Following is very interesting email and Genforum thread shared with us by our cousin Joseph Valles, Richard Barela and Daniel De La O of Mexico City. Thanks guys!
Many thanks for posting your message! And your English is perfect; it is my Spanish that is poor.
Several De La O relations in the United States have been trying to get to primary historical documents in Mexico for some time, but so far none of us has been able to go. Your communication is very welcome indeed! (I have added it at the bottom for others to see)
Some of us have been aware of the various clans of De La O in Veracruz, Acapulco, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Costa Rica, Peru and Chihuahua, but we have not discovered how they are all related exactly.
All the members of our group trace our heritage back to Cristobal De La O and particularly his son Pasqual, whose children all moved from Senecu in Chihuahua, a town that no longer exists, to areas around Dona Ana and Mesilla in New Mexico. We have no substantial records yet of Cristobal's generation, nor of his ancestors. We know you are able to have access to some very old material in Mexico City, and hopefully there are traces of information to be found that will be able to link all the various De La O families together.
If you are willing, please send what details you can, particularly if you can work with GEDcom documents. We will be happy to share what we can. Appended is an outline of the Cristobal De La O line from Chihuahua / Dona Ana.
Our group consists of:
Joseph Valles firstname.lastname@example.org
Juanita De La O Gordon email@example.com
Carol Herrington firstname.lastname@example.org
Randy De La O email@example.com
Gwynne Chastain G1Chaz@aol.com
Mary Kersey firstname.lastname@example.org
Michael DeLaO email@example.com
Henry Turrey firstname.lastname@example.org
Cindy Fahrbach email@example.com
Gwynne and I have met here in Atlanta, while Mary Kersey, Michael DeLaO, Juanita De La O Gordon and Randy De La O have just this year met each other out in California--Randy has photos of this up on his website at:
It is an extremely exciting thing that 6th and 7th generations of the descendents of the children of Pasqual De La O--widely separated in time and space--have been able to find each other and meet after having been apart for 5 generations!
From Daniel De La O
Hello, everybody, I'm writing from Mexico city, hope you can understand my english. My name is Daniel De La O I was born in Acapulco (1974) in one of the oldest families in the port. I'm a researcher for the Mexico College, and during my masters degree I made an investigation about one of the first De La O in the pacific of Mexico. I was surfing the net when I discovered this site about the De La O genealogy and I was amazed to read your mails about the origins of the name. I don't know exactly about the other family lines from which you may decent, I do know that the cuban line is the one that migrated to florida, and that there are three mexican origins known of the De La O: Veracruz, Guadalajara and Acapulco.
This last one, goes all the way back to 1561 when Fray Andres de Urdaneta receives the order of sailing from Acapulco to the philipines, with the objective of finding islands nearby the chinesse continent and japan that may serve to the spanish rute of silver and gold. One of the companions of Urdaneta was the young Alonso De La O who came to Mejico with his brother in search of fortune. His brother stayed in Veracruz and became a merchant, I haven´t found much about him, although there is a lot of De La O's in Veracruz.
Perhaps your parents come from that line...
Anyway, Alonso didn't stay with his brother because he wanted to follow the religious path, and started the process to become an agustino like urdaneta, but it wasn't an easy thing, because the De La O in Spain from which these two brothers came, had Moro blood in their veines. This is why if you feel like you have a nose or some other arab like characteristics you don't know were they came from, well, ok, you are not crazy. As matter of fact, you have to know that Spain had a couple of centuries of ocupation by the moros. There is not a clear reason of why Alonso didn´t go with the others to Japan, but the thing is that he stayed in Bahia de Santa Lucía, today Acapulco to build the first chapel. We know this because Urdaneta, as most agustinos, kept a record of his travels and evangelizations, and in the Acapulco old archive is a copy of these records. He stayed in the port working in the construction of the chapel, which didn´t go well because it was more urgent the edification of a fort, eventually the fort of San Diego.
