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Thread: The history of Tayopa

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  1. #1
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    The history of Tayopa

    The story of Tayopa is largely legend today, some even go so far as to claim that it never existed. Confounding any research into this history (besides occurring so long ago) is the profusion of different spellings of the name. The name Tayopa has been applied to several different locations over the centuries.

    According to the legend, Tayopa was first discovered in 1603. Here is a map of Sonora-Sinaloa in the seventeenth century;


    More to follow.
    Oroblanco
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  2. #2
    us
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Nice teaser. How many segments will there be

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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Quote Originally Posted by spartacus53
    Nice teaser. How many segments will there be
    Hola amigo Spartacus (talk about illustrious names - I very much admire your namesake) thank you and gosh I hadn't thought about how many 'installments' or segments, just thought this might make an interesting discussion. Tayopa is one of my favorite lost mine legends, and I believe that one of our members here has in fact discovered it and now owns it - complete with all eighteen mines! (I am referring to Real de Tayopa, aka Don Jose', Tropical Tramp, Don Jose de la Mancha, Til Eulenspiegel, and possibly other aliases - a friend of a number of years now) I am sure that he could tell this history in detail, and accurately. I am hoping that he will join us here and help - especially with the mysterious early history.

    The story goes that Tayopa was first discovered in 1603 - and we have very little records from that early date, but I did find that a Captain Diego Martinez de Hurdaide led a prospecting and 'evangelical' mission of soldiers and padres in what is today Sonora starting in 1601, and continued to 1603, when he went back to Mexico City and remained into the new year 1604. Could it be that the original Tayopa was discovered during this very expedition? I more than half suspect this to be the case.

    Depending on which source you look at, Tayopa was first operated by Franciscans or by Jesuits; however in favor of Jesuits we can point out that the priests assigned to accompany Capt Hurdaide (whom was also "governor of Sinaloa" by appointment of the Viceroy) were all Jesuits. At San Felipe y Santiago de Sinaloa on the Rio Petatlan where Capt Hurdaide started on his 1601 expedition, the priest for the town and garrison was also Jesuit. So the evidence (so far) points to Jesuits being first on the scene. Also, from what I can find, it appears that the earliest Franciscan entrada into the area we are talking about (the hinterlands along the Sonora/Chihuahua border today) was 1640.

    In 1600 five Jesuit missionaries Perez, Velasco, Villafane, Orobato and Mendez had founded eight missions with substantial churches and were at work in some thirteen towns on and near the rivers Sinaloa and Mocorito having also visited the tribes on the Rio Tamotehala and beyond but without founding as yet any mission there. According to Father Ribas (Jesuit missionary and historian) Hurdaide conquered no less than 20 nations of the heathens during his tenure that lasted 30 years.

    According to the Tayopa Inventory document, the famous bells of Tayopa were cast in 1603 by Right Reverend Father Ignacio Maria de Retana. I have not been able to find a record of a Jesuit by the name Retana for 1603, but the name Retana is prominent among early colonial Spaniards, including a Captain Retana (famous for his Indian-fighting, and left his fortune to, you guessed it the Jesuits) plus even the best historians admit they don't have the names of many of the early missionaries - in fact it is more like the rule, only having the names of but few.

    I have to sign out for the night, hopefully our amigo Don Jose, Dueno de Real y Minas de Tayopa will soon join us and help us out. Good luck and good hunting amigos, I hope you find the treasures that you seek.
    Oroblanco
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  4. #4
    mx
    Nov 2004
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Evening Oro, naturally, except where "X" is, that is your work. With out a doubt they are heavily guarded with traps, that is where you come in someone has to spring them. Bbk a bit later, still involved with book work with the 'secretaria de las Minas' on taxes etc.

    Don Jose de La Mancha el *Tropical Tramp*
    "I exist to live, not live to exist"

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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Hola amigos,

    Muchas gracias compadre, I look forward to your replies.

