Thursday, August 25, 2011

1990s: A Spark Was Lit

Research into the Crespin-Andrea Torres line started with Patrick Moore – a great-grandson of the couple – when he was living in Washington, D.C., in the late 1980s. He started doing research at the National Archives (no Internet back then) and shared his findings with California cousins. When Patrick died in 1989, the California cousins picked up where he left off, and in 1992 they hosted a reunion in Southern California of many of the family lines. The interest in family stories and photos was contagious. In the meantime, New Mexico relatives were digging into family themselves. We know each other now, having connected with the help of the Internet. We’re a small group, relatively speaking, but many, many descendants of Crespin and Andrea continue to dig, ask and share information. Of all the families in cyberspace, you have to wonder why this family has so many enthusiasts. No matter. We’re not likely to run out of stories anytime soon.
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NEXT: The Year 1890 in Socorro

Monday, August 8, 2011

Monica Montoya Mystery

When was the death of Monica (Torres) Montoya – the second child of Crespin and Andreita? Family stories say Monica died in childbirth, leaving behind a son, Juan José. Could she have died in childbirth with Tomasa, who was born Jan. 6, 1899? Neither Tomasa nor Monica appears in the June 1900 census. Death/burial records for Tomasa and Monica cannot be found. Here are a few key facts:

  • A child was born to Monica’s sister, Domitila, in May of 1899. She was named Monica – perhaps after her deceased sister? If Monica had been alive, she would likely have been the godmother. That baby’s godparents were Apolonio Torres, a brother who was not yet married, and Francisca Luna.

  • In the June 1900 census, Monica’s husband David, 30, was listed as a widower in a Socorro household, and the couple’s 3-year-old son, Juan José, was living in the household of his grandparents (his godparents, too) Crespin and Andreita. No mention of Tomasa anywhere.

  • As for Monica’s birth, her baptismal record says her full name is Maria Josefa Monica Juliana Torres. She was born Sept., 21, 1871, and baptized a day later. Her godparents were Juan Julian Trujillo and his wife Monica Padilla.

  • Thanks to Montoya cousins for information and photo. The picture of Monica, David and Juan José was taken in 1896.