Tamaulipas
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History of Tamaulipas
(Nuevo Santander)

bulletNuevo Santander
bulletJose de Escandon
(Chief Colonizer of Tamaulipas)
bulletHistoric Places
bulletFounding Families of Reynosa
bulletMier, the Founding Families

Places Listing
Abasolo, Armadillo, Aguayo, Altamira, Bagdad, Baltazar, Burgos, Camargo, Cerro de Santiago, Croix, Cruillas, Diaz Ordaz, Escandon, Gomez Farias, Gonzalez, Guemes, Guerrero (Revilla), Horcasitas, Juamave, Padilla, Palmillas, Llera, Los Guerra, Mante, Matamoros, Mendez, Mier, Miguel Aleman, Miquihuana, Morelos, Nuevo Guerrero, Ocampo, Quintero, Rayon, Reynosa, Rio Blanco, Rio Bravo, Rio Rico, San CarlosSan Fernando, San Nicolas, San Vicente, Santa Barbara, Santander (Jimenez), Santillana, Soto La Marina, Tampico, Tetillas, Tula, Villagran

 

Nuevo Santander
The origins of Tamaulipas begin with the province of Nuevo Santander which was officially named and became a part of New Spain in 1746. The territory spanned from the San Antonio river to the north east to the Gulf of Mexico, then south to the Panuco River near Tampico and west to the Sierra Madre Mountains. This area became a haven for rebellious Indians who fled here after increased Spanish settlements in Nuevo Leon and Coahuila..

Jose de Escandon Helguera
Conde de la Sierra Gorda
Jose de Escandon, a native of Soto La Marina, Santander, Spain and an officer of the Querétaro militia , was commissioned to pacify the Sierra Gorda. Escandon was a wealthy man and accomplished much with little expense to the Spanish crown. 231-339 Escandon founded most of the towns during this pacification. The Sierra Gorda was located in the new province of Nuevo Santander which was named after Escandon's home province in Spain. Escandon led a total of three expeditions to colonize the new province, and after the first one was appointed Conde.

Chronological Listing of Places

Notes on resources: 
1. Resources labeled GSFCNS (General State of the Foundation of the Colony of Nuevo Santander) refer to the web site located at the Corpus Christi Public Library that contains the entire text of the documents left by Jose Tienda de Cuervo and translated by Edna Brown in 1993. Among them, you will find censuses and statements made on old Tamaulipas settlements.

2. Family History Center Resources refers to materials available through the Family History Centers which are sponsered by The Church of Jesus Christ Latter Day Saints (LDS). You can check out there web site at familysearch.org. They have libraries at most major cities throughout the country where you may go and for a small fee request microfilm and other materials for a small fee (usually about $3.00 US). It takes 1 or 2 weeks to get the material usually.

3. Offical Web Sites are web sites sponsored by the city or state government. Here is the Official Web Site for the History of Tamaulipas (in Spanish).

4. Books on Civil and Church Records. I am listing that which is available at the University of Texas Pan American Lower Rio Grande Valley Collection The reason I am using them as a source is that it is located close to me and they have their list available online. These books may and probably are available at other locations.

Historic Towns and Settlements of Tamaulipas. (In Chronological Order)
* Indicates an Escandon Settlement

Modern Name, (Common/Older Names), Date Founded

Resources

Tampico 1554

Family History Center Resources for Tampico Tamaulipas
Family History Center Resources for Tampico Alto, Veracruz

History of Tampico (In Spanish)

This city is comprised of several early settlements, the first one beginning in 1554. A convent established by Fray Andrés de Olmos existed there as early as 1530 and was located near what today is Cuahtémoc. The Indian settlement dates from much earlier. The first official settlement was the Villa de San Luis de Tampico which was consolidated in 1560 and was settled by people from San Esteban del Puerto, a nearby settlement. After many pirate attacks another settlement named Tampico Joya was established about a two kilometers north of the present day Tampico Alto, Veracruz. Villa de San Luis de Tampico II was established January 15, 1754 by Escandon and was located at the present day Tampico Alto, VeraCruz. Santa Ana de Tampico was established April 12, 1823 and was settled by Mexicans of the time as well as Spaniards and French.
221-218

