Friday, April 25, 2014

52 Ancestors – #17 Bartolomé Dávila Cantos

It's probably only been just about a full year that I have known about my 5th great grandfather Bartolomé Dávila Cantos. Having returned to New York City from college I was able to visit the FamilySearch center more and got to use more microfilm rolls for the churches of Puerto Rico. One of the towns I really wanted to research was the town of Maunabo where I have maternal roots. I have written about Pedro Dávila Ruiz, my 2nd great grandfather and Bartolomé would be Pedro's great grandfather.

Maunabo, Puerto Rico - Coat of Arms [Google]

I've talked about Maunabo in previous posts - it's a town located on the southeastern coast of Puerto Rico and was founded in 1799. By switching to the Spanish Wikipedia page of Maunabo I was able to learn that the town's first residents were people of Guayama. The town also suffered badly from the hurricane San Ciriaco in 1899, destroying most of its stores and the town's sugar mill "La Bordaleza". Also, from 1902-1905 the town was annexed to Yabucoa due to a law enacted by the Legislative Assembly of Puerto Rico. 

Faro Punta Tuna - Maunabo, PR [Rainforestsafari]

I'm not sure if Bartolomé himself was from Guayama but he was most likely born circa the 1780s, which is a few years before the founding of Maunabo. Since I went only through the baptism records, I was only able to find the records of Bartolomé's children and grandchildren being baptized in the church . So far I have been able to find six children's baptism records with his wife María Candida Rodríguez: José Laureano, Juliana, José Manuel, María Feliciana, Francisca, and Manuel Dávila Rodríguez. I am a descendant of José Manuel Dávila Rodríguez who was born on the 19th of March 1818 and baptized the 30th of March. His godparents were Manuel Cintrón and Nicolasa Baerga.

I actually don't know when Bartolomé passed away either, it seems that no death records were indexed by the LDS church, and I hope that doesn't mean that Maunabo doesn't have them. Hopefully they never got the chance to index them and Maunabo has them safely tucked away in their church. 

I wonder what Bartolomé's background was, there is family lore that the Dávilas were a Spanish family but of course you always hear those stories in Puerto Rico with all your family lines. Using the little nifty last name tool I found last week it seems that the surname name Dávila can be found mostly towards the western side of Spain in Pontevedra, Badajoz, and the Canary Islands. These maps however aren't conclusive on where my lines are from, they just provide some ideas as to where the surnames are currently mostly found in Spain. 

Dávila Frequency Map in Spain [INEBase]

Currently trying to get a Dávila Y-DNA-carrying male cousin tested to see what haplogroup Bartolomé and the other Dávila men would belong to -- the adventure continues!

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