Monthly Archives: September 2011

Texas General Land Office, Land Grant Search

Texas Land Grants

Did your ancestor ever receive a Land grant from the Spanish Government or the State of Tamaulipas? If your answer is yes it is very likely that you will find it on the website for the Texas General Land Office.

What the Texas General Land Office has to Offer

The Texas land grant database contains over 4,200 land titles issued by Spain and Mexico from 1720 to 1836 covering 26 million acres. It also offers other collections for a total of 656,129 records.

You can get a full description of it or start searching for your ancestors at the land grant search.

I hope that you find this resource useful and helpful in your research. Let me know about your finds.

This is an example of one of the results for one of my wife’s ancestors:

County:  Hidalgo
Abstract Number:  83
Adj County:  Starr
District/Class:  San Patricio 1st
File Number:  000753
Original Grantee:  Flores, Segundo
Patentee:  Flores, Segundo
Title Date: 
Patent Date:  13 Aug 1881
Patent No:  500
Patent Vol:  23
Certificate:  106
Part Section: 
Survey/Blk/Tsp:  27
Acres:  13322.20
Adj Acres:  903
Remarks:

Luis Zamora Rios – Baptism and Death Story

When I was just a small kid I used to hear my mother Sanjuana Tanguma Lopez tell the story of how Luis Zamora died. Luis was my mothers half uncle since he and her father Juan Tanguma where half brothers. Their fathers name was Yldefonso Zamora Mendoza. Luis’s baptism record was the key to finding who Yldefonso’s parents where. The following image can be found in the 24th Baptismal Book of La Parroquia de Mier in Ciudad Mier, Tamaulipas, Mexico.

Baptism Image:

Click to enlarge.

Transcription:

No 164
Luis
Zamora
Rios
En la Yglesia Parroquial de Mier Tam. a los doce dias del mes de Noviembre
de mil novecientos veintedos el infrascrito cura Economo de ella bautizo
solemnemente a un nino quien puso por nombre Luis nacido en esta
ciudad en el veinte cinco de Agosto de mil novecientos veinteuno, hijo
natural de Yldefonso Zamora y Felipa Rios. Abuelos paternos Ga-
bino Zamora y Paula Mendoza. Abuelos Maternos Andres Rios y Pi-
lar Gonzalez advirtio su obligacion y parentesco espirit-
tual a los padrinos que fueron Francisco y Ramona Gonzalez Pa-
ra constancia lo Firmo

                              Padre L. Llamas Flores

Death at an early age:

According to my mother, family lore states that the day that Luis died there was a dance (baile) in El Nogalito, Municipio de Miguel Aleman Tamaulipas, a nearby town only a few miles away from La Mecca (the Zamora’s ranch).

She stated that that night Luis went to the dance and that while there someone cut open his throat with a knife. He was in his teens, about 17 years old, when this happened. She stated that Luis died in his mothers arms. My mother stated that Luis’s mother, Felipa Rios,  keep her clothing and his clothes all covered with blood.

She stated that when ever she would bring them out she would weep due to a pain only known to mothers whose children have died. When asked my mother stated that they never found out who killed Luis.

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Raul Longoria’s Website

A Great Resource for South Texas and Northeastern Mexico Genealogy

For all of you who may barely be getting their feet wet into their own family genealogy and or family history, here is another great resource that I have used many times over and over again.

The resource that I want to make you aware of is Raul Longoria’s Website RaulLongoria.net.

In my own opinion I believe it to be one of the greatest resources for Mexican American Genealogy when it comes to the South Texas and Northestern Mexican Genealogy.

Most entries in Raul N. Longoria’s website have citations to where he got the information from, thus providing the researcher with precious leads to original documents or more great resources.

This is how he describes his website:

Many of us with deep family roots in South Texas have found that we are part of a very large extended family; you may find some of your own ancestors here. – Raul N. Longoria

Did I mention that he has thousands of names in his database and most of them are form South Texas and Northeastern Mexico. Go ahead and check it out. It will not be long before you find your ancestors listed there.

My only hope is that Mr. Longoria continues to make this great resource available to all of us.

Once again here is the link to his website: RaulLongoria.net.

