Spanish missions in Arizona

ArizonaArizona MissionsArizona missions chain
Mission San Xavier del Bac 1692 – 1770, 1783 – 1837, 1859 – present. Mission San Cayetano de Calabazas 1756 – 1786. Mission San José de Tumacácori 1757 – 1848. Mission de San Agustin del Tucson 1768 – 1828. Mission San Pedro y San Pablo de Bicuñer 1781. Spanish missions in the Sonoran Desert. Spanish missions in California. Spanish missions in New Mexico. Spanish missions in Texas. Jesuit Asia missions. Jesuit Reductions. Reductions. National Park Service, Kino Missions. Arizona Education, Kino Missions.

Spanish missions in the Sonoran Desert

Spanish missionKino missionsLos Remedios, Imuris, Magdalena, Cocóspera, San Ignacio, Tubutama and Caborca
In the Spring of 1687, Jesuit missionary named Father Eusebio Francisco Kino lived and worked with the Native Americans (including the Sobaipuri) in the area called the "Pimería Alta," or "Upper Pima Country," which presently is located in northern Sonora and southern Arizona. During Father Eusebio Kino's stay in the Pimería Alta, he founded over twenty missions in eight mission districts. On February 3, 1768, King Carlos III ordered the expulsion of the Jesuits from Spain and its overseas empire. Despite the order, many Jesuits remained in and around the present day Tucson, Arizona as late as the 1780s. Misión de Cuquiárachi founded in 1645, south of Fronteras, Sonora.

Society of Jesus

Eusebio Kino is renowned in the southwestern United States and northern Mexico (an area then called the Pimeria Alta). He founded numerous missions and served as the peace-bringer between the tribes and the government of New Spain. Antonio Ruiz de Montoya was an important missionary in the Jesuit reduction s of Paraguay. Baltasar Gracián was a 17th-century Spanish Jesuit and baroque prose writer and philosopher. He was born in Belmonte, near Calatayud (Aragon). His writings, particularly El Criticón (1651–7) and Oráculo Manual y Arte de Prudencia ("The Art of Prudence", 1647) were lauded by Schopenhauer and Nietzsche.

New Spain

Viceroyalty of New SpainSpanishNueva España
From 1687, Father Eusebio Francisco Kino, with funding from the Marqués de Villapuente, founded over twenty missions in the Sonoran Desert (in present-day Sonora and Arizona). From 1697, Jesuits established eighteen missions throughout the Baja California Peninsula. Between 1687 and 1700 several missions were founded in Trinidad, but only four survived as Amerindian villages throughout the 18th century. In 1691, explorers and missionaries visited the interior of Texas and came upon a river and Amerindian settlement on 13 June, the feast day of St. Anthony, and named the location and river San Antonio in his honor.


FranciscanFranciscan OrderFriars Minor
The Franciscans are a group of related mendicant religious orders within the Catholic Church, founded in 1209 by Saint Francis of Assisi. These orders include the Order of Friars Minor, the Order of Saint Clare, and the Third Order of Saint Francis. They adhere to the teachings and spiritual disciplines of the founder and of his main associates and followers, such as Clare of Assisi, Anthony of Padua, and Elizabeth of Hungary, among many others.

Timeline of Arizona

Kino establishes missions among the Tohono O'odham people along the Santa Cruz River. 1691 – Kino establishes the Mission Los Santos Ángeles de Guevavi. 1694 – Kino explores Arizona, discovers the ruins of Casa Grande. 1732 – Mission San Xavier del Bac founded by Jesuits near present-day Tucscon. 1736 – Silver discovered on the ranch of the Basque settler, Bernardo de Urrea, near the Guevavi mission.

Pima Villages

Pimos Villagesvillages
Father Eusebio Kino had been tasked with establishing Spanish missions in the Sonoran Desert. In 1691–1692, he established three missions in the Pimería Alta among the Tohono O'odham (Papago) and Sobaipuri. These were the Mission San Cayetano del Tumacácori, Los Santos Ángeles de Guevavi, San Xavier del Bac, all south of the Pima Villages. The villages of the Akimel O’odham where located along the Gila River before the Spanish explorers Father Kino and Captain Manje, the leader of Kino's military escort, first encountered them in 1694. A census taken by Manje in 1697 and 1699 found 1118 people in 5 villages along the Gila, within the boundary of the modern Gila River Indian Community.

Santa Teresa de Atil

The original mission was founded in 1687 by Jesuit missionary Eusebio Francisco Kino. Some buildings were constructed by Jesuit missionary Jacobo Sedelmayer. On February 3, 1768, King Carlos III ordered the Jesuits forcibly expelled from New Spain and returned to the home country. That year, the Franciscans arrived to take over the mission. In Jesuit records, the mission is called Los Siete Príncipes del Átil (The Seven Archangels of Átil). The name of the mission was changed when the Franciscans arrived in 1768. Mission San José de Tumacacori. San Cayetano de Tumacácori Mission. Mission San Xavier del Bac. Spanish Missions in the Sonoran Desert. Teresa de Atil - in Spanish.

