Double Pai Incognito

I’m coining that phrase.

I’ve been working on my cousin’s Raposo line. It seemed a simple request. Figure out if Francisco Raposo and Manoel Raposo of Kilauea were really brothers.

To start, the birth place information in some records in Hawaii was inconsistent. I sorted it out and identified they were from the village of Mosteiros on Sao Miguel Island. I had a starting point at least.

I found their marriage records and saw the phrase no Portuguese researcher wants to see. Their father was Pai Incognito. Pai Incognito translates roughly to “father unknown”. Okay, we know the woman knew who the father was, but she wasn’t telling. Pai Incognito is a dead end unless someone gives up the information in a later record.

I decided to search for their baptismals. A fellow researcher found Manoel’s and then I located Francisco’s. What I didn’t expect was this: their maternal grandfather was also a Pai Incognito. This means their father’s line is a dead end and their mother’s father’s line is a dead end.

No matter how much research I do I always come across something I’ve never seen before. This is a case where both the mother and the grandmother were unmarried mothers.  Perhaps more common today, but no so much in the 1840s (or maybe it was but we just don’t hear about it).

It leaves a lot of open questions. Where did their surname Raposo come from? Did Manoel and Francisco have the same father?  How did the single mother and grandmother make ends meet?  I can only hope some record, maybe in Hawaii, provides answers these questions. For now, this is a brick wall with cement poured over it.


A very young marriage

I came across a marriage for the sibling of one of my ancestor that gave me pause to think.  The marriage is for Joze Correa and Roza de Rezendes.  He is the son of Mateus Correa and Maria de Mello.  She is the daughter of Domingos Pimentel and Barbara de Rezendes.  They were married in 1777.

What caught my eye was the baptismal years.  If I was reading it correctly, Joze was baptized in 1764 and Roza in 1766.  It was the practice of the Azoreans to baptize children very soon after birth.  If that held up here, the groom was 13 and bride 11 when they were married.

I know that at different times and places a young bride and groom was not uncommon.  My own great aunt was married at 14.  However, I haven’t seen this in the Azorean records.  They are usually at the minimum 16 and the groom is usually 20 or so.  Roza’s brother, Antonio, didn’t get married until 1797.  These two were already married 20 years by then.

Maybe the priest recording the information messed up.  We all mistakes.  Maybe this was a rare case where the bride and groom were baptized in their teens.  I haven’t found that in my research in the Azores but it’s a possibility.

The only way to find out was to find the baptismal records.  Luckily, the dates were given in the marriage record.  I headed over to the arquivo website to see what I could find.  First page I looked at gave me Roza’s sibling (lucky for me!)  Next, I found Joze’s record, and then I found Roza’s.  In both cases, they were born and baptized same month and year exactly as written on the marriage record.

Woah.  I have to wonder how that came about since it wasn’t the norm.  He was just hitting adolescence and she was really still a child.  Could it be that he got her pregnant?  The only way to find that out will be to search the baptismal records in 1777 or 1778.  Otherwise, I will never know what might cause parents to agree to a marriage between what really is two children.

Looks like I’ve got another genealogy mystery to solve.



What’s wrong with these ages?

I thought I would do something nice for some cousins this weekend.  As some of the Azorean church records are online,  I thought I would look through them and find some of my great and great great aunts and uncles.  I was able to locate Francisco de Boa Ventura in Sao Jose, Ponta Delgada fairly easy.  This, of course, encouraged me to go further.

Most of these records are not indexed and as one would expect are in Portuguese–a language I don’t really know, but have learned the basics for vital record reading. It is a painstaking process of going one record at a time.  This is fine when someone like Francisco actually knew what year he was born.

But, I’m trying to find Alexandrinha (Jose) Pacheco.  Alexandrinha has two different birth dates and a multitude of birth years.  I have found her born anywhere from 1866 to 1877.  Hey, at least I have the village!  I know she was born in Ginetas.

As I’m looking at the data I have for her family, I begin to suspect something is not right with the numbers.  The family went to Hawaii in 1882.  Alexandrinha is listed as 5 years old in the passport entry. I have her father born ca 1839 and mother born in ca 1841.  Alexandrinha would have been born ca 1876 if the passport is correct.  That would make her mother 35-36 when she was born.  I’m fine with that, although, I am suspicious that there were no other children listed with them.  Portuguese families were rarely small.

Now it gets tricky.  They had two children in Hawaii.  Manoel was born in 1884 and Jacinta was born in 1891.  That makes 14 years between Alexandrinha and Jacinta. That means their mother was 50 when Jacinta was born.

I supposed she could have been giving birth at 50.  What really bothers me is the amount of years before Alexandrinha was said to be born.  I find it hard to believe they didn’t have any children until they were in their mid 30s.

But, there is another problem.  If I am to believe Alexandrinha was born in 1876 and 5 years old when she got to Hawaii, then I must also accept that she was 12-13 when she married Antonio Pacheco in 1889.  Antonio was 35-39 at the time.  That means there could have been as much as 27 years between them.  I know there were older men, young teen marriages between the Portuguese, especially if the man was married before (he was) and he had children (he didn’t as far as I know).  I have seen marriages where the bride is 15.  13 seems very young.

So, now I must think about this.  I’ve already gone through 1876 and 1877 with no luck finding Alexandrinha.  I supposed I could make an attempt at her parent’s marriage certificate, but what year would I look in?  It could be anywhere in the 1860s or the 1870s.

I think for now I should go look for someone else.  Until I have a much firmer set of dates, or an index, this would be like finding a needle in a haystack.