May 25, 2014

Locating your Mexican ancestors ranch or town In Mexico prior to 1888
Last Names of Nuevo Leon

Locating your Mexican ancestors ranch or town In Mexico prior to 1888 can sometimes be hard. That is why I am writing this blog post, to share a resource with you that will help you locate Mexican towns whose name might have had changed after 1888. It will also help you get more details about the towns your ancestors used to reside or live at.

The resource I am talking about was written back in 1888 by Antonio García Cubas and it is titled “Diccionario geográfico, histórico y biográfico de los Estados Unidos Mexicanos” (in English “Geographical, Historical and Biographical Dictionary of the United States of Mexico”).

 The importance of locating towns is imperative when it comes to Mexican Genealogy Research since without a geographic location it will be very difficult to locate documents about your ancestors. In my previous post “Website to Help, You Find Where Your Ancestors Were From In Mexico” I describe how you can locate current cities and towns. The problem is that cities and towns to get their names changed. “Geographical, Historical and Biographical Dictionary of the United States of Mexico” will help you locate these towns. Once you locate your ancestor’s town you will have a description as to what state and municipality it belongs to, thus giving you an idea where to continue to search for documents.

 There are two places online that you can check this resource out by yourself and I list them below including a screenshot of each. I also tried to search for the PDF version of this resource but unfortunately, there are only two volumes online. If I ever find them all in PDF I’ll post them in another post.

Digital Library of Daniel Cosio Villegas:

This gazetteer will help you in locating your Mexican ancestors ranch or town In Mexico prior to 1888

The above is a screenshot of the repository that holds the five volumes of this resource. What is great is that it contains a list of all the cities and towns for easy browsing.

You can visit it by using this link:

 Digital Collection of UANL

The above is another repository that has this resource online. The only unfortunate thing is that is is very difficult to locate anything but you never know maybe you may prefer it.

You can access it here:

I hope that this resource, Locating your Mexican ancestors ranch or town In Mexico prior to 1888,  is useful to you. Please let me know int he comments if it was or if you have used it in the past let me know what you think about it.

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About the author 

Moises Garza

I have doing my family genealogy since 1998. I am also the creator of this blog Mexican Genealogy, and my personal blog We Are Cousins. To always be up to date with both of these sites follow me on facebook. To contact me or book me for a presentation, buy my books, and or learn more about me visit my personal website at

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  1. This was a HUGE help! It confirmed a hacienda mentioned in a baptismal record was indeed in the area and made sense piecing the story together. Thank you for this!

  2. Moises,

    Thank you for creating this blog. It has encouraged me to find out more about my Mexican heritage. My question for you is if you have ever came across a book which listed the owners of various haciendas. My grandmother was born on the Hacienda de Las Letras in Puruandiro, Michoacan. I have always wondered who owned the hacienda and how my ancestors came to live there.

    Awaiting your thoughts if any.

    Guy Giannerini

  3. These are great resources! I’d like to add one more. I’ve used the following link to find haciendas, pueblos, ranchos, and puestos mentioned in some of the records I’ve read through. The website has each under the main municipality and then state. It sometime helps with lesser known areas.

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