Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society, JMADS

Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society, JMADS JMADS is the acronym for Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society. Our society reveals untold stories of Jose Miguel Arciniega an unsung hero of Texas.

The Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society (JMADS) mission is to restore the legacy of Jose Miguel Arciniega and to promote Tejano History, Texas History and American History. We stride in helping the public with their genealogy. Our long journey is to successfully have the Tejanos included in Texas and American History.

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Hello Everyone!I am so excited to share an entry  I wrote to honor a Spanish American Patriot, my great, great, great, g...
TSHA | Arciniega, José Gregorio de

Hello Everyone!

I am so excited to share an entry I wrote to honor a Spanish American Patriot, my great, great, great, great, great grandfather, Jose Gregorio Arciniega. TSHA's Handbook of Texas has added this article after a thorough process.

It is a little late for Hispanic Heritage Month however this is without doubt a celebratory moment to promote the history of Jose Gregorio Arciniega. Jose Gregorio Arciniega was Jose Miguel Arciniega's father. Jose Miguel Arciniega is also noted in the Handbook of Texas.

Many thanks to TSHA's Brett J. Derbes, Ph.D. Director of Research
Managing Editor - Handbook of Texas, the Chief Historian, and the TSHA Review Panel for making sure Hispanic History it written and told!

Also, gratitude and many thanks to JMADS' artist David Baisden, a fine artist from Houston Texas who has put his heart and soul for our heritage come to life through his paintings of Jose Gregorio Arciniega and Jose Miguel Arciniega; on TSHA"S Handbook of Texas and displayed at the Texas State Capital, Bastrop Museum, San Jacinto College, Meador Elementary and the Marriott Plaza Hotel's "Arciniega House" in San Antonio.

God bless!

Donna De Leon

José Gregorio de Arciniega, soldier, landowner, and Spanish American Patriot, was born in Cerro Gordo, Coahuila, New Spain. Sources differ regarding the year of his birth and often list the year of 1761. His parents were José Eusebio Arciniega and Anna Cardenas. He married María Josefa Flores de ...

SA300: 300 San Antonians: Jose Miguel De Arciniega

Hello everyone!
Happy Hispanic Heritage Month!
The Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society (JMADS) is honored the City of San Antonio has recognized Jose Miguel de Arciniega in their City's Tri-Centennial Celebration of the founding of this grand and beautiful city. Hispanic Heritage Month is a time for celebration of our ancestor's history. Each year more contributions are being made to our rich history by people all over. Bravo!!


Jose Miguel De Arciniega, a political figure and hero, helped shape the state of Texas and his portrait now hangs in the capitol legislative library. In 2015...

Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society, JMADS's cover photo

Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society, JMADS's cover photo

Happy 4th of July everyone!#prouddesecendant#IndependenceDayA SPANISH AMERICAN PATRIOT for the Independence of United St...

Happy 4th of July everyone!


A SPANISH AMERICAN PATRIOT for the Independence of United States: Jose Gregorio de Arciniega (1759-1822) Jose Gregorio was born in San Miguel de Cerrogordo, Durango, New Spain. His parents were Jose Eusebio Arciniega and Anna Cardenas. He married Maria Josefa Flores de Abrego in 1792, and had two children with her, Jose Miguel de Arciniega and Dolores de Arciniega.

On February 26, 1779, Jose Gregorio was twenty years old when he enlisted for ten years in the Spanish Seventh Company of Alternative Provisional Dragoons (soldier) of San Carlos de Parras. The Spanish officers wrote the physical description of the enlisted soldiers according to Spain’s Caste System. Jose Gregorio was listed as a mestizo, half Spaniard and half Indian. He was five feet, one-inch tall, black hair, blue eyes, beardless, a round nose and he had a pink birth mark on the left side of his nose.

Throughout his military career, he was stationed in several presidios. (garrisons) within the Presidio Cordon. The Presidio Cordon was a northern line of frontier land made up of several military forts south of Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. It was built as a defense line to protect New Spain’s Provincias Internas. The Interior Province was south of the Presidio Cordon. The Presidios were formed in a line to deter encroachments of the hostile Indians from advancing to the Interior Province. The hostile Indians were the Apache and their kinship tribes, the Lipans, and Mescaleros. Teodoro de Croix was the governor and the commander in chief of the Interior Provinces who strengthened the Northern Presidio Line.

