by Moises Garza

April 26, 2018

Y-DNA Question on the Cantu Brothers Joseph and Geronimo Cantu
Last Names of Nuevo Leon

Crispin Rendon's research has brought about a Y-DNA Question on the Cantu Brothers Joseph and Geronimo Cantu . It is unknown whom their father was, but it is common knowledge that all Cantu's come from the same two brothers. 

But where does this information come from, what records mention it? I've seen this information in many books but none mentions the source. I myself area descendant of Geronimo Cantu, he is my 9th great grandfather.

Now, below you will find the Y-DNA descendant report of "Unknown Cantu" whom had three boys Fray Lorenzo Cantu, Captain Geronimo Cantu, and Captain Joseph Cantu that was prepared by Crispin Rendon. 

Only Geronimo and Joseph are known to have had descendants and they lived during the very late 1500's and the middle part of the 1600's.

This report by Crispin Rendon is an attempt to document or discover the Y-DNA of the Cantu Brothers. Presently as Crispin mentions there are two lineages and both have different Y-DNA. The reasons can vary but more male descendants need to test and contact Crispin.

So if you are a Cantu male and can trace your line back to any of these two brothers, with documentation please contact Crispin Rendon. 

Introduction of Report by Crispin Rendon

This is what Crispin say about this report.

Crispin Rendon


Fact or Fiction: The Cantu from Northeastern Mexico mostly descend from brothers Geronimo and Joseph Cantu. That has been my understanding for over 20 years. Genetic genealogy results have left me wondering if I have had it wrong.

Y-DNA test results for Robert Louis and John Carlos Cantu, who both descend from Geronimo Cantu, do not match those of Gene Cantu, Oscar Cantu and Michael John Cantu who descend from Joseph Cantu. If Geronimo and Joseph Cantu are brothers then their Y-DNA would match.

This is of interest to many in my kindred group. Geronimo Cantu is my 8th great grandfather. Joseph Cantu is my 9th great grandfather. Our kindred group database has 66,183 of their descendants. It has 51,516 Geronimo descendants and 24,630 Joseph descendants. I belong to a group of 9,961 who descend from both men. 

This is what we know of the Geronimo Cantu Y-DNA group with test results on next page. Robert Luis Cantu is a 7th cousin once removed of John Carlos Cantu. The most recent common Y-DNA ancestor of Robert Luis Cantu and John Carlos Cantu is Fernando Cantu son of Geronimo Cantu. Roberto Luis Cantu descends from Jose Antonio Cantu son of Fernando Cantu. John Carlos Cantu descends from Joseph Cantu son of Fernando Cantu.

This is what we know of the Joseph Cantu Y-DNA group which happens to be a Cohen match. The most recent common Y-DNA ancestor of Gene Cantu and Michael John Cantu is Nicolas Jose Cantu. Gene Cantu is a 5th cousin once removed of Michael John Cantu. Gene Cantu descends from Joseph Cayetano Cantu son of Nicolas Jose Cantu. Michael John Cantu descends from Jose Nicolas Cantu son of Nicolas Jose Cantu. Gene Cantu is a fourth cousin of Oscar Cantu. Their common YDNA ancestor is Joseph Cayetano Cantu. Gene Cantu descends from Jose Toribio Cantu and Oscar Cantu from Jose Ignacio Cantu son of Joseph Cayetano Cantu.

Back to the issue of genetic testing.

If Geronimo Cantu and Joseph Cantu had the same father then their Y-DNA would match yet it appears from YDNA testing that Geronimo Cantu is haplogroup R-M269 and Joseph Cantu haplogroup J-M267, so either they are not brothers or there has been a non-paternal event. More testing could shine some light on the issue.

Get A Copy of the Report, Y-DNA Descendants Unknown Cantu

Make sure to get your own copy of this report today, since you never know. One day he may end up being your ancestor or of someone you may be doing research on for someone else.

Here is the link to Download it:

The We Are Cousins DNA Project

To read, learn, or get more reports similar to this one by Cripin Rendon please visit the We Are Cousins DNA project page. Here is the link:

Don’t forget to download your very own copy of this report. Have fun!

