Author Archives: Moises Garza

About Moises Garza

This blog is an attempt to document my family and make you aware of resources that I find. I also hope that with this blog I can network with other researchers interested in this region and connect with long lost relatives. To keep up to date with this blog follow us with RSS feed, Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. Contact me at moisesgarza@gmail.com

The News From Brownsville

Are you interested in the history of Brownsville, Texas? Even if you are not I highly recommend that you get a hold of a copy to Caleb Coker’s book “The News from Brownsville: Helen Chapman’s Letters from the Texas Military Frontier, 1848-1852″. This book, as the title mentions, is just a compilation of the letters that the authors ancestor Helen Chapman sent her mother while she lived in Brownsville, Texas.

Helen Blair was the wife of William Chapman, Fort Brown’s first quartermaster. They were founding citizens of Brownsville, Texas. In her letters from the South Texas frontier, she commented on social conditions along the Rio Grande, expressing her opinions on a wide variety of topics.

While reading this book you will get a sense as to how life was so fragile during those years and with any sickness you could die and many did. You may have come across this in your own research where you may find your ancestors without a father or mother at a very early age. She also writes of the battle of Palo Alto and of the Americans route to Monterrey and latter the Americans route through Veracruz and to Mexico City, during the Mexican American War.

One of the things that strikes me about this book was how she mentions the corruption of Mexican officials and the poverty of the population with the exception of a few. I thought well things have not changed in Mexico. Continue reading

J. T. Canales and the 1919 Texas Ranger Investigation

I am writing this post to just make you aware of J.T. Canales and the 1919 Texas Ranger Investigation. The story is a four part series by Tony Bill and was published on the website alice24-7.com. The four articles are very interesting, intriguing, and full of local history all the way from Matamoros, Ciudad Mier, to Austin, and all in between. Details cover most of South Texas and it is a great read that every South Texan should read.

I had never heard about Jose Tomas Canales until a few weeks ago when someone just left a comment that said “J.T. Canales Texas Ranger Investigation”. I looked for the message to credit them but could not locate it. If it was you thank you. Continue reading

How Lights Came To South Texas, South Texas History Volume 1 Issue 6

This is the 6th issue in Volume one of the South Texas History magazine published by the Jim Hogg County Enterprise, published on May 29, 2013. As i have mentioned before If you are interested in Hebbronville, surrounding communities, and its genealogy you definitely have to check this issue out.

I also highly recommend that you check out the story of J.T. Canales. Part 3 of four is within the pages of this issue. I hope that on a latter post I can get to have links to all of the parts of the J.T. Canales and the Texas Ranger Investigation. Continue reading

The Story of Union Forces in South Texas During the Civil War

As many of you know I attended the Rio Grande City High School and My class was one of the last classes to attend the old High School which is situated in the grounds of Historic Fort Ringgold. Every morning the bus used to drive us past an old small house in much disrepair on top of a small round hill and some other small tall hills further back towards the river.

It was a great shame that in history class they never mentioned Fort Ringgold or even that small house. It was years latter while in college that I learned that that small house was used by General Robert E. Lee during some part of the Civil War and the small hills where used to place cannons to try and sink any Union Steam ships.

I recently came across a PDF document titled “The Story of Union Forces in South Texas During the Civil War” it was Compiled and Edited by Norman Rozeff from the Harlingen Historical Preservation Society. It is an 82 page document detailing the history of the Union Army in South Texas. Continue reading

1858 and 1886 Maps of Nuevo Leon, Mexico

When doing Mexico Genealogy, in search of our ancestry, maps can be of great benefit and help. Specially since towns do change names. The following are two maps one is dated 1858 and the other 1886 both published by Garcia Cubas, Antonio, 1832-1912.

It is interesting to see how the names of towns changed in just a span of almost 30 years and how it seems that the population grew. You may be asking your self. How will this help me find my ancestors? Well very simply by helping you pinpoint towns that have changed their names and also by providing you with clues as to where to research for documents. Continue reading

The Families of Santiago, Nuevo Leon, Mexico Volume Five

Are you doing Mexican Genealogy Research on your ancestors of Santiago Nuveo Leon? If so this past Sunday I received the email listed bellow from Crispin Rendon letting me know that he has published “The Families of Santiago, Nuevo Leon, Mexico Volume Five”. This volume covers all the church marriages from 1835 to 1841. He also includes the families of each couple. This eBook is an excellent resource and you should download a copy of it.

The Families of Santiago, Nuevo Leon, Mexico Volume Five, eBook Cover:

Continue reading

Guerrero Viejo, Los Caminos del Rio and It’s Founders

I recently came across two photos posted by Isidro Antonio Gonzalez on the Facebook page of Laredo Genealogical and thought that it would be great if I could share them with you. I sent a message for permission to post them on We Are Cousins and Mr. Gonzalez was so kind to grant my request. Besides really liking the photos, another thing caught my attention and that is that it mentions a very familiar name as the founder of Revilla, Vicente Guerra Canamar. Also, previously while conducting research on one of my ancestors Miguel Martinez I also came across that he was the founder of Revilla. Ok, by now I was confused and I had to do a little digging to find out who is really the founder of Revilla, but before I do that here are the two photos and bellow them a transcript of the image and translation. Continue reading

65 Cuadernos Del Archivo de Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico

The following is a list of the 65 Cuadernos Del Archivo de Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico. They are all in Spanish. These 65 eBooks are about the history, geography, and archaeology of the state of Nuevo Leon. I am sure that if you read all the titles you are sure to find one that will interest you. If you  re building a digital library I highly recommend that you download all of them. You never knwo when thwy will come in handy. As for me I have only read two of them # 25 EL CRONISTA ANONIMO by Israel Cavazos Garza, since it is about my 9th great grandfather Juan Bautista Chapa. The other one that I have read is #36 LA CATEDRAL DEL NUEVO REINO DE LEON by Aureliano Tapia Mendez, since many of my ancestors are buried there.

I know that these eBooks will provide you also with great historical context and also provide you with genealogical data and clues. Continue reading

Slaves of Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico

The Mexican Genealogical eBook Slaves of Monterrey Nuevo Leon Mexico is, as it’s cover describes it, a compilation of Hundreds of Notary Documents Translated by: Dahlia Rose Guajardo, Dhlia Palacios, Eusebio Benavidez, Tony Vincent Garcia and Crispin Rendon.

It is a sad thing that Spaniards had slaves but what is even sadder to me is to see my own ancestors buying and selling slaves as if they were property. You might also find your ancestor as being one of the slaves. The majority of the slaves were either Black or Mulattos.

It is not mentioned in this book but one of my ancestors was a Morisco meaning that his parents were Mulatto and Indian.  A Mulatto is the designation given to children of  a Spaniard and black African. The earliest mention of him is In Ciudad Mier in the middle of the 1700′s and this eBook makes me wonder if he or his family were ever slaves. Continue reading

El Cronista Anonimo by Israel Cavazos Garza

The following will be of great interest to anyone that is a descendant of Juan Bautista Chapa or is interested in the History of Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, Tamaulipas, and Texas. It is a 72 page eBook where Israel Cavazos Garza proves that the anonymous author of Historia del Nuevo Reino de León, desde 1650 hasta 1690 was none other than Juan Bautista Chapa.

I ran across it just by chance, but once I started to read it I could not put it down. As I always recommend, please download it to your digital library. Just bellow this post you will find the download link.

On the Genealogical aspect this eBook contains details about Juan Bautista Chapa and also whom his parents were and also lists all of his brothers. I won’t list those details here since I don’t want to spoil it for you. Continue reading