|Auguste Sylvestre Lacome|
|Born||October 25, 1821
|Died||November 11, 1888
Arroyo Hondo, New Mexico
|Spouse(s)||Maria Rosa Arellano|
|Children||José Eulogia, Gabriel Augustin, Silvestre Augustin, Juana Josefa (adopted), Pedro Antonio (adopted), Juan Maria|
|Parent(s)||Jean Paul Lacome and Jeanette Doleac|
Auguste Sylvestre Lacome (born October 25, 1821) was a settler and trader in the New Mexico territory and brother of Jean Baptiste (Juan Bautista) Lacome. He was an investigator to the White Massacre.
Auguste Lacome was born in the township of Ordizan near the French/Spanish border. His father was a surgeon and his maternal grandfather, Alexis Doleac left the priesthood to join the French Revolution in the name of liberty and equality. His parents had three other sons besides Auguste and Jean Baptiste. One of those brothers, Joseph Lacome also left France to travel to South America. None of their three daughters survived to adulthood.
US census records list his birthplace as both France and Spain, however he and his brother are referred to as "Frenchmen" in contemporary sources. He was issued a passport on August 6, 1842 and left from the port of Bordeaux, France aboard the Talma on September 9, 1842. He landed at New Orleans before settling in the New Mexico Territory. Auguste's physical appearance is described as being 1.73 meters tall (5'10") with chestnut hair and eyebrows, oval face, and pointed chin.
Children of Auguste and Maria Rosa
- José Eulogia (1859 – died May 23, 1918)
- Gabriel Augustin (February 2, 1858 – ??)
- Silvestre Augustin (August 22, 1859 – March 3, 1929)
- Juan Bautista (April 6, 1862 – ??)
- Juana Josefa (adopted Navajo girl baptized at 6 years old in 1862)
- Pedro Antonio (adopted Navajo boy baptized at 12 years old in 1863)
- Juan Maria (November 4, 1866 – ??)
Baptismal records note the brothers Auguste and Juan Bautista (Jean Baptiste) adopted José Pedro, a 3 year old Paiute boy. José Pedro, was baptized on May 10, 1852, with Juan Bautista and his wife, Maria Dolores Alire, standing as godparents. The boy was originally purchased as a captive by Cura José Thomas de Jesus Abeita.
Juan Bautista was murdered later that month on May 28, 1852. Jean Latour was sought for the crime. Records list his wife and children living with Auguste and Maria Rosa.
Children of Juan Bautista and Maria Dolores
- Francisco Agustin
- Juan Bautista
In February 1850, James S. Calhoun, Indian Agent, and later first Territorial Governor of New Mexico, granted Lacome a license to trade with the Ute nation so long as he did not trade lead, weapons, or other war items. Calhoun charged Lacome to search for survivors of the White Massacre and ascertain whether they could be ransomed. He returned his report a few weeks later on March 16, 1850.
He traveled with an interpreter and two peons. About forty warriors came to meet him, taking his rifle, and divided his trade goods among themselves, valued at about $690 in goods, one horse, and one mule.
The Utes had resolved to kill the party with the exception of one of the peons, who was to be allowed to live to inform the governor of their actions. An arrow was shot at Lacome but the interpreter jarred the Ute who held the bow and it missed its mark. After much negotiation the Utes consigned to only give a severe whipping to the interpreter and a peon. Lacome's rifle was returned to him, being too heavy for their use, along with four of his worn out mules, two oxen and two cows.
Lacome stated he was searching for the Jicarilla Apache involved in the massacre and the Utes confirmed that the child had been killed shortly after Grier and Carson's attack on their camp and her body thrown in a river. The servant was killed a short time later, being unable to keep up with the band. The Utes further stated they wanted no peace with the United States. Upon his return, Lacome presented a petition on behalf of citizens of Taos County to Calhoun for a campaign against the Apache. Kit Carson was also a signer of the petition.
Other documented trading
In 1852, Lacome took trade items, including knives, tobacco, coffee, lead, sugar, and other goods, loaded on mules to trade with the Navajo at Cañon de Chelly. A month later Lacome returned. Lacome's .58 caliber prairie rifle is displayed in the Palace of the Governors museum in Santa Fe, where he is listed as a trader with the Zuni.
Trading license records note that he traded with other Pueblos in addition to the Zuni. They also indicate he lived in San Luis, Colorado and Rio Colorado, New Mexico and traded as far as Wyoming and Nebraska.
The Spiegelberg Brothers are listed on several of his licenses as providing the surety bonds required by the territorial government for trade with the Native Americans. Abraham Staab, a prominent Jewish donor for the Cathedral in Santa Fe, is also listed.
A letter in French to Manuel Álvarez, a fellow trader and lieutenant-governor of New Mexico, notes their friendship and business dealings.
The 1860 census of Taos/Arroyo Hondo lists his occupation as a merchant with real estate valued at $2000 and personal property at $8000 (approximately $55,500 and $225,000 respectively in 2013 dollars).
Death and legacy
Lacome died on November 11, 1888 and was buried beneath the floor of Nuestra Señora de los Dolores church in Arroyo Hondo.
Lacome's son, José Eulogio, inherited the mercantile and went on to serve as a sheriff and New Mexico state legislator, as well as owning a saloon and hotel and silver and gold mines. Sylvestre Augustin built a house in Arroyo Hondo that still stands on Lacome Road.
- Arroyo Hondo Book of Baptisms/Marriages 1852-1865 Nuestra Senora De Los Dolores
- Calhoun, James S., collected and edited by Annie Heloise Abel, "The Official Correspondence of James S Calhoun While Indian Agent at Santa Fé and Superintendent of Indian Affairs in New Mexico", 1915 Washington Government Printing Office, pp. 166
- Taos County Marriages Nuestra Senora De Los Dolores Arroyo Hondo, New Mexico 1852 - 1869
- 1860 Federal Census Taos County, New Mexico Territory (Index: File 7 of 18)
- Our Lady of Guadalupe Church Baptisms 1868-1871, Conejos, CO extracted by David Salazar and compiled by Hope Yost
- Calhoun, James S., collected and edited by Annie Heloise Abel, "The Official Correspondence of James S Calhoun While Indian Agent at Santa Fé and Superintendent of Indian Affairs in New Mexico", 1915 Washington Government Printing Office, pp. 168-170
- Calhoun, James S., collected and edited by Annie Heloise Abel, "The Official Correspondence of James S Calhoun While Indian Agent at Santa Fé and Superintendent of Indian Affairs in New Mexico", 1915 Washington Government Printing Office, pp. 178
- https://web.archive.org/web/20111102040353/http://www.rugreview.com/8-5-11.htm. Archived from the original on November 2, 2011. Retrieved February 25, 2013. Missing or empty
- Wheat, Joe. "Blanket Weaving in the Southwest", 2003 University of Arizona Press, pg 75
- 1860 Federal Census Taos County, New Mexico Territory (File 23 of 32)