The Dalton-Zamoranos: Intimacy, intermarriage, and conquest in the U.S.-Mexico borderlands

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Relying on the experiences of the Dalton-Zamorano family of Rancho Azusa in Southern California, this article examines how a Californio family fared socially and economically from the mid-nineteenth century to the turn of the twentieth century, a period undergoing rapid social, political, economic, and cultural change. It focuses on the social and geographic borders that the Dalton-Zamoranos crossed culturally, racially, and spatially to pursue upward mobility and social integration. I argue that the Dalton-Zamoranos are a representative case study of biethnic families in Southern California and of the adaptations these families made following the geopolitical regime change. Outlined here is a story not only about struggle and misfortune but also of negotiation and survival by a once-prominent, ethnically mixed family whose trials and tribulations reflected rapid societal changes ushered by a new emergent industrial and capitalist order in the Southwest.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)44-73
Number of pages30
JournalPacific Historical Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020


  • Bicultural
  • Conquest
  • Ethnicity
  • Families
  • U.S.-Mexico Borderlands

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History


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