San Antonio Missions National Historic Park

I had a birthday in January (the 23rd to be exact), and Jack asked me what I wanted to do on my birthday. Without hesitation I responded, “Go to the Missions National Historic Park.” So we went.

San Antonio Missions National Historical Park is a National Historic Park preserving four of the five Spanish frontier missions in San Antonio, Texas. These outposts were established by Catholic religious orders to spread Christianity among the local natives. These missions formed part of a colonization system that stretched across the Spanish Southwest in the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. All four of these missions were built during the late 1600s and early 1700s.

We didn’t do the missions in any particular order because we went to the one closest to us first. If you decide to visit these missions, I would suggest getting a pamphlet of information about them first, and then plan your course. I would suggest going from south to north or north to south. Then you won’t “back track” as much as we did.

We went to Mission San Jose first. It was the one with the biggest visitor center (we didn’t know that at the time). Mission San Jose was established in 1720. The church that is still standing was built in 1768 and founded by Father Antonio Margil.

Next, we went to Mission Concepción which was established in 1716 as Nuestra Señora de la Purísima Concepción de los Hainais in East Texas. The mission, which was founded by Franciscan Friars, was moved to San Antonio in 1731, and is the best preserved of the missions. We were not allowed inside the church because they were doing some preservation work that day. In fact, in one of the pictures you can see part of a camera crew with two workers. They must have been doing some kind of news story on the renovation work to be aired in San Antonio in the near future.

The guy on the far right is the cameraman.

Then, we went to Mission San Juan which was established in 1716 as Mission San Jose de los Amazonia in East Texas. The mission was renamed and moved in 1731 to San Antonio.

Finally, we went to Mission Espada. It was established in 1690 as San Francisco de los Tejas near present-day Augusta and was renamed San Francisco de los Neces in 1721. It was moved to its present location in 1731 and given its current name.

Each of the missions is unique, and the churches are so different not only in size but in decor, style, and color. We really enjoyed strolling around each site and learning its history.

So, for now ….. “In the Road Again!”

Betty

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. ourcrossings
    Feb 06, 2020 @ 21:19:30

    Happy belated Birthday! What a lovely and memorable way to spend your special day! Thanks for sharing such beautiful photos and letting me learn about new places worth visiting. Aiva 😊

    Reply

    • Betty Huffman
      Feb 06, 2020 @ 22:56:09

      Aiva, thank you for the birthday wishes! It was a wonderful day and the weather was perfect. I’m so happy you are enjoying my posts. I’m just a novice, but I enjoy sharing our travels.

      Reply

  2. Janet Bingham
    Feb 07, 2020 @ 15:02:49

    I adore your photographs—makes me long to travel! Looks like you had a beautiful weather situation for your birthday! Hope you enjoyed it!

    Reply

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