Tributes and Tributaries in the Querétaro District, 1807
Even as tributes became a head tax that funded local schools and otherwise
sent funds to the general treasury, and as levies on full tributaries (married
male heads of household) and half- tributaries (unmarried men and widowers)
were equalized at 1.5 reales each, the tributary list (matrícula) completed for
the Querétaro district in 1807 distinguished full payers from halves. It also
listed tributaries by residence and employment, distinguishing residents of
pueblos and barrios from those working in large obrajes and tanneries, those
employed in small shops, and those at estates (and sometimes separating em-
ployed residents from tenants and informal residents). The resulting count
allows analysis of men classiﬁed as indios by residence and employment, dis-
tinguishing the roles of married and single men—the latter mostly youths yet
to establish households. That the count came in 1807, the last year before the
combination of political crisis and drought that led to the insurgency of 1810,
makes the results all the more informative.
The count covers the full tribute district of Querétaro: the city and its envi-
rons as well as regions south around San Juan de Río and east toward Tolimán
and the edges of the Sierra Gorda. It does not include the Cadereyta district,
more fully of the Sierra. I present the results in tables that distinguish the city
of Querétaro, its near countryside, the San Juan region, and the Tolimán area.
Within each I separate town, village, and barrio residents from those linked to
workshops and estates. The results are revealing: urban workshops, large and
small, had become places of unmarried youths; rural estates were worked by
married men and a few youths; only towns and villages mixed both in balance.
Among indios in the Spanish city the concentration of youths in workshops
emerges clearly. In the city’s Espíritu Santo parish youths were a majority of
indio workers in three large obrajes.