The surname Montoya is of Spanish origin. The earliest documented Montoya families lived in the mountainous Basque region in northern Spain. It was derived from the Spanish word monte which means “hill” or “highland.”
Bartolomé de Montoya, a Spanish Conquistador, arrived in New Mexico on 24 Dec. 1600. A conquistador is a term used for a soldier or an explorer. The conquistadors in the Americas were more volunteer militia than an actual organized military. They very often were required to supply their own materials, weapons and horses. Bartolomé was described in census records as being short in stature, black bearded and 28 years old in December of 1600.
He arrived in San Gabriel del Yunque with his wife Maria de Zamora (born in Mexico City at San Sebastian, the daughter of Pedro de Zamora (Mayor of Oaxaca, Mexico)). With the couple were their children: Francisco, Diego, José, Lucia and Petonia. The family came as part of the second Onaté expedition, whose colony consisted of 65 settlers. The Montoya family brought with them 25 servants, cattle and equipment needed to start a new life in Nuevo España. Bartolomé was a Spanish Loyalist who settled and remained in New Mexico. He was a native of Cantillana, Spain, the son of Francisco de Montoya.
From the family of Bartolomé de Montoya the Montoya surname was firmly established in New Mexico – and virtually all Montoya families from New Mexico descend from him.
My Montoya research focuses on:
Jose Ylario Montoya (1844 – 1902) and mistress Maria Augustina de Herrera
Maximiano de Herrera Montoya (1871-1945) and wife Maria Juana Adelia Martin
Jose Celestino Montoya (1905-1988) and wife Pearl Eva Spencer