José Toribio Losoya (1808-1836)
© 1996 Texas State Historical Association
José Toribio Losoya belonged to Juan Seguín's company of Tejanos and was among the Tejanos who died in defense of the Alamo.
He was born in the Alamo barrio on April 11, 1808 to Ventura Losoya and Concepción de Los Angles Charlé. The family's two-room stone house, an old Indian dwelling that had been deeded to them, was situated on Plaza de Valero near the southwest corner of the mission's compound.
As a young man, José Toribio Losoya married Concepción Curbier and became the father of three children.
By 1830 he was a private in the Alamo de Parras military company serving under Lt. Col. José Francisco Ruíz. That year the company built and occupied Fort Tenoxtítlan where Losoya and his family remained until the company's return to San Antonio de Béxar in September of 1832.
Losoya was one of many Mexican soldiers who opposed Santa Ana's despotic rule. By the fall of 1835 Losoya had deserted the Mexican army to enlist as a private (a rifleman) in Juan Seguín's company of Tejanos. In December of that year he participated in the storming of Béxar. The Losoya family was displaced from their home for many months as the Texans used it and other structures surrounding the Alamo to defend their position.
As Santa Ana's troops converged on San Antonio in February of 1836, Seguín rode from the Alamo leaving seven of his men, including Losoya, behind as reinforcements. Losoya's wife and three children sought refuge in the mission's chapel with several other women, children and slaves. Losoya died in the final battle on March 6, 1836. In the battle's aftermath, his body was found in the chapel of the mission and was cremated. His ashes were buried with those of the other martyrs . His wife, son and two daughters survived the siege.
Important note to scholars: José Torbio Losoya has often been confused with his paternal uncle José Domingo Losoya who also fought in the revolution. See Endnote #1
Chabot, Frederick C., With the Makers of San Antonio. (San Antonio, Tx.: Artes Gráficas, 1937; reprint, San Antonio, Tx.: Graphic Arts, 1970.)
Daughters of the Republic of Texas, Pamphlet, The Story of The Alamo, Thirteen fateful days in 1836. (San Antonio, TX: DRT, nd.)
Fox, Anne A. & Ivey, James E., Historical Survey of the Lands within the Alamo Plaza - River Linkage Development Project. (San Antonio, TX: Center for Archaeological Research, UTSA, 1979), Archaeological Survey Report No. 77. [UTSA]
Gronemann, Bill. Alamo Defenders, A Genealogy: The People and Their Words.(Austin, TX: Eakin Press, 1990.) DRT Library, 920.71 A318g C.2
Ivey, Jake, The Losoyas and the Texas Revolution, Alamo Newsletter 4 March 1982, pp. 12-13. Leal, John Ogden, Archivist Bexar County Courthouse. Baptismals of the San Fernando Church, Book 3, 1788-1824. trans. (San Antonio, TX: unpublished ms., c.1977).[SFB]
Leal, John Ogden, Baptismals[sic] of the Children of the Military Company of San Carlos de Parras, 1788- 1824. trans.(San Antonio, TX: unpublished ms., c.1977).[SCB]
________________, Personal correspondence 23 Feb 1990, pertaining to the relationship of Domingo Losoya and his nephew José Toribio Losoya. Complete package of subject matter located in the Bexar County Archives pertinent to the Losoya family.
________________, Typescript collection of articles taken from the San Antonio Express, on microfilm. nd., Bexar County Courthouse. [EXP]
Lord, Walter, A Time To Stand,(N.Y.,NY: Harper & Brothers, 1960).
Lozano, Ruben Rendon, Viva Tejanos, The Story of the Tejanos, the Mexican-born Patriots of the Texas Revolution. With new material added by Mary Ann Noonan Guerra.(San Antonio,TX: Alamo Press, c.1936,1985).
McLean, Malcolm D., Papers Concerning Robertson's Colony In Texas. (Arlington, TX: UTA Press, c.1977). Volumes 3, 4 and 5 contain letters and documents providing details of Fort Tenoxtitlán.
______., Tenoxtitlán, Dream Capital of Texas. Southwestern Historical Quarterly,Vol.LXX,July 1966, No.1, pp.23-33. [SWHQ]
Miller, Thomas Lloyd. The Roll of the Alamo, Texana, Vol.2, No.1, Spring 1964.
Schoelwer, Susan Pendergast. Alamo Images --Changing Perceptions of a Texas Experience. (Dallas,TX: DeGolyer Library & SMU Press, C.1985).
Tarin, Randell G..The Second Flying Company of Alamo de Parras. The New of the Handbook of Texas, (Austin, TX: Texas State Historical Association, 1989).
Walraven, Bill, Tejano fought many fights for freedom, Corpus Christi Caller, article. 13 January 1986, no page. From Losoya, Domingo folder in the DRT Library at the Alamo, San Antonio, TX.
Williams, Amelia. A Critical Study of the Siege of the Alamo. Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Vol.37,pp.17-19 (Originally Vol.37, July 1933, No.1).
________. A Critical Study of the Siege of the Alamo and of the Personnel of Its Defenders. Chapter IV Historical Problems Relating to the Alamo. Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Vol.37, pp.167-171, January 1934, No.3.
