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About Josefa Antonia de Paz Bustillos y Ontiveros
From the Hispanic Genealogical Research Center of New Mexico's Great New Mexico Pedigree Database:
Josefa Antonia de Paz BUSTILLOS Y ONTIVEROS    
- 1684 - ____
- NAME: Josefa de Ontiveros and Josefa de Bustos
- BIRTH: 1684, Ciudad de Mexico, Calle de Alameda, Nueva Espana
- EVENT: José Ruiz de Valdes
- Had child with: 1708, Plaza Blanca Grant, New Mexico
- DEATH: Y
- Father: Antonio Xavier BUSTILLOS Y ONTIVEROS
Family 1 : Diego SAYAGO ARROYA
- MARRIAGE: ABT 1730, Santa Cruz de la CaГ±ada, New Mexico
- 1. +Diego GONZALES DE LA ROSA
Family 2 : Jose RUIZ DE VALDES
-  Illicit relationship with Jose Valdez--not married
- 1. +Francisco Antonio VALDES Y BUSTOS
- 2. Juan Feliz de Paz BUSTILLOS
- 3. Manuel de la Rosa BUSTOS GONZALES
- 4. +Maria Antonia de ONTIVEROS
- 5. Joaquina GONZALES DE LA ROSA BUSTOS
- 6. Antonio GONZALES DE LA ROSA BUSTOS
- 7. +Juan Jose BUSTOS
- 8. Jose GONZALES DE LA ROSA BUSTOS
- 9. Salvador BUSTILLOS
Family 3 : Manuel BUSTOS
-  [S37] New Mexico Genealogist--NMGS, March 1998, p.19-24
-  [S799] ORIGINS OF NM FAMILIES, PAGE: pg. 301
-  [S37] New Mexico Genealogist--NMGS, March 1998, p.19-24
Josefa Antonia de Pas Bustillos y Ontiveros
Matriarch of the Bustos Family of Colonial New Mexico
by José Antonio Esquibel
Part 1 of 2
From the New Mexico Genealogist, March 1998, p. 19-24.
Included in a series of talks entitled "The Founding Mothers of New Mexico." This paper was originally presented under the title "The History of a Spanish Matriarch of Eighteenth Century Northern New Mexico: Josefa Antonia de Pas Bustillos y Ontiveros" at the Annual Conference of the Historical Society of New Mexico, 20 April 1996, in Las Vegas, New Mexico. Author José Antonio Esquibel is a New Mexico genealogist, historian, and a co-author of The Royal Road: El Camino Real from Mexico City to Santa Fe [Albuquerque, University of New Mexico Press, 1998]. Esquibel hosts a highly informative web site, Beyond Origins of New Mexico Families.
On the third day of April 1731, Josefa de Pas Bustillos y Ontiveros, then a woman of forty-seven years of age and a resident of La Villa Nueva de Santa Cruz, took pen and ink and set these words to paper:
I, Josefa de Ontiberos, one of the settlers from Mexico City and a resident of La Villa Nueva de Santa Cruz, appear before your Excellency in due form, according to the law, and in favor to my right I say that I have presented to Lieutenant Domingo Vijil a petition demanding a parcel of land which today is possessed by Pascuala de la Concepcion, widow of don Tomas de Herrera, which was given to me in the name of his majesty as a settler in this kingdom, and which was sold without my consent by Juan de Pas Bustillos, asking in said petition that the deed of sale of the said lands be manifested to me in order that in view thereof I might claim what would be rightfully mine. ... I ask and request with supplication to your Excellency that you be pleased to do and determine as I have asked because it is just, and I swear in due form that this, my petition, is not from malice, etc.
Josefa de Ontiberos (rubric) (1)
These words were written by a woman of determination with the knowledge and pride of having the royal privileges of a pobladora, a colonizer and settler of the Spanish frontier. Generally in our written histories men are remembered for their deeds in relation to the events of their surrounding situation and era. These words were written by a woman of determination with the knowledge and pride of having the royal privileges of a pobladora, a colonizer and settler of the Spanish frontier. Generally in our written histories men are remembered for their deeds in relation to the events of their surrounding situation and era.
