Overview: This non-profit family history website records what we have found out about the Baruch Lousadas. Some of our motivation for this research can be found here. It was found of course that the Baruch Lousadas were part of the Sephardic diaspora, initiated by the 1492 Spanish expulsion of Jews, and given impetus by the Portuguese and Spanish Inquisitions. The 1492 exiles sought to avoid baptism, and half of them crossed into Portugal where they greatly outnumbered the local Jews. Those who went to the Ottoman Empire, and other places, were spared the nasty surprise awaiting Portuguese Jews (who as just noted were mostly from Spain), for in 1497 their baptism became compulsory. With little chance to leave until 1580, they were obliged to live for generations as Portuguese New Christians. Their choice of destination was thus less than happy, though it allowed easy connection to their former Spanish home and gave them a Portuguese identity which was useful and which lasted for centuries to come. They shared with their new host country an attitude to Spain that was at best ambivalent. We have found only one (unreliable) hint (go to note 6) as to the Spanish origin of the Baruch Lousadas and no hint as to their travel to Portugal in late 1492 or early 1493, but some detail of their stay in northern Portugal emerges from two encounters with the Coimbra Inquisition. Something of their departure from Portugal is also known, and it seems to have been in stages - some left and some stayed at each stage. Their departure from Portugal was not however the same as that of other similar families, for the times and routes chosen depended on each family's international links. Today the Judaism which propelled this story is barely evident in the family and its Jewishness is much diluted. All known ancestors can be found in our genealogies, but whether their more recent stories are found on this website depends on whether or not relevant family contributors came forward which of course many did. For instance, reflecting the Australian origin of the builder of this website, we explore the early history of the Australian Lousadas, especially of Edward Charles Lousada and his brother Howel, and their link via Peak House to their ancestors. Relatives came to Australia (their history linking with the Rum Rebellion, the start of South Australia and the ANZ Bank, and the Victorian gold rushes) and we depict the early Australian Lousadas with these Barrow, Barrow Montefiore, Levi Montefiore and Mocatta relatives.
The Baruch Lousada mini-diaspora: Edgar Samuel pointed out that Amador de Lousada's imprisonment by the Coimbra Inquisition in 1590-91 uniquely preceded the family's later known presence outside Iberia, and made him a probable Baruch Lousada ancestor. Amador was born in 1540 and was a shoemaker in the Portuguese town of Vinhais when arrested. His parents were Pedro de Lousada and Briatis Alvares, probably the offspring of Spanish Jews displaced to Portugal by the 1492 expulsion. He was found guilty of judaizing and sentenced to perpetual penitence. Our research suggests that by 1606 his married first daughter was living in the nearby Portuguese town of Villaflor, and that by 1610 his Villaflor in-laws had moved to Madrid presumably to avoid the flourishing Portuguese Inquisition. But the Spanish Inquisition was unshackled in 1643 with the fall of d'Olivares, so Amador's wealthy grandson Tomas Rodrigues Pereira left Madrid, and then from 1645 lived an active Jewish life in Amsterdam as Abraham Israel Pereira. Meanwhile, by 1640 Amador's son Isaac Baruch Lousada was living in the port of Livorno (where in 1641-2 he voted in synagogue elections), and in 1649 Isaac's nephew Moses Baruh Lousada became a regular visitor to Amsterdam, probably from France. This was a tumultuous time, for by 1654 Portugal recaptured Dutch Brazil and expelled its Jews, and the push by the Dutch to establish new sugar-producing colonies was eagerly supported by the Amsterdam and Livorno Jewish communities. Despite Anglo-Dutch tensions, the Baruch Lousadas lived as planters and merchants in the English sugar island of Barbados from 1659 (Isaac's nephew Aaron then Isaac's sons David and Abraham); in London from 1660 (Moses and his brother Jacob, in the vanguard of the English re-settlement of Jews); in Amsterdam from 1662 (Isaac from Livorno plus Jacob from London, and from 1672 Isaac's son David); and in the prospective sugar province of Surinam (which was English but became Dutch in 1667) from 1671. From Barbados they reached Curacao around 1685 and Jamaica around 1705, the latter movement now much clarified. From Curacao the Baruch Lousadas re-established themselves in Surinam, and in 1743 from Jamaica they re-established themselves in England. People carrying the Baruch Lousada name (or its many equivalents) were continuously present in Amsterdam until 1739, Jamaica until 1808, Curacao until 1816, Barbados until 1831, and Surinam until 1912. We have mapped this mini-diaspora and show a corresponding family tree; we also chart the first Baruch Lousadas in 6 of their early destinations. The 'Lousada' component of their name is still borne by descendants in England, the USA and Australia but in The Netherlands it appears as 'Louzada'.
