Category Archives: Breaking Brick Walls

Feldstein Genealogy Services, Helped Me Bring Down a Brick Wall

If you follow my blog then you are very well aware that I always recommend exhausting all the free resources before shelling out any money.

Several months ago I posted a request on Google+ asking for any genealogist that had access to the Family History Library to contact me for help in obtaining a document, even stated that I was willing to pay.

To my dismay no one replied so I left it alone until a few weeks ago. I thought let me look for someone providing services in that are and after searching came across Feldstein Genealogical Services. The service was fast and it only cost me $12.00 to have someone look at the microfilm and obtain the document. Paying through PayPal was a breeze.

You can check the document in my previous post Narsizo Perez and Juana Francisca Tamez – 1841 Marriage . So if you know a document exists and don’t have access, I highly recommend them for its retrieval.

The Mystery – Rancho Santa Teresa

I first came aware of Rancho Santa Teresa when I found Martin Garza’s Catholic Church Record at FamilySearch. Unfortunately I have not been able to find this ranch but I have found several clues so far. 
My first clue was the same page where Martin’s baptism was recorded. There are two other baptismal records that indicate that the children documented there where also born in Rancho Santa Teresa. 

My second clue is Mary Jo Galindo’s Dissertation “Con Un Pie En Cada Lado: Ethnicities and the Archaeology of Spanish Colonial Ranching Communities Along the Lower Río Grande Valley” on pg 142 she indicates that in a partial Census of Mier taken around 1817, which is in private hands, the Rancho is listed as Santa Teresa de Guardado. Unfortunately she does not list the names of the individuals listed but provided the following synopsis of the rancho:

                                                         Indivi-                                                  Horses          Mules
Rancho Name                 Families     duals  Goats  Sheep  Cattle Mares Tame Colts Tame   Colts
Santa Teresa de Guardado    14       71        769     2037     16      34     16        3       6         0
Could this be possibly Guardados de Arriva and Guardados de Abajo which are two communities near Present day Miguel Aleman, Tamaulipas, Mexico?
Copyright © Moises Garza. All rights reserved. Article may be reused for whatever purpose, and it is encouraged, as long as it is in its entirety including this notice.

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.


No 164
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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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 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 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 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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