    I am including here a (very tentative) timeline for Tayopa;

    1601 - prospecting expedition begins led by Cpt Hurdaide
    1603 - Tayopa #1 is discovered, Cpt Hurdaide returns to Mexico City
    also first of the famous Bells of Tayopa is cast by Father Ignacio Maria de Retana
    1646 - Tayopa #1 inventory document is written up by Father Francisco Villegas Garsina y Orosco, SJ
    1645-46 -serious Indian uprising, Apaches assault Tayopa #1, Teras (Texas town, not state) and other missions resulting in the abandonment,
    1686 - Another more serious Indian uprising in which Jocomes and Sumas join with Apaches and result in abandonment of Tayopa #1

    This timeline I am tentatively identifying Tayopa #1 with a place also called San Juan del Rio, and Toapora. The description of this place seems to parallel the 'legend' of the original Tayopa fairly closely

    San Juan del Rio was in former times a little place inhabited by Opatas having been a visiting place of Texas and was twelve leagues further down the river from Opotu. The ruins of a small chapel are still to be seen there It was afterwards a rich Royal mining settlement. The town called by the Opatas Toapora and which was depopulated in 1686 being powerless to withstand the attacks of the Apaches was a ranch of the Opatas situated three leagues further down the river and was good country.

    Texas a town and a Mission of the Opatas four leagues from Guepacomatzi where many Sumas and Jocomis had gathered together was under the administration of the Reverend Franciscan Fathers until becoming dissatisfied with a mulatto steward the Sumas and Jocomis revolted and joining the Apaches made war against the land compelling the Opatas to go some to Opotu some to Teuricatzi etc. The Missionary Father had warning of the rising and retired to Bispe. The rebels looked for him and not finding him burned down the church and the houses the ruins of which are to be seen to this day.

    <Rudo Ensayo, by Father Nentvig SJ>

    1675 - Teopari is visited from Chihuahua by Father Tomar de Guadelajara SJ
    1676 - San Jose de Teopari de Ovas (also spelled Theopari & Teporachic, and Ovas is also written Jovas) founded (Tayopa #2, it is shown on the map above) with a 'visita' of Dolores; baptismal certificates begin with this date
    1678 - population of Teopari found to be 369 Indios
    1725 - population of Teopari by census, 110 Indios
    1730 - population of Teopari is 259, in 78 families with a nice church
    1768 -Teopari and visita of Sahuaripa are taken over by Franciscans, Father Juaqin Ramirez as padre
    some time between 1764-1800 - Teopari is abandoned due to relentless Apache attacks

    I am fairly convinced this Tayopa #2 to be the one located by Dobie and his partner, mentioned in his book 'Apache Gold and Yaqui Silver'

    On Tayopa #3 I have very little info so far.

    How far off am I, Don Jose? I hope you can help set the record straight, thank you in advance;
    Oroblanco
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    PS - "oops" - I forgot to add, San Juan del Rios <Toapora> had a Franciscan convent founded there in 1564; padre Estevan Benitez was killed there along with a party of soldiers in 1686, and the mission was abandoned.
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  7. #7
    mx
    Nov 2004
    Alamos,Sonora,Mexico
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    good morning Oro de Tayopa: You posted -->How far off am I, Don Jose? I hope you can help set the record straight, thank you in advance
    **********
    You data is as correct as it is possible to do so with existing files. As can be seen you have Tayopa in many areas covered. Also Tayopa data shows up at Guaynopa & Guaynopita.

    Latest information has it rumored to be at "Dios Padres" located west of Yecora at "La Trinidad:.

    However the mere fact that it hasn't actually been found at any of those places, indicates that they can generally be ignored, All of those areas in general, have effectively easy access today, except for the Guaynopas.

    The one that actually has an old map, is the one that is still considered as lost, is mine, the actual Tayopa of the legends.

    As we go on, I will post actual pictures of the area, the site of the headquarters, the capilla, two maps, one of which has never been published before etc..