Tucson, Arizona

TucsonTucson, AZTucson, Arizona Territory
The Spanish Jesuit missionary Eusebio Francisco Kino first visited the Santa Cruz River valley in 1692. He founded the Mission San Xavier del Bac in 1700 about 7 mi upstream from the site of the settlement of Tucson. A separate Convento settlement was founded downstream along the Santa Cruz River, near the base of what is now known as "A" mountain. Hugo O'Conor, the founding father of the city of Tucson, Arizona, authorized the construction of a military fort in that location, Presidio San Agustín del Tucsón, on August 20, 1775 (the present downtown Pima County Courthouse was built near this site).

Francis Xavier

St. Francis XavierSaint Francis XavierSt Francis Xavier
In Magdalena de Kino in Sonora, Mexico, in the Church of Santa María Magdalena, there is reclining statue of San Francisco Xavier brought by pioneer Jesuit missionary Padre Eusebio Kino in the early 18th century. The statue is said to be miraculous and is the object of pilgrimage for many in the region. Also Mission San Xavier del Bac is a pilgrimage site. The mission is an active parish church ministering to the people of the San Xavier District, Tohono O'odham Nation, and nearby Tucson, Arizona.

Tohono Oʼodham

Tohono O'odhamPapagoO'odham
The San Xavier District is the location of a major tourist attraction near Tucson, Mission San Xavier del Bac, the "White Dove of the Desert", founded in 1700 by the Jesuit missionary and explorer Eusebio Kino. Both the first and current church building were constructed by the Sobaipuri O'odham. The second building was constructed also by Franciscan priests during a period extending from 1783 to 1797. The oldest European building in the current Arizona, it is considered a premier example of Spanish colonial design. It is one of many missions built in the southwest by the Spanish on their then-northern frontier.


Sonora, MexicoSonoranSonora State
The most famous missionary of Sonora, as well as much of what is now the American Southwest, was Eusebio Kino. He arrived in Sonora in 1687 and started missionary work in the Pimería Alta area of Sonora and Arizona. He began his first mission at Cucurpe, then established churches and missions in other villages such as Los Remedios, Imuris, Magdalena, Cocóspera, San Ignacio, Tubutama and Caborca. To develop an economy for the natives, Father Kino also taught them European farming techniques.


They were a subgroup of the O'odham or Pima, surviving members of which include the residents of San Xavier del Bac which is now part of the Tohono O'odham Nation and the Akimel O'odham. Debate sometimes still arises as to whether the Sobaipuri and other O'odham groups are related to the prehistoric Hohokam who occupied a portion of the same geographic area and were present until about the 15th century. This question is sometimes phrased as the "Hohokam-Pima" or "Salado-Pima continuum", a phraseology that questions whether there is a connection between the prehistoric Hohokam and the first historic groups cited in the area.

Santa Cruz River (Arizona)

Santa Cruz RiverSanta CruzSanta Cruz Valley
It then continues northward from the international border past the Tumacacori National Historical Park, Tubac, Green Valley, Sahuarita, San Xavier del Bac, Tucson, Marana, and Picacho Peak State Park to the Santa Cruz Flats just to the south of Casa Grande and the Gila River. Between Nogales and Tucson the river valley is flanked by the San Cayetano and Santa Rita Mountains on the east and the Atascosa, Tumacacori, and Sierrita Mountains on the west. Most of the Santa Cruz River is usually a dry riverbed, unless the area receives significant rainfall.

Tohono Oʼodham Nation

Tohono O'odham NationPapago Indian TribeTohono O'odham Nation of Arizona
Grant signed an executive order creating the San Xavier Indian Reservation, surrounding the 18th century Mission San Xavier del Bac. In 1882, President Chester A. Arthur signed an executive order creating the Gila Bend Indian Reservation as additional lands for the Tohono Oʼodham people. In 1916, a third reservation was created by executive order with Indian Oasis (now named Sells, Arizona) as its headquarters. In 1937, The Tohono Oʼodham Nation, then called the Papagos Tribe of Arizona, adopted their first constitution. In 1960, the Army Corps of Engineers completed construction of the Painted Rock Dam on the Gila River.

Pimería Alta

Pimeria AltaSpanish Arizona
Pimería Alta was the site of the Spanish missions in the Sonoran Desert established by the Jesuit missionary Eusebio Kino in the late 17th and early 18th centuries. A significant Pima rebellion against Spanish rule occurred in 1751. * Albrecht Classen, "Transcultural Encounters: German Jesuit Missionaries in the Pimería Alta," in Martinson, Steven D. / Schulz, Renate A. (eds./Hrsg.), Transcultural German Studies / Deutsch als Fremdsprache: Building Bridges / Brücken bauen (Bern etc., Peter Lang, 2008) (Jahrbuch für Internationale Germanistik, Reihe A: Kongressberichte, 94),

Nogales, Arizona

NogalesNogales, AZNogales (Arizona, USA)
The county of Santa Cruz and the city of Nogales have 200 properties listed in the National Register of Historic Sites, including Tumacacori National Monument first visited by Father Eusebio Kino in 1691 and Tubac Presidio, established by the Spanish in 1752 on an Indian village site. Others include the Old Tubac Schoolhouse, Old Nogales City Hall, Santa Cruz County Courthouse, and Patagonia Railroad Depot. The Patagonia-Sonoita Creek Sanctuary, 19 miles east, attracts worldwide visitors to see its diverse bird life. It is also host to ghost towns and mining camps, curio shops, first-class restaurants and night clubs.

