By Eleanor Philips Barnes,. 1967
It is incredible! The interconnections between
the Horruytiner family and the de Leon family.
I know there were many families who had been
related over and over for years as this is
consistent with the kind of environment to
which the residents of St. Augustine was exposed.
However, I know of no family who so consistently
blended their off-spring as did the ex-Governor
Pedro Denedict Herruytiner and the ex-Treasurer-
Capt. Don Lorenzo Josef de Leon!
Much information stands out when you inspect the
two families closely. Much you would never guess
unless you knew the families as well as I do.
Governor Horruytiner fathered his last child in
1661 just as Captain Lorenzo Josef de Leon was
getting settled to rear children. I speak of them as
contemporaries and I judge them to be near the same age
but Capt. de Leon was more of an equal of the eldest
children of the ex-Governor.
If ever there was an"inner circle" of official families
this-certainly was the cream of the middle. You have
to be familiar with the families to realize how tenaciously
they clung to this class conscious "circle".
Take those who were allowed marriage with the Horruytiners,
for example: Capt. Enrique de Riberia(Ribera) the later
well-known Sargento Mayor. Josepha de Leon, Emerciana de
Villa Real, Antonia Pueyo, daughter of the Contador.
Sanchez de Urisa sprinkled with Adjutants, Treasurers and
Contadors. The de Florencia family, one of the oldest.
The noted Pohce de Leon family and the beloved Menendez
Marques so weighted down with officials for generations.
The Hita-Salazar family from another "Gobernador clan".
Repeat those above and you have the in-laws of the ex-Treasurer,
Capt. Lorenzo Josef de Leon as well. Add the Villaverde and
Capt. Pasqua-Sanchez .to Don Lorenzo's group and you have the
"cream" of the town with a connection in every home of distinction
in the city.
The honorary title "Sargento Mayor" was the distinguished
handle given to ex-officials very often. Horruytiner had
it being an ex-Governor. The records are dotted with
the marriages and baptisms of slaves of these people.
There were other periods with other and equally important
"inner circles" as well but not with this consistent inter-
The Solana brothers held the ear of Governors nearly 50
years being Escribanoar, the job referred to by historians
as "powerful". Their brother was Deputy Governor and their
grandfather was likewise a Sargento Mayor.
But with few exceptions(one de Leon, one Ponce de Leon)
there were no Horruytiner marriages.
Each marriage usually brought forth from eight to ten
children. It must have been quite a chore keeping the
grandchildren straightened outj
For instance: The Governor's son, Juan, married the
Treasurer's daughter, Josefa. This was the first of
a long line of blendings. 1681. And a hundred years
later, 1781 they were still doing it!
Then in 1695 the Governor's grand-daughter married the
younger son of the Treasurer. Horruytiner's daughter had
married the well known Primo! Uapt. Henrique de Ribera!
Her daughter, Jacoma, was the girl who wed Uapt. de Leon's
Few years later this was followed by TWO GRANDSONS of
Sargento Mayor Pedro B. 's ....marrying TWO GRAND-DAUGHTERS
of the ex-Treasurer de Leon. One is your(Lindsley House)
line. When Don Antonio Lore~o Horruytiner married Antonia
Pueyo y de Leon in 1706. (They were the parents of the man
who last owned your home during Spanish days)
She was the daughter of Maria de Leon and Contador Juan del
Then young Antonio's brother, Pedro(not yours) does the
same thing. Prepares to marry his 3rd cousin. 1713.
Pedro Horruytiner to Maria Geronima Menendez Marques.
She was the daughter of Ana Basilia de Leon by the senior
Francisco Menendez Marques. Hence all children from
both unions would be DOUBLE FIRST COUSINS!
I often wonder (as they called the aunts..Tia) how they
knew to whom they were speaking. Especially if the "tia"
also was mother-inlaw. It was very confusing.
To add to this confusion TWO MORE of the grandchildren of
the ex-Governor united with TWO MORE of the ex-Treasurer'
Can you imagine the church holding all the relatives?
And what a FIESTAI .....the receptions to follow!
The Spaniards loved their grog, wine et al...and with
hints on the "tippling alleys" and the taverns...I'll
bet there was a gay time in the old town those nights!
I can't believe these were all..."made in heaven love matches"..
There must have been some "twisting of arms" from the parental
roof! But anyway in 1714, Miguel Horruytiner, grandson of the
Governor, married Manuela Pueyo, another daughter from the Contador's
house, grand-daughter of the ex-Treasurer.
And in 1725 young junior Menendez Marques, the Treasurer's
grandson, wed Juana Horruytiner, Josef's daughter and grandchild
of His Excellancy! By this time we have two sets of DOUBLE FIRST
The next marriage mixed relationships a little.
For when the Governor's great grandchild, Maria
Gertrude de Leon, prepared to wed she was ALREADY
the grand-daughter of the Treasurer in her own right.
Now she picked PEDRO ALCANTARA(BENEDICT) HORRUYTINER.. yours)
who was a great grandson to BOTH her GREAT GRANDFATHER, the
ex-Governor and to her GRANDFATHER, the ex-TreasurerZ
This was the best of all! The year was 1732, part of what
is known as the "golden years" of St. Augustine's economy.
Even before they left Florida this was still going on.
In 1750 Phelipe Horruytiner, son of Pedro and grandson
of Lorenzo, great grand of the Governor, married Dona
Antonia de Villaverde y de Leon, great grand of ex-Treasurer
de Leon. Rounding out this inner circle.
There were many marriages but not one to an ORDINARY
soldier and I have listed only those that blended the families.
Even after they left Florida during the last days of the
Spanish regime and took up residence in Campeche, they
continued this practice. One of the Governor's great grand-sons,
Geronimo B. Horruytiner, married 1781 Maria Dolores de Leon,
great grand of the ex-Treasurer, and closely related to her
If you fail to note these relationships in planning
re-construction or restoring houses, you miss many
documents that answer your questions. That is how
Mr. Lawson pulled such a mistake on the so-called
Salazar House on St. George Street. He did not take the
FAMILIES into consideration hence failed to recognize
the Avero connection with Fernandez, Blanco and others.
The Restoration is making the same mistake which I hammer
at constantly. For example to take the Lindsley House
and use it for a tinsmith shop or a carpenter shop would
be a crime! This was, more than most, a Hidalgoo" family!
Of the first water!
Many people in St. Augustine in the early days were poor,
were deprived, this we know....They depended upon the subsidy
for sustenance. But when and IF the money, produce, material
ARRIVED....who do you think got the "gravy"'..those on the VIP
list....(and you better believe it!) The Dons, the eMAofficials,
the Sargento Mayors, and THEIR families ....never fear...
Hence the Horruytiners and the de Leon's never were deprived
too much....of that I feel sure...