    Yes ! Tayopa does exist, however there were three mining areas that have had the name of Tayopa under the Jesuits. the first was near the Guaynopo /Guaynopita Chihuahua area. This is till being looked for, It too has a large treasure.

    Later they found a richer zone, so moved their center of operations to that spot, taking the name of Tayopa with them. This was at the present La Trinidad, Son. quite possibly the present Dios Padres. they called their former workings La Trinidad.

    Then, even later, they found the Bonanza, the present Tayopa, Chihuahua, and moved the center of their mining operations there. This became the legendary Tayopa. They apparently called the last workings La Trinidad and renamed the first Tayopa - I have never found data on the new name for the Guaynopa / Guaynopita workings. ©@

    Don Jose de La Mancha el *Tropical Tramp*


    "I exist to live, not live to exist"

  8. #8
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Hola amigo - thank you for your reply. Researching Tayopa is quite a confusing task, especially since the location(s) seem to be right on that dividing line between the Jesuits and Franciscans, and that each Order at one time or other claimed jurisdiction.

    I had more info on Dios Padres, unfortunately it is on an old PC which is truly dead. About all I can recall is the name of the fellow who owned it (years ago) and haven't been in touch with him for some time now. One more question amigo - is there another Tayopa - a fourth? I thought you had mentioned yet another, which may date to a still later time (French intervention?) and I have lost that name too.

    "Of all the things I have lost over the years, I miss my mind the most." -anon
    Oroblanco
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  9. #9
    mx
    Nov 2004
    Alamos,Sonora,Mexico
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    good morning Sr Oro de Tayopa: The French connection is jumping the gun a bit. No, there was no 4th tayopa of the Tayopa series, but what you mentioned was Napoleons intention to utilize Tayopa to rebuild France's finances.

    It appears that France had partially installed Maximilian in Mexico precisely for her mining possibilities, especially concentrating on Tayopa. Maximilian's personal adviser was a reported dour Belgium who just happened to be a mining Engr. He apparently was a representative of the Belgium King, whose daughter, Carlota, was marred to Maximilian.

    It has been reported , but not confirmed yet, that there was a Jesuit connection, which produced data on Tayopa #3. I frankly do not know if the French mining engr's ever actually set foot on Tayopa, but they had drawn up plans for a Rail Road from Guaymas to the base of the Sierra Obscura, where Tayoa actually is.

    The successful revolution in Mexico put a stop to that plan. I would just love to find the data regarding this French operation on Tayopa. It must still exist somewhere in Belgium, since they weren't as fanatical as the Jesuits in hiding and protecting their operations.

    This data isn't critical in regards to finding Tayopa, since that has been accomplished, but to fill in on the many searches and history of Tayopa. It has been kept on hold 'just for us'. ©@

    Don Jose de La Mancha el *Tropical Tramp*

    "I exist to live, not live to exist"

  10. #10
    mx
    Nov 2004
    Alamos,Sonora,Mexico
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    1936 times

    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Morning again Sr Oro de Tayopa: Regarding the Dios Padres mine at La Trinidad, I contacted the American owner at that time, he lived in Texas. He was friendly until he learned that I had The Tayopa. It was later purchased by a Mexican group who also started small guided tours of the mines as possibly being Tayopa. Today the area is an ecological disaster, the water and grounds are contaminated with Cu ore residue. Broken and rusty mining equipment etc. I presume that the Mexican owners are starting to clean it up ?

