Friday, September 19, 2014

Finding Elena Longoria

That first night of searching on line introduced me to Ines Gonzalez and Elena Longoria.  Finding one set of my dad's grandparents really struck me.  I always assumed my great grandfather's last name would be Gonzalez, but I had no idea about her.  I think that is why she fascinated me the most.  It may have been the "ease" in which I found her.  All I can say is thank goodness for the Spanish tradition of women keeping their maiden names!  Subsequent searches on did not yield much in the way of Ines, but I quickly found a baptism record for an Elena Longoria.  But, as I am quickly finding out, in Mexican records can come across the same name for different people over and over again.  How am I to prove that I am on my Elena's trail?

I had heard of the Longoria name before.  But not before Eva Longoria graced our TV's starring in Desperate Housewives.  And now, I may be related to her somehow?

But it wasn't Eva I was fixated on; it was Elena.  I just loved the way the name sounds.  Following the link to Elena's baptism record on led me to her parents, and then her grandparents, and back another 6-7 generations of Longoria's.  All the way back to a Lorenzo Longoria born in Spain in the 1500's.  I was floored!  Could this be part of my family tree?  The "tree" I thought could never be documented.  

The seemingly pre-built tree on Archives referenced that the tree actually came from a site called  I had to check this out. is a site run and maintained by the Church of the Latter Day Saints (Mormons).  It is free to join and an amazing source for finding records of your Mexican Heritage.  (And other regions of the world too.)  The indexed record for Elena baptism on FamilySearch listed her parent’s names and her grandparent’s names.[1]

And this time it was sourced.  I had to see the original record!

From the main page, I followed the search link to Mexico, then Tamaulipas, then Matamoros until I came to the list of Catholic Church records for this area.  I chose the appropriate record for 1881.  After getting the hang of "turning the pages" I finally to got the 1881 records.  I should point out, I do not speak Spanish, and I certainly can't read it.  I do know numbers and calendar months, so with my limited knowledge, I figured it out. 
Elena's baptism record[2] from 2 July 1881 at Nuestra Señora del Refugio in Matamoros, Tamaulipas,[3] Mexico would be the first of many Mexican records I would eventually find.

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