Monday, November 28, 2016

My 50 yr old brick wall just came tumbling down!

Here's an update on my search for my ancestors - my reasons for starting this search and the craziness that motivates me to continue! This is from my first blog entry, December 29, 2012:

Maria Juana de Jesus Bojorques, the daughter of Juan Bojorques and Maria Ysidora Galindo, was born near the Twin Peaks and Uvas Reservoir area of present day Santa Clara County, CA. She was baptized at Mission Santa Clara, California during the Mission era under the Mexican Flag. Her mother had been born in 1816 under the Spanish Flag. Juana's grandmother was also born under the Spanish flag, near Mission Dolores in 1790, with her mother coming to California with the Anza Expedition of 1775-76. 

And now, almost four years later I have some answers, and I also have nearly 150 living cousins! At least that many!! Here's the rest of my story:

Earlier this year Mom gave me her mother's engagement ring, this is the ring Nana wore from March 1927 until her death in Feb 1961. Mom kept it in a tiny box from the time she removed it from Nana's finger moments before she died until Mom gave it to me. In late July of this year I had a jeweler look at it to see what could be done for me to wear it. Mom and I stopped at that jewelers in late Aug to see about the ring and I was told to reset the three little rubies and repair/replace the entire setting it would be about $1100+. Yikes! Not in my budget so I just left with the ring, as is. After I dropped Mom off at her house I headed home, and while stopped at a red light, I decided to just put the ring on my finger anyway, if the stones were lost at least I would have had the chance to wear it, share Nana's years of wearing.

Soooo, and here's the part you'll probably say is just plain hokey, or made up, or ???
... It's real.
I put the ring on the middle finger of my left hand and the instant I slid it on there was a rush of feelings that I can't explain. I certainly wasn't expecting them!
Good thing that red light was a really long one!
... I was absolutely mesmerized by whatever had just happened.

A week or so later, over Labor Day Weekend I spent nearly all my waking hours (long hours!) working on just MY family, my Bojorques lines, the ancestors of my Juana Bojorques.
This is very unusual because I normally don't do MY own research, I do stuff for everyone else.
I had set aside this long weekend to research just MY stuff.
Here's what I began to discover:

I already knew from the 1840 Index to the Padrones (Catholic Church census) by Zoeth Skinner Eldgredge (Bancroft Library) that there were two guys named Juan Bojorques living in San José. One was 33 and married and the other was 28 and single. Years ago I had done research for a Berryesa family and knew that Maria Loreta Pelagia Berreyesa was married to a Juan Bojorques, and they lived in San José. From my typed version of the Index to the Padrones, 1840 for San José, one guy was married. I checked all my records and sure enough Juan Bojorques, husband of Loreta Berreysa, was 33 yrs old, was born/baptized 16 Dec 1806, Mission Santa Clara. At the time of the baptism it was not known if this new baby would survive and in his baptismal record it says the water was pretty much thrown on him. His parents were Bartolome Francisco Bojorques and Maria Nicolasa Linares.
A side note here: for years I've thought this was MY Juan Bojorques, father of my 2x great grandmother Juana Bojorques.
... I was sooooo wrong!

During my marathon genealogy search over the long weekend I remembered I also have the images of the handwritten 1840 Padrone of San José, not just the typed version. The handwritten list one identifies the families AND lots of extra details.
I scrolled up and down the pages and found both the guys named Juan Bojorques.
    ... One, age 33, was living with his wife Loreta Berreyesa. OK, one eliminated.
Time to look much closer at the other one who was age 28 and single.
In the handwritten index, on page 45, household #17, this Juan Bojorques, single, age 28 is living with Petra Pacheco who is identified as the widow of Jose Cipriano Bernal.
Her Bernal children with Cipriano are all listed too!

I quickly went back to my own files and found the marriage of a Petra Pacheco and Jose Cipriano Bernal and what do you know! In that marriage record, Mission Santa Clara, 17 Jan 1816, Maria Petra Pacheco is identified as the widow of Juan Bojorges!
When I checked the marriage of Juan Bojorques and Maria Petra Pacheco the names of both sets of parents were stated - Yahooie!!
... Soooo, from all this detective work I learned that MY Juan Bojorques was the son of Juan Josef Bojorques and Maria Petra Pacheco.

I learned that Juan, the father, was shot and killed in San Francisco, buried at Mission Dolores Cemetery in June before his son Juan, MY Juan, was born in September, just months earlier!

I learned that Maria Petra Pacheco, a 22 yr old widow, mother of one small son, waited about three more years to remarry. At the time of that marriage she was 26 and her new husband, Josef Cipriano Bernal was just 22 but a widower. They married at Mission Santa Clara and stayed in the area for the rest of their lives. They had possibly 13 children before Josef Cipriano died in 1833 and was buried in the Mission Santa Clara Cemetery, according to his burial record.
... MY Juan Bojorques had half siblings, Bernal half siblings!

On Sep 5th of this year, through a very odd batch of circumstances I came across some information that a guy named Juan Bojorques, living in San Jose in the late 1840s and 50s had a family with a Francisca Padilla.
Luckily I spent a ton of money and time years ago collecting the various Mission and local church records, so I pulled down one of my books and looked at the marriages of St Joseph's Catholic Church, San José.
... I found that exact record, the marriage of Juan Bojorques and Francisca Padilla.
Yay, but not so yay. There are no names for parents listed in the marriage record. Darn!