Jose Gregorio was a Spanish American Patriot in 1779 when Spain and France were allies to General George Washington and the Thirteen American Colonies; during the American Revolution, against Great Britain. More specifically, a Spanish American Patriot is a soldado (soldier) in the Spanish Regiment from 1779-1782, who made contributions towards the Independence of the United States of America. King Charles (Carlos) III made an official order; a “cedula”. The Royal Order required the soldiers to pay a “donativo” (donation) of one peso if they were Indians, and two pesos if they were Spaniards. The donation was used to pay for artillery, food, and blankets for the American soldiers. Spain also supplied a fleet of ships to help the Americans who did not have any ships to hold England’s naval power at bay, in order to disable them from advancing inland of the North American Colonies. This is the translation of King Carlos III’s Royal Cedula.

“Royal Dispatch from His Majesty in which it is ordered that all free subjects of America contribute once, in the quality of donation, with the expressed amount, to sustain the costs of the present War.”

George Washington wrote:
“Indeed although the British forces are already kept in check by the combined efforts of France and America, it is nevertheless evident that the accession of Spain only can give to the alliance a decided superiority adequate to our purposes, and free us from this fatal chance that a single unlucky event may overthrow the balance.”

In 1782 Jose Gregorio, and five other soldiers were detached from the presidio of Cerrogordo to assist the Presidio of Guajaquilla, of hostile Indians deprivations. They served under Captain Ramon Diaz de Bustamante. Gregorio Arciniega paid his donation of one peso to his respective commander in Cerrogordo, he fought the hostile Indians to protect the Interior, and he was listed as a “compista” (laborer), who worked in the tobacco fields and in the silver mines for the cause of the American Revolution.

Each military enlistment lasted for 10 years. Gregorio enlisted in 1779-1818. By 1803 he had been promoted from soldado, (soldier) to Cavo (Corporal), in the volante company of the Second Flying Company of San Carlos de Parras, or Alamo de Parras for short.

A “volante” or “mounted lancer” would mount their horses with their lance, pistol, rifle and shield and “fly” by chasing the hostile Indians away from the convoy or presidio. The Presidio Regulations of 1772 required the mounted lancers to wear a short blue jacket with cuffs and a red collar, blue pants, cloth hat, white belts crossed with their company’s name embroidered on one of them.

Since Gregorio was a mestizo, part Indian and part Spaniard, he could not own land while he was a militant in the Presidio Cordon. The mestizos or Indians could not apply for land, as their missions were to relocate where the hostile Indians were causing problems. They traveled with their families to different garrisons within the Presidio Cordon. Gregorio and his family moved several times within the Presidio Cordon that was divided into three jurisdictions of Durango, Conchos and Santa Rosa.

In 1803, Cavo (Corporal) Jose Gregorio and his brother Alfarez (Lieutenant) Felipe Florentine Arciniega were among the King’s 100 mounted lancers sent to the Mission San Antonio de Valero, Texas to protect the borders, become settlers, civic workers, and merchants to fortify Spain’s existence and cease enemies from entering Texas. It was later named the Alamo because the 100 soldiers came from the town of San Jose y Santiago de Alamo. In this year of 1803, Corporal Jose Gregorio Arciniega had served 24 years in the Spanish Regiment. He was a marksman in a lance, rifle, pistols, and sword, while carrying a shield. Gregorio brought with him his wife Maria Josefa, and his son Jose Miguel. The barracks for the soldiers and their families were in ruins, leading them to live in the San Antonio Mission, the Alamo. The Alamo was their first resident in Spanish Texas.

In 1772 King Carlos III wrote the Royal Regulations for the military. The king wanted settlements to grow and stay protected by the soldiers. King Carlos decided to allow the Indians to apply for land of their own, however, the Indian soldiers could not receive land until they proved their loyalty to the Crown. This included the mestizo soldiers, because they were half Indian. They had to be discharged as a retired soldier. They could not retire unless they were too old, if they became an invalid because of injuries they suffered in combat, or they were too sick from the epidemics.