Women appear less frequently in historical documents, and more often then not they are remembered in relationship to other people, particularly men, as daughters, wives, and/or mothers. This is certainly reflected in the available historical documentation concerning Josefa Antonia de Pas Bustillos y Ontiveros which span from 1693 until her death in 1772. Still, as an able and strongly independent woman she was unlike many other women of her time.
Josefa was born of a Creolle [European, born in the Americas] family of Spanish descent in 1684.(2) Her paternal grandparents were Mexico City residents don Francisco de Pas Bustillos and doña Antonia de Cervantes. Extremely little is known about this couple except they had two known sons, Juan de Pas Bustillos (b. ca. 1664) and Antonio Xavier de Pas Bustillos, the father of Josefa.(3) The Pas Bustillos y Ontiveros family were at least second generation residents of Mexico City. The earliest members of this family appear to have been don Juan de Pas Bustillos and doña Luisa de Alcantara Ontiveros whose daughter, Juana de Ontiveros, was married at the Cathedral of Mexico City in September 1644. The exact relationship of this couple to Josefa Antonia de Pas Bustillos y Ontiveros is still unclear.
When Josefa was baptized, her uncle, twenty year old Juan de Pas Bustillos, was her padrino, her godfather. Juan accepted the responsibility of ensuring that Josefa was raised in the Catholic faith, including the obligation to become her caretaker if her parents were to die while she was a child. It was an obligation which he would take very earnestly.
The earliest cultural influences on Josefa came from her childhood experiences as a resident of Mexico City, the viceregal capital of Nueva España. Religiosity was a dominant factor of the culture. This was reflected in the many churches of Mexico City and the expression of sincere devotion by its citizens. As a young child, Josefa would have attended mass regularly with her parents, very likely at the cathedral where several members of the Pas Bustillos family were parishioners. She received her early instruction in the Catholic faith from her family and learned much by witnessing the solemn expression of this faith in the many religious ceremonies at church and in public. In particular, the penitential processions of the numerous hermandades (brotherhoods), through the city streets during the seven days prior to Easter Sunday would have made a lasting impression on any person, particularly a child.(4) Indeed, many of Josefa's descendants would themselves be members of hermandades and participate in penitential rites during Holy Week in northern New Mexico. Josefa's grandparents had been residents of the Calle de Vergara in Mexico City. She herself was born on Calle de Alameda, and her younger brother, Antonio, was born on Calle de Reloj.(5) To the east of the city lay Lake Texcoco where Josefa may have played along its banks under the watchful eye of a parent. There were several plazas in this large city, but the very heart of activity was the Plaza Mayor, a grand open space bounded on the north by the magnificent Cathedral of Mexico City and to the east by the viceregal palace. On the plaza, merchants would sell their wares and food, especially meats, fruits, vegetables, and grains. Certainly, Josefa walked on the Plaza Mayor, and on one or more occasions watched with excitement as the viceroy and his wife rode to or from the palace in their luxurious carriage.
At about age six, Josefa was one of many children of the city to live through the disastrous events of 1691 which culminated in the tumult of 1692. In June 1691, Mexico City and the surrounding area received an extreme amount of rainfall, causing ravines and dry stream beds to overflow. This was followed in July by thirteen days of continuous rain which resulted in the rising of the waters of Lake Texcoco to flood the city. Streets became impassable and had to be navigated by canoes. As the flood worsened with additional run-off water from nearby mountains, buildings in the city collapsed and the necessary supplies of firewood, meat and vegetables became scarce. Many crops had failed and others could not be harvested in August because of continued rainfall. All residents, rich and poor, suffered the shortage of food which hit Mexico City hard in September and continued into the spring of 1692. The Pas Bustillos family members undoubtedly did their best to provide for themselves in this period of hardship which severely disturbed the usual routine of life in the capital city. Much of the populace grew extremely discontented and demanded that royal authorities act to make food available in the city. This discontentment erupted into protests and rioting which took place in June 1692 with more than two hundred Indians attacking the palace of the archbishop and the royal palace which housed the viceroy.(6) These horrendous events may have had some influence on the decision of the Pas Bustillos family to eventually enlist as colonists for New Mexico. Certainly, these events became a memory which Josefa would not forget, and the experience of hardship prepared her for the hardship of frontier life in New Mexico.
