by Moises Garza

January 7, 2014

Last Names of Nuevo Leon

Here is the list of the sixteen founders of the Villa de Santiago del Saltillo present day Saltillo, Coahuila, Mexico. I extracted the following portrait of Alberto del Canto and the names of the founders from the book titled “The Conquistadores and the Crypto-Jews of Monterrey“.

Among the list are 3 of my ancestors that I know of. I have included their relationship next to their names. Saltillo was founded in 1577.

Mural depicting the Founding of Saltillo by Alberto del Canto


The founding of Saltillo by Alberto del Canto. From the mural by Helena Enriqueta Huerta Muzquiz in the Instituto Nacional de Antropologia e Historia, Saltillo, Coahuila. Photo: Henry Gomez

List of the Sixteen Founders of Villa de Santiago del Saltillo

  • Captain Alberto del Canto, Portuguese (my 10th great grandfather)
  • Juan Alonso, Portuguese
  • Julian Gutierrez
  • Rodrigo Perez
  • Cristobal de Sagastiberri, Basque
  • Agustin de Villa Sur
  • Santos Rojo, Basque.
  • Manuel de Zirua
  • Juan de Erbaez, Basque
  • Manuel de Mederos, Portuguese
  • Antonio Hernandez Grimon
  • Baldo Cortes, Spaniard
  • Juan Navarro, Basque (my 12th great grandfather)
  • Mateo de Barrasa
  • Juan Perez Chocallo, Portuguese
  • Gines Hernandez, Portuguese
  • Baltazar Castano de Sosa, Portuguese (my 11th great grandfather)

Let me know in the comments if your ancestors are also listed in this list. If you are interested also in the early settlers of Saltillo I highly recommend that you check out my previous post: Aquellos Primeros Saltillenses, eBook by María Elena Santoscoy Flores

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About the author 

Moises Garza

I have doing my family genealogy since 1998. I am also the creator of this blog We Are Cousins, and the Mexican Genealogy blog. To always be up to date with both of these sites follow me on Facebook. To contact me or book me for a presentation, buy my books, and or learn more about me visit my personal website at

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  1. Alberto del Canto is my 12th great grandfather according to my family tree. Glad to see we are related down the line!

        1. Baltazar is my 12th bisabuelo too, via my Moreno/Treviño line.

          Moises- if I purchase the Treviño book, does it give file numbers allowing me to find the birth and marriage records on line?

          ¡Muchas gracias!

      1. Alberto is my 10th Great Grandfather on the Rodriguez de Montemayor side.

  2. Moises are you related to Juan Navarro too? Remember we had a connection before via Cuellar from Guerrero, Tamaulipas.

  3. i have readed four books on family tree i do not have a website, but i love to hear stories on mier ,tamps i just finished the juan de dios guerra,,,wife– narzia gomes – my mothers grandparents, (mier,tamps and later moved to san carlos, ranch 8 miles north of el sauz,tx,,,i would like to stay in touch the you, thank you carmen munoz, gonzalez, 271 Harrow dr. san antonio,tx,78227 210-673-0988

  4. Hola Moises,

    We have two common ancestors, Juan Navarro is my 11th great grandfather and Baltasar Castaño de Sosa is my 11th great grandfather. I do not have a website, but my tree is on

    1. Late to the party, but I am really starting to dig into my geneology.

      Conquistador Juan Navarro I and Capitan Baltazar Juan Castano de Sosa are both my 13th great grandfathers. Juan's son and Balthazar's daughter married. I'm on if anyone has a tree there and wants to connect.

  5. Good Afternoon,
    Does any one know the birthdate to Ines Rodriguez De Montemayor wife of Baltasar Castano de Sosa? Baltasar is my 12th great grandfather.
    Thank you

  6. Capitan Juan Navarro is my 11th g-grandfather, and Baltasar Costano de Sosa is my 12th g-grandfather. Where do you have your family tree?

  7. Oh wow, i am so excited to see this. My last name is Sosa and have been trying to track down my Sosa lineage and having no luck. With this post maybe i can find a link to my fathers family from the Tamaulipas areas. This is so awesome. I had found that the Sosa name was actually of Portuguese decent instead of Spaniard as we had originally thought. Is there a family tree somewhere for Baltazar Castano de Sosa that i can take a look at. I would really love to get my hands on a copy of his family tree.

    Wow, after looking at some of the postings on here seems there are quite a few relations to the Sosa funny how many of the last names are not even Sosa thought. I would never have imagined.

