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South Indian (Sri Lanka) Ancestry of Aguascalientes

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By FSG_85 - Posted on 14 November 2020


This is my first post on this forum. I've been casually browsing pages on here for years but never actually created an account. I've gone about 3 or more years now of reading through countless documents to trace back my ancestry within Nueva Galicia with a focus on Indigenous roots. I've helped several people reconnect with their distant living relatives within Aguascalientes as well. Lastly, I'm an author on lost civilizations and my background is Anthropology.

Anyways, there's a genetic anomaly in my DNA profile which only a very few people within Aguascalientes share. At first I thought it was a fluke, seeing as the Bering Strait migration from Asia carried over genetic profiles of many ethnic groups. However, this genetic trace (at around 1%) is so specific I've been able to disregard it as part of the original genetic mtDNA haplogroup migrations into the Americas. The result is that of South Indian/Sri Lankan. I've seen other people from Aguascalientes with Northern Indian, which could be the result of early immigrational epochs. I've heard rumors of Indians and Filipinos migrating into the region as early as the 1600's.

I'm just curious if anyone has come across a specific name or lineage that could reveal a little more on this subject. In all my research I've never actually come across anything closely resembling a 'chino' link as it would have been entered into the records.

Any ideas?

Hi FSG_85

You asked for ideas so I have two. :)

I found some info on Sri Lankas early colonial history, back when it was a colony of Portugal. The following is an escerpt from a paper here:
which is at this website: about Macao.

(start of quote)

Viceroy Afonso de Albuquerque (1508-1515), recognized the problem of a shortage of manpower at an early stage. He sought to overcome this by encouraging the Portuguese to intermarry with the local population. Many Portuguese outposts in Portuguese Asia were inadequately manned. It was expected that the offspring of these marriages would create a population in the colonies loyal to the Portuguese crown. 1

These married settlers were known as casados, and lived in various towns and cities in Sri Lanka. Having married local women, they maintained close contact with the local population. Their neighbours, through intercourse with them, were able to acquire a knowledge of the Portuguese language during the Portuguese period in Sri Lanka. As a result there emerged a group of people in towns who had acquired a smattering of the Portuguese language. This was, however, not a language they had learnt from books or with the help of a teacher. They had only gained familiarity with the spoken language. This colloquial variety was a corrupted form of Portuguese, as among these casados there were Eurasians and mestizos in addition to the settlers from Portugal living in Sri Lanka. The second and third generation of the Portuguese descendents became more and more Ceylonised not only due to mixed marriages but also in their mental attitudes. They continued to use the Portuguese tongue in order to maintain their position as a race separate from the indigenous population and to identify themselves as the ruling class whether they were Portuguese, Dutch or English.

Among these casados the most prominent were the Portuguese soldiers. There were practically no Portuguese women in Sri Lanka. The men who were registered as soldiers moved freely between Portuguese establishments. There were Portuguese traders and merchants. The latter were clearly separated from public officials in Portuguese Asia. They were associated with trade conducted by the state and were allowed to carry a certain weight of commodities free of charge in Portuguese vessels. 2

All these groups lived in the towns, mainly trading centers with very few connections with agriculture in the surrounding area. It is reported that they resorted to fishing in the neighboring sea. They also practiced other crafts such as cobbling, tailoring and other arts and crafts that they were familiar with in their mother country. The later generations continued these trades. They were unable to feed their population without foodstuffs from the interior. In this manner the frontier society also came to use Portuguese language for communication.

The Portuguese did not care to learn about local habits and organization of the society. They have been blamed for their lack of respect towards the 'high castes' in Sri Lanka. They offered duties to other castes which were assigned to high castes. In marriages they cared more about looks and talents than castes. However, it is recorded that even royal princesses, including a queen, had sought conjugal connection with Portuguese men. Therefore it is clear that Portuguese language was not confined just to upper classes but went deep into all classes of the Sri Lankan society.

(end of quote)

A number of Portuguese ended up in Mexico. Maybe one individual was a descendant of a Casado pair. I have 13% Portuguese DNA, I also have lines back to Aguascalientes - the Romo line among others (but no South INdian dna).So maybe you are really looking for someone who is identified as Portuguese in records.

Alternatively, African slaves were brought to Sri Lanka and intermarried or had children with local women. It may be a slave descendent of theirs was sold to a Portuguese trader who transported this individual to Mexico. THere were a number of slaves in Aguascalientes area. I do have African dna and have found at least one ancestor listed as esclavo mulatto in church records.


