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By Stuart Armstrong - Posted on 17 June 2009

En la Hazienda de Santiago feligresia de la Villa de Aguascalientes en
treinta y uno de Henero 1740 ... Maria Antonia, india originaria de el
Pueblo de San Joseph hija de padres no conocidos, fueron sus padrinos
Simon Benites y Juana de Lara, á quienes advertí su obligación y
parentesco espiritual, y lo firme con dicho Señor Cura

This record is very typical for children of unknown parents, and the
padrinos named here happen to be my wife's direct-line ancestors. I
wonder what the relationship was between Antonia and her godparents,
when there are no other parents known. Did the godparents assume
responsibility for raising the child? Did they merely fine her a home?
Did they do little or nothing but allow their names to be written
down? Just how seriously did godparents take "su obligación y
parentesco espiritual"?

--
Best regards,
Stuart mailto:stuartarms@gmail.com

Estimado Stuart buenos días.

Cualquiera de las preguntas que haces puede ser la respuesta.

La obligación para con los padrinos era más que nada espiritual, dependiendo de sus posibilidades ellos podían llevar o no a los niños a sus casas. Los niños podían quedar bajo la custodia de Iglesia mientras se les buscaba un hogar pero el bautismo era algo que no podía ni debía postergarse ya que la muerte asechaba todo el tiempo. Por eso se les buscaba padrinos con urgencia para poder bautizarlos.

Casi siempre esos infantes toman los apellidos de los padrinos, puedes buscar que pasó con esa niña, pudo haber muerto ya que el íncice de mortalidad era muy alto o puedes buscar en los expedientes matrimoniales si es que se casó, es en esos documentos en donde se encuentra la mayor información útil para cualquier investigador o genealogísta ya que las partidas de libros de bautismo, matrimonio y entierros son muy breves.

El índice de niños hijos de padres no conocidos e Hijos de la Iglesia es muy alto durante el virreinato la historia de Antonia la niña que mencionas, fue bastante común. Eran hijos nacidos de relaciones ilísitas desde el punto de vista legal o moral, de abusos, etc. Por ello eran abandonados en los pueblos cercanos, para ocultar "el pecado".

Rodolfo Sinaí Gómez

> Date: Wed, 17 Jun 2009 07:34:19 -0600
> From: stuartarms@gmail.com
> To: research@NuestrosRanchos.com
> Subject: [Nuestros Ranchos] de padres no conocidos
>
> En la Hazienda de Santiago feligresia de la Villa de Aguascalientes en
> treinta y uno de Henero 1740 ... Maria Antonia, india originaria de el
> Pueblo de San Joseph hija de padres no conocidos, fueron sus padrinos
> Simon Benites y Juana de Lara, á quienes advertí su obligación y
> parentesco espiritual, y lo firme con dicho Señor Cura
>
> This record is very typical for children of unknown parents, and the
> padrinos named here happen to be my wife's direct-line ancestors. I
> wonder what the relationship was between Antonia and her godparents,
> when there are no other parents known. Did the godparents assume
> responsibility for raising the child? Did they merely fine her a home?
> Did they do little or nothing but allow their names to be written
> down? Just how seriously did godparents take "su obligación y
> parentesco espiritual"?
>
>
> --
> Best regards,
> Stuart mailto:stuartarms@gmail.com
>

Stuart,
sometimes the child(ren) of PNCs were the bastard child(ren) of the
"Padrino" and occasionally of the "Madrina." Marge

On Jun 17, 2009, at 8:34 AM, Stuart Armstrong wrote:

En la Hazienda de Santiago feligresia de la Villa de Aguascalientes en
treinta y uno de Henero 1740 ... Maria Antonia, india originaria de el
Pueblo de San Joseph hija de padres no conocidos, fueron sus padrinos
Simon Benites y Juana de Lara, á quienes advertí su obligación y
parentesco espiritual, y lo firme con dicho Señor Cura

This record is very typical for children of unknown parents, and the
padrinos named here happen to be my wife's direct-line ancestors. I
wonder what the relationship was between Antonia and her godparents,
when there are no other parents known. Did the godparents assume
responsibility for raising the child? Did they merely fine her a home?
Did they do little or nothing but allow their names to be written
down? Just how seriously did godparents take "su obligación y
parentesco espiritual"?

--
Best regards,
Stuart mailto:stuartarms@gmail.com

Stuart,
I have a situation where I do have father and mother for the great, great, great grand-parents. However, while the father's side is OK, the maternal grandparents are listed as "abuelos maternos no conocidos." One of the children does have a grandmother.

Should this be interpreted as the grandmother was unwed? I am a little bit confused. Can you help me with this? Do you want names? Thank you for any help you can give me.