Corporal Jose Gregorio was given a Spanish Land Grant in downtown San Antonio in 1811. His land was located in present day; La Villita, Hemisfair Park, and his he built his first home where the Marriott Plaza Hotel's courtyard. Corporal Jose Gregorio retired after thirty-two years of service as written in his land grant. He retired but continued his service to the king’s regiment because of the ongoing revolutionary wars.
Corporal Jose Gregorio was a in the Spanish Regiment for a total of thirty-nine years. He fought in the Battle of Medina 1813 and took part in the First Republic of Texas in Nacogdoches during the Gutierrez-McGee Expedition. There is a list in the Bexar Archives of properties Gregorio lost during the revolutions from 1812-1818. It states he lost seven horses, one “macho”, a saddle, a gun, and a lance, during the Anglo-American Invasion

From 1815-1818 Gregorio was San Antonio’s “Juez de Barrio” (town judge). His last mission was in 1818 when he accompanied his son Jose Miguel Arciniega on a mission to secure the Louisiana Border, to stop all Americans, foreign opportunists, and filibusters from entering Spanish Texas.
Gregorio was born a mestizo, however, because of his loyalty to the Spanish Crown, and his Catholic faith, his Spanish Caste status changed through a process called “gracias a sacar” where it was legal to purchase their legitimacy in social status, or it could be acquired through the “limpieza de sangre”, cleansing of blood. This process required witnesses to attest on Cavo Jose Gregorio’s behalf in front of a judge to testify he was not of Jewish or Moor blood, and his parents or grandparents were of Spanish blood. By presenting his marriage record to Maria Josefa Flores de Abrego, he did produce documentation. The priest recorded both Cavo Jose Gregorio and his wife as Spaniards. Proof of this outcome is written in San Antonio’s “Padron Census de Alamo, of 1822” where Cavo Jose Gregorio, his wife and children are listed as Spaniards.

On April 25, 1822, he died in San Antonio, Texas of a tooth infection and buried in the Campo Santo Cemetery in San Fernando de Bexar, Texas, Mexico, as a Spaniard.

by Donna De Leon


Hello everyone,

CORRECTION: I attempted numerous times to make a correction on the post of "ALCALDE ARCINIEGA" , through "edit post" tab, but I was not able to so. I have been able to make the correction on my personal page. History in all, MUST always be corrected when an error is made, so here it is.

I have 2 marriage records of Jose Gregorio Arciniega to Maria Josefa Flores de Abrego.

1. The first, looks like "Santa Ana". There is a place named Santa Ana de La Babia. This town was not a presidio. Sometimes you can figure out the Spaniard's abbreviations in the Spanish Colonial Docuemnts, and most of the time you are guessing. This is why it is best to have an expert in Castilian Spanish to translate old Spanish documents for you. Another difficulty is the writer of the document did not always write legible and the lead ink, with age, seeped through paper, and age, there is fading of the ink.

2. In the abbreviation written in the first marriage license, the tiny "o" was not visible because it was very hard to read due to the condition of the document and the hand writing. The word San An"o" or "a" above the "n" can easily be misinterpreted as Santa or San, and Antonio and Ana. With this is very important, because it can lead your research down a rabbit hole. You can encounter one "brick wall" after another.

3. The correct name of the my great grandmother, Maria Josefa Flores de Abrego's birth place is the Presidio San Antonio de la Babia, and not Santa Ana de la Babia. The formal name of the presidio was the Presidio San Antonio Bucareli de La Babia.

God bless!

Donna De Leon

Hello everyone,We are very happy to announce the Texas State Historical Association “Handbook of Texas” Online has place...
ARCINIEGA, JOSE MIGUEL DE | The Handbook of Texas Online| Texas State Historical Association (TSHA)

Hello everyone,

We are very happy to announce the Texas State Historical Association “Handbook of Texas” Online has placed, the portrait of Jose Miguel Arciniega next to their biographical entry they wrote for him. Handbook of Texas also added the painting of the Alamo de Parras portrait featuring (left) Alfarez Felipe Arciniega, (center) Jose Miguel Arciniega, and (right) Cavo Jose Gregorio Arciniega.

