The Milmo name is very unique, uncommon and belongs to one single family in the world.
Some Genealogists derive this family from Maol-na-mBo (“maol:” Irish, the devotee; “na-mBo,” of the cows or cattle), who is No. 110 on the “MacMorough” genealogy; and a quo O’Maoilmbo. The surname Milmo was originally anglicized as Milmoe, then Millamoe, Mattimoe and Millamo.
There are many considerations over the origins of this surname, which may be Irish or English. What is certain is that as Mil(l)moe it was found originally only in a part of Sligo county near the town of Boyle in northern Ireland. If we assume that the origin is Irish, then Milmo, Milmoe or Melroe, the three variant spellings, are developed forms of the ancient Gaelic O’Maolmuaidh. However the Milmo(e) spellings are intermixed in the Boyle area with the surname Mattimoe, one family being recorded as using both forms (!), and Mattimoe is without doubt of English origin, and deriving from the Anglo-Norse-Norman ‘Matheumogh’, meaning ‘the relative (mogr) of Matthew’.
In the 1749 diocese register of Elphin, the Mattimoes and Mil(l)imoe’s are recorded in equal numbers and alongside each other. The recordings in either case were never large. This suggests that both names were originally the same and probably of ‘planter’ origin, but as documentary evidence is almost totally lacking from the pre 17th century, it has to be conjecture. Our view is that Milmoe in its various forms, is a dialectal spelling of Mattimoe. Apparently the National Library of Ireland contains an unpublished manuscript by Col. Cyril Mattimoe on the families, and their inter-relations.
The 19th century registers includes the following recordings, Maria Malimoe, who married Ricardus Barret at Calry, Co. Sligo, on October 22nd 1858, James Melmoe who married Catharine Linot at Ballymote, Co. Sligo, on March 3rd 1864, and Martin and Mary Milmo, recorded at Lowpark, Co. Mayo, on July 22nd 1865.
The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Matheumogh, which was dated 1327, in the subsidy rolls of Derbyshire, England, during the reign of King Edward 111, known as ‘The father of the Navy’, 1327 – 1377. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to “develop” often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
The Milmo family, after the English invasion of Ireland, settled in Connaught, and intermarried with (among others) the ancient families of “O’Dowd,” and “Crean,” in the Sligo county.
The Venerable Archdeacon O’Rourke, in his “Ballisadare and Kilvarnet, county Sligo,” mentions that the “Milmo” family is one of the oldest and most respectable families in the parish of Ballisadare. From this family came Don Patricio Milmo O’Dowd, of Mexico, who was born in Collooney, in the county Sligo; and who in his youth, went to Mexico to visit a rich unmarried Uncle James Milmo, who helped his nephew to lay the foundation of his colossal fortune.
One of Don Patricio Milmo’s brothers was a notable man of the Catholic University, Dublin, in 1856; and another brother, Daniel Milmo, was in 1883 head of the “Milmo National Bank,” in Laredo, Texas.
Don Patricio Milmo married the daughter of the famous Mexican statesman, General Santiago Vidaurri, who was the powerful governor of the northern Mexican states of Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, Tamaulipas and head of the Red Mexican Army. They had seven children: Santiago, Jose, Patricio, Sara, Pudenciana y Leonor Milmo Vidaurri.
Patricio Milmo Vidaurri married Laura Hickman Morales. Their marriage produced five children: Patricio, Jose, Tomas, Josefina and Laura. Patricio married a descendent of Juan Zuazua and from this branch, we have Milmo Hernandez. Jose married Dona Barbara Garza Madero, descendant of the former president of Mexico, Franciso I. Madero; from here, we have the Milmo Garza Madero. Tomas married Berta Zambrano and from this marriage, we have Milmo Zambrano and Milmo Santos. Laura married Emilio Azcarraga Vidaurreta; from this branch we have Azcarraga Milmo. Josefina married Eduardo Mascarenas; from this branch we have Mascarenas Milmo.
Sara Milmo Vidaurri’s first marriage to New York banker Eugene Kelley did not produce any children- neither did her second marriage to Harold H. Reeder of New Orleans. Family history mentions that Harold was so enamored of La Mesa that he asked Sara to leave it to him in her will. Fulfilling a family legacy, Sara left La Mesa to her three nephews: Patricio, Jose y Tomas Milmo Hickman.
Emilio Azcárraga Vidaurreta or Emilio Azcárraga Sr. (March 2, 1895, Tampico Tamaulipas – 1973, Mexico City) was a Mexican businessman founder of the XEW and Televisa, the largest Hispanic broadcasting television company in the world. Emilio married Laura Milmo Hickman (daughter of Patricio Milmo Vidaurri, and granddaughter of Don Patricio Milmo O’Dowd, major stockholder of Milmo National Bank of Laredo) and they had three children: Emilio, Laura, and Carmela.
The caretaker of La Mesa for over a decade was Patricio Milmo Hickman- he stayed behind while his younger brothers went away to college. After finishing their studies, Jose and Tomas went to work for their uncle, Emilio Azcarraga Vidaurretta. The boys never forgot their duty to their legacy; they periodically sent money home to help with the maintenance of La Mesa.
Patricio loved ranching so much that he dedicated his whole life to it. Patricio Milmo Hickman realized how expensive it was to run the ranch at La Mesa- as much as he loved it; he also realized it was a financial burden. He knew that it required more than heart. He finally retired his branding iron and sold his portion of La Mesa to his brothers, Jose and Tomas Milmo Hickman.
Jose Milmo Hickman was a country boy at heart- he never forgot his first love; it was important to him that his children became familiar with the place of his childhood. His children still fondly remember family journeys to La Mesa, which continue to this day.
The Milmo family in Mexico remains distinguished for its strong political and economic power with influence in the telecommunications, cement manufacturing, real estate development, construction, ranching and wine production sectors, among others.
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