Spanish missions in New Mexico

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The Spanish Missions in New Mexico were a series of religious outposts in the Province of Santa Fe de Nuevo México — present day New Mexico. They were established by Franciscan friars under charter from the monarchs of the Spanish Empire and the government of the Viceroyalty of New Spain in a policy called Reductions to facilitate the conversion of Native Americans—Indians into Christianity.


Quarai Mission church in 1940. Photo: George A. Grant.

They attempted to Hispanicize the indigenous peoples. The affected included the rich cultures and tribes of: many of the 21 distinct Puebloan groups; the Tiwa; the Navajo; and the Apache. The missions also aimed to pacify resistance to the European invasion of the tribes' Pre-Columbian homelands and loss of traditions. The missions introduced European livestock, fruits, vegetables, and small-scale industry into the Southwest region. They also introduced European diseases that the native people had no immunity against.

Fray Marcos de Niza, sent by Coronado, first saw the area now known as New Mexico in 1539. The first permanent settlement was Mission San Gabriel, founded in 1598 by Juan de Oñate near what is now known as the San Juan Pueblo.[ citation needed]


(est. 1598 as San Pedro y San Pablo; destroyed 1680; rededicated 1692; Church built between 1706 and 1760)

(est. 1598; destroyed 1680; re-est. 1692; Church built 1694-96; Second church built 1706-44; abandoned 1838)

Noted churches that were not missions

See also

External links


  1. ^ "Mission Nuestra Señora de Purísima Concepción de Quarai".
  2. ^ Frank D. Reeve,History of New Mexico, Volume 1.Lewis Historical Publishing Co.1961
  3. ^ Images of Acoma and San Estevan, Acoma, New Mexico
  4. ^ "Abo Pueblo and San Gregorio Mission".
  5. ^ "Books of the Southwest - University of Arizona Library".
  6. ^ "Mission San Buenaventura de Humanas".
  7. ^ "Mission San José de los Jémez".
  8. ^ "San José de Laguna".
  9. ^ "Mission Santa Ana".
  10. ^ "Mission Santo Domingo".