Pedro Balli – the South Texas Los Porciones Series

The first Balli in America, was Pedro Balli (1545-1600), a printer, of Salamanoam, Spain. He reached Mexico in 1569, where he married Catalina del Valle and had three sons. Balli was named fourth printer of the New World by royal decree of King Phillip II in 1574. His printing house was located on the corner of Honeda Street and Lic. Verdad on the plaza in Mexico City. He produced over 60 books, including some in native language and others for the University of Mexico.

Descendants of Pedro Balli II moved to Nuevo Leon. By 1750, Nicolas Balli (1701) and Josefa Guerra de Balli were living in Sabinas Hidalgo, about 70 miles north of present Monterrey. They had five (5) sons, Jose Manuel, Bartolomeo, Juan Jose, Juan Antonio, and Jose Maria Balli. Durning the colonization of Nuevo Santander by Jose de Escandon in 1749, Jose Maria Balli and Juan Antonio Balli settled in Reynosa and became primitive settlers.
At the time of the General Visit to assign lands to settlers in 1767, Jose Maria Balli was one of the surveyors, and received porcion 72. His brother Juan Antonio Balli received porcion 13.

In 1800, because of continous flooding of the original site, the villa of Reynosa moved downstream 11 miles onto land donated by the Juan Jose Antonio Balli Family. Manuel Balli is probly descendant from one of these two Reynosa settlers.

At San Antonio del Estero Ranch, a one-acre plot was set aside for a family cemetery. First family member buried in the Balli Cemetery was Atilano Pina in 1874, the husband of Natividad Balli- Rubalcaba. Ranch founder, Antonio Balli and his Wife, Manuela Rubalcaba are also buried in the ranch cemetery, according to Mr. Arturo Balli of Donna. Last Balli to be buried in the ranch cemetary was Apolonio Balli-Salazar (1869-1956).

*Source: Mr. Arturo Balli of Donna, Texas and Fresno, Califorina. ARGL&I Chain of Title, Llano Grande Grand, Share 2, 1913, Garcia, Clotilde. Padre Nicolas Balli and Padre Island.;

Thanks to The South Texas Heirs of Las Porciones for republishing permissions.