For some time I had been stymied in tracking the ancestry of my paternal grandmother Consuelo Chávez Stoltz (1904-1969). Part of this is due to the fact that her father, Carlos Marín, is said to have abandoned Consuelo, her older sister Aurora (1903-1979), younger brother Carlos (1906-1994) and their mother, Simona Balderas. After that, Simona… Read More


In recounting the various jobs of my great-grandfather Louis Stoltz, I have been looking for images of the various places he worked. I was able to find a vintage 1950s postcard of the location of the El Paso Billiard Club,317 E. Mills Ave., where he was manager in 1940. The club was located in the… Read More


In response to the posted photo of my grandaunt Maybelle Stoltz Chavez’ El Paso band, her daughter my cousin Margie, points out: Both my Mom and her cousin, Juanito Lujan, were members of the band called The Stoltz Blues Chasers. Richard, Arlene and I remember that band being mentioned by Mom years ago… We did… Read More


My great-grandfather Louis Stoltz had quite a life. There was that whole hobo riding the rails thing from North Dakota to the end of the line, El Paso. Then there was that living out of the lyrics of the song El Paso: Out in the West Texas town of El Paso I fell in love… Read More


[Update: The name of the group was Stoltz Blues Chasers. No one seems to know where the Nighthawks name came from.] How can this photo not make your weekend just a little better? This is my grandaunt Maybelle Margarete Stoltz with Maybelle’s Nighthawks, according to family lore the first band in El Paso led by… Read More


Last week I visited family in El Paso, and one of the things I did with my dad and some cousins was to see historic San Elizario, just outside El Paso. Aside from checking out the historic presidio chapel, founded 1789, where my ancestors were baptized, married and buried, I was curious to see the… Read More


Typical sod house built by homesteaders in the Dakota Territory. Peter and Apollonia Stoltz and their children would have lived in a similar house.

From this valley they say you are going. We will miss your bright eyes and sweet smile, For they say you are taking the sunshine That has brightened our pathway a while. So come sit by my side if you love me. Do not hasten to bid me adieu. Just remember the Red River Valley,… Read More


We all knew about the eight children my great-grandparents Ludwig Josef “Louis” Stolz (1866-1958) and Apolonia Luján (1872-1929) raised in El Paso. One of these children, Louis Gustave Stoltz, died in 1928 at the age of 30. The other seven are the progenitors of the California and Texas branch of the Stoltz family, while my… Read More


The following article from the El Paso Times of March 16, 1957 is a profile of my great-grandfather Ludwig “Louis” Stoltz, born 18 May 1866 in Delano, Wright, Minnesota. He was the son of Peter Stoltz (1836-1921) and Apollonia Stricker (1831-1896). Louis was the first generation of his family born in the United States; his… Read More


This delightful folk tale is taken from Mexican-American Folklore: Legends, Songs, Festivals, Proverbs, Crafts, Tales of Saints, of Revolutionaries, and More, by John O. West (August House, Little Rock, 1988), and concerns my great-great-granduncle José Mauro Luján of San Elizario. His father, Don Jesús Luján (~1813-1871), built an adobe house just off the Plaza in… Read More