“The Handbook of Texas is a digital state encyclopedia developed by the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA) that is free and accessible on the Internet for students, teachers, scholars, and the general public. The Handbook consists of overview, general, and biographical entries focused on the entire history of Texas from the indigenous Native Americans and the Prehistoric Era to the state. The association's publications include the Southwestern Historical Quarterly, more than 150 scholarly books, the Texas Almanac, and the well-known Handbook of Texas Online”

Many thanks to TSHA “Handbook of Texas” Dr. Brett J. Derbes, Ph.D. Director of Research, Managing Editor and the Chief Historians Walter L. Buenger and former Chief Historian Randolph B. Campbell for adding Jose Miguel’s portrait, and the Alamo de Parras painting to Jose Miguel’s biography.
The Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society (JMADS) hired artist David Baisden to created these paintings, through my research, to represent our great, great, great, great grandfather, Jose Miguel Arciniega, according to true facts from historical documents in the archives and according to history books written by well-known historians in Special Collections; who wrote volumes of books to educate us in Texas history. This portrait successfully depicts Jose Miguel as a military explorer, captain of the Militia and an Inspectors of Arms, an emissary and many other positions he held throughout his life granting him a title as one of the Makers of Texas.

Pictures and portraits JMADS created will be seen by many people currently, in the future, and will educate people from all walks of life who desire to know facts of Texas History, Tejano History, and American History. JMADS has created many promotions, so Jose Miguel’s legacy will be taught of his amazing life with accuracy; even when we close our eyes to this world and are home with the Lord.

I have signed a TSHA “Handbook of Texas” Author’s form. I have been given permission to write a biography entry for Jose Gregorio Arciniega (Jose Miguel’s father) as a Spanish American Patriot, and Cavo in the Alamo de Parras regiment. It will be reviewed by the Director of Research Brett Derbis and the Chief Historian Walter Buenger, and if all goes well Cavo Gregorio Arciniega will be added to Texas History.

Donna De Leon

Hello everyone!Alcalde Jose Miguel Arciniega has been noted as one of the Makers of Texas. Jose Miguel was born in Santa...

Hello everyone!

Alcalde Jose Miguel Arciniega has been noted as one of the Makers of Texas. Jose Miguel was born in Santa Ana La Babia, Coahuila, New Spain. Santa Ana de La Babia Presidio is where Jose Miguel's mother, Josefa Flores de Abrego, was born. Gregorio married her when he was stationed at San Carlos de Alamo Presidio on August 23, 1793. There was not a church Santa Ana La Babia where Jose Miguel was born. When Jose Miguel was eight days old his father, Jose Gregorio Arciniega and his mother Maria Josefa Flores de Abrego, arrived in Valley of Santa Rosa which is presently called Santa Rosa de Melchor Muzquiz, Coahuila, Mexico. I recently came across a second, and different image of their marriage. I did research on the towns involved.

Jose Miguel arrived with his parents in 1803. He was about 9 almost 10 years old. His first home was the San Antonio Mission, the Alamo. He never went back to his native land, instead he lived in San Antonio, Texas until his untimely death on May 1, 1849. In the 46 years he lived in San Antonio he became a military, political, civic, governmental leaders, and a fine merchant of carts, ores, shingles, corn, sugar cane, potatoes, corn and fruit.

Alcalde Jose Miguel Arciniega was in office in 1830 and 1833. He was an unsung hero to San Antonio and to the State of Texas. JMADS has had a recent meeting with the City of San Antonio City Clerk’s Office. We were given their approval and will pursue the final approval to hang Alcalde Arciniega’s portrait, of when he was of 37 years old, on the City of San Antonio’s “Wall of Mayors” in the City’s Main Plaza Building. His portrait is painted in oil on canvas and mounted in a vintage wooden ornate frame This will also include to put his portrait back on the City of San Antonio’s official website, next to his name in the “List of Mayors”.

Donna De Leon


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“Texas Tejano History Matters” “No Tejanos, No Texas”

The Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society (JMADS) mission is to restore the legacy of Jose Miguel Arciniega and to promote lost Tejano History, Texas History and American History through the life and times of Jose Miguel and his father Joseph (Jose) Gregorio Arciniega.

