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Author: Subject: Academic Paper on Baja California Missions
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[*] posted on 9-7-2003 at 06:46 AM
Academic Paper on Baja California Missions

Since we are posting academic papers on Baja, I will add this as yet unpublished article.
Robert H. Jackson

Jesuit Mission Frontiers: A Comparison of the Development of Two Missions in Baja California and Paraguay

Once outside of the territory occupied by highly advanced sedentary and hierarchical indigenous societies in MesoAmerica and Tawantinsuyu, the Spanish encountered challenges to colonization: how to subjugate indigenous peoples who did not live in hierarchical state systems; and how to create a system of indirect rule based upon the model of politically autonomous indigenous communities. Further challenges included how to efficiently organize the task of religious conversion, the collection of tribute, and the organization of labor drafts that formed such an important role in the colonial economy. The solution was to congregate indigenous peoples in new communities where, under the direction of members of different religious orders, such as the Jesuits, Franciscans, and Dominicans, or missionaries from other orders, the neophytes would be converted to Christianity and introduced to a new way of life that would prepare them for their role in colonial society in a cost effective way.
Members of the missionary orders established mission communities, known by different names such as doctrinas, misiones, reducciones, along the fringes of Spain?s empire in North and South America. Although generally studied in isolation as subsets of national history, a comparative approach helps holds the potential to illustrate the similarities between missions, as well as patterns unique to missions located in different areas and organized in different time periods. There was a basic blue print for the mission programs based upon the model of the pueblos reales, the corporate indigenous communities in central Mexico, and the Andean region. A comparative approach helps to flesh out how the missionaries adapted the general plan to different regions. Generations of scholars have studied frontier missions, but generally in isolation in discrete regions and over time periods that cover either the colonial period or the post-colonial periods. In recent years, however, comparative studies of missions have appeared. This essay brings a comparative approach to the examination of Jesuit mission frontiers, and uses an environmental analysis as one organizing theme.
The missionaries often found that they had to modify the program in response to the challenge of transforming the culture and social organization of indigenous peoples that had no tradition of agriculture and sustained agricultural labor, and resisted the imposition of a new labor regime. Harsh desert environments limited the ability of the missionaries to direct the development of agriculture and ranching that would under ideal circumstances have feed the neophytes congregated on the new communities, where the missionaries could supervise their activities and indoctrinate them in the new religion. Arid regions, such as the Baja California Peninsula, did not have sufficient arable land and water to produce crops to feed the thousands of neophytes, and left many to support themselves in their traditional settlements hunting and gathering plant foods. The missionaries could not supervise the neophytes on a day to day basis, and they found much to their chagrin the persistence of shamanism and traditional religious practices among the neophytes living in a dispersed settlement pattern necessitated by the limited agricultural potential of the region.
The native peoples, who lived in bands that generally were extended families, had learned to survive in the arid Peninsula, and did not necessarily see the need to change a well established way of life. In contrast, the peoples collectively known as the Guarani occupied a large territory of tropical rainforest and savannas that would support extensive agriculture and ranching following the establishment of missions. Living in villages made up of members of a single clan governed by a headman the Spanish called a cacique and supporting themselves through a mixed economy of agriculture, hunting, and the collection of wild plant foods, the Guarani experienced a less difficult transition to colonial life than did the natives of the arid Baja California Peninsula.
The study of the environmental history of colonial Spanish America is relatively new, but offers important insights not available through more conventional forms of analysis. In a pioneering study, Elionor Melville showed how over-grazing by large flocks of sheep significantly altered the landscape of central Mexico. In a recent study that is one of the first to try to apply an environmental approach to the missions of northern Mexico, Cynthia Radding used the concept that she called ?ecological frontiers? as an organizing theme for a study of Spanish Sonora. Radding attempted to show how different ecologies or perhaps more accurately microclimates modified the course of Spanish colonialism, although the limited evidence presented largely failed to support the author?s assertions and broad conclusions. Radding also discussed what she called ?wandering peoples,? an indigenous pattern of migration as a form of economic adaptation to a harsh world, but failed to provide ethnohistoric and concrete historic data to make sense of the broad characterizations drawn. Moreover, Radding was not the first scholar to document migration among native peoples living in northern Mexico.
More recently, Radding has brought her perspective of ecological frontiers to a comparison of Jesuit missions in Sonora, a region she has studied for several decades, and the Jesuit missions of Chiquitos, a region located east of the eastern Andes cordillera in modern Bolivia. A comparative approach that considers differences or similarities in culture and, as Radding interprets it, can provide important insights to the workings of Spanish frontier policy, and the failures and successes of the mission programs. However, Radding makes broad generalizations based on slim evidence, and this approach detracts from and undermines the validity of her conclusions.