The Barrows: Not all the Baruch Lousadas left Livorno with Isaac #42. Those who remained gave rise to the Tunis Baruch Lousadas, who settled permanently in Tunis around 1700; we have had initial contact from a descendant. In addition it seems that one of the remaining Baruch Lousadas married an Ashkenasi man named Baruch, though not in Livorno. This gave rise to the Barrows in the form of their son Simon 1709-1801 who married Bailah Montefiore 1720-73 and then settled in Barbados before 1759 - probably linked with the settling in London of Moses Vita Montefiore in 1752. But not all of Baruch's offspring sought to prosper away from central Europe - Gedalia went to Prague, and Moses seems to have gone to Timisoara in the wake of its recapture in 1716 by the Austro-Hungarian Empire after 164 years of Turkish rule. On Barbados, Simon's Ashkenasi name of 'Simon bar Baruch' was anglicized to 'Simon Barrow' and hence our 'Barrow' surname derives from him and not from the Baruch Lousadas who had nevertheless, a century earlier in London and Barbados, sometimes used the 'Barrow' surname! Simon's 1st son Baruch and later son Joseph found Sephardic spouses in Barbados which linked them with the local Baruch Lousadas, and a 1785 Sephardic marriage in London also linked his 4th son Jacob #60. With Isaac Baruh Lousada #34 Jacob developed the Barrow & Lousada business which lasted for about 50 years accompanied by 2 Barrow/Baruh Lousada marriages. In the first of these marriages Jacob #60's daughter Bella married Isaac #34's 2nd son Moses Baruh Lousada #32 at Bevis Marks in 1806. But the Ashkenasi link was renewed at Bevis Marks in 1808 when Bella's brother Simon Barrow of Bath married the 4th daughter of the wealthy diamond merchant Baron Lyon de Symons to whom he was probably already related. Meanwhile on Barbados in 1797 a daughter Judith Joseph Levi of (Simon's youngest daughter) Eve Barrow had married Eliezer Montefiore thereby giving rise to the Barrow Montefiores and in the next generation the Levi Montefiores. After his wife died in 1828, Simon Barrow of Bath converted to Christianity, enabling him to enter politics and to place his sons in the Army, the Anglican Church, the law and medicine; many Barrows saw Army and Civil service in India and China. In 1832, his 1st daughter Tryphena had a Christian marriage with her cousin John (born Jacob in 1809, the 2nd son of Bella and Moses #32); they lived in Peak House. Today, descendants of Simon Barrow of Bath carry his Barrow name in England, Kenya and Canada but in Barbados it may be that some of the present-day Barrows descend not from Simon Barrow and Bailah Montefiore but from the local Baruch Lousadas!
The Lousada Dukes: Kinship with the nobility of the Iberian Peninsula was commonly claimed by Sephardic Jews and the Curiel family is a proven case (ref 35). Curiel ancestry, with its link to the last Visigothic Kings and to the Portuguese ruling family, was inherited by the Baruch Lousadas through the Lamegos, but the Curiel noble descent was illegitimate. After the end of the Spanish Inquisition in 1834, pursuit of noble descent in Spain would no longer threaten relatives having New Christian ancestry. The vacant title of the Duque de Losada was a suitable vehicle for Lousada nobility ambitions, as its 'Losada' name was the Spanish equivalent of the Portuguese 'Lousada' or 'Louzada', and it was very grand. We do not know how this suggestion came to be made to the Jamaican Baruch Lousadas, but it undoubtedly was for they hired a Spanish herald who produced a set of lurid, expensively-looking but specious documents enabling them to hold themselves out as successors to the Duque de Losada. Isaac the first 'successor' may have been passive, but his first son Emanuel lost little time making himself known as the Duke de Losada y Lousada after Isaac died in 1857; on this peculiar name-change see here (note 9). Because Emanuel left in his papers a handwritten draft of a Burke's Peerage entry, and there is evidence of the fee Emanuel paid to Burke, we consider he was a prime mover in the whole exercise. Explaining his link to the Duque posed a quasi-genealogical question impossible to answer for there is no logic to explain how the Dukes inherited - in Spain - a moribund Italian title that had been held by a non-relative. Therefore the ingenious explanation we found in a nobility authority demonstrated little but the creative hand of the Spanish herald, the gullibility of the authority and the