Juamave 1743 

GSFCNS Page

221-143

Palmillas 1745

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

221-143

* Llera (Villa de Llera, Santa Maria de Llera, Villa de Llera de Canales) 25 Dec 1748 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Santa Maria de Llera
Population: 77 Families, 257 persons.
Capitan: Jose de Escajadillo
Mission: Peña de Castillo (Escandon Settlement)
Escandon named it in honor of his wife Josefa de Llera y Ballas (the Canales was subsequently added in honor of General Servando Canales).
221-145

* Hidalgo, (Guemes, Guemez,  San Francisco de Guemes, San Antonio de los Llanos, Villa de Hoyos, Santo Domingo de Hoyos) 1 Jan 1749

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources 1 Family History Center Resources 2
Official Web Site 1  Official Web Site 2

Population: 58 Families, 303 persons
Capitan: Felipe Tellez Jiron (Escandon Settlement)
221-145 117-221

* Padilla (San Antonio de Padilla) 6 Jan 1749 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

This town was relocated after Vicente Guerrero Lake which is in the central part of the state was constructed.
Population: 44 families, 280 persons
Capitan: Gregorio de la Paz, Martin de La Peña,
Mission: De Guarnizo (Escandon Settlement)
Escandon named it in honor of Doña Maria Padilla, the wife of the Count of Revillagigedo
221-146

* Jimenez, Santander Jimenez (Villa de Santander de los 5 Senores) 17 Feb 1749 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Original capitol of Nuevo Santander.
Population in 1749: 45 families
Capitan: Jose Gomez
Mission: Nuestra Señora de la Concepcion. (Escandon Settlement) 221-151

Burgos (Nuestra Señora de Loreto) 20 Feb 1749

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Population in 1757: 260
221-165,7

* Camargo (Nuestra Señora Ana de Camargo) 5 Mar 1749

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site
Camargo Census of 1750
Camargo Census of 1757
Camargo History
Camargo Land Grants of 1767
Map of Camargo Settlement Showing Land Grants of 1767

UTPA LRGV Collection
[Tamaulipas] Church Baptism Records, 1764-1864. [UTPA LRGV CS 108 .C36 C32 1989]
Camargo [Tamaulipas] Church Marriage Records, 1764-1876 [1879]. 2 volumes. [UTPA LRGV CS 108 .C36 C34 1989]
Camargo [Tamaulipas] Church Marriage Records, 1764-1913. (2nd. edition). 2 volumes. [UTPA LRGV - See "Photocopied Manuscripts" List]
Camargo [Tamaulipas] Civil Records, 1860-1880. 2 volumes [Brides and Grooms]. [UTPA LRGV - See "Photocopied Manuscripts" List]
Camargo [Tamaulipas] Church Death Records, 1764-1864 [1881]. [UTPA LRGV CS 108 .C36 C33 1989]

 

Database available for purchase on Camargo

This was the first Escandon settlement along the Rio Grande. Land originally occupied by Nicolas De Los Santos and Blas Maria De La Garza. Previously inhabited by pastors from Pedro de Ugarte's hacienda "El Rosario". A nearby mission, San Agustin de Laredo was also established.
Population in 1749: 85 families, 402 persons
Close to 200 of these settlers were from the Presidio of Cerralvo. When Escandon arrived on March 3 there were approximately 30 families living there.
Population in 1757: 638 108-6, 106-24 221-153

* Reynosa (Reynosa de San Antonio, Reinosa Vieja, Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de Reynosa "La Vieja") 14 Mar 1749

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Census on Reynosa July 1757


Land originally owned by Nicolas De Los Santos and Blas Maria De La Garza. Previously habitated by pastors from Pedro de Ugarte's hacienda "El Rosario" Originally 15 miles east of Camargo, moved to higher ground in 1757 due to flooding problems.

Founding families relocated from Cadereyta, San Mateo del Pilon (Montemorelos), Linares, Pesqueria Grande, Sabinas and Cerralvo.

Population in 1749: 279 with 50 families
Population in 1757: 470
108-6, 110-54, 221-154

The land on which Reynosa was founded was originally granted to Jose Maria Balli Porcion 72 and present site. 110-61, 62, 110-82, 55-e4

The Capitan of the Villa was Carlos Cantu.