. Groneman, 1990, 74; Leal, Baptisms, #877: 17 April 1808: his full name is José Toribio Losoya and not Toribio Domingo Losoya as stated by Walter Lord(p.213) and Thomas Miller(pp. 57-58) who have confused José Toribio with his paternal uncle, José Domingo(1783-1869)who was not at the Alamo and survived; BCA, Toribio Losoya Headright Certificate, 10 April 1837, I:33, #159: "...at the time of his death, being one of the individuals who perished in the Alamo, in the service of Texas in March 1836..."
Leal, Baptisms, #1215: 23 May 1784: José Domingo Losoya born to Miguel Losoya and María del Pilar Ydalgo. Chabot, 1937: 220: Toribio's father, Ventura Losoya is the son of Miguel Losoya and María Hidalgo thereby making him the brother to José Domingo Losoya.
Neither Lord or Miller referenced the primary source records of the San Fernando Cathedral or that of Chabot which very clearly make this distinction. See also, Ivey, 1982: 12-13; Walraven, 1986; Schowler, 1985: 128,186. Toribio and not Domingo died at the Alamo.; Leal, Marriages, 79, #656: 26 July 1851, Domingo Losoya widower of María Gregoria Domingues to Gualupe Dias; BCA: Last Will and Testament of Domingo Losoya, 30 Dec 1869, Domingo Losoya names his wife as María Guadalupe Dias. Toribio was married to Consolación Courbier further evidence that these are two separate individuals.
Leal, Baptisms, #877: Toribio was the legitimate son of Bentura Losoya and Concepcion de los Angeles baptized 6 days old. BCA Survey 2:17 indicates that his mother's maiden name was Charlé; BCA Headright 1:65, #317, her name is given as Concepción Charloix[sic] Losoya;
Fox, Ivey, 1979, 3-4: "In 1786 Fray José Francisco Lopez, Father President of the Missions in the province of Texas, granted a house and workshop and their lots of land together with a large garden at the southwest corner of the mission[Valero] to Pedro de los Angles Charlé, as a reward for 13 years service to Mission San Antonio de Valero as carpenter, barber and sacristan BCDR G1:1)...Pedro Charlé died between 1786 and 1792, leaving his property to his wife, María de Estrada. In 1793 the missions were secularized and the lands of Mission Valero were distributed among the Indians of the mission and to refugees from the disbanded East Texas settlements. The lands on the north and west sides of the Plaza de Valero were granted to Miguel and Cipriano Losoya (BCDR Sp. 3: 302) Later, María Estrada's daughter, Concepción Charlé, married into the Losoya family and eventually inherited title to most of the land on either side of Losoya Street within the project area." BCA Survey 2:17 Plat shows location of the family's property, at the southwest corner of Alamo Plaza.
. Schoelwer, 1990, 121: Although this text list Losoya's wife's name as Concepción, other text suggest Francesca Curbier(Groneman, 1990: 74) or Antonia Curbier(Leal, 1990). See Also "The Story of Enrique Esparza" San Antonio Express 22 Nov 1902, which corroborates Schoelwer.
Williams, 1934, 169: Amelia Williams merely identifies her as "Mrs. Toribio Losoya -- later Mrs. Milton -- and her three young children. BCA, Express, 1902: Enrique Esparza identified Mrs. Melton[sic] as one of the Losoya children, the sister of Juan Losoya. This differs from William's information and most other accounts. I found no record of marriage for Milton or Melton.
I found no record of marriage for José Toribio nor any record of birth for any of his children. While his wife's Christian name is in question, most text confirms her surname was Curbier or Courbiere. Most authorities agree the couple had least three children.
. McLean, 1977, 4: 124. Muster roll of the Alamo de Parras Company in which Torbio Losoya is listed with the rank of private; Mclean, SWHQ, 1966: Description of life at Ft. Tenoxtílan; Tarin, "Alamo": Chronology of the Alamo de Parras Company and their subsequent return to Béxar.
. Groneman, 1990, 74: Groneman states that Losoya took part in the siege and battle of Bexar and entered the Alamo as a member of Seguin's company. He further states that Losoya was in Seguin's cavalry company as rifleman in the rank of private and that the battles of 1835 and 1836 forced the Losoya family from their home; Schoelwer, 128, 1985: The Losoyas were displaced from their home.
Author's note: Because the Losoya home(actually the home of Miguel and Concepción Charlé Losoya) was part of the Alamo compound, it had been commandeered regularly by both the Mexican and Texas armies.
. Lozano, 1985, 34; Schoelwer, 1985, 128; Ivey, 1985, 12-13; Groneman, 1990, 74: Toribio Losoya was among seven of Seguin's company who died at the Alamo. His body was found by Francisco Antonio Ruís, the son of his former commander and also the alcalde of San Antonio. BCA, Headright Record Book I, p. 33 #159: "Toribio Losoya...being one of the individuals who perished in the Alamo."
Leal, 1990: Citing Texas State Historical Marker at the location of the Losoya homestead, "Toribio Losoya was killed in the Battle of the Alamo, March 6, 1836. His body was burned with the others by orders of General Santa Anna." Note: most authorities agree with this account.
Williams, 1934, 169; Scholewer, 1985,121; : Mrs. Losoya and children were among the survivors.
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