Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

Abalone Shells
 May they be honored, and may we be reminded of their long term presence, their rich culture and humanity and the importance that they hold for their descendants today.

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

Abalone Shells
These symbolic grave sites, adorned with abalone shells, represent the many hundreds of indigenous people buried in this graveyard and beyond.

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

The Grave of Old Gabriel
Baptized by Father Serra in 1780, Old Gabriel claimed he was present in 1770 when Father Serra said the first Mission mass on June 3rd, after landing in Monterey. Although the tombstone records him to be 151 years of age, his age is not factually known.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

In memory of the Christian Indians and Spaniards who were interred in this cemetery between the years 1771 - 1833

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

Cork Oak, Carmel Mission

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

After abandonment of the Carmel Mission in 1843, the roof collapsed circa 1852.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

His remains rest under the Carmel Mission Basilica’s main altar. 

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

“Always go Forward, and Never Turn Back” – Saint Junipero Serra

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

In honor of Serra’s evangelism and the dignity he held for the native peoples he loved, Fray Junipero Serra is now Saint Junipero Serra

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

Junipero Serra’s dedication and sustaining faith allowed him to overcome tremendous adversity. This devoted and selfless missionary died at the Carmel Mission on August 28, 1784, at the age of 70. His remains rest under the Carmel Mission Basilica’s main altar. 

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo

Between 1769 and 1782, Fray Serra established nine missions. The remaining Alta California missions, ultimately numbers 21 were founded under the guidance of Fray Fermin Francisco De Lasuen and his successors.

Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo

Mission San Carlos Borromeo Del Rio Carmelo (The Carmel Mission), became the first headquarters for the California mission system.

Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo

The first restoration of the Carmel Mission by Fr. Casanova prevented further deterioration, circa 1884.

Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo

In 1770, the padres set out for Monterey Bay where the second mission was temporarily located. 
Serra moved the mission in 1771, to the Carmel River six miles to the south, in order to better protect the baptized native peoples, called neophytes, and to take advantage of better water and agricultural conditions. 

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Vast numbers of souls had lived and died before the coming of the missionaries

But after the discovery of the New World, where apparently vast numbers of souls had lived and died before the coming of Columbus and the missionaries, some theologians proposed that these souls since they lived in invincible ignorance of the true faith, could have been saved without an explicit belief in Christ and the Trinity.


Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo

The Carmel Mission embodies the living historical record of the Alta California mission system and the subsequent founding of the State of California. The Mission’s founder, Saint Junipero Serra is interred beneath the altar in the Basilica.

Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo

The 246 year old Carmel Mission has more than 1,500 priceless artifacts within 11 historic buildings on the 22 acre complex. The adobe walls are deteriorating, structures are over-stressed, and life-safety issues challenge continued enjoyment by the public. 

Friday, January 18, 2019

Lorenzo Asisara's 1890 Interview

Lorenzo Asisara's 1890 Interview:
"The capture the wild Indian, first were taken the children, and then the parents followed. The padres would erect a hut, and light the candles to say Mass, and the Indians, attracted by the light-thinking they were stars- would approach, and soon be taken. These would bring in others, such as their relatives."

From: A Gathering of Voices
Picture: Carmel Mission in 1794

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Monterey County Pictograph Sites Are Numerous

Monterey County pictograph sites are numerous. The majority of the sites are located in the Vaqueros sandstone caves of the Santa Lucia Range and consist of red painted elements placed on smoke-blackened walls. Some caves are decorated with polychrome designs in red, black, and white. Elements represented in these caves range from geometric shapes, grids, cross-hatches, and lattice designs, to a few stick figures and animal shapes.

Also represented are concentric circle elements depicted in bands of red, white and slate blue. Several caves in Monterey County contain numerous hand prints executed in white paint. One of these, known as the Cave of the Hands, contains more than 200 of the hand print elements.

The most studied and documented cave in the area is La Cueva Pintada on the Hunter Liggett Army Base. This pictograph site contains hundreds of images and some of the best preserved rock paintings in central California.

From: A Gathering of Voices
Picture from:  Monterey County, California rock art

Wednesday, January 16, 2019


KENSHA:NEL is the Salinan word for Creator.
Salinan elder Susan Latta prayed "Kensha:nel" at Mass at the Mission San Antonio De Padua.