I did a quick search through baptismal records at Mission Santa Clara for the mother's name being Francisca Padilla and found three children, but no father listed. I looked for children born around the time of the marriage of Juan Bojorques and Francisca Padilla and found Jose Leonardo Padilla, father is Juan Bojorques and mother is Francisca Padilla.
Yay! I kept looking and found Jacinto, Manuel, and Juan de Mata all baptized at St Joseph's Catholic Church in San José, all with the same parents. This is getting exciting!

Using census records, Find A Grave, and others trees on Ancestry I was able to piece together the family of Jacinto Bojorques and Maria Encarnacion Sepulveda. I really wanted to find any male children for the sons of Jacinto and Encarnacion.
The first one I found was from their son Joseph Jacinto, born in 1896 who married Hilda Devecchi. They had a son and a daughter. I checked for the son's family first and found he had two sons.
... And they are both living - were both living in San Jose until several years ago!

After almost two weeks of thinking about what I might say I finally mailed letters to both brothers on about Sep 15th and hoped for the best. Not a letter with details like this writing, but just a hi, I'm your cousin type of letter.
... The wife of one of the brothers called me back within a week.
... I was ecstatic!
We talked for some time and made tentative plans to meet in a few weeks.
Sadly, I haven't heard back from them yet. Huge sigh.

Soooo, I went back to the family of Jacinto and Encarnacion, and their other son, Simon Bojorques.

Simon had married Trinidad Teresa Martinelli and they had two sons: Simon and Joseph Hiram Bojorques Edwards. I found no marriage for Simon the son, but for his brother, Joseph Hiram Bojorques there was a most interesting story!

When Joseph Hiram's mother was just 23 yrs old, pregnant with him as her fourth child, Joseph's father Simon was shot and killed.
The story posted online tells about infant Joseph Hiram being placed in the orphanage with his siblings while their young mother gets her life back to some form of normalcy. Joseph Hiram, as the infant, was placed with a childless and somewhat elderly couple named Edwards.
This story is so touching. It must have broken his mother's heart to lose touch with her baby!

I carefully entered all the info into my tree on Ancestry about this family, including the touching story of the Edwards name. I entered the names of the children I found through online searches but I didn't enter info about one person. His birth date seemed too far after his brother's birth dates to be part of the same family.

And then ...

As Membership Secretary for Los Californianos I received an application from a man named Edwards. When I opened his application I had this odd feeling that I knew the guy.
His hand written note at the bottom of his application that explained the various spellings of the name Bojorques made me nearly rip his papers trying to get to his pedigree chart! OMG!!
... This is the same person that I didn't include in my tree, the one I thought was born too late to be part of the family - yet here he was, definitely part of the family!!!

On Oct 1st I sent an email to this Mr Edwards. The email was from me the Mem Sec of Los Californianos and it was as reserved as I could make it, not the crazed message I wanted to send when I realized that here was another Bojorques cousin!! I went back to the online trees and found the comments again about Simon's death and added my own comment.
I didn't expect to hear from anyone.
Boy, was I in for a surprise!!
The following day I received a message regarding my comment on a tree on Ancestry,
... a comment I made about MY Juan Bojorques!

Again, I was jumping for joy!!

And then ...
Within hours Ancestry sent me a notification that I have a DNA match with L.E. and their test was administered by the same person with the tree where I posted my comment!
Wow, nice coincidence.
... OMGeeeee!!! I just realized that "L.E" is the brother of Mr Edwards, the recent Los Californianos applicant
Ay, yi, yi!!!!

And then ...
We started exchanging messages about the family trees.

wow. just wow.

I've been trying to find anything and everything about my Juana Bojorques since I was 13, when my Nana died. I'm now 68 and if I could turn cartwheels without damaging my body I would be doing it!

I had always hoped that my Juana Bojorques, my 2x great grandmother would have had a relationship with her father because I had such a great relationship with my father.
They did.
Juan and his wife Francisca Padilla were Padrinos (Godparents) for Juana's second son.
Juan would have met at least two of his daughter's children, probably many more of them.
... Made me smile. Made me a bit teary-eyed too.

My Bojorques family has been in San José California since the town was founded on November 29, 1777... two hundred and thirty nine years ago - tomorrow!

El Pueblo de San Jose de Guadalupe was officially founded on November 29, 1777, the first town in the Spanish colony Nueva California. It took its name from Saint Joseph, patron saint of pioneers and travelers, and from the Guadalupe River.

My 5th great grandfather Pedro Bojorques and his wife Maria Angela de la Luz Chumacero Trejo were living in San José as early as 1780. While no one knows for certain who the parents were for Pedro Bojorques - "Pedro Antonio Bojorquez originally of Sinaloa, an orphan left at the house of Juan Vojorquez and Ana de Ochoa, residents of that jurisdiction..." (marriage entry 03 Apr 1775, La Purisima Concepcion, Mocorito, Sinaloa, Mexico), the Bojorques name is still worn proudly by so many still living, after all these years, in San José, Santa Clara County, California.

So here's the crazy stuff ...
... Receiving that application from Mr Edwards when I did,
... Receiving the DNA notification when I did,
... Having all the connections all falling into place when they did,
... and all happening within a very short time after I began wearing Nana's ring.

Yeah, this is the part where you might be rolling your eyes, saying Geesh, that's just sooooo hokey!

But I feel strongly about being helped all these years by the spirits of my ancestors.
... and Red Tailed Squirrels too!