By the age of nine, in 1693, Josefa and her brother, Antonio, were part of the household of their uncle Juan de Pas Bustillos.(7) It would appear that Josefa's parents were deceased at the time, or in some other way absent from her life. Because her uncle took his spiritual duty earnestly, she was brought into his household.
In the previous year, Juan had been married at the Cathedral of Mexico City to twenty-seven year old Manuela Antonia de Alanis. The marriage took place in September, only two months after the tumult of 1692. Sometime between July and September 1693, Pas Bustillos with his wife, niece and nephew, had enlisted as colonists for the restored realm of New Mexico.(8) Whatever their personal motivation, this was an opportunity to serve the crown in exchange for being granted land and obtaining all privileges, honors, and favors as pobladores, colonizers and settlers of the frontier.
The call for colonizers had been initiated in Mexico City by the viceroy of Nueva España, the Conde de Galve. The news of the restoration of New Mexico reached the viceregal capital in late November 1692 and spread quickly among the populace.(9) The Pas Bustillos family very likely participated in the public celebrations which took place across the whole city.
Volunteers to help recolonize New Mexico began to come forward, and the viceroy's own initiative to provide compensation and supplies to prospective colonists for their northward journey brought forth additional families. In September 1693 a total of sixty–seven families comprised of 235 people were situated just north of the city at the encampment of Guadalupe.(10)
A muster roll of these families provides us with the first historical record of Josefa in which she is described as being nine years old with a round face, slightly cross-eyed, and a short and turned up nose. Brief descriptions were needed to physically identify the colonists traveling into a dangerous frontier region.(11)
Viceregal stipulations ensured that only Españoles, people of Spanish descent, were allowed to enlist as colonists for New Mexico. Church records were consulted to verify that couples were indeed legitimately married. The majority of the responding families were of the tradesmen class—tailors, weavers, painters, carpenters, stonemasons, and millers.(12) The occupation of Juan de Pas Bustillos in Mexico City is not known, but in New Mexico he was a teacher and was known to have kept school at Santa Fe in the early 1700s.(13) Finally, after many delays, the long awaited day of departure arrived. Josefa rode in a mule–drawn wagon with her adopted family. The route north to New Mexico was to follow the Camino Real to Querétaro, then to Zacatecas, Cuencamé, the outpost of El Gallo, Parral, El Paso del Norte, and finally Santa Fe. On the muster rolls of families made near Zacatecas and Cerro Gordo during the long journey, the Pas Bustillos surname was shortened and recorded as Bustos, perhaps Bustíllos was actually pronounced Bústillos which then became Bustos.(14)
Josefa, as a member of the largest group of people to traverse the entire length of the Camino Real from Mexico City to Santa Fe, was one of eighty-eight children, consisting of forty-one percent of the entire colonizing expedition, who completed the fifteen hundred mile trip.(15) This must have been a most memorable, exciting and challenging adventure for young Josefa. With her family she lived on the Camino Real for nine months. It was anticipated that the northward journey would take only ninety days, but difficulties caused the expedition to move much slower. Bonds were formed among many families that would later be strengthened in New Mexico by matrimonial alliances. It was during this journey that Josefa very likely was introduced to four year old Jose Ruiz de Valdes, who would later become the father of her eldest son, and was himself the son of fellow colonists Jose Ruiz de Valdes and Maria de Medina Cabrera.(16)
In mid–June 1694, the colonizing expedition arrived at Santa Fe to the early morning welcome of the local citizens who themselves had resettled the town six months earlier.(17) The new settlers came with the intent to stay and establish a new lifestyle in the frontier. The Pas Bustillos family resided in Santa Fe until April 1695 when the new Villa de Santa Cruz de la Canada was founded specifically to accommodate the families recruited at Mexico City. Juan de Pas Bustillos, also known as Juan de Bustos, was granted land in the Santa Cruz area by Governor don Diego de Vargas.(18) At this time, Santa Cruz was the northern most settlement in the Spanish Americas. Bustos and his family had adopted a very challenging lifestyle which contrasted sharply with that which they had in Mexico City.
