Bringing together this compilation of Soza Family Newsletters,
and Other Correspondence, written over a span of 27 years, allows
the reader a rare and unique opportunity to experience first hand,
the once nascent, then full blown development of a family's genealogy.
Very little was known about the Soza heritage and history, when
the search commenced. Over the years, the newsletters became a viable
vehicle for genealogical research.
Begun innocently, and purely to elicit, solicit and share information,
the Newsletters grew as more and more information surfaced. A modest
mailing list, soon expanded to approximately 700, and postage became
a major problem.
From the outset, the direction, intent, and purpose of the newsletter,
has not deviated. Its contents, orientation and thrust remains educational,
genealogical, and historical.
Numbering the Newsletters was not contemplated in 1972 when publishing
began. It was not anticipated the Newsletters would have any longevity
beyond a few issues. By 1993, it began to look as though some longevity
might be achieved. Newsletter numbering began with Volume 1, No.
1 on January 10, 1993.
Reading the newsletters in their totality, the reader can travel
the journey of one that sought his ancestry; found honor, and pride
in the same; and enjoyed tremendous pleasure in sharing the material
with hundreds of Extended Soza / Sosa families, now spread out over
18 States of the Union. This is the story found in the first section
of this book.
In the second section of the book, Other Correspondence serves
as a bona fide window to the efforts expended on behalf of family
members. It shares with the reader bits and pieces of a journey
commenced and travelled, while fleshing out the family's place in
the pages of Arizona's history in Colonial Spanish, Mexican, Arizona
Territorial, and Arizona Statehood periods.
For this book, the Editor's original typewritten outgoing correspondence,
has been faithfully reproduced on a word processor. This facilitated
indexing, referencing and publishing. Facsimiles of original incoming
letters are included to provide the reader a sequential chronology
Some projects covered by Other Correspondence have come to fruition,
while others faltered. Success of some projects was due to support
by many family members, and friends who shared a strong interest
in preserving Arizona's viable historical past.
The following items or subjects were an integral part of the literature
found in the Newsletters since their infancy:
The John Charles Fremont House / Casa del Gobernador
Jose Maria Sosa Room
Soza Ranch State Park (Proposed)
Former Soza Ranch at Redington Henry T. Redfield was named Postmaster
of Redington on October 1879. On May 30, 1892 Philip S. Patton,
Postmaster identified Redington as being in the SE 1/4 of Section
34, Township 11 South, Range 18 East, with Mammoth 24 miles north
and Benson 40 miles south.
Plaza of the Pioneers at Tucson Museum of Art
Fruition of the Jose Maria Sosa Room, and the renaming of the Sosa-Carrillo-Fremont
Museum, was appreciated, cherished, and heartwarming to the family.
The labor was long and arduous, but heartfelt thanks has and continues
to be extended to dear friends, that believed, and supported the
The Soza Ranch State Park (Proposed), intended as an Arizona Bicentennial
Park (1976) was a subject of much Newsletter discourse. Influential
letters of endorsement, were very helpful, and drew attention to
the validity of preserving the former Soza Ranch, but it was not
to be. The project was predicated on the sole premise that the then
owner could be persuaded to donate the land for a Bicentennial State
Comparisons might be irrelevant and misplaced, but travel to the
area today, a third of a century later, and the development of the
San Pedro River Valley, reveals that the pristine area of yesterday,
is only a memory today.
It has been said and written that a "preservationist is a
person wanting to save everything, but has no money." In the
instance of the idealistic Soza Ranch State Park, guilty is the
Lastly, birthplace and burial sites of Sosa ancestors has been
a subject of long term interest, and which long eluded research
efforts. Through happy research circumstances, the family is now
Researching at the Bancroft Library, Berkeley, CA, Mrs. Carlos
(Nadine) Vasquez, Carmichael, CA. found a Tucson Presidio document,
dated January 1, 1801, reporting the death of Alferez Jose Maria
Sosa on April 2, 1800. Presumably he was buried in the Presidio
Cemetery, though his burial place is not mentioned in the report.
We are eternally grateful to Mrs. Carlos Vasquez for her research
contribution on the family's behalf.
The burial site of ancestor Dona Rita Espinosa de Sosa has been
more definitively defined. This was accomplished by locating early
19th century Tubac Church records. Facsimiles of Tubac Church burial
records were obtained through the good offices of the Bancroft Library,
and reported in the Newsletters.