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Breaking Brick Walls in Genealogy Research

I recently broke two brick walls when doing my own family research; I thought it would be nice if I shared them with you all.

First Brick Wall,

In my Garza family line I had only gone as far back as to my great-great-grandpa, I only knew his name to be Martin Garza but I could not figure out his wife’s name. I searched every possible way I knew how. I did ask my father but he did not know who the wife might be. I thought if my dad does not know no one knows. Then I thought to myself what if I ask my dad’s sister tia Amelia. So I called my cousin Yolanda who is the eldest daughter of my aunt and she agreed to ask my aunt if she knew who that wife of Martin Garza might be. She called minutes later and told me that the name was Ruperta Lopez. Once I hanged up I could not wait and headed to www.familysearch.org and found their marriage record listing their parents also, and guess what tonight I’ll be researching them.

Second Brick Wall,

I was doing research on one of my wife’s aunts by marriage. I knew she was from the area of Abram Texas and I also had her parent’s names but could not find any more information about them. So I went over to www.texaslandrecords.com and searched for her mother first, there I came across a 1955 Oil and Gas Lease listing her and her husband. What caught my eye where the other names listed on the lease with her same last name. I then went over to www.familysearch.org and searched for one of those names which I had assumed was one of her brothers and there it was a U.S. 1910 Census matching three of the names in the Oil and Gas Lease, and listing also the parents. The same happened once I started to search for her father’s information, I found a 1956 Oil and Gas Lease and found him listed in the U.S. 1920 census listed as Amidio instead of Amadeo. It listed all the siblings and also their parents.

The Lesson,

  • Reach out and ask
  • Try and go around the brick wall by searching for siblings instead

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Chimney at Rancho Viejo

Rancho Viejo is the name of the ranch were the Marroquines through my fathers side once lived starting in the 1880′s in Northern Tamaulipas, Mexico. This place is located near present day Arcabuz, Tamaulipas, Mexico.

The Marroquines in my family were originally from Allende and Santiago Nuevo Leon and I have traced them back as far as 1680′s. I have yet to discover why they left their native Allende Nuevo Leon to settle in Tamaulipas.

Pedro Marroquin, my fathers grandfather, was born and baptized in Allende and ended up marrying my great grandmother Maria Amalia Gonzalez in Mier, Tamaulipas, Mexico on Aug 27 1912. I have traced her ancestors as back far as the early 1700’s.

What is left of Rancho Viejo:

Chimney at Rancho Viejo

This picture is of the chimney that is left from my great grandparents original jacal. According to my father his aunt accidentally burned it down to the ground.

The family then built another jacal about 300 feet in front of this one but only the chimney remains of that jacal too.

Still to this date Rancho Viejo continues to be property of the Marroquines and the vast ranch that once was managed from Rancho Viejo continues to be in the hands of my father’s cousins.

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Lauro Garza Marroquin – Photo Restoration

You may ask yourself what does restoring photos have to do with genealogy. In my opinion everything  it gives a face to a name and instant imagery to a place. It makes our old photos more presentable and gives them a second chance.

Photo restoration if done by a professional can get to be very expensive depending on vendor and how many photos you may need restored.

I for sure can not afford to pay $35.00 or more per picture. I do my restorations my self and I do it digitally using Paint Shop Pro X5 which runs for about $58.00, believe me you will not regret purchasing it and besides it is way cheaper than Photoshop.

Here is an example of a picture, of my father, that I restored.

Photo of Lauro Garza Marroquin Before Restoration
Photo of Lauro Garza Marroquin After Restoration

I fixed the photo by using the touch up tool on the left hand side panel and also by copying and pasting pieces of similar looking areas in the photo. For a more detailed guide on restoring and fixing your pictures look at this about.com article.

John Wilmot’s Genealogy Notebook

There are not many South Texas and Northeastern Mexico Genealogy blogs out there and coming across one is pretty exciting.

If you have not done so yet I highly recommend that you check John Wilmot’s Blog JOHN WILMOT’S GENEALOGY NOTEBOOK.

Mr. Wilmot describes his blog as:

This blog was created simply to share the many notes and documents I gather in the course of my personal research, much of which turns out to be unrelated to my own ancestry. Since they would otherwise be sitting in a file folder, I’m hoping that posting them here instead will help others along.

