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Presentación personal / Personal Introduction

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By ktbusa - Posted on 04 August 2017

Presentación personal / Personal Introduction

Saludos a todos / Greetings everyone,

I am new to the group, although not so new to doing Los Altos genealogical research. My name is Kassandra Brenot; I am the great-grand-daughter of a Los Altos couple who came to the U.S. during the cristero war.

About 25 years ago I began researching my family roots in Los Altos, thanks to my Marquez cousins and the Somos Primos group in the greater Los Angeles area (including Mimi Lozano and Mary Lou Montagna and the stellar work they all got me going on, for which I shall be forever indebted). While my professional and family duties have pulled me away from my passion for genealogy over the course of the past twenty years or so, through some recent unexpected encounters through my work I have reconnected with my Los Altos roots...

I am the head of an all girls, Catholic boarding school in Monterey, California and have discovered that a few of the families at my school are Los Altos families! Knowing the prevalence of endogamia amongst los alteños, I figured we must be related so.... during my summer vacation, I dug back into my old files and jumped online and have been helping these families get started on researching their lines.

Lo and behold, we are related and we are now looking to start a small Los Altos research group here on the Monterey Peninsula. We had our first mini-get together last night with a small group that represented Ramirez, Loza, Campos and Gutierrez. Some of the members of these families immigrated only within the past 20 years, while others immigrated in the 1950s, settling in the Salinas Valley. As for my own family, it was my great-grandparents María Gonzalez Muñoz and José Lorenzo Loza Muñoz who emigrated from San Miguel el Alto to Carpinteria, California in 1926. Some of the names I am researching farther back in my lines (in the areas of Jalostotitlán, San Juan, Aguascalientes and Ayo el Chico) are the following:

Fernández de Rueda
García de Miranda
González de Rubalcava
Hernández de Arellano
Hurtado de Mendoza
López de Fueresclava
Muños de Nava y Estrada
Loza y Linares
Lozano Vásquez
Vásquez Cermeño

Through this group, I hope to fill in a few holes I have in my chart, as well as to help guide some of these families as they begin discovering the joy of researching their Los Altos family history. What I also hope to learn more about through this group is the rich history and traditions of the Los Altos region: I was only about 8 when my great-grandmother died so what little I know about Los Altos is what I have read about, found online, or heard about through cousins, grandparents and family friends.

(Hablo español)

Saludos a todos,

Welcome to the group Kassandra. You are a distant cousin of mine. You are also a distant cousin of my wife whose parents are from San Miguel el Alto.

Here is a little addition to your family tree:

Cristobal Vasquez de Lara is married on the 28/Oct/1668 to Juana Fernandez de Rueda. Juana is the daughter of Alonso Fernandez de Rueda and Ana De Anda Altamirano.

Ana is the daughter of Juan De Anda Altamirano and Juana Ruiz de Nava.
Juan De Anda Altamirano is the son of Pedro de Anda Altamirano and Beatriz Gonzalez de Castañeda.

Beatriz is the daughter of Pedro de Castañeda

These are also your ancestors:

Luis Padilla married to Fabiana Diaz Tiscareño

Luis is the son of Francisco de Padilla and Ana Munoz de la Barba.

Fabiana is the daughter of Nicolas Diaz and Juana Isassi Martin del Campo

From Fabiana you descend from Lope Ruiz de Esparza and his wife. I am writing a book on his and her ancestry. His wife descends from Moctezuma II. I have stories of some of the family members' bad experience with the inquisition. I also have some other family stories that I find interesting.

Good luck in your research,
Rick A. Ricci

Muchísimas gracias, Rick! My Marquez cousins have spoken about the Moctezuma connection, and it has been a mystery to me so I am so glad to know the lineage now. I have been keenly interested in the Sephardic ancestry, too, and researching quite a bit about it. I understand that the Padilla and Muñoz lines were probably conversos... as well as others in our shared lineage? Any information you can share with me on that would be most helpful. Thank you so much for replying to my post.

I look forward to reading your upcoming book. When will it be published?

Saludos de

Hola Kassandra:

El apellido Riquelme proviene de Murcia, España, de la zona de Lorca llamada Coy de los Riquelmes.

El apellido Machuca es de Granada, España.

Los Lomelín puedes estudiarlos en los nodos anteriores proviene de Génova, más atrás de Lombardía y posiblemente de los bárbaros longobardos.

Hay ya muchos avances en el estudio de algunas ramas por lo que te recomiendo que explores los estudios de Manny, Richard, El Capitán Paco...

Saludos y bienvenida


Saludos Kassandra,

In my earlier post, I mentioned that you were related to both me and my wife. What I should have written was that we are related repeatedly due to the " endogamia" amongst "los Alteños".

I have much information to add to your family tree. I don't have a publishing date because I keep finding new information that I am adding to the book. Professional and family duties prevent me from working full time on this hobby.

I have done much research on a couple of your ancestors that you have as a deadend. Unfortunately I still have more research to do before posting my conclusions on the ancestry of Nicolas de Loza and Antonia Diaz de Leon. Unfortunately, some genealogists have posted false family trees on this couple. They confuse Antonia with an aunt of hers with the same name. They also give different parents for Nicolas Loza. Manny's research has provided valuable leads to figuring out the puzzle.