Two years later this family was accounted for as recipients of livestock distributed by Governor Vargas.(19) The record of distribution identifies Josefa as a "daughter" of Juan de Bustos and his wife Manuela Antonia. In time, this family found it difficult to work the land, and it is apparent that Bustos did not make a successful adjustment from urban dweller to pioneer of the far northern frontier. This was partly due to the ill health of Bustos who was remembered as a sickly man.(20) He was certainly more attracted to the lifestyle offered at Santa Fe, where he began to spend more time. The result was that in 1700 he sold his land in the Santa Cruz area to fellow Mexico City colonist Tomas de Herrera y Sandoval and kept his permanent residence at Santa Fe. (21)
Indications are that Josefa remained in the Santa Cruz region, perhaps living in the household of another family. At this period she was a young woman of sixteen years of age, a time when marriage was expected for most women. Eight years later in 1708, still unmarried, Josefa gave birth to her first known child, a son who was the namesake of her grandfather, Francisco. There is no documentation preserved in the Spanish Archives of New Mexico nor the Archives of the Archdiocese of Santa Fe to provide us with details about the circumstances which led to the birth of this child. Was Josefa raped, or was she manipulated through the promise of marriage and seduced, or did she take a young man as her lover? Whatever the situation, the father's name was public knowledge. From a later record we learn that he was nineteen year old Jose Ruiz de Valdes whose family had also come from Mexico City and settled in the Santa Cruz area.(22) By impregnating Josefa, Valdes had brought shame upon her and her family. According to custom, some measures would have been taken to restore her honor unless she herself was responsible for her circumstance. For any number of reasons, the couple never married. Either she did not wish to marry him, or one or both of the families opposed the union. Curiously, Valdes did not remain in Santa Cruz, but settled at El Paso as a soldier and was married in October 1711 to Micaela Lucero de Godoy.(23) Perhaps he was exiled or his family sent him away to keep him separated from Josefa. No mention was made about his previous relations with her during his prenuptial investigation.
The birth of Josefa's first child marked the beginning of her life as a matriarch of a large family. Over the course of the next fourteen years she gave birth to at least five other children. The various surnames of her children indicate they were born of different fathers whose identities are not given in existing historical and sacramental records. Her eldest son used the surname of Valdes y Bustos. Four other sons and a daughter used the surnames of Bustillos, Bustos, Ontiveros, Gonzalez, Gonzalez de la Rosa, and de la Rosa interchangeably.
Although there were other women in New Mexico who had children outside of marriage, Josefa de Ontiveros, would become one of only a few New Mexico Spanish women of her generation who founded and presided over a large and extended family group. Other such notable women include Juana Lujan, founder and matriarch of the prominent Gomez del Castillo family of the San Ildefonso–Pojoaque area, Josefa Baca, founder and matriarch of her own significant branch of the Baca family of Rio Abajo, and her aunt Juana Baca founder and matriarch of the Luna family of Rio Abajo with a branch later settling in Abiquiu.(24)
These women were strongly independent and managed their lives differently than the typical women of their times. Not without difficulty, each was able to successfully raise and provide for their natural children without a husband; children who contributed positively to the communities in which the lived. As adults, these children appear to have not experienced any significant social stigma due to their bastard status, and married into other prominent Spanish families of New Mexico. These marriages formed valuable kinship alliances between in-laws through compadrazgo relationships, particularly between their single mothers and the parents and siblings of their spouses.
