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Old Spanish Trail

Mission San Gabriel

In the earliest days of historic California the Mission San Gabriel was the destination of explorers, trappers, and traders making the trip across the Mojave Desert.

Old Spanish Trail

The Old Spanish Trail was an historic pack trail connecting Santa Fe to the pueblo of Los Angeles. Travelers on the trail aimed for the San Gabriel mission as a welcome destination and gathering place. In addition to Mexican traders, emigrants from Santa Fe also used the trail. Traders brought woolen goods from New Mexico and returned with highly prized California mules and horses. The trail or originated as a trade route from Santa Fe into central Utah during the Spanish Colonial days but was extended West to California during the Mexican Period.

San Gabriel Mission

On September 8, 1771 founding fathers Pedro Cambon and Angel Somera named the new mission for the Archangel Gabriel. It was the fourth in a chain of 21 missions in California. In 1774, Juan Bautista de Anza arrived and established a formal overland route from Mexico City to California.

As trade between the United States and Mexico and the new Republic of Mexico expanded, Santa Fe traders saw the potential for profits in dealing directly with California ranchers and church missions. In the fall of 1829, well after Mexican independence from Spain, Antonio Armijo led a caravan westward from Santa Fe. He arrived at the San Gabriel mission in January, 1830 with 60 men and pack mules loaded with woolen goods. Armijo returned to Santa Fe that spring with an additional 100 horses and mules. For the first time, a trade and communication route was established between the Mexican provinces of New Mexico and California. Thus the old Spanish trail was born.

Following the success of Armijo's expedition, San Gabriel mission became a focal point for the lucrative trade. Traders, trappers and travelers coming west gathered here to conduct their business with the Californios. the mission was one of the most prosperous in California, and the padres graciously provided food, rest and shelter to the travelers, weary from the long and difficult trail. Some of the visitors were no doubt rough and unruly, but all were treated with gentle courtesy by the padres of the Mission.

The San Gabriel mission was secularized in 1834 and much of the land became private property. In 1874, the Catholic Church was granted control of the 13 acre property surrounding and including the Mission Church.

Arrival at the San Gabriel Mission

I followed at a good gait (a paso largo) till nightfall; and having gone eight leagues in this direction and to the northwest, I halted [on Rio de San Gabriel, at or ...

Changes were Bound to Occur

Mission San Gabriel, established in 1771 prior to any journey of the whites over the Mojave Indian Trail, had considerable influence over the Indians of the ...

The Mohave Continued

Reinforcements were sent to San Gabriel as the Mission was in the direct route from the Mojave River trail. (10) Fray Luis Antonio Martinez of San Luis Obispo ...

Serrano History - Mission Period

History - Mission Period ... when the Spanish arrived in 1769, but beginning about 1790, the westernmost of them began to be drawn into Mission San Gabriel.

Don Gabriel Moraga

Gabriel Moraga was a son of Lieut. Jose Joaquin ??????, the first comandante of San Francisco, and of his wife Dofia Maria del Pikir de Leon ? Barceló, born ...

This Type of Treatment

Runaway Indians fled to the interior valleys (San Joaquin, Mojave, and ... and his ear severed by the mayordomo of the San Gabriel Mission rancho at Chino.

Descending the Mojave River

They arrived back in San Gabriel on December 14, 1819. (13) The Mohave Indians continued the trade but generally kept away from the missions and the ...

The Story of the Mojave Desert: Westward Expansion

... banned under Spanish rule, provided ample opportunity to dispose of hides, wines, tallow and the products raised around Mission San Gabriel and the little ...

Father Joaquin Pasqual Nuez

We found the place where the Amajabas killed four Christians of this mission ( San Gabriel), three from San Fernando, and some gentiles (unbaptized Indians).

Mojave Indian History - The Spanish & Mexicans

... Father Francisco Garcés, a Franciscan priest stationed at Mission San Xavier ... Captain Juan Bautista de Anza from Mexico to San Gabriel Mission in 1774, ...

The Institution of Slavery

... Indians around the present cities of Santa Barbara, Ventura, and San Gabriel. ... River and across the San Bernardino Mountains to the San Gabriel Mission.

