Me and my horses were Spanish when Spanish wasn’t cool!
Doroteo (Joty) and Virginia Baca reside in the beautiful village of La Costancia, New Mexico. Their property is located directly on an historic section of the original Camino Real. It is one of the crossing points over the Rio Grande.
Along with 9 children and their families they have been preserving a rare herd of Colonial Spanish Horses for well over 50 years.
Doroteo Baca, breeder of Colonial Spanish Horses
Doroteo G. (Joty) Baca was born on December 30th, in the year 1928. Born in a wagon on the way to the doctor. Born in Tome, New Mexico to Antonio and Alicia Baca.
Virginia J. (Galindo) Baca was born on August 21st, in the year 1933. Born in Los Angeles, California to Henry and Clara Galindo.
Virginia and Joty were married on the 7th day of April, in the year 1951. Though the years they were blessed with 9 children. Dorothy Jean on August 8, 1952, Richard Timothy August 22, 1953, Anthony Leo on May 19, 1955, Paulina Rose on July 19, 1956, Mark Kenneth on January 27, 1958, Marian Annette on May 5, 1959, Diane Elizabeth on December 25, 1960, and the twins Gregory Gerald and Roxanne Geraldine born on March 30, 1962.
Sadly, at the end of 1951 his life was put on hold as a result of his calling to serve in Korea. Joty left his wife home with his family. Virginia was 2 months pregnant at the time with his first of 9 children. He left to serve his country. To fight for the freedom we enjoy today. He fought for 10 months in full combat.
With pain and sadness beyond words he returned home. With a heavy heart Joty saw his 3-month-old baby girl, Dorothy Jean for the first time. His love so intense for his wife and baby. Yet his heart irreparably wounded. Always to wonder… what does God think of soldiers?
Doroteo (Joty) Baca remembers the beautiful Spanish Horse from his youth. Always feeling a strong connection and a passion to preserve this precious piece of history. Deeply saddened by the atrocities that existed in his time. Mass killings of mustangs, efforts to “breed-up” involved shooting stallions only to replace them with larger horses. It was truly a sad time. He among other ranchers decided he must fight the slaughter. He must take responsibility and save the breed that our country was built on. This was the original and pure Spanish horse, the horse that carried the conquistadors during the colonization of the new world. Knowing how difficult the task he began assembling his own herd, still untouched by other breeds.
Times were hard, working at the post office during the day, running the riding stables after hours. Hurrying home to his wife and nine children. There were never enough hours in the day. Have to feed the horses, cow, chickens, and pigs, plow the fields, irrigate the orchard…on and on. Not enough hay, the kids need shoes, need to get some meat in the freezer. Another bill goes unpaid.
Virginia is his beautiful bride from California. The most incredible woman he had ever known. Always singing, always smiling. She filled with love. Always doing her part….churning her own butter, making bread, tortillas, beans and an incredible Spanish rice. Always working, cleaning clothes for 11 with a hand turning washing machine. Rarely able to buy groceries from the store they lived off the fruits of the farm. Doing homework. Getting 9 kids ready for school. Making their clothes by hand. Our clothes were hand me downs, but they were clean.
And most importantly and constant, was the never-ending faith in God.
How easy it would have been to sell the horses, to give up this demanding side of life. How easy and yet quite impossible, as this was to be his legacy.
Doroteo and Virginia still carry on at Baca Chica Farms with the original and rare strain of Spanish Horse they began 50+ years ago.