Since its original printing in 1952, the publication of the Handbook of Texas has been made possible through the support of its users. As an independent nonprofit, TSHA relies on your contributions to close the funding gap for the online Handbook and keep it a freely accessible resource for users worldwide. Please make a donation today to preserve the most comprehensive encyclopedic resource on Texas history. Donate Today »


John G. Johnson

OLIVÁN REBOLLEDO, JUAN MANUEL DE (?–1738). Juan Manuel de Oliván Rebolledo, official and mapmaker in Spanish Texas, was a member of the Junta General as early as 1715. As auditor general he handled the investigation of Louis Juchereau de St. Denis after his arrest in 1717, and recommending the Canadian's release and restoration of the goods seized. On December 24, 1717, Oliván submitted a plan advocating measures to keep the French east of the Mississippi River and prevent French expansion along the Gulf Coast and Texas. With the report he prepared a map based on information obtained from St. Denis. He eventually drew up a series of seven maps of the territory north of Mexico, and at least some of the sketches were directly based on St. Denis's testimony. Oliván was designated governor of Texas in 1719, but he never assumed his duties. In 1727 as judge advocate of Mexico he advised the viceroy to send soldiers to Santa Fe to find and arrest the French there or to drive them away. That expedition was never made. In the 1720s Oliván suggested moving the presidios of Nueva Vizcaya to the Rio Grande and establishing Christian Indian settlements along that river to form a chain of forts and settlements from El Paso to San Juan Bautista. The expedition of Pedro de Rivera y Villalón resulted, but it failed because it did not follow the specified route. In 1737 Presidio del Sacramento was moved to about thirty miles south of the site of Del Rio at Oliván's suggestion. For much of his life he held the duties of auditor of war. As such, he took the report of Antonio de Valarde Cosio, governor of New Mexico, reporting the massacre of Pedro de Villasur. Oliván died in 1738.

James M. Daniel, "The Spanish Frontier in West Texas and Northern Mexico," Southwestern Historical Quarterly 71 (April 1968). Henri Folmer, Franco-Spanish Rivalry in North America, 1524–1763 (Glendale, California: Clark, 1953). Charles W. Hackett, ed., Pichardo's Treatise on the Limits of Louisiana and Texas (4 vols., Austin: University of Texas Press, 1931–46). Jack Jackson, Robert S. Weddle, and Winston De Ville, Mapping Texas and the Gulf Coast: The Contributions of St. Denis, Oliván, and Le Maire (College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 1990). Robert S. Weddle, The French Thorn: Rival Explorers in the Spanish Sea, 1682–1762 (College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 1991).

Image Use Disclaimer

All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.

For more information go to:

If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Handbook of Texas Online, John G. Johnson, "OLIVAN REBOLLEDO, JUAN MANUEL DE," accessed May 25, 2019,

Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

Get this week's most popular Handbook of Texas articles delivered straight to your inbox