Cronology/timeline, Cahuilla Indians

They learned of Mission life from Indians living near Missions in San Gabriel and San Diego. 1781 Yumas closed land route to Whites 1811 Revolted against the ...

Indians in the Silverwood Lake area

The stable lives and traditions of the Serrano changed drastically around 1790, when they were drawn into the San Gabriel Mission. Hard labor and European ...

Mojave River

On the Trail of a Spanish Pioneer ˇ Fr. Francisco Garces discovers the Mojave River in his journey across the Mojave to the San Gabriel Mission.

Cahuilla Indians of the southern Mojave Desert

Few were baptized in the coastal Spanish missions until the 1820s, when some were brought into Mission San Gabriel. Others were baptized at a later time at ...

Fr. Francisco Garces

On the Trail of a Spanish Pioneer. Pertinent sections of Garces' journal of his crossing the Mojave from Needles to the San Gabriel Mission and back across the ...

The Life of Kit Carson

Soon after leaving the Mohave Indians, Mr. Young's party, proceeding westward, arrived at the Mission of San Gabriel. This is one of these extensive ...

History of the Eastern Mojave

... a priest stationed at Mission San Xavier del Bac, accompanied an expedition up the Colorado River and then through the desert to the San Gabriel Mission.

Ewing Young

Young's journey to California with traveling companions crossed Arizona, the Colorado River, the Mojave Desert and arrived at the San Gabriel Mission, near ...

Vanyume Indians

Stock: Uto-Aztecan Aboriginal Locations Atongaibit, Cacameat, Guacaibit, Topipapit, and at least two other villages. 1771 Mission San Gabriel Arcangel founded ...

Timeline of History of the Mojave Desert

1810 Sufficient sentiment against the missions had been stirred up that the Mohaves ... in and may have been leaders of an attack on Mission San Gabriel.

Historic Roads & Highways

Mohave Indians from the Colorado River used this ancient trade route to the sea and guided Father Francisco Garces to Mission San Gabriel in 1776, the first ...

A History of Zzyzx: 1776-1830 Early Explorers

He eventually met Mohave tribesmen who led him west, across the Mojave Desert to Mission San Gabriel. Graces, probably the first European to cross the ...

Other Facets of this Indian Slavery: Indian Slave Trade

... Indians from California and had some dealings with Isaac Williams' Ranch ( Rancho Chino which was once part of the massive Mission San Gabriel holdings ), ...

Continuing Up the Mojave River

247, at date of Mar. 23. Previous < Contents > Next, "... and they hear with attention that which is told them of God." (Ave Maria - Mission San Gabriel) ...

Kit Carson

Frémont's unit arrived in San Diego on one of Stockton's ships on July 29, 1846, ..... Notes on Mohave Indians, San Gabriel Mission & possibly the Chemehuevi ...

On the Trail of a Spanish Pioneer

Arrival at the San Gabriel Mission. - 248 - ... I was received by the padres with great kindness, ... Editor's Notes: The first 5 chapters have been omitted in order to ...

Chronology of expeditions between New Mexico and California ...

Friar Cabot of Mission San Miguel reports that New Mexicans traded wool for ... Baptiste Chalifoux enters California from New Mexico arriving at San Gabriel.

History of the Cajon Pass

... the valley that separates the San Bernardino and San Gabriel mountain ranges . ... missions and the village (Muscupiabit) was abandoned nearly completely.

Old Spanish Trail

Garcés followed the Mojave for several days, reaching Misión San Gabriel via .... Americans claiming to be beaver trappers, fugitive Indians from the missions, ...

Yerba Santa - Mojave Desert Plants

Yerba Santa was introduced to the Spanish Padres at Mission San Antonio de Padua by the .... Yerba santa, San Bernardino and San Gabriel Mountains plants ...

Some Unpleasant Treatment: Indian Slave Trade

Another time five or six Indians were brought to the mission and ". . . whipped, and ... The Americans left San Gabriel and went to the San Joaquin Valley to trap.

Serrano Indians

The territory of the Serrano included the entire San Bernardino range of mountains, west into the San Gabriel mountains to North Baldy (Mt Baden-Powell ), south ...
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