For reasons that only he knew, my grandfather never spoke about his activities during the Mexican Revolution, nor did he speak about his close association with Pancho Villa. He also never spoke about his “compadre”, General Toribio Ortega.
When I inherited some of my grandfather’s papers I found a little book he wrote, “El Rondin”, in which he gives a detailed account of General Ortega’s activities during October and November of 1912.
I later gave permission for El Rondin to be published in an Ojinaga newspaper. The newspaper editor, Armando Mata, suggested that I look up the General’s son, Galacion Ortega, who lived in East Los Angeles.
After returning to Los Angeles, I introduced myself to a very surprised “Galacion”. At the mention of my grandfather, Esteban Lujan, his face lit up. His first anecdote was that his mother often told him that: “Don Esteban Lujan le enseno al General a leer y escribir.” translation: Don Esteban Lujan taught General Ortega to read and write.” That puzzled me because I have a book in which it is stated that an ancient man in Cuchillo Parado schooled the General.
When I met Galacion, he suggested I get La Brigada. A nephew of Toribio’s wife found it in the rare-books section in Austin Texas. He put out copies in Spanish and English. In the book it was noted that anti re-election clubs opposing the re-election of 35- year Dictator Porfirio Diaz were springing up all over Mexico. In Chihuahua, Toribio Ortega established the Cuchillo branch and was installed president. Esteban Lujan was installed secretary. Other members were: Jose Lucero, Fabian Rico, Marcelino Juarez, and Fulgencio Olivas.