audacity of Emanuel himself! No doubt there was reward to compensate for the expenses and difficulties; Emanuel was granted an official British passport in 1862 and three further Lousada Dukes assumed the title. Further, but more subtly, though the title was Italian and the Dukes never officially had it (see here note 3), in effect no-one else was eligible either. This was discovered by the unsuccessful Madrid claimants of 1915 and 1969 - even though they were related to the Duque which is more than can be said for the Dukes! Most people overlooked the Dukes' peculiar change of name, hybrid coat of arms and lack of official authentication; so the affectionate regard some members of the family held for the Dukes was undisturbed, while Sir Anthony Baruh Lousada even dared to resume Emanuel's Quixotic struggle with that quasi-genealogical question when he claimed to be related to the Duque de Losada! The problems did not go entirely unnoticed however, for as one of Isaac's own descendants reported, the title was not officially recognised by Buckingham Palace; but even this caveat was overlooked when - in the 1920s - Hungary allowed a Dirsztay to formally use the 'de Losada' title. This Hungarian footnote to the story of the Lousada Dukes is fascinating for it suggests that the Dirsztays had Baruch Lousada ancestry via an early Barrow and it also shows a link to the 5th and last Lousada Duke!
Family links and family dispersal: The Baruch Lousadas and the Sephardic families with which they intermarried gave many people to the Portuguese branches of the Sephardic diaspora, especially the branch involving a brief return to Spain from Portugal and then conversion back to Judaism in tolerant places connected to Atlantic trade. Amsterdam became the key haven for Sephardic Jews, and during 1659-99 it was the focus of the Atlantic trade for the Baruch Lousadas; they and many other such families - the Dutch Sephardim - thereby made their contribution to a golden age for Amsterdam. The Caribbean region was crucial and in Barbados the Baruch Lousadas renewed their link to the Barrows as did the Montefiores. Livorno saw the Baruh Lousada, Mocatta, Montefiore and Franco families who later came together in England; while Livorno also seems to have been integral to the first Barrow link with the Montefiores and before that to their origin with the Baruch Lousadas. Amsterdam became a stepping stone for Ashkenasi Jews coming to England; by 1800 Ashkenasi families had began to intermarry with the established Sephardim - and the Lyon de Symons, Keyser and Goldsmid families thus appear in the Barrow and Lousada family trees as did the Rothschilds in the Montefiore family tree (ref 283). Geography thus left its mark on family history. Conversely, family connections shaped the Baruch Lousada diaspora. The sojourn around 1600 in Villaflor linked them to the Israel Pereira, Henriques Faro and Levi Montezinos families; and the Baruch Lousadas seem to have followed their Villaflor in-laws to Madrid. Isaac Baruch Lousada followed an uncle Abraham Levi Lousada to Livorno; in 1641/2 both were living as Jews in the uncle's house there. In 1655 the Mercado family took its sugar experience in Dutch Brazil promptly to Barbados and the David Raphael de Mercado marriage with Gracia Baruch Lousada was probably vital for her family's presence there as well a few years later. Moses Baruh Lousada - a cousin of Abraham Israel Pereira - was prominent in the early years of the resettlement of Jews in England perhaps a result of Pereira in Amsterdam being a key financier of Menasseh ben Israel the leader of the push for English resettlement. But a link through the Montezinos family in Madrid to the New Christian Lamego family in Rouen may also have facilitated the Baruch Lousada dispersal from Madrid and Livorno, and later their Jewish marriages with the Lamego family took them to Jamaica and thence to England where the Lopes Pereira marriages then took place. Not long after 1492, the Duoro valley of northern Portugal was the home of the Lamego and the Lopes Pereira families, and also the Carvajal family perhaps from Cordoba. One of the Portuguese Lousada villages close to the Duoro is the probable source of our Lousada name, rather than the Spanish towns and villages named Lousada (in Galicia) and Losada (in Asturias/Leon), though the ancestral Baruch Lousadas probably spent only a generation there before moving on to Vinhais, Braganza, Villaflor, Madrid, Livorno and so on.