Some of the Jewish ancestry is not Sephardic. Ashkenazi Jews from France and Germany left descendants in northern Spain that I believe to be the ancestors of Toribio Hernandez Arellano. One of our Jewish lines can be traced for many many centuries because it is a rabbinic line that left records in Spain and in Germany. The German branch took many records with them when they left Spain. These records show the line for over two thousand years, with the family living for a time in what is now Iraq.

Your cousin,
Rick A. Ricci

Hola Marcelina,

Muchas gracias por la respuesta y por la información sobre el apellido Riquelme. No sabía que proviene de la zona de Federico García Lorca. Conozco muy bien su obra pues he enseñado su obra desde hace años. Qué lindo saber esto, y además que Machuca es apellido granadino. Es curioso el apellido, ¿no?

Voy a explorar los estudios de Manny, Richard y el Capitán Paco. Gracias de nuevo.


Now this is absolutely fascinating, primo! It corroborates the family stories of having ancestors from France and northern Spain. I had not heard of a connection to Germany but rather to Austria, but perhaps that was Germany given the political demarcations of the era in which the story was passed on?

Some of the rabbinic lineage being Ashkenazi through northern Spain is intriguing. When did this German line leave Spain? Would that have been in 1492 at the time of the Alhambra Decree or at a different time?

I am still presuming there are a few Sephardic Jewish lines in our lineage...? If so, which ones would they be? I am wondering if they are in the Padilla line by chance? This is just a hunch, nothing more. Please know that I have not touched my research in years and at that time I was ordering microfilms a few at a time and scrolling through them "old school!" To now see so many from the parishes of Jalos, San Miguel, San Juan de los Lagos, etc. all posted online is such a gift!

Clearly, countless hours of investigation have been done by members of this group. Since one of the families I mentioned in my first post shares Loza lineage with me, we will make sure to not make the mistake of confusing the ancestry of Antonia Díaz. This is very helpful information. Muchísimas gracias.

Hasta pronto,


You are correct as to there being a descent from Austria that is connected to southern France and northern Spain. This is the Ashkenazi line connected to what I believe is the ancestry of Toribio Hernandez Arellano. I have been studying different Jewish lines in the Iberian peninsula. The Padilla ancestry does include Sephardic ancestry just as you suspected. The de la Torre Ledesma line is related to this Sephardic ancestry.

The German line that I wrote about had to do with Jews leaving Spain and going to Germany. These Jews took their family records with them and stayed Jewish. so we had very distant cousins that we could connect to through family records that suffered through the holocaust. The records survived although many of our distant cousins did not.

I started over forty years ago so I too did much of my research "old school", and although much of my research has been advanced through technology, I am glad that I went through the Old school way of researching as it provided Much practice in looking for "threads", and following up on these clues.

Mary Lou has also helped me with my research. Just recently, she provided valuable papers for my research on Lope Ruiz de Esparza.

Hasta pronto,

Gracias Marcelina por tu recommendacion.

Rick A. Ricci

Thank you for confirming that hunch on the Padilla line, Rick, and the de la Torre Ledesma link to this Sephardic ancestry.

Indeed, much was to be learned through scrolling through the films and following up on threads.

How interesting that the German line about which you wrote earlier went to Germany and suffered the holocaust.

Just last week when researching one of the families from my school I came across a Padilla dispensation with some good information. I will post it to share with everyone, in case it is useful for others doing Padilla research.

Gracias de nuevo,

Hola Kassandra.

Así como hay diferentes estudios sobre los linajes criptojudíos también los hay sobre las familias criptomusulmanas. Algunos musulmanes forzados a convertirse al cristianismo se agruparon en cofradías que les permitieron conservar algunas costumbres.

Yo desciendo de los Ramírez de Coy, es decir de Coy, Murcia ligados a las órdenes militares en algún momento supuse que podrían ser criptomusulmanes pero no se confirmó mi hipótesis. Aún así estuve leyendo sobre esos temas.

Al estudiar dichos temas -además porque toda mi familia admira a Federico García Lorca- me di cuenta que éste no era precisamente gitano en cuanto a su inspiración, incluso el Romancero Gitano no es en realidad gitano sino andalucista (criptomusulmán) ya que la única poesía completamente gitana es el Romance de la Guardia Civil Española, los demás poemas en realidad se refieren a temas de Al Andaluz por ejemplo "hijo de Benamejí".

Al leer diversas biografías del poeta creí que lo persiguieron por su orientación de izquierda o su orientación sexual, pero parece que en realidad estuvo involucrado con el movimiento andalucista que pretendía un regreso a la cultura hispano musulmana. Si te interesara el tema puedes ver en youtube la historia de Blas Infante, quien por cierto fue también fusilado en esa época. Existen retratos de Federico con ropa musulmana, con turbante.

Aunque mi hipótesis sobre los Ramírez no se confirmó sí encontré una rama musulmana de la familia Ramírez que desciende de Muley Hacén.


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