The Spanish Missions in California comprise a series of religious and military outposts established by Spanish Catholics of the Franciscan order between 1769 and 1833 to spread the Christian faith among the local natives. Beginning in 1492 with the voyages of Christopher Columbus, the Kingdom of Spain sought to establish missions to convert the natives in Nueva España (New Spain). Visitador General Jose de Galvez engaged the Franciscans, under the leadership of Friar Junipero Serra, to take charge of founding new missions in Alta California by order of King Charles III. Let me present to you this photo odyssey through the 21 California Missions which I hope you enjoy as much as I have since the day I started photographing these remarkable and enduring Spanish-Franciscan establishments.
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