Thank you for your reply! That's something I didn't take into account, Portuguese ancestors and 'Mulattos' within the records. I have come across a lot of 'mulatto libre' records, some within my own tree. That might be worth re-looking into.

I used to wonder about possible immigrants from East Asia to Colonial Mexico via Acapulco, but I never saw any records for them until I started to peruse the indexed dispensas at Valladolid Dispensas. If you search Valladolid Dispensas you will find records for a Chinese man, a Malaccan, and various Filipinos.

Hola a todos.

También investigué sobre los ancestros chinos de unas tías que tienen rasgos chinos y pude encontrarlos en censos y registros eclesiásticos, creí que era esclavos porque hubo muchos asiáticos esclavizados que fueron traídos a Nueva España, pero resultaron comerciantes acomodados de Manila, aunque chinos y no filipinos se les catalogó como "indios de Filipinas".

Además de los muchos esclavos hubo grumetes, barberos, comerciantes, etc. hay dos estudios que me sirvieron para conocer sobre ésta materia, que se pueden consultar en línea:
"La esclavitud asiática en el Virreinato de la Nueva España" de Débora Oropeza Keresey en y "Asian slaves in colonial México" de Tatiana Seijas en

Otra ruta posible es la de los gitanos que salieron del norte de la India y llegaron a España y de allí pasaron a Nueva España, uno de los conquistadores de Nueva Galicia llamado Juan de Cuéllar Verdugo fue conocido como "El Gitano".

Finalmente he observado que el nombre Rangel es hindú aunque en la Nueva España se usa como apellido.

Espero que encuentren algo interesante en éstos comentarios.



I just read an article regarding this subject:

Though I haven’t seen any records of people from Sri Lanka during my research, I have seen records of Asians & Pacific Islanders as early as 1642:

Here’s a burial record, dated 29 May 1642, for Agustin Lopez de la Cruz, “de nación Japón,” who died in the Hospital of Señor San Miguel in Guadalajara, Jalisco. It does’t say whether he was married, so I don’t know if he left issue in Mexico. He did leave a testament, and his executor was “Luis de Encio Japón.”

On 5 Oct 1643, in San Luis Potosi, married were Pedro Vasquez, “de nación Japón,” and Juana de San Pedro, Negra Libre. Pedro Vasquez was a “criado” or employee of Juan Manso.

Just the other day, I came upon this marriage petition for Pedro Hernandez, “chino, natural de la Isla de Manila,” dated 11 Jan 1687. He was at the time a resident in Tacambaro, Michoacan:

So, there are scattered cases. One imagines that their DNA would’ve “bred out,” after so many generations.

Manny Díez Hermosillo

My dna shows 4% Indonesian, maylasian + Japan. My paternal oral history has always been that our 3x great grandparents were south East Asian. I was told that they worked the mines in chihuahua early 1800s but have not been able to verify through docs...but the dna is there and some in my family do have features. While I continue to search, I assume they came with the Manila Galleons through Acapulco since Indonesian slaves were included.

Hi Manny

Regarding the watering down of the dna, keep in mind this would happen less, if cousins married, especially if it happened several times over a few hundred years.

I have had the same mystery about some Great Britain dna in my paternal grandmother's family, where several generations back from her are identified and no indiviuals are Anglo. My best theory is an ancestor way further back, whose descendants remarried a few time over the ensuing generations. For example, on my family tree there is a confusing instance of two brothers who married two sisters, and their children (or maybe it was two grandchildren) married.

Good luck with your research!

I remembered this thread as soon as I saw the Guadalajara marriage record for Antonio Rodríguez Chino de las indias orientales natural de la Ciudad de Vengala.

Makes one wonder what the scribe was thinking here. Could it be Antonio was Chinese or Burmese from Bengal, which is technically not a city but a region? Or have I read it wrong and his surnames are Rodríguez Chino and he is from Bengal or one of its chief cities, like Kolkata (Calcutta)?

I think Chino in this case is not part of his name, since the record states that he is from the East Indies.

Searching for the origin of the name of the city of Bengal, Wikipedia says "The name of Bengal is derived from the ancient kingdom of Vanga ..."

So, "Bengal" is a reasonable interpretation of "Ciudad de Vengala".

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