didn't know cause I don't know why but I said to Elaine; Julia will have a very nice history of all of the schools. She was a teacher. I knew from my son Benjamin that you were teacher in that city. Benjamin told me all of this. So I really wanted to interview her. Well this is how it started to grow. Without exception they have all came from the same Archuletta family that you are telling me about.
Julia: I'll talk to my sister about it, maybe she can give you some (information) she knows more about those Archuletta people, the older folks from way back. The only one I remember is my Padresito, which means my Mothers great grandfather. My Padresito Antonio Archuletta and my mama Maria Inez, those were the grandparents of my mother.
Lucia: And all of these people nave the recollection of where they came from? From N.M. or from the San Luis Valley to this Valley?
Julia: I think they came from there, my Madresita Ma. Inez came from San Luis. She had pinks eyes, a very pretty women, with brown hair. El Padresito picture shows him with a white horse and his hair was white, I have that picture someplace. These people came from Spain, I think. I don't know that fore sure but I figured because they were light complected people. The Quintana's, which comes to my father's side and my papa Filomeno Cardenas, was very light. But my Madresita Nina Quintana was very, very dark complected, so they (probably) came from Mexico.
Daniela Montez was a Manzanares, because her family was from my uncle Jose Manzanares who is the uncle of the mama of my daughter-in-law Mary Lou. Daniela, her mama was my Aunt Maria Cardenas daughter of a uncle of papa Cardenas. That is the way my papa and my Tia Marina were first cousins. The sister of my papa, Monica Harmes, was married to Fred Harmes, who died just a few days ago. Monica and Fred were third cousins. Daddy argued the point through the bishop. If the Bishop did not give them permission to marry, then he was opposed. Because Fred Harmes was the son of Augusta Quintana, who was first cousin of my father by the mama of my papa, Mama Quintana was a Quintana, for that reason my father didn't want them to marry but the Bishop gave permission. You can see the relationship right there. I don't know where old man Harmes came from, I don't know if he was part French or not, he wasn't pure Spanish or Mexican.
Lucia: Well we have to interview Savino.
Julia: If I start him in a good mood, like we want to talk about Padresito Antonio Archuletta, who was his father, married with my sister Hope, then he and she can talk about it and both can recall things that I don't know. Like I said after the things that happened to me I'm not as sharp as I used to be. You lose when you are in love with a person, the only boyfriend I had, that I was so madly in love with and gave me my kids and we were doing so well at the time that he died. I don't know how many cows we had. I wouldn't have to be working if I had been old enough to keep the property in Mosco Pass. I would have a dude ranch up there. I would have had something and that would have been good for me and my kids. But I didn't keep it and I sold the 160 acres for $2000.00 and now it is worth a million dollars. I could not be in two places at one time, dad was already retired and lived here in town and I moved in with them until I needed my little house. See daddy bought the place from the Montez from one of the sons, Jake and it had three houses. My papa took one big house for himself and gave me one house when I became a widow and my sister Hope took the other house. I think that she bought it from him.
My Jo (daughter?) worked for a dentist, Dr. Ferandelli, and I raised Stanley (her son), he was about two years old, so that she could work, she spent a good 12 or 15 years with Dr. Ferandelli.
My son when he married Mary Lou was already working for the utilities. He is the manager of the electrical work in town now. See things pay later on as you go along in life. I would do my life all over again; I wouldn't want to be another person. I was very happy as a child and we were a very religious family. Nobody can convert me and I believe in my religion and my family.
Talking about going to Faustino and Filomen'as feast, it was a going for two days. Like it was the tradition of the weddings in those days. Then they had a son, he doesn't look Mexican at all, he is such a good looking little boy. His first marriage didn't work but then he married a girl from here in town, I forget her name but they get along fine. I know that Faustino has the ways of a gentleman; I bet those people have been married for over 50 years. I remember that I was about 10 years old when they got married.
Lucia: And they had a very big fiesta?
Julia: Yes and Aunt Marina also had a big fiesta, because she was one of the oldest daughters. All of the weddings years ago used to be big doings. I don't recall anyone being married by the law, (civil court) that was something you never heard about. My sister Hope got married by the law, it was different then. My sister Fedelina got married to a Montez son so that was a big doing. She bought a beautiful outfit which I wore in a play that Mrs. King produced one time in the country. I wore some of the clothes she bought for her wedding; I think my nieces have her stuff. Her shoes were up to here, you had to use those hook things or ties I don't remember which. This was about 1920 when they got married; I don't remember nothing about my sisters wedding. I was born about 15 years after she was born. I must have been about 2 years old when she got married.
Lucia: So your sister got married real young. Then Filomena got married with Faustino after your sister got married with Montez?
Julia: Ya, because I remember the wedding of Filomena, I must have been about 18? I remember Aunt Monica's wedding, when she got married with Fred. I remember we were waiting for the novios to come and a group of girls had a banquet, bananas, oranges etc. We arrived at the banquet myse1f and others, and we ransacked it, so we took out something to eat before the wedding party got in.
Lucia: Your sister, how old is she?
Julia: Well, she was 68 when she died, she would be 73 now. Hope my other sister is going to be 72.
Back to the Oral Interviews Main Page
Return to the Huerfano County Home Page
© Karen Mitchell Colorado