* San Fernando (San Fernando de Presas, Congregacion de la Barra de Salinas) 19 Mar 1749 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Books

The Capitan of the Villa de San Fernando was Francisco Sanchez Zamora. 221-155,6

* Altamira (Nuestra Señora de las Caldas) 2 May 1749 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Capitan: Juan Perez
Population in 1749: 65 families, 340 persons. (Escandon Settlement) 221-157

* Gonzalez (Magiscatzin,  San Juan Bautista de Horcasitas) 9 May 1749 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Was already a settlement when Escandon arrived. Designated a city on this date.
Capitan: Jose Antonio Oyeruide

* Ocampo (Santa Barbara de Ocampo) 19 May 1749 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Capitan: Juan Francisco Barbarena

* Soto La Marina 3 Sep 1750 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

The setters who settled here had been part of failed attempt to establish settlement on the Nueces River. The area proved to be unsuitable for this purpose and the settlers retreated back to Mexico.
Capitan: Juan Jose Vazquez Borrego.
Population in 1757 abt 420. 221-168

* Ciudad Victoria (Aguayo,  Villa de Santa Maria del Refugio de Aguayo, Boca de Caballeros) 6 Oct 1750 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site


Designated the capital of Tamaulipas.
Capitan: Juan de Astigarraga.
Population in 1757 over 1000. (Escandon Settlement) 221-170

Guerrero Viejo (Revilla, Villa de Señor San Ignacio de Loyola de Revilla) 10 Oct 1750

GSFCNS Page
Official Web Site
Web Site on Guerrero Viejo (A Shared Experience)
Census of Guerrero Viejo in 1750 & 1753
Ecclesiastical Census of Revilla,1791
Bibliography on Revilla (Guerrero Viejo)

Founded on a part of Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de las Puentes an hacienda owned and operated by Nicolas De La Garza Falcon. This land was then passed on to Juan Guerra Cañamar a notario publico in Boca de Leones. Juan's son Vicente was introduced to Escandon in Burgos in October of 1750. At that meeting Vicente asked for authorization from Escandon to establish a settlement on lands which he owned and operated ranches on. He offered to do this at no expense to the Spanish Government. The only condition was the he be allowed to be the Capitan. Escandon agreed and Vicente proceeded to bring 40 families from Monterrey for the original settlement. Vicente died in 1753. When Escandon visited in 1754, he designated Jose Baez Benavides as the new captitan of the villa. By this time more settlers had arrived from Nuevo Leon and Coahuila. Originally about a mile upriver from Carrizo, it was moved to the banks of the Rio Salado, just two miles above the famous water falls. The nearby mission was named Ampuero. The priest at this time was Fray Miguel de Santa Maria. Many settlers from Revilla operated a salt trade in which they aquired salt at the Sal Del Rey mines, north of Reynosa and sold it to locations in Nuevo Leon and Coahuila. Guerrero was one of the towns that was submerged when Falcon Lake and Anzalduas Dam were constructed in 1952.
Population in 1749: 336, in 1757: 357 108-6, 106-186, 221-172

* Abasolo (Santillana,  Nuestra Señora del Rosario de Santillana) 26 Dec 1752 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Nuestra Señora del Rosario de Santillana
Population in 1752: 18 families, 73 persons. Population in 1757: 473
Capitan: Tomas Conde. 221-184

* Mier (La Purisima Concepcion de Mier, Paso del Cantaro) 6 Mar 1753

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Located near what was earlier known as El Paso del Cantaro, a natural ford in the Rio Grande. The land was originally owned by Felix de Almandoz. Land later passed on to General Prudencio Basterra who married Felix's sister Ana Maria. 19 Families from Camargo formed the new settlement. Capitan: Jose Florencio de Chapa. 

UTPA LRGV Collection
[Tamaulipas] Church Baptism Records, 1767-1880, 1854-1867. 4 volumes. [UTPA LRGV CS 108 .M54 M51 1989]
Mier [Tamaulipas] Church Marriage Records, 1767-1925. 2 volumes. [UTPA LRGV CS 108 .M54 M53 1989]
Mier [Tamaulipas] Church Death Records, 1767-1903. 2 volumes. [UTPA LRGV CS 108 .M54 M52 1989] 

* Xicotencatl (Villa de Escandon) 15 Mar 1757 

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Population: 76 families. Capitan Domingo de Unzaga. Population in 1757: Over 500.
221-176

Villagran (Real de Borbon, Cerro de Santiago) 8 May 1757

GSFCNS Page
Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Named Villagran after the hero Julián de Villagran, by the then Governor of Tamaulipas Don Lucas Fernández on 15 November 1827.

