Saturday, December 31, 2011

15 Generations of Chavez

Shortly before Christmas, my parents received a Christmas card from my cousin Steve Chavez who lives in Apple Valley, CA. The card included three photos: one of Steve and his wife, Chrissy; one of his daughter Lauren and her husband, Christopher; and another photo of his son, Mike and his wife, Kelsie, and two sons, Micah Andrew, who turns 2 next month and Jack Elias who was born just one month ago.

I told my mom that Steve’s grandsons represent the 15th generation of the original Chavez men who settled in New Mexico. My mom replied: “Your grandpa would have been proud.”

Grandpa Louie was proud of his Chavez surname. Many years ago, he and my Uncle Ralph welded a headstone for his father who is buried at the Cubero cemetery. Underneath his father’s name, Diego Antonio Chavez, my grandpa welded: “El Chavez”

As I’ve written before, Diego Antonio Chavez died at a relatively young age of 55. Tragically, two of his sons, Mike and Benny, died even younger, before they could have families. That left my grandpa Louie, his sister Perla and their youngest brother, Lalo. Because Lalo had a family of girls, my mom said grandpa used to worry that the Chavez name would end with him.

Jose Benito "Benny" Chavez
Melquiades "Mike" Chavez

But Grandpa’s concerns were premature because all three of his sons, Louie, Jr., Mike and Ralph all had sons to carry on the Chavez name. My cousin Steven, the eldest of Louie Jr.’s children, had a son of his own, who he named Michael Steven Chavez. And now, Michael has passed on the Chavez name to two more Chavez boys, Micah Andrew and Jack Elias. As I said, that marks the 15th generation of the Chavez name that first appeared in New Mexico (known then as New Spain) in 1600.
Chavez Men: Mike, Louie, Ralph (holding Javier), Grandpa Louie, Steven and Mike
 There are many branches of the Chavez family, probably too many to count. My Great-Uncle Lalo has told me about huge Chavez family reunions held annually in Arizona, California and New Mexico. I’m sure most of those families can trace their roots back to Don Pedro Gomez Duran y Chaves.

I should point out that there are several 14th generation Chavez boys and girls who descend from Grandpa Louie, including: Giovanna, Andrew and Emma Chavez (children of my cousin Andrew and his wife, Deborah); Phoebe Chavez (daughter of my cousin Mike and his wife, Hedy); and Julian, Derrick (sons of my cousin Eric), and Lynell and Kaitlin Chavez (daughters of Eric and his wife Nadine).

Of course many, many more cousins, including my own daughters, Carin Nicole and Isabella Lucia, carry the Chavez bloodline, even if they don’t carry the name. My brother Jon and his wife, LeeAnn, have three sons, Alek, Derrick and Tanner Gallegos; Cousin Lisa and her husband John have four children -- Justin Ronald, John Wesley, Zachary Alexander and Cassidy Elizabeth Kirk; Cousin Sharon and her husband Anthony have two sons, Nicholas and Vincent Scarinci; Cousin Cindy and her husband Jay have one son, Louie Cabrales; and Cousin Karen has one son, Matthew Whitlock. My youngest first cousin, Javier (son of Ralph and Holly Chavez) is in high school.

I will do my best to tell the origins of the Chavez family in my next blog post. For now, here is a chronology of the Chavez line as it extends down to my Grandpa Louie, and on down to his great-great grandsons.

Don Pedro Gomez Duran y Chaves
Born:               Between 1550-1556 in Valverde de Llerena in Extremadura of southwestern Spain in the Magistracy of the military Order of Santiago
Don Pedro Duran y Chaves II
            Born:               New Spain

Don Fernando Duran y Chaves II
            Born:               About 1650 in New Spain
Nicolas Duran y Chaves
            Born:               1686 in El Paso del Norte, New Spain
            Married:          1714 in Atrisco

Fernando (Bernardo) Chaves
Born:               About 1710 in New Spain

Manuel Chaves
Born:               1745 in New Spain

Jose Chaves
            Born:               About 1795 in New Spain
Married in Belen

Diego Antonio Chaves
Born:               6 Dec 1823 in Laguna
            Married:          La Jolla/Socorro parish

Jose Preciliano Chaves
Born:               3 Jan 1862 in La Jolla
Married:          10 Jun 1882 in Albuquerque
Lived in:          St. Johns, AZ and Cubero
Died:               23 Oct 1928 in Cubero

Juan Diego Antonio Chaves
            Born:               6 Oct 1884 in St. Johns, AZ
            Died:               1939 in Cubero, NM

Louis Telesfor Chavez, Sr.
            Born:               24 Mar 1918 in Cubero
            Died:               19 Aug 2006 in Albuquerque

Louis Telesfor Chavez, Jr.
            Born:               Albuquerque

Steven Chavez          
            Married:          Victorville, CA

Michael Steven Chavez
            Born:               Victorville, CA

Micah Andrew Chavez and Jack Elias Chavez
            Born:               Apple Valley, CA

No comments:

Post a Comment