Nevertheless, the approach of analyzing the relationship between the environment, indigenous adaptations to the environment, and how Spanish missionaries endeavored to cope with harsh climates has considerable merit. In several of the cases examined here man did not conquer and modify the environment. Rather, it could be said that Mother Nature made man, in this case the missionaries, dance to a different rhythm. The native peoples living in these harsh environments had already adapted in ways that enabled them to survive in ways that the Spanish would not imagine doing.
This essay briefly compares the history of two missions with the same name, Nuestra Senora de Loreto, located thousands of miles from each other, and established almost a century apart. The first is Loreto established in 1610 by the Jesuits in the Guayra region east of Paraguay in what today is Brazil. The mission remained in Guayra for two decades, until forced to move in 1631 because of slave raids by bandeirantes from Sao Paulo. The Jesuits moved the mission a second time to its current location near the Parana River in the modern Argentine province of Misiones in 1686. The Jesuits created a mission program for the Guarani, who were sedentary agriculturalists when the Spanish arrived. The Jesuits working with and through the Guarani caciques that retained their status and authority in the missions, directed the development of extensive farming and ranching operations that produced an abundance for the consumption of the neophytes and for sale within the larger regional economy. The Jesuit missions of Paraguay most closely resembled a primitive Christian utopia, and more than any other missions on the fringes of Spain?s New World territories achieved the goal of creating stable indigenous communities similar to the corporate indigenous communities in areas such as central Mexico and the Andean region. The Spanish government expected its native subjects to pay tribute and provide labor services. The Guarani residents of the missions paid tribute and provided services to local royal officials, and services to the Crown included labor on public works projects as well as participation in military campaigns as members of the mission militias. At the same time the Guarani missions approached being a theocracy, a society dominated by religious ideals.
The second is Loreto mission established in October of 1697 in Baja California, at a site known by the local indigenous peoples as Concho. In contrast to the missions of Paraguay, the Jesuit missions of Baja California challenged the ability of the Black Robes to implement the outlines of their program of evangelization and directed cultural change, and the establishment of economic self-sufficiency. The aridity of most of the Peninsula particularly Concho prevented the Jesuits from developing extensive agriculture as they were able to do in the Rio de la Plata region, and much of the food consumed by the neophytes came from Sinaloa and Sonora. Moreover, the native peoples of Concho were hunters and gatherers of wild plant foods, and did not have a tradition of sustained labor that the missionaries expected of the neophytes, particularly the males. As such, the Black Robes left many of the neophytes to fend for themselves, and only brought them to the main mission village periodically to receive religious instruction. The missionaries could not supervise the neophytes, and as noted above shamanism and traditional religious beliefs persisted. The native peoples of Baja California were hunter-gatherers, and the missionaries found the transition to disciplined agricultural labor a difficult one.
This essay examines several aspects of the development of the two missions. First it considers the building of the missions, and particularly the stages of construction and the general blueprint for the creation of new communities in what the Spanish considered to be the wilderness outside of urban centers that were traditionally the center of culture in Iberian life. The mission building complexes constituted the quintessential manifestation of the creation of new well-ordered utopian communities. This is followed by an analysis of mission economies as related to the establishment of self-sufficiency, and the participation in regional markets. As will be seen in the case of Baja California, however, the harsh environment limited the ability of the Jesuit missionaries to establish self-sufficient agricultural communities, as they were able to do among the Guarani. Next a discussion of demographic patterns and the fate of the indigenous peoples brought to live at the missions. Finally, it considers the demise of the missions as viewed within the context of shifting government policies and philosophy.
The Building of the Missions
There were two major phases of building construction at Loreto mission in Baja California. The first was between 1699 and 1707. Temporary structures served for the first two years, but then resident missionary Juan Maria Salvatierra, S.J., decided to build permanent buildings including a new and larger church. The church itself, constructed of adobe, took five years to complete (1699-1704). When completed the church had dimensions of 55 x 17 feet, and was flanked by two wings of rooms also 55 feet long. The wings contained, among other things, a residence for the missionary and a dormitory for single women, who were to be segregated from men at night. A wall enclosed the complex. Neophytes lived in two rows of adobe houses. The housing for the neophytes represented a step in the process of converting a non-sedentary population into peoples residing in a town, the seat of civilized life.
Some forty years later, beginning in 1740, the Jesuits directed the construction of a new church, the structure that survives today. It took a decade to complete the new church built of stone, and when completed in 1750 the new structure measured 150 x 20 feet (56 x 7 varas). The new church was the longest erected in the Peninsula. A new residence was built for the missionaries across from the church on the mission plaza. It measured 67 x 31 feet, and became the cause for some criticism of the Jesuits because of the size of the structure. The government confiscated the building following the expulsion of the Jesuits, and it became the official residence of the governor.