* Cruillas 9 May 1766 

Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

221-206

San Carlos 6 Jul 1766

Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

221-207

San Nicolas (Mineral) 1 April 1768

Official Web Site

Casas (Tetillas, Villa de Croix) 8 Jun 1770

Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

221-211

In 1827 this settlement was given the name Casas in honor of Juan Bautista de las Casas, a military man killed in the war of Independence.

* Aldama (Presas del Rey, San Vicente) 15 April 1790

Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

This was the last settlement founded by Escandon. By decree it was renamed Villa Aldama in memory of Ignacio Aldama, a hero of the Independence movement on 25 November 1828.

Antiguo Morelos (Baltazar, Villa de Baltazar Morelos) 6 May 1821

Official Web Site

 

Matamoros (Esteros Hermosos, Congregacion del Refugio, San Juan de los Esteros) 28 Jan 1823

Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

UTPA LRGV Collection [Tamaulipas] Church Baptisms Records, 1800-1850. [UTPA LRGV - do NOT own]
Matamoros [Tamaulipas] Church Marriage Records, 1801-1848. Brides. [UTPA LRGV - See "Photocopied Manuscripts" List]
Matamoros [Tamaulipas] Church Marriage Records, 1801-1848. Grooms. [UTPA LRGV - See "Photocopied Manuscripts" List]
Matamoros [Tamaulipas] Church Marriage Records, 1802-1833. Brides. [UTPA LRGV CS 108 .M38 M37 1989 v.2]
Matamoros [Tamaulipas] Church Marriage Records, 1802-1833. Grooms. [UTPA LRGV CS 108 .M38 M37 1989 v.1]
Matamoros [Tamaulipas] Church Death Records, 1800-1828. [UTPA LRGV CS 108 .M38 M36 1989]

In 1818 an influx of settlers arrived from Palafox, another settlement upriver from Laredo, which was abandoned after many Comanche raids. In 1823 it was reorganized as a villa and named Matamoros after the martyred priest Mariano Matamoros. 220-51 106-41 221-216,7

Rayon (San Antonio de Rayon, Congregacion de San Antonio) 5 Feb 1829

221-219

Tula (Ciudad Tula) 17 October 1835 ( 22 July 1617)

Official Web Site

The date given is actually when the settlement officially became a city. Spanish first arrived at this Indian settlement in 1617.

Nuevo Laredo (Congregacion Monterrey) 1847

Official Web Site

Miquihuana (Congregación de San Juan de Miquihuana) 14 May 1849

Official Web Site

221-220,221

Ciudad Mante (Villa Juarez, Quintero, Congregacion del Palcuay) 1860

Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

221-221

Nuevo Morelos (Congregación de Mesillas) 19 October 1860

Official Web Site

Bagdad 1863

Located on south bank at the mouth of the Rio Grande. It boomed and was used as a port during the civil war, when the Union blockaded all of the Confederate ports. Destroyed in the hurricane of 1874. Reported to have as many as 6000 inhabitants in 1863, while population 10 years later was about 2000. 106-8, 106-39, 106-99, 221-222,223

Gomez Farias (Congregacion La Joya, La Joya de Los Indios) 1869

Official Web Site

221-221

Mendez (Congregacion de la Laja) 1869

Official Web Site

Named after General Pedro José Méndez (1836-1866).

Rio Rico circa 1906

Web Page on Rio Rico

Miguel Aleman (Congregacion de San Pedro de Roma) 11 October 1950

Official Web Site

Date given is when settlement was renamed to Miguel Aleman in honor of Mexican President. Settlement dates from at least a hundred years earlier to 1850's.

Valle Hermoso 8 September 1951

Official Web Site

Nuevo Guerrero 1952

Family History Center Resources
Official Web Site

Formed after Falcon Lake and Dam were built and Old Guerrero flooded. The Mexican counterpart to Zapata located 35 miles north of old Guerrero 109-16

Rio Bravo 11 December 1961

Official Web Site

Diaz Ordaz (Gustavo Diaz Ordaz) 20 March 1968

Official Web Site

 

 

Last Updated: August 30, 2002


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