Tuesday, January 15, 2019

The Ohlone expressed their distaste for the mission by running away

The Ohlone of the north expressed their distaste for the mission environment by running away, often to the east, where they joined Yokuts groups and engaged in horse raiding.

The southernmost Ohlone, the Rumsen in the Sarhentaruc area, perhaps unable to move east, moved south into Esselen territory instead.

And the Excelen, in the upper Carmel Valley, moved quietly back into the rugged mountains and passed from the historic record. However, rumors of their survival lasted into the twentieth century.

From: A Gathering of Voices

Monday, January 14, 2019

Phelipe de Neve First Governor of the Californias: 1777-1782

Nowhere else in the northern frontier did New Spain face such a concentrated Indian population as in California. And the Indians were far from submissive.

Governer Phelipe de Neve was awarded the Cross of Carlos III in 1783 for meritorious service and advanced to the rank of brigadier.The duties and requirements of the Cross of Carlos III were specified: they needed to have "pure and noble blood" up to their great-grandparents, as was regulated by the Old Book of Territorial Laws of Castilla and the other valid laws. 

Those received by the Order took an oath for loyalty towards the king, his family, and the protection of the goods of the Royal House, recognizing him as Great Master, live and die in faith catholic, accepting as indisputable the Mystery of the Immaculate Conception, and attending and receiving communion at mass at least once a year.

From: Military  Museum

and Wikipedia

Friday, January 11, 2019

"Wild" Indians

With clear evidence for Indian occupation of the mountainous portions of Esselen territory at least into the mid-1820's, it becomes likely that a few individuals survived long enough to bypass the mission system entirely.  As the missions disbanded, it would have been possible for Indians to return to their original homelands.
Professor Clem Meighan noted that "wild" Indians are reported to have occupied the Esselen territory until 1850 or later.
Anthropologist Arnold Piling heard the same story when he worked in the Carmel area in the late 1940's, noting that there were persistent rumors of a group of Indians still hiding in the hills.
This rumor, echoing down the years, may reflect back to the time a hundred years earlier in the 1840's when there were actually were Indians hiding in these mountains.

From: From: A Gathering of Voices
Picture from: Leor Pantilat's Adventures

Thursday, January 10, 2019

They could not stand up to the weapons of the Spanish

Many of the Esselen baptized during 1776 were children.  After baptism, children were permitted to live with their parents in their native villages until they reached the age of reason, approximately nine years old at which point the missionaries forced the children to the mission.
Large numbers of Esselen joined the mission during the following months- seeing that they could not stand up to the weapons of the Spanish, they simply wanted to be reunited with their children. By 1798 the majority of baptisms had occurred, and it is likely that only a few dozen individuals were left in the mountains of Excelen.

From: A Gathering of Voices
Picture from: California Military History

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

The Carmel River near Paso Hondo Road

Four major floods boosted the Carmel River’s natural processes and improved the spawning habitat for steelhead trout since the dam removal in 2015.

The river structure has become more complex, mainly due to large wood and coarse gravel that has drifted from upstream.
The steelhead were not the only ones who managed to swim up. Pacific lamprey have appeared upstream for the first time in 20 years. But non-native species have also flourished upstream, like the striped bass that eat the young steelhead.

From Monterey Herald
Picture by Vern FisherThe Carmel River near Paso Hondo Road in Carmel Valley

Pach-hepas, chief of the Excelen

The first documented meeting between the Spanish and the Esselen comes from Carmel baptismal entry number 350, dated May 9, 1775.  On that day, Junipero Serra baptized a 40-year-old man, named Pach-hepas, who was described as the chief of the territory of the Excelen and its rancherias. The baptism took place in the village of Xasauan. The modern name of Cachagua, a small community in the upper Carmel River drainage is dervied from this Essalen village name.

From: A Gathering of Voices 

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

The Rumsen

The Rumsen of the lower Carmel Valley and the Monterey Peninsula were the first Monterey Bay area triblet to be completely absorbed into a Spanish Mission.
A total of 436 of them were baptized at Mission San Carlos between 1770 and 1784.
At baptism, there were identified according to home village name, Achasta at the mouth of the Carmel River, Tucutnut about three miles inland on the Carmel, Socorronda in the Carmel Valley area, Echilat at the high flat south of the Carmel River Valley and Ichxenta, location unknown.