Mr. Wilmot’s blog has posts about family and ancestors from the the following South Texas Counties:

  • Cameron Co., TX
  • Hidalgo Co., TX
  • Starr Co., TX

He also has posts about family and ancestors with the following last names:

  • Cano
  • Gamboa
  • General Teran, NL
  • Martinez
  • Rendon
  • Reyes
  • Rios
  • Rodriguez
  • Ruiz
  • Salazar
  • Serda
  • Serna
  • Valdez
  • Valenzuela
  • Villareal
  • Zamora

Northeastern towns or cities mentioned on his blog:

  • Burgos, Tamps.
  • General Teran, NL
  • Montemorelos, NL
  • Monterrey, NL

I just hope that you do visit his blog since you never know you may just find your relatives. Once again you can visit his blog Here:  JOHN WILMOT’S GENEALOGY NOTEBOOK.

Birth Certificates for Tamaulipas and Nuevo Leon

If you are searching for ancestors or family members that were born after the 1930’s in Tamaulipas or Nuevo Leon you can search for them in the Civil Registry for those states.

Tamaulipas as well as Nuevo Leon have online databases were you can search for an individuals birth information.

Links to the Tamaulipas and Nuevo Leon Civil Registry Online Databases:

  • Nuevo Leon  – This link is no longer working, since the database was removed.

Unfortunately to do searches you have to actually know who you are looking for.

For example, the Tamaulipas one asks only for a date of birth and you have to select which Municipality you want to search. Once you find your relative you will be provided with all types of details and also with the parent’s names and their age. I did my own and it worked great.

When it was available the Nuevo Leon was a bit different you have to enter the mothers and fathers last name, person’s name, and date of birth. Once you find the relative you are looking for you will be provided with parents and grandparents names. It was pretty neat. I found my mother’s information using this website.
I’ll be on the look out to see if it ever gets added again and will keep you posted.

Texas Land Records, A Great South Texas Genealogy Resource

I found this awesome resource when it comes to Texas Land information. If you have not heard about this great resource you are in for a treat.

On the following website you can expect to find:

  • Texas Land Titles
  • Deeds
  • Affidavits of heirship

and much more.

This resource is the Texas Land Records Real Property Records Search. You can find it online at www.texaslandrecords.com. It contains a lot of counties but for some of them you have to pay in order to be able to search or view images.

Luckily for me Hidalgo County is free to search and view images. Once you find a record you can even download it to your computer.

There are two requirements for Hidalgo county is that you have to signup but it is free to do so, and also install a TIFF reader, but once you do it you won’t regret it.

After playing for a few days with it I am still amazed at the wealth of genealogical information I found and not to mention downloadable copies of original court documents.

Give it a try, once again the website is www.texaslandrecords.com.

South Texas and Northeastern Mexico Genealogy

Hi there,

Thanks for dropping by and I hope that you may find this website informative and useful.

Why I started this blog:

Welcome to We Are Cousins, after much thought I saw the need to create a blog that would not only serve as a place to document my research, family stories, but also a resource to those interested in South Texas and Northern Mexico Genealogy. I also hope that with this blog I can network with other researchers interested in this region. To keep up to date with this blog simply subscribe to the rss atom feed.
This quote was the content of my first post on this website and honestly I was super nervous. I guess it is the same nervousness that always goes hand in hand when we start a new project. Let me just tell you that this blog has turned out to be more than what I expected and a very rewarding experience.

What to you can expect to find in this blog.

As mentioned before this blog is about South Texas and Northeastern Mexico Genealogy. It focuses on Genealogy South of San Antonio, the Mexican states of Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, and Tamaulipas.

 

Here you will find,
  • Baptism Transcriptions
  • Marriage Transcriptions
  • Death Record Transcriptions
  • Resources available for Genealogy Research
  • Books You should know about
  • Transcriptions to indexes of Vital Records
  • We Are Cousins Magazine

Also expect to find many other randoms things but the above mentioned ones are just the main ones.

Interested in South Texas and Northeastern Mexico Genealogy why don’t you follow us at:

To keep up to date with this blog follow us at,
If you would like to contact me please do so using the contact form of this blog or leave a message on this post.

 

This post was last updated: 3-31-2013