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Misión San Francisco de Asís (California)

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Located near the modern-day city of San Francisco, California, this historic church was established by Spanish friars in 1776. It is also known as the Mission Dolores. Its cemetery, which houses the burial sites of indigneous individuals who lived, worked, and worshipped at this complex, remains largely intact from the eighteenth century. This church belonged to an extensive network of... Read More »

Misión San Francisco de la Espada

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The Misión San Francisco de la Espada is one of the many churches that Spanish friars founded along the modern-day Southwestern United States. This area was a frontier-zone, bordering indigneous communities and British and French territories. It was established in the mid-eighteenth century near San Antonio, Texas to evangelize the native peoples. The stone complex originally featured a dam,... Read More »

Misión San Francisco de Solano

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Located in Southern California, the Mission San Francisco de Solano once operated as a Spanish colonial church. It was founded in 1823 and originally featured living quarters in addition to the sanctuary. Missions like this one were established to evangelize the native communities in the area. The Spanish monarchs approved the creation of dozens of missions throughout the borderlands region.... Read More »

Misión San Gabriel Arcángel

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Founded in 1771, the San Gabriel Arcángel Mission joined a large network of Spanish colonial churches throughout the territory that today comprises the Southwest United States. The Crown had granted the church permission to not only establish sanctuaries, but also to supervise local settlements in the hopes of converting the local peoples to Catholicisim. Its interior decoration still features... Read More »

Misión San Gregorio de Abó

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The San Gregorio de Abó Mission once operated as a site of Spain’s evangelization efforts in the Americas. As the Spanish crown expanded its empire throughout North, Central, and South America and the Caribbean, it encountered a major obstacle: a shortage of bureaucrats to run all of the governments it was establishing. One of the solutions to this problem was allowing missionaries to... Read More »

Misión San Ildefonso

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The San Ildefonso Mission, once operated as a Spanish colonial church near Santa Fe, New Mexico. Its adobe structure was built with indigenous labor under the supervision of Francsican friars. The objective of this church complex was to convert the native communities to Catholicism and introduce them to Spanish ways of life. Throughout the colonial period, the Spanish Crown struggled to staff... Read More »

Misión San José de Laguna

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The San José Laguna Mission is one of several Spanish colonial churches that still stands in modern-day New Mexico. It was built in the late-seventeenth century by Spanish friars with indigenous labor. The objective for this type of settlement was to evangelize the native peoples, which here included the Kawaiks, teaching them about the Catholic church and European ways of life. Often, the... Read More »

Misión San José de los Jémez

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The San José de los Jémez Mission is located near Albuquerque, New Mexico. It once belonged to a larger group of Spanish colonial churches along what is now the Us-Mexico borderlands. It was originally built in the early-seventeenth century to evangelize the native peoples, including the Jemez. Today, stone ruins remain. In the territory of modern-day New Mexico, Spanish friars struggled to... Read More »

Misión San José y San Miguel de Aguayo

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The San Jose Mission in San Antonio, Texas is one of the most complete complexes in the southwest. It was built in the mid-eighteenth century to evangelize approximately 300 indigenous people.Their tiny, two-room living quarters lined the interior walls of the complex. These individuals lived and worked there under the supervision of the church authorities. During the 1930s, the federal... Read More »

Misión San Juan Capistrano

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The Misión San Juan Capistrano was a Spanish colonial complex intended to evangelize the native peoples. Although Spain claimed vast stretches of territory throughout the Americas, it struggled to produce enough bureaucrats to staff local governments. In some sparsely-populated regions like the modern-day US Southwest, the Crown granted missionaries the power to establish and supervise... Read More »

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