This ancient surname originally was found in Castilla, in the council of Ibio in the Cabezón Valley, province of Santander, as well as Asturias. It later spread to Galicia and Burgos. The original form of the name was "de la Guerra," though as time passed the name was both shortened to Guerra and appended with other familial or regional names. Many people with this surname entered the Royal Orders of Santiago, Calatrava, Alcantara, Carlos III, and the Reales Cancillerías de Valladolid, and the Real Compañía de Guardias Marinas. The Guerra name is widespread in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Uruguay and Venezuela, and is very common in Ecuador and Peru. Family histories have been identified in Chile, Cuba and the Dominican Republic. In the United States, Guerra is the 50th most popular surname among modern Hispanic families. In New Spain, Don Vicente Guerra Cañamar - a descendant of an Antonio Guerra Cañamar of Llanes, Asturias - was chosen by Jose de Escandón to survey and settle a large area of the Nuevo Santander land grant. His descendants settled the town of Revilla (Guerrero), as well as the land east of there, in modern Starr County, Texas. Vicente's cousin, Don Antonio Guerra Cañamar, is the ancestor of another branch of Guerras, who also settled in Nuevo León and Texas. Antonio's son Ignacio Guerra served in a 1707 expedition from Monclova against the Indians at Ranchería Grande near the middle Brazos River. Don Antonio Joaquín Guerra Arteaga was appointed Marqués de Guerra in May 1729; Don Francisco Guerra Vega Cobo became Marqués de la Hermida on April 3, 1796. Another, more modern, Guerra family centers around Rosa Guerra, who was brought to San Antonio by Miguel Guerra; both left many descendants in Central Texas.
Coat of Arms: In gules, a silver sword with gold hilt facing upwards. A gold bend with a synople cotise and two gold dragon heads swallowing; accompanied by six sable rondels, three on each side. The chief is in gold, with the motto: Ave María gratia plena. Silver bordure with the motto: Esta espada quebrará y la fe no faltará. Separate branches of the family may have developed their own, unique, standards.