Thursday, March 30, 2017

Day 30 - The Missions of California

An integral part of the history of California is its network of missions. Spanish missionaries stablished them in the later part of the 18th century. The Native Americans were absorbed into the missions and put to work there. Many cities in California have these missions, and during our travels, we've seen several of them - and they all look both simple and grand at the same time. The adobe structure is unique to all these mission buildings. There is one comparatively small mission in Fremont itself - Mission San Jose.

4th grade history textbooks speak in detail about these missions, their ultimate secularization, and their effects on the lives and culture of Native Americans. Students are also allocated a mission each, and they have to do a report and a slideshow on their mission, and study in detail the history of that mission. Puttachi was allocated Mission San Antonia de Padua and she did a decent job of reporting about it, finding pictures for the slideshow.

And it was as part of this education that the children were taken to Mission San Juan Bautista (named after St John the Baptist) on Wednesday.

Some pictures taken from a phone, so please excuse the quality.

Mission San Juan Bautista.
The statue of St John the Baptist, his arms raised in prayer or rapture

But from afar, he looks as if he is picking fruit from a tree (acc to one of the children in my charge)

The Plaza Hotel - rooms for travellers cost $2.50 at a time when most people earned less than a dollar a month. A very fancy place, with stables, a saloon, a card room and comfortable rooms. But privies outside!

But even the privies at the back were fancy - 2 storied! There was a separate walkway that connected the living rooms on the right, above, to a storeyed privy on the left (behind the trees) so that women and children could go there directly without having to face the horrors of passing by the card room in the ground floor

The altar at the church

The pug mark of a mountain line - it came in when the tiles were being set.

The church was supposedly one of the larger and grander among missions.

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