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MESQUITA:

Castilian family, members of which, during the period of the Inquisition, found their way to Holland, England, and America.

David Bueno de Mesquita was one of the wealthy merchants of Amsterdam about the middle of the seventeenth century. The family Bueno de Mesquita still exists in England; in American history also the name appears at an early date. Luis de Amesquita is mentioned in the course of the trial of Gabriel of Granada by the Inquisition in Mexico (1642-45). From Obregon it is learned that Luis de Mesquita (alias De Amesquita Sarmiento) was a native of Segovia, Castile, and a citizen and merchant of Mexico. The name is found also in the West Indies. Benjamin Bueno de Mesquita is mentionedas a Portuguese merchant, resident in Jamaica, who petitioned the king for letters of denization in 1664; he appears to have lived there several years before the date mentioned. Banished from the island shortly after 1664, he went to New York. He was buried in that city, and his tombstone in the old cemetery on New Bowery is the oldest Jewish tombstone existing in New York; it bears the date of 1683. Other members of the same family remained in Jamaica, and their name is repeatedly met with at later dates; thus Jacob Fernandes Mesquita was naturalized there in 1740 and Moses Mesquita in 1749. Abraham Bueno de Mesquita was a resident of the island of Nevis early in the eighteenth century, though administration of his estate was granted in New York, to his daughter Blancha in 1715. Members of this family appear repeatedly in the records of the New York congregation, but the name disappears during the nineteenth century.

Bibliography:
  • Publications Am. Jew. Hist. Soc. i. 91-92; v. 48-49, 112; vii. 102-103 (D. Fergusson, Trial of Gabriel de Granada);
  • Obregon, Epoca Colonial, second series, p. 357, Mexico, 1895;
  • New York Hist. Soc. Col. ii. 154;
  • Graetz, Hist. vol. v.
A. L. Hü.
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