Sunday, February 19, 2012

Marquez Sisters in the 1820s

Here's a look at three sisters who grew up in Socorro, New Mexico.

Doloritas (Marquez) Trujillo, the mother of our matriarch Andrea (Trujillo) Torres, was born around 1824. According to census and marriage records, Doloritas had two sisters named Victoria and Clara – born about 1821 and 1826 respectively.

They lost their mother when they were very young.

No family stories are known about the sisters of Doloritas. But family stories are very clear that Doloritas - who married at age 14 - was so young when she moved into the household of her future husband that she was still a playful child more than she was a woman. Maybe some 14-year-olds at the time were prepared for the transition from child to woman, but Dolores was not. Her marriage to Jose Trujillo, who was 10 years older than her, took place at San Miguel church in Socorro on March 15, 1837. One of Jose's sisters in that household was the same age as Doloritas.

The couple didn't have children right away. A search of Socorro birth records from 1837-1850 would be expected to show children being born to a newly married couple, but that’s not the case. Doloritas and Jose didn’t have their first child until 10 years after they married. They acted as godparents for at least seven children born in their community during those years. The couple even witnessed the baptism of one of the children born to her father and his second wife. An examination of the baptismal ledgers shows that sisters Victoria and Clara did have children during those years.

In the 1800s, it wasn’t unusual to marry so young. But it was unusual to marry so young and have only six children. We have to wonder if Doloritas had numerous miscarriages.

Children of Doloritas and Jose were born in the 1850s and early '60s. Doloritas was still living in 1875, when she witnessed the baptism of her grandson Ignacio Torres, but her husband had probably died by then. Doloritas is listed as dead in 1897, when her eldest son, Juan Julian, married for a second time. But she probably died long before that.

Doloritas’ sisters married closer to age 20, and they wed spouses near their own ages. Victoria married Felipe Montoya in February 1844, and they lived many years together in Socorro. Clara was born and baptized at San Miguel parish in August 1826, and she married Toribio Molina in May 1846. The last Socorro census record of Clara was in 1860 at age 35 in a household with her father, Antonio Marquez, who was age 70. He had remarried.

The three girls’ mother, Loreta Vigil, had died in 1829, and Marquez had remarried in August of 1930. The three girls had other siblings – a couple of older ones who didn’t move to Socorro – and other half- and step-siblings.


  • An interesting twist: Clara married Toribio, a boy who lived in their blended-family household as they were growing up. His parents were unknown – according to an 1846 record of their child’s baptism.

  • One more twist: Victoria’s husband Felipe is a son of Juan Montoya. In other words, he is an uncle of Crespin Torres. … So that means that an aunt of Andrea’s married an uncle of our patriach Crespin.



Sources: Socorro, N.M. Baptisms 1821-1850; Family History Library Film No. 16993.
Also, "San Miguel del Socorro Marriage Records, 1821-1853," Joe Sanchez III, extractor; Antoinette Duran Silva, Ed. (Independently Published. Whittier CA, 1999). Pgs. 24, 40 and 48

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