July 17, 2016

Marriages from Book 1 of Cathedral in San Juan - Nuestra Senora de los Remedios

I have spent a lot of time pulling marriage records out of book 1 of marriages for Nuestra Señora de los Remedios.  This is the cathedral in San Juan that was originally built in 1521, was destroyed by a hurricane in October 1526 by San Francisco and rebuilt in 1529.  It is the 2nd oldest church in the Americas behind Cathedral of Santa María la Menor in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

The images of this book were taken back in the 1990's and based on the images the book was in really bad shape. I would hate to see its condition today since the weather, bugs, etc. in Puerto Rico can pretty much destroy old documents if not stored properly.  Some of the books were thrown out because they were in such bad shape.  It is a shame that many of these books are gone for good which means it deters people from being able to trace their ancestors.  Most of the records going back beyond this book are no longer around which is why you have to rely on other sources.  This issue exists on many of the Caribbean islands, it isn't something that can be avoided.

Below is an image of two wedding records.  I will interpret the most important pieces.  On the left hand side of the image, it is the wedding of Francisco Sanchez Ravelo and Maria Bernarda del Rosario.

Wedding Records in San Juan's Book 1

The record states that on the 30th of November of 1702, that Pedro Zenteno, priest, presides over the marriage of Francisco Sanchez Ravelo, naturally from the city of San Juan and legitimate son of Juan Sanchez and Maria Ravelo, who are residents of Coamo and Maria Bernarda del Rosario, legitimate daughter of Juan del Rosario and Elena Melendez and residents of Coamo.  The witnesses to this marriage are Juan Alanso Gonzales, clergy from Menorca ( Balearic Islands), Juan Fernandez (sic) and Manuel Gomez. 

Juan del Rosario and Elena Melendez are actually my 8th great grandparents. I descend from another daughter, Maria Leonor, so this makes Maria Bernarda my 7th great grand aunt.  Juan del Rosario is actually originally from Ireland.  He was sent over as a slave to Puerto Rico during Cromwell's era. You can find those records in PARES.

The wedding record on the right side actually starts at the bottom of the left page.   This wedding occurs on the 3rd of June in 1703.  Pedro Zenteno is the priest that presides over the marriage between Juan Albertos and his bride Serafina. He is actually my 8th great grand uncle.  I descend from his brother Julian Albertos Lin.

It states that Juan Albertos Lin is naturally from San Juan, meaning born there.  He is the legitimate son of Juan Albertos Lin and Maria de los Remedios.  I have Maria de los Remedios last name listed as Moreno Garcia.  I believe I got those surnames from other records within the family.  Juan's bride, Serafina de Figueroa is naturally from Provincia de Piritu y Cumana Nueva Barcelona, Venezuela and the legitimate daughter of Manuel de Matos and Isabel Maria Figueroa.  Notice that she didn't take her father's last name.  This is very common during this era so keep that in mind when researching your ancestors.

The witnesses to this marriage are Juan Alanso Gonzales, clergy from Menorca, Domingo Sanchez and Juan de Figueroa.  Juan can possibly be a brother or uncle of the bride.  I didn't research which one he is as I don't descend from the line.

There is a 3rd wedding record that starts at the bottom right but I didn't review or capture it.  I can tell you that this image is of Folio (page) 292 vuelto (back) which is image 7 on Familysearch.org.  I have many other records and will share in future posts.