    1. Many people have Sosa in their tree even though they may not carry the last name. That is why it is vital to research every branch including all females. Don’t just focus on your last name.

  8. Among my ancestors are Juan Navarro, Baltazar Costa no Sosa, and Juan Alonso. Many of my ancestors are written about in the book The Conquistadors and the Crypto Jews of Monterrey including Baez Benavides.

  9. Thank you for this list. Five of my ancestors are listed: Alberto de Canto, Juan Alonso, Santos Rojo, Juan Navarro and Baltazar Castano de Sosa. All are in my Grandmother Garza’s line. I probably with find others when I research my Grandfathers tree.

  10. Alberto del Canto is my 9th great grandfather, Baltazar Castano de Sosa is my 10th great grandfather. Juan Navarro is my 9th great grandfather.

  11. Baltazar Castano de Sosa, Juan Navarro, Basque, Santos Rojo, Basque, and Captain Alberto del Canto, Portuguese are my 13th Great Grandfathers. All are in my Garcia line.

  12. Hola, how can I get access to the family trees on Monterrey founders? my family is from and al lives in Monterrey Mx, we are- de la Garza/Garcia, my great grandparents were Perfecto de la Garza Paz, Genoveva Garcia Guerra. I am Lopez Ancer ( my grandmother married a Monterrey Lebanese)
    Any info would be great, Im trying to fill in grandmas side of the family tree- [email protected]

  13. My great grandfather may come the Philippines with Magellan in 1521, all I know is that my father is Pedro Salboro Villalobos born to a father Marcos Villalobos. My father was born in 1929 in the Philippines.

  14. Captain Don Miguel Montemayor del Canto, born 1586, is my 10th Great Grandfather… whom is son of Alberto del Canto, born 1547, is my 11th Great Grandfather.
    ~this all starts from my Dads mother, mothers’ fathers side who is an “Alanis” of Montemorelos, Nuevo Leon, MX
    ~the De la Garza/Falcon/Trevino & Montemayor are also my ancestors

  15. Alberto del Canto, Juan Alonso (which is a decendant of Afonoso’s in Portugal centuries before him) & Baltazar Juan Castano Sosa; 3 individuals, are on this list for me as direct Ancestral Great Grandfathers

  16. Baltazar is my 14th great grandfather, im also related to his daughters María Rodriguez Sosa and his sons Lucas García Rodriguez and Diego Rodriguez Sosa.

    Also Alberto del Canto Diaz Vieira is my 12th great grandfather and im descendant of his son Miguel Montemayor Canto.

    I wanted to know if you have information about any relation betwen Baltazar Castaño Sosa and Gaspar Castaño Sosa, this last one is founder of San Luis (now Monterrey Nuevo León).

    I dont know if they were brothers or if Baltazar was Gaspar´s young uncle.

    They both were portuguse, both came to the new world, both have this cityfounding history, both arrived to Zacatecas, but there is no book that relate them.

  17. Moises, your list of the 16 Founders of Saltillo has one name that differs from the book by María Elena Santoscoy Flores – on pg. 16 of “Aquellos Primeros Saltillenses” there is a Portuguese person by the name of ANTONIO GONZALEZ ; all the other names match, but I was just wondering, since my GONZALEZ family comes from SALTILLO.

  18. Hey ya,

    I see three references on the founders list of Saltillo to Basque….interesting, my surname is Del Bosque, the vast majority of my relatives come from Nuevo León. I wonder if Bosque was once Basque? I see many variations in the records, Basque, Bosques, Basquez.

    Also I’ve seen very many references to the Saltillo area, Nuevo León generally as a Sephardic Jewish community. Have you found the same and perhaps links to your tree?


    Belinda Del Bosque

      1. I’ve since contacted Maria Jose Surribas, a genealogist in Barcelona and through Inquisition records and other primary sources she prepared a “Names Report” and confirmed Sefardí and conversó heritage. So much and clear that I was granted Spanish citizenship via the Sephardic pathway extended by the government of Spain. We are Sephardic Jews; there is no doubt.

  19. Juan Navarro is my 11th grandfather and Baltazar Castaño De Sosa my 12tg grand father
    Can anybody share stories, pictures, anything?
    Thank you!