--Esther Jordan Lopez

En la Hazienda de Santiago feligresia de la Villa de Aguascalientes en
treinta y uno de Henero 1740 ... Maria Antonia, india originaria de el
Pueblo de San Joseph hija de padres no conocidos, fueron sus padrinos
Simon Benites y Juana de Lara, á quienes advertí su obligación y
parentesco espiritual, y lo firme con dicho Señor Cura

This record is very typical for children of unknown parents, and the
padrinos named here happen to be my wife's direct-line ancestors. I
wonder what the relationship was between Antonia and her godparents,
when there are no other parents known. Did the godparents assume
responsibility for raising the child? Did they merely fine her a home?
Did they do little or nothing but allow their names to be written
down? Just how seriously did godparents take "su obligación y
parentesco espiritual"?

--
Best regards,
Stuart mailto:stuartarms@gmail.com

Marge,

Something doesn't make sense. Hijos de padres no conocidos were usually
abandoned children by parents who could not raise them due to unusual
circumstances. Children left at the church or handed over to a catholic
priest were given up for adoption to families that could support them, both
financially and spiritually. I have ancestors who were godparents of many
abandoned children. Most were young couples, frequently husband and wife,
but just as often a single man or woman. Perhaps some were children of the
padrino...maybe in some odd cases...but children of the madrina? Could a
mother be godmother of her own child? I don't think the church would allow
it.

Bill

----- Original Message -----
From: "Marge Vallazza"
To:
Sent: Wednesday, June 17, 2009 2:27 PM
Subject: Re: [Nuestros Ranchos] de padres no conocidos

Stuart,
sometimes the child(ren) of PNCs were the bastard child(ren) of the
"Padrino" and occasionally of the "Madrina." Marge

Just an educated guess...I think there is no one solution for all
probabilities which can include:

1) children of the godparents or family thereof.

2) Indian or African slaves, or mixture thereof.

3) orphaned children (especially from Native Americans or Mulatto)
resulting from warfare or disease.

My best guess is that these children were "protected" to some
degree.....depending on their appearance, servitude, etc...

**************Download the AOL Classifieds Toolbar for local deals at your
fingertips.
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The church didn't have to know. Maybe if there was collaboration in
concealing a "maiden's" impregnation, pregnancy, and childbirth,
SURPRISE!!!!! "Look what we found!" It may not have happened often
but it COULD have happened. Just me, thinking outside the box. Marge:)

On Jun 18, 2009, at 12:14 AM, Bill Figueroa wrote:

Marge,

Something doesn't make sense. Hijos de padres no conocidos were
usually abandoned children by parents who could not raise them due to
unusual circumstances. Children left at the church or handed over to
a catholic priest were given up for adoption to families that could
support them, both financially and spiritually. I have ancestors who
were godparents of many abandoned children. Most were young couples,
frequently husband and wife, but just as often a single man or woman.
Perhaps some were children of the padrino...maybe in some odd
cases...but children of the madrina? Could a mother be godmother of
her own child? I don't think the church would allow it.

Bill

----- Original Message ----- From: "Marge Vallazza"
To:
Sent: Wednesday, June 17, 2009 2:27 PM
Subject: Re: [Nuestros Ranchos] de padres no conocidos

Stuart,
sometimes the child(ren) of PNCs were the bastard child(ren) of the
"Padrino" and occasionally of the "Madrina." Marge

In transcribing these records I have run across every combination of
godparents of hijos de padres no conocidos - some with a padrino only,
some with a madrina only, some with both, and some with one parent
(either father or mother) and one or both godparents, and nearly every
mixture of races. In a few, the child is described as "expuesto",
usually en la casa de someone of race other than indio. There were
also some niños born of transients (paraxeros / parajeros).

The Antonia in question also has the interesting possibility of being
the same person who later married her godparents' son. That Antonia is
found having at least six different surnames in various records,
causing one to wonder if she had any idea who her real parents were,
and perhaps identified with various families who took care of her or
were close friends.

The nature of the records is such that in the case of marriage records
I wonder if "hijo/a legitimo/a" is really truthful in every case. If a
person was raised in a family I doubt they would be willing to admit,
if they even knew, that they were not legitimate.

Could someone translate Rodolfo's reply? (ff)
>
Estimado Stuart buenos días.
Cualquiera de las preguntas que haces puede ser la respuesta.

La obligación para con los padrinos era más que nada espiritual,
dependiendo de sus posibilidades ellos podían llevar o no a los niños
a sus casas. Los niños podían quedar bajo la custodia de Iglesia
mientras se les buscaba un hogar pero el bautismo era algo que no
podía ni debía postergarse ya que la muerte asechaba todo el tiempo.
Por eso se les buscaba padrinos con urgencia para poder bautizarlos.

Casi siempre esos infantes toman los apellidos de los padrinos, puedes
buscar que pasó con esa niña, pudo haber muerto ya que el íncice de
mortalidad era muy alto o puedes buscar en los expedientes
matrimoniales si es que se casó, es en esos documentos en donde se
encuentra la mayor información útil para cualquier investigador o
genealogísta ya que las partidas de libros de bautismo, matrimonio y
entierros son muy breves.

El índice de niños hijos de padres no conocidos e Hijos de la Iglesia
es muy alto durante el virreinato la historia de Antonia la niña que
mencionas, fue bastante común. Eran hijos nacidos de relaciones
ilísitas desde el punto de vista legal o moral, de abusos, etc. Por
ello eran abandonados en los pueblos cercanos, para ocultar "el
pecado".

