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Tuesday, February 23, 2010

San Antonio Missions ~ Part III ~ San Jose'

Mission San José y San Miguel de Aguayo ~ San Jose (1720)

Soon after the building of the Alamo, a second mission was founded in 1720 about five miles downstream. Named San Jose, this new mission was established by Fray Antonio Margil de Jesus, who had previously left a failed mission in East Texas. A model among the Texas missions, San Jose gained a reputation as a major social and cultural center. Among the San Antonio missions, it also provided the strongest garrison against raids from Indians.

The San José, established in 1720, was a model for other missions--and the most prosperous. Located just south of the Alamo, this “Queen of the Missions” represented a social and cultural center. Its 300 residents sustained themselves by raising livestock and tending to vast fields. The mission had its own gristmill and granary, which have been restored. At the church, you can enjoy seeing carvings, quatrefoil patterns, and the famed “Rose Window,” a superb example of Spanish Colonial ornamentation. The stairway that leads to the belfry and choir loft is an incredible showcase of workmanship; all 25 risers were hand-hewn form a single log and assembled without the use of nails or pegs. You can also spend time reflecting in the beautiful gardens...

Did You Know?
That the four churches within San Antonio Missions National Historical Park are active Catholic parish churches? While they have not been in continuous operation since established in the early 1700s, many parishioners today are direct descendants of the mission Indians who built the churches.

Until Later... Have FUN, Travel Safe & Enjoy Everyday!


Mike Goad said...

We made it down to San Antonio once several years ago, but didn't get to see many of the sights. Our son-in-law was in Korea, so we went with out daughter to take care of our grandson when our granddaughter had appointments with specialists at an air force hospital. We were able to make it to Riverwalk and the Alamo, though.

Three years ago, just after I retired, we were headed down that way, but leg pains that I had been having for a while got worse and we turned around and headed home before we got there. Turned out to be an infection called cellulitis.

One of these years, we'll make it back down there.

Haw Creek Out 'n About

Rick said...

Thanks for the tour and great pics of the Mission. I'm sure glad to see someone else likes visiting these old places as much as I do.

Justine said...

Oh, that is absolutely beautiful!!!

Justine :o )

Happytrails said...

I absolutely love history!!! Thanks so much for all the terrific information about the San Antonio Missions. I can't wait for us to get to San Antonio....the history there is awesome. Great story in pics as well.

Take care and enjoy the journey!!

Margie M. said...

What a beautiful place, Donna. Thank you for showing your readers these great photos. This will certainly be an interesting place to visit. We've seen so many of the missions in CA and those in TX seem of equal historic importance.

Enjoy the rest of your visit.


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