Drama, Genealogy, Immigration, Rant

My life was a lie.

Just kidding, it wasn’t that dramatic.  My dad’s parents are Joe Conde and Amelia Juarez Rangel, although I didn’t really think about that until recently.  I wasn’t very close to these grandparents because, when I was born to teenage parents who did the best they could (a damn good job if you ask me), these grandparents didn’t feel old enough to be grandma and grandpa.  Amelia also tried to convince my dad I wasn’t his daughter.  I thought of her when my dad’s DNA results came in and did a little jig, even though we never doubted I am my father’s daughter.

My last name was Rangel, as was my dad’s, so I always assumed that was my grandfather’s last name.  Later I noticed some of my aunts and uncles were Conde.  As I got into genealogy I neglected my dad’s side because I feel very distant from them.  As time went on, I questioned my dad’s (and his dad’s) last name.  First off, it’s weird that my father has his mom’s maiden name but I had him join the Rangel Project at Family Tree DNA just in case.  I couldn’t find a Conde project.  In any case my father’s Y-DNA at 12 markers has no matches.  None!

My dad asked an older brother about all of this, and my uncle admitted to having asked my grandfather because he also had his suspicions.  My uncle said that my grandfather admitted his last name was false and told him his real last name which my uncle did not remember although he said “it sounded very indigenous.”

My paternal grandparents, Joe Conde and Amelia Juarez Rangel.  Some of their children were named Rangel, like my dad, and others Conde.
My paternal grandparents, Joe Conde and Amelia Juarez Rangel. Some of their children were named Rangel, like my dad, and others Conde.
Dad's mom, 5th down. Here is a record of Amelia Juarez Rangel's birth on October 17, 1941 to Maria Rangel and Benito Juarez.
Dad’s mom, 5th down. Here is a record of Amelia Juarez Rangel’s birth on October 17, 1941 to Maria Rangel and Benito Juarez.
1940 census
In 1940 we see Amelia Juarez Rangel’s parents, Maria Rangel and Benito Juarez living with Benito’s family. Benito’s father Miguel is the farmer and his sons are farm laborers, suggesting that Miguel Juarez owned the land. Interestingly, living with them are some Conde relatives. I think this is how my grandfather Joe Conde took his last name.
1930 census
In 1930 we see a very young Maria Rangel living with her family. This seeks to explain the different last names used by my father’s family: Conde, Juarez, and Rangel

AJR tombstone

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