  20. I am a direct line descendant of Juan Alonso, Juan Navarro and Baltasar Castnao de Sosa through my maternal Rendon line. I am also a direct line descendant of most, if not all the 15 founders of Monterrey NL, including Diego Montemayor, again through my Rendon line………

  21. Hi Moises,
    My father-in-law is a a Garza from South Texas. I have just started his family tree, and they believe their ancestry includes many generations from South Texas, and then Mexico, when South Texas was a part of Mexico. Which of your books do you recommend to help with my research?

    Thank you,

    1. If you are new to Mexican Genealogy then my book about doing research in Mexico. If you find you had ancestors in Mier or Revilla then my other books. As for websites, is amazing to find records.

  22. Hello! Thank you so much for the information! I found out on Ancestry that Baltazar Juan Castano de Sosa may be my 13th great grandfather, which does make sense because my great grandmother’s family is from Saltillo. Awesome!

  23. Hola moises, yo desciendo de Baltasar de Sosa, Juan Navarro, Santos Rojo y el gran Alberto del Canto, sabes si los demas dejaron descendencia? Nunca a encontrado algun hijo de los demas.

  24. My paternal side of the family, García, has its origins from Nuevo León, Mexico. I can trace back to 1850 but it gets cloudy after that. Having such a common last name, recycling of first names and the inter marriages between the Villa families, does not make it easy. Supposedly, our ancestor is Capitán Lucas García Rodriguez, son of Baltazar Juan Castaño de Sosa. I’m still researching and want a concrete confirmation.

    Another matter I don’t understand is, if we are supposedly related by the paternal linage of a common male ancestor, shouldn’t all the males have the same DNA haplogroup? What I’m seeing in my research is different haplogroups. Most common Y-DNA are haplogroups R, E and J. My paternal side being Haplogroup J.

    Does anyone know Captain Castaño Sosa’s DNA?

    Open for suggestions and ideas to expand my research.

  25. Hello,
    I have a couple common ancestors also I run into my father’s, father and mother’s lines crossing, I heard stories about both sides coming from Spain, and a generation of conquistadors, captain’s and a few generals. I would love to compare information!

    Captain Alberto del Canto, Portuguese (my 10th great grandfather

    Baltazar Castano de Sosa, Portuguese (my 9th great grandfather)

    Juan Navarro, Basque (my 11th great grandfather)

    Juan Alonso, Portuguese (my 11th great grandfather)

  26. I read this with so much interest, I admire all of you that have done so much research on your family tree. I have not been as successful, my maternal ancestors were from Saltillo Coahuila. The last names were Medrano, Carmona, Espinosa and Hidalgo. I have only gone back to my great grandmother who was Maria Ignacia Carmona Medrano. I don't have the know how to follow up. Congratulations to all of you!

  27. Hi Baltazar Castaño de Sosa was my grand great father, I would like to know if there are documents that ca proved that he was a crypto Jewish? Because on the booked it is mention but There are no documents

    Tatiana Del Rincon

  28. Navarro and Batazar are my 14th or 15th. This is so awesome that you are doing this. I agree we are all connected. I found out that my husband and I share a common set of great x 13 grandparents.

      1. Hi Moses. We share the same common ancestors you identified in the list of founders. I am constantly working on my family tree and welcome comparing information to ensure my research is accurate.

          1. Hola ! I am a Garza. my mom's parents were Garza cousins. so i have many many relatives.
            they started in Cerralvo & Saltillo. Then settled in Garza Gonzalez near Monterrey. I really enjoyed reading the history behind all my family names like Trevino, Cantu , Rodirguez, Sosa etc.
            I see some one these founders on my tree. I would just like to confirm it somehow since anyone can add these names to a public tree.

            very exciting ! Looking forward to signing up for the virtual conference

  29. My great grandfathers are

    Juan Navarro (11th)
    Captain Alberto del Canto, Portuguese (13th)
    Baltazar Castano de Sosa, Portuguese (14th)

  30. Very fascinating. Baltazar Castano de Sosa is my 15th great grandfather, according to my research. How cool!

  31. Our family descended from Baltazar Castano de Sosa also through his son Lucas García. Do you know why he took the García surname? Very interested to find out.

    We still have family in the Nuevo León area and in the northern part of Mexico.

  32. Baltazar Juan Castano de Sosa was my 10th great-grandfather according to research from Carmel Trevino Garza was my 3rd great-grandmother married to Felipe Torres. Their son was Modesto Torres who also has an interesting story. He was famous for the "Last Battle of the Indians" in Bexar Texas. Many of his family trees stop with the Torres surname. He eventually took the surname of his 3rd wife Susanna Dykes. And there is a large branch of us out here 🙂

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