These matriarchs remained connected to their communities and were owners of land, having full knowledge of their rights and privileges as "pobladoras", and they understood the value of those rights. In this regard, they were not women without means. Regardless of their lack of marital status, they retained a measure of social status as individuals endowed with the honors of settlers in the name of the king. It was not necessary to have wealth, many possessions, or a husband to keep and make use of these honors. Josefa de Ontiveros and the small handful of other women like her took full advantage of this as they balanced living life on their own terms and maintaining enough of the social precepts to not become outcasts. Their status as unwed mothers did not impede the devout expression of their religious faith and their duty to ensure that their children and godchildren were raised and educated in the Catholic tradition.
Between 1719 and 1749 the name of Josefa de Ontiveros, also referred to as Josefa de Bustos, was recorded in the church records of Santa Cruz, Taos, San Juan de los Caballeros, San Ildefonso and Nambe.(25) She was the madrina for at least 13 children, ten of them orphans. A few of those orphans were probably adopted into her own household.
The remainder of this article was published in the New Mexico Genealogist, June 1998, p. 71-75.
(1) Spanish Archives of New Mexico, Series I (SANM I): 1076.
(2) Spanish Archives of New Mexico, Series II (SANM II): 54c.
(3) Ibid. Jose Antonio Esquibel and John B. Colligan, "The Spanish Recolonization of New Mexico: An Account of the Families Recruited at Mexico City in 1693," unpublished manuscript, 800+ pp.
(4) Diary entries by Juan Francisco Gemelli Carreri made in early April 1697 provide one of the few accounts of the penitential processions which occurred in the days prior to Easter Sunday through the streets of Mexico City. These very public ceremonies were impressive. Most of Gemelli Carreri's diary entries are brief, but with regard to the penitential processions he provided additional details, including descriptions of public self-flagellation. Many of the New Mexico colonists recruited at Mexico City in 1693 were the principal settlers of Santa Cruz de la Cañada from which many other Spanish settlements in northern New Mexico sprang. Some of the men of these families may have belonged to brotherhoods in Mexico City and particpated in the yearly pentitential processions, and could have been the earliest influence in establishing the Penitentes of northern New Mexico. Juan Francisco Gemelli Carreri, Viaje a la Nueve España Tomos, traducido por José Maria de Agreda y Sanchez (Mexico: Jorge Porrua SA, 1983), 102-105.
(5) SANM II: 54c.
(6) Carlos de Sigüenza y Góngora, Alborto y Motin de Mexico del 8 de Junio de 1692: Relación de don Carlos de Sigüenza y Góngora en una carta dirigida al almirante don Andres de Pez, ed. Irving A Leonard (Mexico City: Talleres Graficos del Museo Nacional de Arqueologiz, Historia y Etnografia, 1932).
(7) SANM II: 54c.
(8) Ibid. Juan de Pas Bustillos and Manuela Antonia Alanis recorded banns of matrimony at the Cathedral of Mexico City on 7 Sep 1692. Juan was identified as a native of Mexico City and the son of Francisco de Pas Busillos and doña Antonia de Cervantes. Manuela Antonia was a native of the Valle de Islahuaca and a resident of Mexico City since she was a child, but her parents were not identified. The couple was married on 14 Sep 1692.
(9) John L. Kessell, Rick Hendricks and Meredith D. Dodge, eds., J. Ignacio Avellaneda, Associate Editor, Larry D. Miller, Assistant Editor, José Antonio Esquibel, Research Consultant, To the Royal Crown Restored: The Journal of Don Diego de Vargas, New Mexico, 1692-94. (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1995), 100-107.
(10) SANM II: 54c. Esquibel and Colligan, "The Spanish Recolonization of New Mexico."
