Monday, June 23, 2014

52 Ancestors – #25 Juan Francisco Sánchez Flores (1855-1916)

I'm kind of late adding my 52 Ancestors post for the week, but not too late! Today, my post is about my  3rd great grandfather Juan Francisco Sánchez Flores.

When I first began to search for my 2nd great grandmother Anicasia Sánchez Arvelo, I knew pretty much nothing about her. Luckily, she appeared on the census along with her father, mother, and her husband. Francisco (sometimes he just went by his middle name) here was listed as Sánchez Martínez, and was listed that way in many other records.  Francisco is listed as being married for 25 years as of 1910, employed on a sugar farm and could not read or write.

Francisco Sánchez Flores – 1910 Census [Ancestry]

Juan Francisco Sánchez Flores is stated to be from Quebradillas, Puerto Rico. Quebradillas is located on the north-western shore of the island. The town was originally founded in 1823 by Felipe Ruiz; possibly Francisco's parents were one of the first inhabitants of the newly created town.

Quebradillas Flag [Google]

Quebradillas, Puerto Rico [Wikipedia]

It wasn't until I searched for Juan Francisco's children with his wife Juana Arvelo Vera, did I find new information both on him and his background. One of their daughters was born in 1892 in the town of Utuado, Puerto Rico. On this record I was able to find out that Juan Francisco was actually surnamed Sánchez Flores and that his parents were Blás Sánchez Martínez and Micaela Flores Valentin. I was also able to learn that Juana Arvelo's parents were Manuel Arvelo and Luisa Vera. I was very excited when I bumped into that record in Utuado because for so many years I had known so little about Francisco and Juana. To date I have been able to track down five children: Marcelino, María Agustina, Anicasia, María Aurora, and María Francisca Paula Sánchez Arvelo.

The way this family moved around was very interesting (and also gave me headaches trying to track them down!). Records point to the families beginning in two different towns, Quebradillas (Juan Francisco's town of origin) and San Sebastián (Juana's town of origin). Now, instead of moving into one of their respective towns, one of their daughters was born in Adjuntas while another was born in Utuado. The family then in 1910 appears to be living in the barrio of Coto in the town of Manatí! That's five different towns in the span of 3 generations! Which I feel like isn't too common from the research I have done so far. Many families seemed to have decided to stay rooted in their towns of origin of jump one town over. Take a look below at all the different towns they were living in!

Migration around Puerto Rico [Google Maps]

So far I was able to find three siblings to Juan Francisco: a sister named Lorenza, another sister named Ruperta and a brother named Basilio. They, unlike Francisco, didn't go to far off -- Lorenza lived and passed away in Quebradillas, Ruperta passed away in Lares, and Basilio passed away in San Sebastián. Unfortunately, I don't know much else about Blás Sánchez and Micaela Flores. I only know that they were deceased by the year 1887 according to records, both seemed to have died in Quebradillas. I hope to one day visit Quebradillas and San Sebastián and poke my head around the towns, discover their respective histories, and how my family ties into them. Hopefully I'll get to learn more about Blás and Micaela along the way as well!

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