    Don Jose de La Mancha
    "I exist to live, not live to exist"

  11. #11
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Hola amigo,

    Somewhere I read that an American had approached either emperor Maximilian or Napoleon and had maps, to Tayopa, El Naranjal and another mine the name of which escapes me; <de Arco?> you have it right on about the idea of building a RR to Tayopa, and French troops were sent to the villages in the area of el Naranjal so Nap must have thought the info was good enough. As you said though, this is jumping the gun a wee bit - still haven't figured out how the mission of Our Lady of Guadelupe de Tayopa became a royal mining Real, but somehow things must have changed, legally. Did the king learn of the existence of the mines, and take them away from the Jesuits, or was it the Viceroy, or how did this happen? The Planchas de Plata deposit in AZ is said to have been discovered by a Yaqui, 'grabbed' by the Jesuits but soon Spaniards learned of the mine and Captain Anza intervened etc so I am wondering if something similar to this occurred with Tayopa? Thank you in advance;
    Oroblanco
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  12. #12
    mx
    Nov 2004
    Alamos,Sonora,Mexico
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Good morning Oro de Tayopa: As far as I know, none of the Tayopas were ever designated as Reales in the legal sense. To be named as a 'Real' would have meant open knowledge of them by the existing gov't, something that they apparantly were avoiding.

    I also have heard vague stories about an American , but it also has been suggested that he was a Representative of Rome

    Don Jose de La Mancha el *Tropical Tramp*
    "I exist to live, not live to exist"

  13. #13
    us
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Hi RDT and Oro, ran across this quotation from an article entitled "Listening to My Mind": Howard Scott Gentry's Recollections of the Río Mayo Author(s): Howard Scott Gentry, Diana Hadley, Boleyn Baylor
    Source: Journal of the Southwest, Vol. 37, No. 2, Explorations on the Rio Mayo (Summer,
    1995), pp. 178-245

    It makes reference to Tayopa - you've probably both heard or seen it already, but thought I'd post it for interests sake. If it's off topic, let me know and I'll delete it.

    "...Emiliano had been a runner for Pablo Schmidt, a German, who was digging a mine at Sierra la Chuna, a three or four mile walk from San Bernardo. Sierra la Chuna was a small outlying mountain with oak, not high enough for pine. Schmidt was a rice grower in Ciudad Obregon and I had met him through Hoffman. One day I had Emiliano guide me up there when he was carrying supplies from the store in San Bernardo up to the mine for Don Pablo. I rented a horse from Don Juan Argiielles and rode while Emiliano walked. It was a nice trip up through the woods. We climbed up into the mountains and came to Pablo Schmidt's dig. He had another German fellow or two and some Mexicans working for him.

    Schmidt was digging away down in a kind of hole there. He showed me an inscription on the rocks right above his dig. After I got acquainted with him, he told me he was digging for an Aztec treasure. He said he'd had the petroglyphs on the rocks interpreted by an anthropologist or linguist and they indicated that Aztec treasure was buried right there. So I found out about Don Pablo's treasure hunt. I told him that I was exploring, going up to the Rio Mayo country to see the Guarijfo Indians, and I hoped to get as far as San Luis Barbarocas.

    He said, "Well, maybe I oughtn't to tell you this, but I think I will. If you're going up into that country, there's a lost mine up there called la Mina Tayopa which is famous for its rich ore." He said nobody else knew where it was, but that he'd give me the description of how to find it. Schmidt said to go to San Luis Barbarocas, climb the mountain north of the river, that the mine was a short distance below on the Rio Mayo. The miners used to come down to San Luis Barbarocas to get milk in the morning, so it couldn't have been more than a few miles away. There was supposed to be a cache up there mined by the Jesuits and abandoned when they left.

    On your way up, you would see these three peaks and on the back side of the third peak you would find an iron door. If you could go through that iron door, you'd find the cache of gold and silver. "Well," Schmidt said, "don't try to bring it out by yourself. You'll get killed on the way. The people would all know you had it and you'd be robbed. Come back and notify us and we'll get it out." So Schmidt told me all about the Tayopa Mine. I finally got up to San Luis, and sure enough, there were three peaks up there. Maybe there's an iron door there too, but probably a tree has grown up since the Jesuits left in 1767.