Alonso started to make money when the turnaroute was ready, but sorry he didn´t became one of the richest colonizers on the port, however he was married to Anita (don't ask me the surname) and had children and died. How do I know about that marriage? Thanks again to the agustinos, who keep records of everybody married in those years, and were kind enough to receive my petition in Spain for the information concerning this affairs. That's all I could find about Alonso, it took a lot of research in the old, I mean OLD mexican archives, so don´t expect to be able to google something about it with out a bunch of readings before you.
The next I can tell you is that Alonso and his children, and his brother in Veracruz, lived in a very special time, marked with the continuous crossing of merchandise and people. So is not surprise to speculate that they had children with different people over those years. For example, in Acapulco was a small but very well registered slave trade for the portuguese and holland. A lot of De La O in Acapulco are clearly african descendent, so of you have black characteristics in your resemblance it may be possible that you come from this line. Although the veracruz De La O have a lot of mixture with black people too, there are more mulatos, white person with black, that the acapulco's (black with indigenas).
In other things more recent, you may probably be related to María De La O a very important women rights' fighter in Mexico. And perhaps you are related with Genovevo De La O who fought the revolution following the Zapata's ideals, he tried to help the poor and is consider a hero.
Finally, my research has pointed one of the origins of the surname in France, in the region of la Vierge de l'eau. Which means Virgin of the Water, this place is famous because the Virgin Mary apeared over a water spring. Someone took the surname De l'eau, -probably happened around the 1485 by orders of the Vatican (long story)- and consequently when he or she moved to Spain the name changed from eau to O, because the word eau is pronounced exactly like the letter "O" in spanish. I'm sure that the ones of you who speak spanish will understand it better. After one or two generations the name became De La O, hiding it's relation to the virgin. This may be the origin of De La O and it would say that your surname actually means: of the Water... Daniel of the Water...
Well is almost four in the morning here in Mexico, and I hope I've been helpful to you. I'm at your orders in this mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
I wish to you all the best, the best of fortunes, the best of lucks, the best of health the best of everything, my dear brothers, my dear sisters, where ever you are...
De La O in NM c. 1890''s
Re: Meaning of De La O name?
Richard Barela (View posts) Posted: 13 Jun 2009 8:43PM GMT
Surnames: De La O, DeLaO, delao
I found your post interesting and collaborates with what I found on the De La O name history on geneology.com from Daniel Antonio De La O in Mexico City. While attaining his masters from Mexico College he researched the family name and found some facts similar to yours. He notes the name originates from the french "la Vierge de l'eau", referring to the Virgin appearing over a spring of water in France, and literally means "of the water" with "eau" meaning water in french; when pronounced having an "O" sound in spanish. When the De La O ancestors moved to Spain the name transformed to its current. This appears to be the origin of the church name you mention in your post. Daniels post is very interesting and I have pasted it below for anyone interested. Daniel also states that it was a command from the Vatican around 1485 that "someone" take the name "de l'eau." I found that very interesting and quite believable.
My gr gr grandfather was Severio De La O, son of Pasqual De La O, son of Cristobal De La O. My grandma was Juanita De La O Barela. (my thanks David)
Meaning of De La O name?
JValles (View posts) Posted: 12 May 2003 1:42PM
Surnames: De La O, Delao
The name De La O refers to the Virgin Mary at the moment of the birth of Jesus. What is missing that makes this clear is this name for the Virgin Mary in full, "Nuestra Senora De La O". This name for the Virgin Mary is sometimes rendered "Nuestra Senora de la Redonda". In English, this could be, The Virgin of the Parturition".
Some have said the the "O" refers to the cry of the mother during birth, or of the child afterwards. Others have said that it refers to the fullness of pregnancy, and still others say it refers to the alpha and omega, i.e., that the birth of Jesus is prophecy fulfilled.
There is a church, with a black Madonna, at Salinas de Anana in Spain with the name Nuestra Senora De La O. After the habit of past times, its use as a family name might mean that the family originated from there, or from the locale of another church with this name, or that someone took this name in honor of the Virgin.