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Roybal, also spelled Roibal and Ruibal, is a Galician surname, later introduced into the Americas[citation needed] . It has its origin in the hamlet of Ruibal, in the municipality of MorañaGalicia (Spain)— where a 3% of the local inhabitant are surnamed Ruibal.[1]

In Galicia this surname is in use at least since the 14th century.[2]


In the Americas, the name first appears in documents dating to around 1675.[citation needed] One of the first recorded instances is that of Ignacio Roybal, a soldier who traveled with Don Diego de Vargas to reconquer the city of Santa Fe, New Mexico from the Indians after the Pueblo Revolt of 1680.[citation needed] Fray Angélico Chávez, a New Mexico historian, is also a descendent of the New Mexico Roybal lineage and was one of the first to trace it. Many Roybals trace their ancestry to the New Mexico cities of Santa Fe, Pojoaque, El Rancho, Jacona, to the San Ildefonso Pueblo, where it is shared by Native Americans, and to the historical area of Cuyumungue. The name also has history in California, Colorado, Pecos, New Mexico and Las Vegas, New Mexico.[citation needed]

Notable people with the last name Roybal[edit]

  • Joseph Roybal, Casino Technology Executive
  • Philip M. Roybal, Early Apple marketing manager and entrepreneur
  • David J. Roybal, Finance
  • J. Roybal, Painter
  • Alfonso Roybal (also known as Awa Tsireh), San Ildefonso Pueblo artist and painter[3]
  • Antonio Roybal, painter and sculptor
  • Edward Roybal, politician
  • Ignacio Roibal (Roybal), Spanish soldier with Diego de Vargas from Spain and the owner of the Historic Sena Plaza in Santa Fe
  • Louis Roybal, Professional Billiard (Pool) Player and Teacher
  • J.D. Roybal, Native American painter from San Ildefonso Pueblo
  • James Roybal, sculptor
  • Josefa Roybal, Native American painter
  • Lucille Roybal-Allard, politician
  • Max Roybal, New Mexico santero and painter
  • Ronald Roybal, Native American flautist
  • Don Santiago Roybal, appointed in 1730 by the archbishops of Guadalajara, Mexico to oversee the missions of New Mexico.
  • Lawrence Roybal Jr., King County Human Rights Commissioner
  • Ken Roybal, renowned financier Los Angeles
  • Sara Roybal. Film and Television Makeup Artist
  • Henry P. Roybal, Santa Fe County Commissioner, Politician


  • Motto, Sytha (1973). Old Houses of New Mexico and The People Who Built Them. Albuquerque: Calvin Horn Publisher, Inc. ISBN 0-910750-24-6. 
  • "Roybal, Josefa". National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian. The Museum. 1995. p. 183. ISBN 0-8212-2216-3. 

Notes and References[edit]

  1. ^ Cf. Cartografía dos apelidos de Galicia
  2. ^ "Corpus Xelmírez – Resultados da consulta". Retrieved 11 October 2015. 
  3. ^ "Awa Tsireh, American Art". Smithsonian American Art Museum. Retrieved 2016-01-11.