    I'd read about the mine in Carl Lumholtz, who had visited the mine. Old Dobie [J. Frank Dobie] had also written about looking for the Tayopa Mine. He apparently had never read Lumholtz. I never went beyond San Luis and didn't waste any time looking for the Tayopa Mine or the treasure, but I've always remembered Pablo Schmidt's secret directions to me. Schmidt never found any treasure there and finally abandoned his dig. Incidentally, San Luis Barbarocas was the farthest church founded by the Jesuits when they came into the Rio Mayo country. It was a very modest adobe church, but it was about twice as tall as any other building in the village and it had been kept intact. The roof had been patched and kept up, so it was still standing when I was there but it wasn't very much used. There were a few Indians, but no Mexican rancheros living in San Luis. I rode that old Nublado horse up to San Luis Barbarocas by myself one day and found an Indian hut. It started to rain, so I went into the hut. The Indian who lived there knew a little Spanish so I could talk to him. He took me out to the storehouse where he kept his grain, a little room with a porch about six feet long, and he said I could sleep under the porch. I slept under that porch in his corn crib that night and early the next morning I found out an old sow had crawled into bed with me. She'd come in out of the rain and laid down next to me. So that's the way I spent the night at San Luis Barbaroca..."
    "There is no getting away from a treasure that once fastens upon your mind" - Joseph Conrad (Nostromo)

  14. #14
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    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Hola amigos,

    Don Jose, el Tropical Tramp wrote
    As far as I know, none of the Tayopas were ever designated as Reales in the legal sense. To be named as a 'Real' would have meant open knowledge of them by the existing gov't, something that they apparantly were avoiding.
    Hmm - well father Nentvig mentioned that at Toapora, it was later a royal mining Real, as mentioned;
    San Juan del Rio was in former times a little place inhabited by Opatas having been a visiting place of Texas and was twelve leagues further down the river from Opotu. The ruins of a small chapel are still to be seen there It was afterwards a rich Royal mining settlement. The town called by the Opatas Toapora and which was depopulated in 1686 being powerless to withstand the attacks of the Apaches was a ranch of the Opatas situated three leagues further down the river and was good country.

    Is there a record of all the 'official' Reals? Also, from what I can learn, the Jesuits were on pretty good terms with the royal government for some time, at least up until bishop Palafox raised issues with them. After all, several of the Jesuit colleges owned mines openly (as posted in another thread) so perhaps the relations were fairly cordial in the earliest days?


    Cubfan wrote
    Hi RDT and Oro, ran across this quotation from an article entitled "Listening to My Mind": Howard Scott Gentry's Recollections of the Río Mayo Author(s): Howard Scott Gentry, Diana Hadley, Boleyn Baylor
    Source: Journal of the Southwest, Vol. 37, No. 2, Explorations on the Rio Mayo (Summer,
    1995), pp. 178-245

    It makes reference to Tayopa - you've probably both heard or seen it already, but thought I'd post it for interests sake. If it's off topic, let me know and I'll delete it.
    No - I have never read of this one before, and on the Mayo river! That puts it further south, and refers to a mine in a singular way - so this would be Tayopa #4! Thank you for sharing it!
    Roy
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  15. #15
    mx
    Nov 2004
    Alamos,Sonora,Mexico
    10,978
    1936 times

    Re: The history of Tayopa

    Evening gentlemen: Cuber I just have to get that book, it is fascinating. There is a road over the sierras to Chinapas that way now. I know that country. Incidentally the Guayjiros are to the west of San Bernardo. I will go into this tomorrow


    Oro de Tayopa : you posted -->on the Mayo river!
    ************
    Yep Tayopa is on one of the drainages of the Mayo. at the crest to the west about 3 -4000 meters, the drainages of the Yaqui and the Mayo are only a few inches apart, will also go into this in the morning.

    Yawn hasta entounces

    Don Jose de La Mancha el *Tropical Tramp
    "I exist to live, not live to exist"

 

 
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