Name of Marrero possibly Marrano from Puerto Rico. Possibly Jewish? #latinamerica #names

Jose Marrero <jantoniomarrero1982@...>

My name is Jose Antonio Marrero I am from Puerto Rico I been told that my family came from spain but they wasn't spanish they were Jewish.  They said that my last name change during the time but originally was "Marrano" and other more that sounds like and written like. When columbus came to the island a group of them came with him. Same with mexico and cuba but I dont know marrero family in Mexico or cuba. Not even here were i live. My family its very appart and I feel alone. Most of my family came from the town of Corozal but i live in San German. 
¡Dios los Bendiga!

Sally Bruckheimer <sallybruc@...>

" I been told that my family came from spain but they wasn't spanish they were Jewish.  They said that my last name change during the time but originally was "Marrano" "

Most, if not all, people of Iberian descent have some small % of Sephardic ancestry, since there were a lot  Sephardim there and  many forced / coerced / whatever conversions; and it is now 5 centuries back to the Expulsion, and more than 6 since the troubles started in 1391.  But you will have to find records of your family back until that point to see if anyone was Jewish (if you can).

And the Sephardi considered themselves Spanish for many years after the Espulsion. Marrano was a slur and not used by Jews.

Sally Bruckheimer
Princeton, NJ

Adam Cherson

Dear Mr. Marrero,

Interestingly I have an ancestor whose actual surname was Marrano from the hills of Central Italy, which was a Spanish colony for several centuries and experienced the same inquisition as in Spain, as well as Spanish migration. There are some descendants of this town who have suggested the possibility of a Jewish origin for this surname, but I have never seen any concrete evidence of this. And I have not yet encountered any modern Marranos from the same town.

There is a way to answer the question about your possible Jewish ancestry even in the absence of any documentary records. I recently completed a study for a friend whose spouse was wondering the same thing: there were family stories yet no tangible evidence. After applying the method of personal genography, the conclusion was: no substantial Jewish ancestry. I would be glad to explain the method in more detail if you are interested (please contact me privately).

Adam Cherson


Marrero is not a derivation of Marrano (pork). Marrero is a Spanish occupational surname of the person who makes or sells sledgehammers.
Jews have made of occupational surnames a strong category only surpassed by patronymics.
Alejandro T. Rubinstein


It is also important to state that this surname was found to be of Jews at Tenerife, Islas Canarias in Spain in 1584.
Alejandro T Rubinstein

Susan J. Gordon

You might enjoy the memoir, The Forgetting River, by D. Carvajal, a (Catholic) who learned her family's history back to the Inquisition... until now. Unfortunately, her book does not have an index, so I could not see if your names were listed.

Also see my story, "One Italian's Secret History," published 2013 in the Forward. It's online.

Susan J Gordon
New York

Schelly Talalay Dardashti

Jose, please go to Click DATABASES, go to Consolidated Surname Index and search for your name. There are several ways to search, please use each one in turn to cover spelling variations.
Have you done any DNA testing? I would suggest the Ydna 37-marker test at FamilyTreeDNA to learn more information about your father's direct line. You may also wish to do the Family Finder autosomal test to find information on all lines of your family. Then, transfer the autosomal results to MyHeritage for a different perspective.

Schelly Talalay Dardashti
New Mexico