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José del Carmen Lugo

José del Carmen Lugo (1813 – c. 1870) was a major Californio landowner in the Los Angeles area, who worked beginning in 1839 to develop the San Bernardino and Yucaipa valleys, an area of more than 250,000 acres (1,012 km2). He made an alliance with the regional Cahuilla Indians.

During the Mexican-American War, Lugo led a Californio militia. In December 1846 he was ordered to punish a band of Luiseño Indians in retaliation for the Pauma Massacre. His militia forces, together with allied Cahuilla, killed 33-40 Luiseño in the Temecula Massacre to avenge the deaths of 11 Californio lancers. The latter were killed for stealing horses from the Luiseño.

After the United States won the Mexican-American War and annexed California, the military governor in May 1849 appointed Lugo as the first Californio alcalde (mayor) of Los Angeles under US control.


  • Lugo family 1
    • Francisco Salvador Lugo 1.1
    • Antonio Maria Lugo 1.2
  • See also 2
  • References 3

Lugo family

The Lugos were a prominent early family in California during the periods of Spanish and Mexican rule. They were among the colonists who became known as Californios. Francisco Salvador Lugo (1740–1805) arrived there as a soldier in the late eighteenth century. His son Antonio Maria Lugo (1775–1860), who also served as a soldier, received several large ranchos in Spanish land grants during the early nineteenth century. His oldest son José del Carmen Lugo was a leader of a Californio militia during the Mexican-American War, and appointed mayor of Los Angeles in 1849 under the United States military government.And are a huge family around the world

Francisco Salvador Lugo

Francisco Salvador Lugo (1740–1805), born in Sinaloa, Mexico, was a soldier in Alta California. Francisco Lugo came to California in 1774, and was stationed in northern California until 1781. Next he was assigned to the Pueblo de Los Angeles. Francisco Lugo was one of the soldiers who escorted the Los Angeles Pobladores (farming families and colonists) from northern Mexico into California. His name is listed on the plaque of those present at the founding of Los Angeles on September 4, 1781.[1][2] Lugo married Juana Maria Martinez y Vianazul. Together they had several children: Jose Ygnacio, Antonio Maria, Juan Maria Alejandro, Maria Antonia Ysabel, and Maria Ygnacia Lugo.[3]

Antonio Maria Lugo

Antonio Maria Lugo (1775–1860) was born at Mission San Antonio de Padua in Jolon, California, the youngest son of Francisco Lugo. After 17 years of service at the Presidio of Santa Barbara, in 1810 Corporal Lugo received his discharge and settled with his family in Los Angeles. Antonio Lugo was granted the Spanish concession Rancho San Antonio in 1810, which was confirmed in 1838 by Mexican governor Juan Alvarado. In 1816, he served as the alcalde (mayor) of Los Angeles. In 1841, Lugo was granted Rancho Santa Ana del Chino by governor Alvarado.

Antonio and his wife Dolores Lugo had five sons: José del Carmen, José Maria, Felipe, José Antonio, and Vicente Lugo; and three daughters: Vicenta Perez, Maria Antonia Yorba, and María Merced Lugo. Maria married Stephen Clark Foster, the first American mayor of Los Angeles after the Mexican-American War.[4][5][6]

José del Carmen Lugo (1813 - c. 1870 ), in a joint venture with his brothers José María and Vicente Lugo and cousin Diego Sepúlveda, began colonizing the San Bernardino and Yucaipa valleys. The land covered more than 250,000 acres (1,012 km2). Their colony charter was approved by the Mexican government in 1839. The valley was constantly plagued by robberies and frequent raids by Indian horse thieves from the high desert area. Many would-be colonizers would stay for only short periods of time. The Lugo families became strong allies with the Mountain Band of Cahuilla Indians led by Chief Juan Antonio.

In 1842 the Lugo family bought the San Bernardino Asistencia or estancia. The buildings were in disrepair. Lugo made repairs and soon he and his wife and two daughters moved into the asistencia. By 1842 the governorship of California was about to change. To protect their land, Lugo applied for and received the Rancho San Bernardino land grant of 35,509 acres (144 km2).

During the Mexican-American War, Lugo led a loosely outfitted Californio militia. He was the leader of Californio forces during the Battle of Chino and the Temecula Massacre. By January 1847 he was placed in charge of the Chino prisoners by General José María Flores. Lugo escorted the prisoners to the Rancho Santa Ana del Chino and released them.

In March 1847 he met with the American John Charles Fremont in Los Angeles. Fremont requested that Lugo round up as many of Flores’s abandoned horses as possible. Lugo rounded up about 60 horses between Los Angeles and San Bernardino.

In 1849, after annexing California following the defeat of Mexico in the war, the United States governor appointed José del Carmen Lugo the first alcalde of Los Angeles under the new rule. In August 1849 he was elected Justice of the Peace of Los Angeles and served until January 1850.

In 1852 Lugo sold Rancho San Bernardino to Amasa M. Lyman and Charles C. Rich, apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). Lugo’s fortunes changed for the worse in later years. In 1854, he signed a note at five per cent interest per month, compounded monthly, and mortgaged all of his property including his home in Los Angeles. He lost his house and his land in Los Angeles to cover the note. He died a pauper.

See also


  1. ^ Los Pobladores
  2. ^ Diana J. Dennett, "Francisco Salvador Lugo" in Tell Me More Ancestor Stories, Grandma! A History of Early California Families, Parkplace Publications, ISBN 1-877809-79-9
  3. ^ "Francisco Salvador Lugo", I933, Rootsweb
  4. ^ H. D. Barrows, 1896, Don Antonio Maria Lugo: A Picturesque Character of California, Publications of the Historical Society of Southern California
  5. ^ Roy Elmer Whitehead, 1976, The family of Don Antonio Maria Lugo, San Bernardino County Museum Association, Redlands, Calif.
  6. ^ The Lugos
  • Whitehead, Roy E. (1978), Lugo, A Chronicle of Early California, Redlands, Calif.: San Bernardino County Museum Association,  
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