(11) SANM II: 54c.
(12) J. Manuel Espinosa, Crusaders of the Rio Grande: The Story of Don Diego de Vargas and the Reconquest and Refounding of New Mexico (Chicago: Institute of Jesuit History), 124. Jose Antonio Esquibel, Remembrance/Recordacion: The Spanish Colonists that Arrived in Santa Fe 12 June 1694 (Denver: Genealogical Society of Hispanic America, 1994), 4, 19-28.
(13) SANM I: 1076.
(14) Esquibel and Colligan, "The Spanish Recolonization of New Mexico"; Archivo General de Nacion (AGN), Historia 39:1.
(15) Esquibel, Rememberance/Recordacion, 14.
(16) SANM II: 54c. Archives of the Archdiocese of Santa Fe (AASF), DM 1723:6.
(17) Espinosa, Crusaders of the Rio Grande, 188.
(18) SANM I: 678, 819, and 1076.
(19) SANM II: 65.
(20) SANM I: 1076.
(21) SANM I: 678 and 1076.
(22) AASF: DM 1723:6.
(23) AASF: DM 1711:17.
(24) Fray Angélico Chavez, Origins of New Mexico Families in the Spanish Colonial Period in Two Parts: The Seventeenth (1598-1693) and the Eighteenth (1693-1821) Centuries (1954), Rpt. Santa Fe: Museum of New Mexico Press, (1993), 144, 187, 214-215. Herencia, (Albuquerque: Hispanic Genealogical Research Center of New Mexico) Vol. 2:2, July 1994, 19. Juana Baca, matriarch of the Luna family, was actually a daughter of Cristobal Baca and Ana Moreno de Lara. She was enumerated in the household of her mother as an 18 year old in the 1692 census, El Paso district. See Kessell, Hendricks, Dodge, eds. To the Royal Crown Restored, 62; Margaret L. Buxton, The Other Luna Family: The Maternal Ancestry of Miguel de San Juan," privately published, 1991 (copy available at the Albuquerque Public Library Special Collections/ Genealogy Library); Rick Hendricks, ed., John B. Colligan, compiler, New Mexico Prenuptial Investigations from the Archivos Historicos del Arzobispado de Durango, 1760-1799, 128, 133.
Juana Baca, matriarch of the Luna family, was actually a daughter of Cristobal Baca and Ana Moreno de Lara. She was enumerated in the household of her mother as an 18 year old in the 1692 census, El Paso district. See Kessell, Hendricks, Dodge, eds. To the Royal Crown Restored, 62; Margaret L. Buxton, The Other Luna Family: The Maternal Ancestry of Miguel de San Juan,", privately published, 1991 (copy available at the Albuquerque Public Library Special Collections/ Genealogy Library); Rick Hendricks, ed., John B. Colligan, compiler, New Mexico Prenuptial Investigations from the Archivos Historicos del Arzobispado de Durango, 1760-1799, 128, 133.
(25) Taos baptismal records: 30 July 1719, 13 Aug 1719, 18 Oct 1719, 2 Dec 1719, 20 Apr 1720, and 7 Jun 1720 and 25 Jun 1720; Nambé marriage records: 5 Mar 1723; San Ildefonso baptismal records: 15 Jan 1728; Santa Cruz baptisms: 24 Mar 1732, 1 May 1734, 15 May 1743, and 30 Mar 1749; San Juan de los Caballeros marriage records; 7 Oct 1743.
Josefa Antonia de Paz Bustillos y Ontiveros's Timeline
Ciudad de México, Reino de México, Reino de Nueva España
Nambé Pueblo, Provincia de Nuevo México, Virreinato de Nueva España
Santa Cruz de la Cañada, Nuevo México, Virreinato de Nueva España
(Present Alcalde), (Present Rio Arriba County), Provincia de Nuevo Mexico, Virreinato de Nueva España
Santa Cruz de la Cañada, Provincia de Nuevo México, Reino de Nueva España