The completion of the stone church in 1750 and the residence for the missionaries marked the end of major building projects at Loreto mission. However, there was routine maintenance and repairs to the existing structures, as well as small improvements. In 1795, for example, the Dominicans had the floor of the church replaced with ladrillos, fired brick floor tiles.
One of the central tasks the missionaries undertook was to create new communities in the wilderness, built on a master plan that the Spanish developed in the Americas. Cities were to be laid out on the grid plan, centered on the main square. The Jesuits designed the Paraguay missions around a large square dominated by a huge church and a cloister that served as a residence for the missionaries, and offices. The complex also included housing for the Guarani neophytes, industrial shops, irrigation systems, a structure to house the cabildo or town council, and a dormitory for single women and widows called the cotiguazu.
The development of the mission building complexes passed though several stages. In the initial stage the Jesuits directed the construction of temporary buildings built of wood and/or adobe or tapia francesa (wattle and daub). The second stage entailed the construction of the main structures of the complex of stone and/or adobe laid on a stone base, such as housing for the indigenous population, industrial shops, etc. A temporary church remained in service during this phase of reconstruction. The final phase at a number of missions was the construction of a new magnificent church of stone. The construction of the large temples occurred in the 1720s, 1730s, 1740s, and 1750s, and the churches at San Ignacio, San Miguel, Candelaria, and other communities date to this period. Construction of the large church at Jesus de Tavarangue began in the late 1750s, but had not reached completion by the time of the Jesuit expulsion. In the same decades the Jesuits in Baja California directed the construction of new imposing churches, including Loreto, San Francisco Xavier, Mulege, Comondu, and Guadalupe.
The three nave church at Loreto dates to the 1720s, and was built under the direction of Jesuit Brother Jose Brasanelli. The inventory prepared at the time of the expulsion of the Jesuits described the church, measuring 62.3 x 24.9 meters, as having stone walls with a roof of wooden beams supporting a tile roof similar to the tile roofs in the California missions see Figure 1). The interior of the church was well decorated, and from the cross to the main altar the walls were painted. In addition to the church, the Loreto complex included a chapel dedicated to the Virgin Mary and a second to the Monte del Calvario. Adjoining the church was the complex known as the colegio that contained the residence for the missionaries, offices, and workshops. This part of the complex measured 166 x 83 meters.
Other structures within the complex included the workshops, located in a separate square behind the colegio. The shops included a kitchen, bakery, carpenter?s shop, iron smithy, and weaving rooms for the production of cotton textiles. The indigenous population lived in small apartments in blocks built on three sides of the main square. Each building contained seven to twelve apartments for neophyte families, and the Jesuits assigned blocks of housing to the different caciques, who thus retained their control over their clan and status within the mission community. The housing area also counted latrines. Outside of the central traza, which covered some 75 hectares were other improvements, such as an extensive irrigation system for the mission farms.
Mission Economies
Loreto was the economic hub for the Baja California missions during most of the eighteenth-century. Supplies for the Peninsula missions from Mexico generally passed through Loreto, although several missions such as San Francisco de Borja owned launches for importing supplies. However, the mission itself was dependent on shipments of food from the mainland, and the Jesuits and later the Franciscans and Dominicans who replaced them after 1768 supplemented the supplies imported from the mainland by trading with other missions on the Peninsula.. Writing in 1771, Francisco Palou, O.F.M., the Franciscan head of the Peninsula mission, described Loreto in the following terms: ?On the side of the mission towards the gulf is the royal presidio, and it alone separates the church and colegio, which are constructed of masonry with flat roofs, from the mission. At present the town is occupied by women and children of the soldiers only, because most soldiers are now at San Diego, Monterey, and the frontier. In front of the town is the suburb for the royal sailors, which likewise generally has only women, because their men are in the ships. The mission is situated in a beautiful and sufficiently extensive plain, which for want of water as well as the scarcity of rain cannot be cultivated at all, wherefore to avoid the expense they provide themselves with water from wells which are tolerably wholesome.?
Agriculture was not possible at the mission, but the mission did own numbers of livestock (see Table 1). The Jesuits built up the herds of cattle to some 3,000 animals by the early 1760s which was small by the standards of the Guarani missions, but the number of animals dropped significantly following the Jesuit expulsion. In some instances cattle went wild, and could be rounded up by neophyte vaqueros (cowboys). However, given that Loreto was one of the launching points for the expedition to occupy Alta California in 1769, it is more likely that the cattle herd was culled to supply the push to California. In the 1780s and 1790s, the number of cattle fluctuated between 100 and 500. The mission also owned small numbers of sheep, goats, and horses.
