jueves, 14 de octubre de 2021

Figueras vs. Figueroa in Cabo Rojo

There are many surnames that are similar and have been interpreted or transcribed as one spelling and other times as a different spelling. There are also surnames that are substantially different surnames that have been confused or misinterpreted. The surnames Figueroa and Figueras are two such surnames that are totally different families with different origins. Unfortunately, handwriting has been the culprit as the endings of these two surnames are sometimes unrecognizable in script.

One line of the Figueras family of Cabo Rojo includes Miguel Ángel Figueras born May 9, 1890, and baptized on June 20, 1890 (APSMACR, LB 37, Folio 83). The transcript is as follows:

Yo, Padre Benito Sanchez, de la Orden de San Agustín y Cura Párroco de la parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel en la ciudad de Cabo Rojo. 

Certifico: Que en el libro 37 de Bautismos perteneciente a este archivo Parroquial y en el folio 83, se halla la siguiente partida... 

En la Parroquia de San Miguel de Cabo Rojo a veinte de Junio de mil ochocientos noventa, yo, el Presbítero Don Carlos Jofre, Cura Ecónomo de la misma, bauticé solemnemente y puse el nombre de Miguel Ángel a un niño que nació el día nueve de Mayo próximo pasado, hijo legítimo de Leonardo Figueras y Monserrate Montalvo. Abuelos paternos: José [Figueras] y Claudia Rodríguez. y Maternos: José [Montalvo] y Beatríz Meléndez. Padrinos: Don Juan Colberg, Doña Esther Cabrera todos de este Parroquia á quienes advertí el parentesco espiritual y sus obligaciones. de que doy fe... Carlos Jofre 

Es copia exacta del original la que remito, expedida a petición de parte interesada, y para que así conste lo firmo y sello en esta Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel, a quince de Abril de mil novecientos treinta y dos. 

El Párroco..Benito Sanchez 

Here is a closeup of the surname

Leonardo Figueras y Rodriguez and Monserrate Montalvo y Meléndez children include:

  1. Josefa (1885-1960)
  2. Candelaria (Candida) - (1887-1949)—Registro Civil, Cabo Rojo, Libro Nacimientos 7 Folio 87v and Cabo Rojo, Libro Defunciones, No 166
  3. María Irene - (1889- 1978) Registro Civil, Cabo Rojo, LN 10, Folio 231 and San Germán, Libro Defunciones 63-207
  4. Miguel Ángel - (1890-1954) -APSMACR, Libro Bautismos 37, Folio 83
  5. Francisco Eugenio (Efigenio) - (1892-1950)
  6. María Andrea - (1893-1981) Registro Civil, Cabo Rojo, Libro Naciemiento 18, Folio 273v, and Mayaguez, Libro Defunciones 200-317
  7. Modesta - (1897-1982) Registro Civil, Mayaguez, Libro Defunciones 200-401
  8. María Monserrate - (1899-1906)- Registro Civil, Cabo Rojo, Libro Defunciones 30, Folio 88
  9. Lázaro Antonio - (1901- 1968) Registro Civil, Cabo Rojo, Libro Numero 29, Folio 203v

The death of Leonardo Figueras y Rodríguez in Cabo Rojo in 1903 (Registro Civil, Cabo Rojo, Libro Defunciones 28, Folio 292) clearly shows his surname as Figueras and his parents as José Figueras and Claudia Rodriguez.

Excerpt of the death of Leonardo Figueras y Rodriguez, 1903

The paternal grandparents are José Figueras and Claudia Rodríguez. This same couple was transcribed as José Figueroa and Claudia Rodríguez in the baptism entry of Julián María Figueroa y Rodríguez in the 2003 Transcription by Eugenio Luis Colón of Libro Número 15, 
Bautismos de Blancos 1838-1842. (APSMACR, LB 15, Folio 225)

Julián’s death in 1904 at the age of 60 in Cabo Rojo clearly states his surname as Figueras and not Figueroa. His parents are verified as José Figueras and Claudia Rodríguez.



The same transcription error appears earlier with Josef Figueras married to María Roque in Cabo Rojo. His death in 1799 states his surname as Figueras (APSMACR, Libro Defunciones 2, Folio 82). Whereas his marriage in 1794 was transcribed as José Figueroa. A careful review of the original is warranted (APSMACR, LM 1, Folio 39).

José’s son, Francisco Figueras, is listed as Francisco Figuera (sic) as godparent in 1842. (APSMACR, Libro Bautismos 15, Folio 246v)

The daughter of Francisco Figueras and María del Carmen Montalvo was baptized on September 7, 1819, in Cabo Rojo and appears in the transcription by César A. Zapata Lozada of Libro 10 de Bautismos de Blancos de la Parroquia San Miguel Arcángel de Cabo Rojo 1814-1820 as María Magdalena Figueroa y Montalvo (p. 91). A closer inspection of the actual record reveals that the surname is indeed Figueras. (blurry copy) (APSMACR, Libro Bautismos 10, Folio 159v)

In Cabo Rojo, the Figueras family married Montalvo, Palermo, Rodríguez, Vega, Galindo and Sepúlveda family members, among other surnames. The indexed records on both Ancestry and FamilySearch are sometimes transcribed incorrectly, confusing Figueroa with Figueras. My recommendation is to review every Figueroa record in your ancestral tree by looking at the actual record and not relying on the indexed transcript.

The Figueras family is indicated as being from Spain in a few documents. In 1833, a Jayme Figueras y Roig obtained a passport to travel to San Juan from Tarragona Spain, where he lived in the village of Torredembarra. 

The connection from the Figueras family in Cabo Rojo to Jayme Figueras y Roig has not been identified. Other Figueras families reside in many other cities in Puerto Rico.

Bibliography

Archivo Parroquial San Miguel Arcángel de Cabo Rojo (APSMACR)

  • Libro de Bautismos: 37, Folio 83
  • Libro de Bautismos: 15, Folio 225 and 246v
  • Libro de Bautismos: 10, Folio 159v
  • Libro de Matrimonios: 1, Folio 39
  • Libro de Defunciones: 2,  Folio 82

Registro Civil de Puerto Rico, Cabo Rojo, Mayaguez and San German

Archivo General de Puerto Rico (AGPR), Gobierno Político Superior, Pasaportes 1795-1889, Caja 155, Film # 1389448, image 1365, transcribed by Rachel Rose

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