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Juan Martinez de Montoya Collection

Identifier: AC 143

Scope and Content

A bound collection of sixty-one pages of letters and testimony concerning New Mexico and dating from circa 1785 until 1835. The documents were gathered in Spain as the result of two petitions (one in 1785, one in 1835) by Martinez de Montoya's descendants to inherit the noble rights received by him in 1606. This collection's transcripts of documents are especially important because they are notarized by Spanish officials as accurate and suggest an earlier date for the founding of Santa Fe than the traditional 1610 date.

The first petition and subsequent hearing took place in 1785. The petitioner was Don Bernardino Lopez. Family papers and church records from the town of Navalagamella, the birth place of Martinez de Montoya were placed in the record at this hearing.


  • 1785-1835

Language of Materials


Access Restrictions


Copy Restrictions

Duplication allowed for research purposes. User responsible for all copyright compliance.

Personal History

Juan Martinez de Montoya came to New Mexico in 1600. He served under Juan de Onate, New Mexicos first governor, as a captain. While in New Mexico he went to the Hopi Pueblos, crossed the Plains (to Quivera), served as Alcalde Ordinario of San Gabriel, fought the Humanos (Apaches) and founded the "plaza de Santa Fe." He was appointed Onates replacement (governor ad interim) but never took office. Martinez de Montoya left New Mexico in 1608. He never returned.


.25 Linear Feet


Contact Information

  1. Fray Angélico Chávez History Library
  2. The Palace of the Governors
  3. P.O. Box 2087
  4. Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504-2087, U.S.A.
  5. Phone: (+)505.476.5090
  6. Fax: (+)505.476.5093
  7. Email:
  8. URL: http://www.palaceof
Guide to the Juan Martinez de Montoya Collection, 1785-1835
Edited Full Draft
Processed by Library Staff
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • June 28, 2004: PUBLIC "-//Museum of New Mexico::Fray Angelico Chavez History Library//TEXT (US::NmSM::AC 143::Juan Martinez de Montoya Collection)//EN" "nmsm1ac143.sgml" converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the Fray Angélico Chávez History Library Repository

Fray Angélico Chávez History Library
New Mexico History Museum
113 Lincoln Ave
Sante Fe NM 87501 USA
(505) 476-5090