• Document: Index and Transcription to the Census of 1815 for the Province of Texas
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Index and Transcription to the Census of 1815 for the Province of Texas (San Antonio de Béxar) by Frank Dominguez ©copyright 2015 published by 1 In the spring of 2014, I was communicating back and forth with Donie Nelson, editor of Nuestra Raices, the quarterly published by the Genealogical Society of Hispanic America (GHSA). We were preparing for the 2014 GSHA conference, which was held in Westminster, Colorado. During the course of our communications, Donie mentioned that she had a copy of an 1815 census for Texas and asked if I was aware if this particular census had been translated or published anywhere. I told Donie that I was not aware but that I could contact some people in Texas. I queried some people at HOGAR de Dallas (Hispanic Organization for Genealogy and Research) and Los Bexareños Genealogical and Historical Society from San Antonio. My Dallas connection informed me that members of HOGAR were familiar with the 1803 and 1817 census records for Bejar but they have never heard if the 1815 census. My contact at Los Bexarenos told me that they have a copy of the 1815 census but no one in their group had extracted/indexed the census. In the summer of 2014, Donie sent a photocopy of the padron (census) for the year 1815 for la Provinicia de Texas (the Province of Texas) to me. While I am quite familiar with 18th century census records from la Provincia de Nueva Vizcaya, this was my first attempt to transcribe and index a census from la Provincia de Texas. I conducted a search on the Internet for 1815 Texas census and found this: 2/27/1815 Census Report of San Jose Mission. 2/27/1815 Census Report of La Purisima Concepcion Mission. 2/27/1815 Census Report of San Francisco de la Espada Mission. 2/27/1815 Census Report of San Juan Capistrano Mission. 6/13/1815 Census Report of San Juan Capistrano Mission. 6/13/1815 Census Report of San Francisco de la Espada Mission. 6/13/1815 Census Report of Senor San Jose Mission. 1815 General Census Report of the Province of Texas. Source: http://files.usgwarchives.net/tx/census/1835/r2notes.txt All of the missions listed above are in the area of what is now modern day San Antonio, Texas. Peter Gerhard’s book, “The North Frontier of New Spain”, page 340, lists these same missions (Purisima Concepcion de Acuna, S Jose y S Miguel de Aguayo, S Juan Capistrano, S Francisco de la Espada) for the year 1731. So, I was quite puzzled as to why the photocopy of the census that I had received simply read “Provincia de Texas” and appeared to be missing San Antonio. In the days prior to the Texas Revolution, San Antonio was known by several names, names such as; San Antonio de Béxar, La Villa de San Fernando, San Fernando de Béxar, San Antonio de Valero, La Villita, but most commonly known as La Villa de Béxar or simply Béxar. http://bexargenealogy.com/name.html An Internet search of some of the people listed in the census revealed this: 2  Jose Dario Zambrano is mentioned as being the parish pastor for the San Fernando church in San Antonio from March 1811 until his retirement in late 1816; his younger brother, Teniente Colonel Juan Manuel Sambrano is also mentioned in the census (page 1). These Sambrano brothers were involved in the Casas revolt of 1811. https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fza16  Another person involved in the Casas revolt was Vizente Tarin. He had to flee the Bexar area, but his wife, Juana Leal and their children are listed on page 13 https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fza16  Manuel Nuñes (age 44) married to Brigida Trebiño (age 25), page 1 of actual census. From this source http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29523/m1/64/ we find this:  Erasmo Seguin (age 33) married to Josefa Beserra (age 23), page 3, and their children Juan Seguin (age 8) and Dolores Seguin (age 5). Of course, this is the Seguin family, so famous in the annals of Texas history. http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fse07 Based on a quick sampling, in all probability, the 1815 census for “la provincia de Texas” is for the Bexar area. This 1815 census is broken up into “classes” of people per racial designation. Pages 1 through 20 are Españoles; pages 21 through part of page 35 are for Mestisos; part of page 35 through page 38 are for Indios; and pages 39 and 40 are for Mulatos y Negros. Oakah L. Jones, Jr., in his book “Los Paisanos” states (page 50) that “For purposes of official records and census reports individuals were listed by calidad (class)”. This makes this particular census a challenge. Typically if the male is listed as “Casado” and the female listed as “Ydem” (i.e. the same) right after the male, you may assume they are marrie

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