Rosario Altamira de Abrego - Encino, Texas

The following story was told to me by Mrs. Isabel Perez, a native of Encino, Texas and presently living east of Falfurrias, Texas where she and her husband Rodrigo have a ranch.

Mrs. Perez recalls as a young girl around 1937 being an eyewitness to a treatment that Doña Rosario Altamira de Abrego prescribed to a baby boy named Esiquio Cantu who was very sick with double pneumonia.

The baby was taken to the doctor in Falfurrias who said that the baby didn't have a chance to make it through the night.

Roque Cantu, nephew of Doña Rosario, told the parents of the baby to take him to his aunt, la curandera Rosario, that she could make him well. The family took Esiquio to her and after examining him she told them to go hunt and kill a rattlesnake and bring it to her.

After finding and killing a rattlesnake the father returned with it to Doña Rosario. She told him to skin it and then roast the snake until it was toasted. When the snake was all toasted she ground it up into a powder and then mixed it into pork lard. She then proceeded to massage the baby's body with the mixture and wrap him with blankets. After the infant started sweating profusely she said that he was going to make it through the
illness.

Baby Esiquio got well and is still very much alive today as an adult man.

Esiquio Cantu was not the only person Doña Rosario cured as she was well known throughout Brooks County for her home remedies in curing the sick.

The following information I obtained from Doña Rosario Altamira de Abrego's death certificate at the Brooks County Clerk's office in Falfurrias:
Doña Rosario was born in México on December of 1835 to Trinidad Altamira and Guadalupe Flores. She came to the Encino area about the turn of the century with her husband Basilio Abrego. Doña Rosario died in Encino on April 4, 1940 and is buried at the Villarreal cemetery in Encino. She lived to be almost 105 year old.

I'd like to thank Mrs. Isabel Perez for relating this story to our readers on how people from the ranchos depended on curanderas or curanderos to make them well.

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