JMADS stride in helping the public with their genealogy and translations of old Castilian Spanish documents to unleash their ancestors legacies too! These old Spanish documents hold secrets of how important Tejanos’ ancestors were to this great state of Texas and OUR nation the United States of America.

We did not have a clue how to begin research and it cost so much. We wanted to give up, but JMADS was driven by unanswered questions. We do not have a degree in Texas History, or Tejano History. We are regular people who yearned to pay tribute to Jose Miguel Arciniega and to all the Tejano ancestors for their unprecedented bravery, long suffering and perseverance as they, together, searched for liberty, justice, democracy and peace in Texas.

Jose Miguel Arciniega was very active in Texas. Through JMADS our great, great, great, great grandfather, Jose Miguel Arciniega, is gallantly recognized by the State of Texas where his portrait is displayed in the prestigious Texas State Capital’s Legislative Reference Library. Jose Miguel has been given a title by the Texas Historical Commission as “A Maker of Texas”, and it is inscribed on a Texas Historical Marker that JMADS has installed to commemorate him in front of his homestead, the “Arciniega House” (his first home was the Alamo) that his father Gregorio handed down to him through a Spanish Land Grant given to Gregorio by the King of Spain in 1811 in La Villa de San Fernando de Bejar, now San Antonio, Texas.