Rodolfo Sinaí Gómez
>
--
Best regards,
Stuart mailto:stuartarms@gmail.com

Stuart,

In your message you said that "There were also some niños born of transients
(paraxeros / parajeros)." I believe you meant "pasaxeros / pasajeros" (with
an "s") like in "pasajeros en esta dicha Villa de Aguas Calientes".

Bill Figueroa

Stuart - here is my translation for Rodolfo's message. He mentions
"expedientes matrimoniales" and "libros de partidas" I don't know what the
difference is. Anyway, I hope this helps. If anyone has a better translation
I won't feel offended.

-Angelina-

Translation of Rodolfo's message:

Good morning Stuart.
All of your questions (scenarios) could be the answer.

The godparents obligations was more than anything spiritual, depending on
their capacity they would or would not have taken the children to their
homes. The children may have stayed under the custody of the church while a
home was found. However, baptism was something that could not be postponed
as death was a real possibility at all times.

Almost always those infants took the surname of their godparents, you can
look to see what happened to that girl, she could have died since mortality
was high or you can look in the "expedientes" marriages to see if she got
married, it is in those documents where genealogists can find the most
useful information since the "partidas" books for baptism, marriage, and
burials are very brief.

The incidence of children born of unknown parents and children of the church
was very high during the Virreinato. The story of Antonia, the child you
mention, was very common. They were children born as a result of illicit
affairs from the legal or moral point of view, abuses, etc. For that reason
they were abandoned in nearby towns, to hide "the sin".

-signed-

Original message from Rodolfo:

Estimado Stuart buenos días.
Cualquiera de las preguntas que haces puede ser la respuesta.

La obligación para con los padrinos era más que nada espiritual, dependiendo
de sus posibilidades ellos podían llevar o no a los niños a sus casas. Los
niños podían quedar bajo la custodia de Iglesia mientras se les buscaba un
hogar pero el bautismo era algo que no podía ni debía postergarse ya que la
muerte asechaba todo el tiempo.
Por eso se les buscaba padrinos con urgencia para poder bautizarlos.

Casi siempre esos infantes toman los apellidos de los padrinos, puedes
buscar que pasó con esa niña, pudo haber muerto ya que el íncice de
mortalidad era muy alto o puedes buscar en los expedientes matrimoniales si
es que se casó, es en esos documentos en donde se encuentra la mayor
información útil para cualquier investigador o genealogísta ya que las
partidas de libros de bautismo, matrimonio y entierros son muy breves.

El índice de niños hijos de padres no conocidos e Hijos de la Iglesia es muy
alto durante el virreinato la historia de Antonia la niña que mencionas, fue
bastante común. Eran hijos nacidos de relaciones ilísitas desde el punto de
vista legal o moral, de abusos, etc. Por ello eran abandonados en los
pueblos cercanos, para ocultar "el pecado".

Rodolfo Sinaí Gómez

We need to remember that the mother of the baby was not at the baptism and I'm sure sometimes the father was not either. Mothers stayed in bed/confinement for up to 40 days.  If the parents were from a different villlage or town of origin the godparents were simply saying they don't know who the grandparents were not that they did not have any.  I'm sure with following labor or field jobs there was lots of moving from season to season plus when a couple married one of them may have been from a different village so locals who became godparents did not know who the grandparents were.  I have one record where the child is one hour old so wonder about the baptism customs since this baby was not ill according to the record.  Sometimes we are just left to wonder..
 
Linda in B.C.

--- On Wed, 6/17/09, Esther wrote:

From: Esther
Subject: Re: [Nuestros Ranchos] de padres no conocidos
To: research@NuestrosRanchos.com
Date: Wednesday, June 17, 2009, 6:01 PM

Stuart, 
I have a situation where I do have father and mother for the great, great, great grand-parents.  However, while the father's side is OK, the maternal grandparents are listed as "abuelos maternos no conocidos."  One of the children does have a grandmother. 

Should this be interpreted as the grandmother was unwed?  I am a little bit confused.  Can you help me with this?  Do you want names?  Thank you for any help you can give me.

--Esther Jordan Lopez

En la Hazienda de Santiago feligresia de la Villa de Aguascalientes en
treinta y uno de Henero 1740 ... Maria Antonia, india originaria de el
Pueblo de San Joseph hija de padres no conocidos, fueron sus padrinos
Simon Benites y Juana de Lara, á quienes advertí su obligación y
parentesco espiritual, y lo firme con dicho Señor Cura

This record is very typical for children of unknown parents, and the
padrinos named here happen to be my wife's direct-line ancestors. I
wonder what the relationship was between Antonia and her godparents,
when there are no other parents known. Did the godparents assume
responsibility for raising the child? Did they merely fine her a home?
Did they do little or nothing but allow their names to be written
down? Just how seriously did godparents take "su obligación y
parentesco espiritual"?
 

--
Best regards,
Stuart                          mailto:stuartarms@gmail.com

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