Canary Islanders



Download the latest version of Adobe Reader click on the icon below:

© 2002- 2012, Steve Gibson, Bexar Genealogy, All Rights Reserved

Don Jose Francisco de Arocha  was born 1703 on the Island of La Palma, in the Canary Islands.  He was the son of Francisco de Arocha and Angela Francisca.  He joined the others after their arrival in New Spain and married Juana Curbelo in September 1730 while at Cuautitlán, Mexico.  She was the daughter of Juan Curbelo and Gracia Umpienres.  She was born about. 1716 in Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Spain, and died April 06, 1759 in La Villa de San Fernando de Béxar.    They are listed as the Ninth Family on the Cuautitlán List. 

Francisco de Arocha  was named secretary to the council and notary  public.

Simón de Arocha was the eldest of fifteen children of Francisco and Juana (Curbelo) de Arocha, both Canary Islanders in Texas.  He was born in San Antonio de Béxar seven months after the isleños arrived there.  In 1752 he married María Ignacia de Urrutia; their union produced eight children. Like his father, who had served as city clerk and public notary, Simón held important administrative posts. He was a judge over distribution of public lands and later an alcalde. He also served as commander of the provincial militia, in which he was a lieutenant general.  In this capacity he escorted the uprooted Adaesaños to the new Trinity River site of Bucareli in 1774 which was named for the viceroy of New Spain Antonio María de Bucareli y Ursúa.     When Teodoro de Croix visited Texas in 1778, Arocha prepared a census report of the province for the new commandant general and his historian, Fray Juan Agustín Morfi. [Urrutia Descendants Report]

Simón and his brother Juan, obtained title to eight leagues of land north of the site of present Floresville in 1782.  With this ranch, called San Rafael de Pataguilla, they and their kinsmen soon became leading cattlemen of the province. Simón was instrumental in forging a roundup agreement with the missions in 1787. Three years later he and other family members virtually controlled the local governing body, the cabildo. When they attempted to use their influence to obtain another ranch at the junction of the Guadalupe and San Marcos rivers, other stockmen lodged a vigorous protest and were supported by Governor Rafael Martínez Pacheco. The ensuing feud cost the governor his job. Don Simón died on July 29, 1796; his wife, on April 27, 1812.

During the revolutionary disturbances of the early nineteenth century, in which the Arocha's were dedicated insurgents, most of their property was confiscated.  With the coming of Mexican independence, however, Arocha's grandson José Ignacio managed to confirm title to the original Arocha grant.

Jose Francisco de Arocha and Juana Curbelo’s daughter, Antonia de Arocha married Ygnacio Francisco Xavier Calvillo  and their daughter, María Calvillo the eldest of six children, was the owner of Rancho de las Cabras.  Maria was born at the Villa de San Fernando de Béxar on July 9, 1765.  María Calvillo married Gavino Delgado around 1781 and apparently lived in the vicinity of San Juan Capistrano Mission until she separated from her husband around the time of Galvino’s involvement in the Casas Revolt.   Her father acquired Rancho de las Cabras ("the Goat Ranch"), an outpost of San Francisco de la Espada Mission, after the mission and its lands were secularized in 1794.    On April 15, 1814, Ygnacio Calvillo was murdered at his ranch during a raid; initially the raid was thought to have been perpetrated by Indians, but subsequent investigation revealed that the attackers included Ygnacio's own grandson.  At this time María gained control and ownership of the property.  On August 28, 1828, she formally petitioned the Mexican government for a new title to her father's ranch; it was granted the next month.  Later grants in 1833 placed three leagues of land under her control.  Her will passed ownership of the property to two of her adopted children, María Concepción Gortari and Antonio Durán.  María Calvillo died on January 15, 1856.   The Rancho de las Cabras changed hands several time until the State of Texas purchased the site in 1976 and 1977.

Jose Franciso de Arocha and Juana Curbelo’s daughter, Maria Angela Francisca de Arocha married Manuel Martin Delgado and their son, Jose Miguel Ponciano Delgado, also known as Miguel Moya y Delgado was an early South Texas rancher who established several ranches between San Antonio de Bexar and Goliad.  His son Juan Moya was born at La Bahía around 1806.

Jose Franciso de Arocha and Juana Curbelo’s daughter, Ana Maria de Arocha, married Joaquín Leal and their daughter Juana Isidora Leal married Vicente Tarín a Spanish soldier in the Second Flying Company of San Carlos de Parras who came to San Antonio de Bexar in 1803.  They married in 1810.

[Tarin Descendants Report]

José María, Manuel, and Antonio Cruz Arocha where all members of Juan Seguin’s Second Regiment of Texas Volunteers during the fight for Texas Independence.

The Arocha Family

The 9th Family of the List of Canary Islanders taken at:

Cuautitlán, November 8, 1730

from the Island of Palma

Canary Islanders

Descendant Reports