Sunday, December 1, 2013

Working Backward Through the Records

Last Friday, working backward through the Mexican Civil Registration files for Hermosillo, Sonora, I stumbled across a death record for my 2nd-great-grandfather, Manuel Portillo. For the longest time, I had his name but little other records to go on. Earlier in November I found the baptism record for my great-grandmother, Manuela Portillo, showing Manuel Portillo and Teresa Diaz as parents.

Other than these records, and a potential find in the 1899 Tucson City Directory, I had little to go on for Manuel. But working backward through 1841 images in the Defunciones 1900-1916 (death records) for Hermosillo proved to be quite useful.

On 6 October 1903, Manuel and Teresa lost a 10 month old son, Ramon Portillo, in Hermosillo. I knew from the 1940 US Census that Teresa had 10 children, so this was the first record of a child of theirs who did not make the journey to America.
Source: FamilySearch, Defunciones, 1900-1916, image 360 of 1841
Another important find has provided me with the names of my 3rd & 4th-great-grandmothers - the death record for Manuel Portillo's mother Maria Bernal lists her mother's name as Manuela Calles. Maria passed on 18 April 1903. She was born about 1841. From my rough translation of Maria's death record, permission was granted to place her in the family vault of Manuel Flores in Hermosillo. There's more work to be done to understand how the Portillo, Bernal, Calles and Flores families are connected, but it's great to have these additional names as I explore this side of the tree.
Source: FamilySearch, Defunciones, 1900-1916, image 326 of 1841
One more image for this post, is from the Recoleta Cemetery in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I don't know if this is what the family vault looks like in Hermosillo. This is helping me picture a final resting place for Manuel and Maria.
Photo by Patrick Jones, Buenos Aires, AR

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