Tumacácori National Historical Park

Tumacacori National Historical ParkTumacacori National MonumentMission Camp
Mission San José de Tumacácori was established in 1691 by Jesuit padre Eusebio Kino in a different nearby location. It was established one day before Mission Los Santos Ángeles de Guevavi, making it the oldest Jesuit mission site in southern Arizona. The first mission was named Mission San Cayetano de Tumacácori, established at an existing native O'odham or Sobaipuri settlement on the east side of the Santa Cruz River. After the Pima rebellion of 1751, the mission was moved to the present site on the west side of the Santa Cruz River and renamed San José de Tumacácori. By 1848, the mission was abandoned and began falling into severe disrepair. In 1854 it became a part of the U.S.

Charles III of Spain

Charles IIICarlos IIIKing Carlos III
Charles III (Spanish: Carlos; Italian: Carlo; 20 January 1716 – 14 December 1788) was King of Spain (1759–1788), after ruling Naples as Charles VII and Sicily as Charles V (1734–1759). He was the fifth son of Philip V of Spain, and the eldest son of Philip's second wife, Elisabeth Farnese. A proponent of enlightened absolutism, he succeeded to the Spanish throne on 10 August 1759, upon the death of his half-brother Ferdinand VI, who left no heirs.

Mexico City

Federal DistrictMexico City, MexicoDistrito Federal
Mexico City, or the City of Mexico (Ciudad de México, ; abbreviated as CDMX, Āltepētl Mēxihco), is the capital of Mexico and the most populous city in North America. It is one of the most important cultural and financial centres in the world. It is located in the Valley of Mexico (Valle de México), a large valley in the high plateaus in the center of Mexico, at an altitude of 2240 m. The city has 16 alcaldías, formerly known as boroughs.

Catholic Church

Roman CatholicCatholicRoman Catholic Church
The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with approximately 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide. As the world's oldest and largest continuously functioning international institution, it has played a prominent role in the history and development of Western civilisation. The church is headed by the Bishop of Rome, known as the pope. Its central administration is the Holy See.

National Historic Landmark

National Historic Landmark DistrictNational Historic LandmarksNational Historical Landmark
A National Historic Landmark (NHL) is a building, district, object, site, or structure that is officially recognized by the United States government for its outstanding historical significance. Only some 2,500 (~3%) of over 90,000 places listed on the country's National Register of Historic Places are recognized as National Historic Landmarks.


YaquisYaqui IndiansYaqui people
The Yaqui or Hiaki or Yoeme are an Uto-Aztecan speaking indigenous people of Mexico who inhabit the valley of the Río Yaqui in the Mexican state of Sonora and the Southwestern United States. They also have communities in Chihuahua and Durango. The Pascua Yaqui Tribe is based in Tucson, Arizona. Yaqui people live elsewhere in the United States, especially California, Texas and Nevada.

Alta California

Mexican CaliforniaCaliforniaUpper California
Father Eusebio Kino missionized the Pimería Alta from 1687 until his death in 1711. Plans in 1715 by Juan Manuel de Oliván Rebolledo resulted in a 1716 decree for extension of the conquest (of Baja California) which came to nothing. Juan Bautista de Anssa proposed an expedition from Sonora in 1737 and the Council of the Indies planned settlements in 1744. Don Fernando Sánchez Salvador researched the earlier proposals and suggested the area of the Gila and Colorado Rivers as the locale for forts or presidios preventing the French or the English from "occupying Monterey and invading the neighboring coasts of California which are at the mouth of the Carmel River."

Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hermosillo

Archdiocese of HermosilloDiocese of SonoraHermosillo
Notable among these priests was the celebrated Father Kino. When the Jesuits were expelled from all the Spanish colonies (1767) they had the following residences: Mission of the Upper and Lower Pimeria (Guazaves, Aconche, Mátape, Movas, S. Ignacio, Arizpe, Aribechi, Batuco, Onavas, Cucurupe, Cumuripa, Saguaripa, Sta Maria Soanca, Tubutama, Odope, Saric, Tecoripa, Ures, Caborca, Babispe, Baca de Guachi, Cuquiarachi, Onapa, Banamichi); S. Javier del Bac, Santa Maria Basoraca, and Guebabi, which were then in the territory now belonging to the United States; Mission del Rio Yaqui (Huirivis, Belem, Rahum, Torim, Bacum); Mission del Rio Mayo (Santa Cruz, Caamoa, Nabojoa, Conicari, Batacosa).