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Dear friends and most likely "relatives"! I live in the Raleigh NC but I am originally from Bogotá Colombia. In my genealogy tree I have as far back as 1680 for members of the Arciniega o Arciniegas Family in Colombia. It seems we all came from the same Basque town of Artziniega or Arciniega. I had the chance to visit last year, lovely medieval town. I am contacting you because my grandfather, Rafael Arciniegas Tavera had a ranch near Bogotá, Colombia, circa 1890 - 1920 called "San Antonio". The supposed key to the ranch was in my father's hands for many years and now in mine. The mystery is that the key has engraved on one side "San Antonio" and on the other "Villita Key". Looking for the possible origins of the key we found the Arciniega in San Antonio and in the Villita district, which is an unbelievable coincidence!!! We would love to know if you know of similar keys or what this key is about. We would really love to hear from you. Kind regards! Germán.
I just discovered through Ancestry, that Jose Miguel Arciniega was my maternal great great great grandfather. This is amazing news. My mother is 93 years old and living in San Antonio. To my knowledge, she is unaware of this.❤️
This gentleman is my 4x grandfather. It doesn't look like the same man in the pictures on this page. Can anyone provide some insight?
This is the story of a young boy, “Miguelito”, who grew up inside our Alamo mission to become a very influential “Spanish Gentleman” of his time. In 1802,..two men,..brothers,..Gregorio and Felipe were part of a “Spanish Military Unit” with orders to relocate,..and travel from their pueblo,..“San Jose y Santiago de Alamo”,..near Las Parras, Coahuila to,..“La Villa de San Fernando”, present day San Antonio, a little over 300 miles, orders of the Spanish King,..Carlos IV. Their assignment was to secure the Louisiana / United States borders in order to keep the Americans out of Texas, and to stop the livestock smuggling. This regiment would be,..the only “Police Force” protection,..that Texas had at that time. These brothers,..“Gregorio and Felipe” were “Mounted Lancers”, the “Second Flying Company of San Carlos de Parras”,..a prestigious, highly trained and disciplined,..Spanish military unit of 100. The name of their Spanish regiment was “Alamo de Parras”. The San Antonio Mission’s name was later changed to “The Alamo” because of this Spanish regiment; Alamo de Parras. The “Mounted lancers of Alamo de Parras” were also commissioned to stop the Indian raids from penetrating the Interior Provinces of New Spain, turn the soldiers were able to start a settlement, become merchants, civil workers, ranchers and farmers. Upon arriving to “La Villa de San Fernando” (San Antonio),..the two brothers “checked in” at the presidio (Fort) with their families only to find out that the soldier accommodations were in ruins. They were ordered to “stay” with their families at a recently built Spanish mission about a mile away,..“San Antonio de Valero”. (The Alamo) Gregorio had a young son who had also weathered the 300 mile trip from Coahuila,..“Miguelito”. Miguelito was only nine years old when his family checked into the now famous,..Alamo. Miguelito grew up and lived in the Alamo for eight years,..until he turned seventeen years old when his father Gregorio retired for serving thirty-two years with the Spanish lancers. Miguelito grew up in the shadow of this “military group” and learned from them, he also grew up among the “Franciscan Friars” and learned from them, and he also grew up with the native Americans housed at the Alamo,..and yes,..he learned from them too. In 1804,..Two years after arriving to San Antonio de Bexar,..Gregorio, Miguelito’s father,..received a generous Spanish land grant in the center of present-day San Antonio. Beautiful river front real estate property. Miguelito would later become a mounted lancer like his Dad. He was the third generation,..and his son, Cristoval also became a mounted lancer, making Cristoval the fourth generation. Miguelito grew to become a man,..and his friends now called him,..”Jose Miguel” and Jose became a mounted lancer like his Dad and uncle from 1810-1836. Jose Miguel became a member of “The Second Flying Company of San Carlos de Parras” which eventually disbanded in 1836,..after the formation of the Republic of Texas. Within these years, Jose Miguel was an emissary for Spain and “Captain” of a military exploratory party. Jose Miguel was fluent in Spanish, English and French,..and, Jose Miguel also had fluency in several different native American dialects. Jose Miguel had been commissioned by the Mexican Supreme Government to have “peace talks” with the hostile Native Indians to promote peace with the Indians so they could all live together. Jose Miguel’s father, Gregorio, died in 1822 from a tooth infection and Jose Miguel inherited Gregorio’s property in downtown San Antonio. In 1826 Jose Miguel was ordered to have peace talks with “Chief Richard Fields” of the Cherokee Indian Nation. He was then sent to the “Las Lagunas de Gallinas” to continue his mission to have peace talks with the Comanche, Tahuallaces, Tejas and Caddo Indians. It took Miguel from January 21 to June 15, 1826 to complete this mission,..but he did it. In 1832 Jose Miguel was the founder of the Town of “Bastrop”. He named this town in memory of his longtime friend and fellow legislator, the “Baron de Bastrop”. Jose Miguel served as the public treasurer, political chief, judge, captain of the militia, general inspector of arms, and also became Alcalde (Mayor) of San Antonio de Bexar, 1830 and again in 1833. On December 11, 1835 Jose Miguel was appointed by General Martin Perfecto de Cos to be his interpreter for the Capitulation between him and General Edward Burleson after the Siege of Bexar was won by the Texians and the Tejanos who supported the Texians. During the “Texas Revolution”,..Jose Miguel proudly served in the military for the “Republic of Texas” with his son Cristoval. Jose Miguel Cristoval served under Juan Seguin’s company of Tejanos. After the revolution Jose Miguel was very active in the Republic of Texas era and served as a probate and an associate judge, Bexar County Commissioner, Alderman, and secured the borders at the Rio Grande under the instructions of President David G. Burnet. Jose Miguel was also a businessman. He made and sold carts for horses and was a well-known lifelong merchant of sugarcane, potatoes and corn. In 1846 during the Mexican War and the Annexation of the Republic of Texas to become Texas, United States,..Jose Miguel secured the Rio Grande border for United States as a Captain. On May 13, 1849,..Jose Miguel died an untimely death at the age of fifty-six only a few blocks from his home in downtown San Antonio. History would remember that young boy,..“Miguelito”,..who grew up in our Alamo,.. by his birth name: Jose Miguel de Arciniega. The descendants of the “Jose Miguel Arciniega Descendants Society”, (JMADS) named his first home the “Arciniega House” on his birthday September 20, 2013; presently still standing on the corner of “Arciniega Street and South Presa Street”; in the courtyard of the Marriott Plaza Hotel. Miguelito and his father, Gregorio Arciniega, built that small house. Jose Miguel (and Gregorio, Felipe & Cristoval) Thank you Spanish Gentlemen,..for your service to our country – Texas. Happy Birthday Jose Miguel!