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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. Cripsin,

    This is very fascinating. I am a Cantu from my maternal line and possibly a descendant. I look forward to any further info.


  2. “Just a bit before 1630 the three Cantu brothers arrived in Nuevo Leon. Jeronimo Cantu–the elder probably, was born about 1585. He married Juliana de Trevino, daughter of Alonso Trevino and Anastacia Gonzalez, after he came into the Kingdom. Another brother, Jose Cantu, probably came in at the same time. He married Mariana de Trevino, sister of Juliana. Their lands lay to the east of Monterrey, around what would be Cadereyta a few years later. The third brother, Lorenzo Cantu, was a priest at Matehuala and then went into the Rio Blanco country for the remainder of his career. A natural son of Jose Canu, Tomas Cantu, made a declaration that he was born in the Mines of Ramos. Tomas Cantu made the declaration in 1654, at the age of twenty-five; therefore Jose Cantu must have been in Las Minas de Ramos in 1628 or a bit before. Tomas was working for his uncle, Lorenzo, at the time of the statement. The origin of the name is unknown. It is not a true Spanish name and was probably of Italian origin, with a modified spelling as was the case of the names of Cavazos and Chapa, Trevino, and probably some others. The Mines of Ramos were between Zacatecas and Matehuala, along the flanks of the eastern range of the Sierra Madres.” Carl L Duaine, With All Arms, (New Santander Press, Edinburg, Tex, 1987)

  3. My y-DNA is in the HAPLOGROUP J-M267. If Crispin is interested in seeing the results of the test let me know please, I’ll be happy to share with him.

  4. Do either have close matches with other surnames?

    Is there any thoughts of a possible connection to Alberto del Canto who founded Saltillo and mayor in 1577, and later in Monterrey? Any Canto Y DNA tested?

    1. Two descendants of Alberto del Canto have been tested and both do not match. A third one is needed. Also no idea if there is a relation between the Cantu and del Canto. Why would you assume that there is one? just curious.

  5. I found on the Portal de Archivos Espanoles (PARES) information on an Agustina Partes, a citizen of San Lucar de Barrameda, Spain who applied for a license to travel to Mexico (Las Indias) on 02/14/1608 . The way I interpreted it, she claimed to be the widow of a Jeronimo Cantu and she wanted to take her daughter and grandchildren to live with her son, Joseph Cantu. In the application she mentions the names Jeronimo, Lorenzo and Enrique. On 05/16/1608 she applies again but this time she says she is the widow of Enrique Cantu and wants permission to travel with her daughter and grandchildren to go stay with her son Joseph de Cantu in Mexico. It is kind of hard to interpret since it is written in the Spanish of the early 1600s. You can see the actual photocopies on the website. My grandfather’s name was Marcelo Cantu. He was born in Matamoros, Mexico in 1891. I have no information about his parents or siblings. He married Olivia Montemayor (my grandmother) in the Rio Grand Valley of Texas. They moved to Houston after the Great Depression.

  6. I forgot to tell you, on the same website (PARES), I found a contract when I searched the name Lorenzo Cantu. The title is Gabriel Arias y Otros. It included the application for a Franciscan priest by the name of Lorenzo de Cantu to travel to Nuevo Espana. It was dated April 22, 1613.

  7. Hello,

    Interesting, I am a Cantu and can trace my genology to both Geronimo and Joseph (still doing some QA here…) and my Y-DNA haplogroup is J-M267.

  8. Im a cantu. I did dna ancestry .

    I want to know my fathers.

    I would like either crispen rendon or moises garza to contact me through email .

    So i can transfer dna results .

    Im a piece of the puzzle too.

    In exchange to know my fathers

  9. Has the unknown cantu been confirmed? I have seen several sources stating Guisepe or Jusepe Cantu born about 1573 in Lombardy Italy is their father and mother is Maria Rosario de la Rio y de la Cerda born about 1577 in Spain. Geronimo Cantu is my 11th great grandfather. My DNA Ancestry report even shows I have 0.04% Italian ancestry.

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