One of the most significant differences between the Baja California and Paraguay missions was in the organization of and the high level of commercialization of the mission economy. Unlike the Baja California missions, the Jesuits in Paraguay and the Guarani themselves made a distinction between what was called abamba? and tupamba?. Abamba? was the labor, land, and production of the individual head of household, and was controlled by the Guarani themselves. Tupamba? was labor and production for God, or in other terms communal labor and production for the support of the Jesuits and their program in the missions. This is not to say that indigenous neophytes in Baja California were not given individual plots of land to work on their own behalf, but the distinction between private and communal production was not an organizing principle in the missions as it was in Paraguay. Agriculture and livestock formed the basis for the economy, as it also was in Baja California. However, the scale was much larger in Paraguay. For example, in 1768, at the time of the Jesuit expulsion, the missions owned 769,869 head of cattle, 138,141 sheep, and 139,634 horses, mules, and donkeys. Yapeyu alone counted more than 200,000 cattle that roamed an estancia that measured 50 x 30 leagues or some 47,000 square kilometers. Similarly, San Miguel had two estancias named Calera de las Huerfanas and Calera de las Vacas that measured some 20,000 square kilometers. Cattle provided hides for export, but also meat to supplement the diet of the Guarani residents of the missions. At the time of the Jesuit expulsion in 1768, Loreto had a herd of 30,000 cattle, plus sheep, horses, and donkeys (see Table 2). Hide exports from the Rio de la Plata region to Spain increased following the loosening of trade regulations in the 1770s under the policy of ?free trade? (comercio libre), which meant freer trade within the Spanish trade system. In the years 1768 to 1771, exports from Buenos Aires totaled 177,656 hides, and this increased to 1,258,008 hides in the years 1779-1784. The civil administrators of a number of the missions took advantage of the growth in the hide trade to increase the number of cattle rounded-up, and to slaughter animals on the range. The number of cattle rounded-up on the Loreto lands dropped to 8,910 in 1775, and then slightly increased to 12,916 in 1788.
The administrators of several of the ex-missions restored the cattle herds following a decline in the numbers of animals immediately following the expulsion of the Jesuits. The number of cattle reported for Yapeyu dropped from 48,119 in 1768 to 24,500 in 1778, but then increased to some 76,000 in the early 1790s. This was accomplished by rounding-up wild cattle, and in some instances through the purchase of cattle from other missions. There are records of the Jesuits stationed at Loreto buying cattle from other missions. In 1737, for example, they purchased 3,000 head of cattle at a cost of 1,968 pesos, 6 reales. However, the civil administrators of ex-mission Loreto either did not have the ability to send vaqueros to round-up wild cattle for the growing market for hides, or decided to not participate in the hide trade.
Within the larger mission system in Paraguay there was specialization, and barter between the missions. One group of missions specialized more in livestock, including Santo Tome, La Cruz, Yapeyu, San Miguel, San Borja, San Juan Bautista, San Lorenzo, Santo Angel, San Luis, and San Nicolas. A second group of missions specialized in agriculture: Santa Maria de Fe, San Cosme y San Damiano, Santiago, Trinidad de Parana, Jesus de Tavarangue, Santa Rosa, Itapua, San Ignacio Guazu, San Ignacio Mini, Santa Ana, and Candelaria. A third group, located in areas with both good agricultural land and pasture for livestock, specialized in both farming and ranching. They were San Carlos, Santa Maria la Mayor, Aposteles, San Jose, and Concepcion. The final group of missions were the most specialized, and supplied yerba mate for consumption within the missions and for export. These were Loreto, San Javier, and Corpus Christi.
The farms produced a variety of crops for consumption by the Guarani population, and for export. Crops for consumption included corn, manioc, and other indigenous tubers, and some wheat. More commercial crops included tobacco, indigo, sugarcane, cotton, and yerba mate. The Crown authorized the Jesuits to sell yerba mate in 1645, and in 1666 the audiencia set the limit for Jesuit production and sales at 12,000 arrobas (300,000 lbs) per year. By the end of the eighteenth century the mission communities produced 121,000 arrobas (3,025,000 lbs.) per year. Santa Rosa reportedly had some 38,000 trees, the largest number among the missions, followed by San Cosme y San Damiano with 25,000. In addition to yerba mate, the missions exported cotton, wheat, sugarcane, hides, and wood. However, it was the export of yerba mate that caused the greatest friction with the settlers in Paraguay since the Jesuits competed with them, and in attacking the Jesuits the settlers claimed that the missions exceeded production quotas.
The Jesuits used the sale of surplus goods to pay costs for imported supplies not produced locally or whose production the Spanish government prohibited, and the administration of the missions. The Black Robes maintained accounts for Loreto and the other missions in two offices in Buenos Aires, the Oficio de Misiones (see Table 3). The existing accounts document several patterns. Loreto mission ran a deficit in its Buenos Aires accounts in the 1730s, a period during which several severe epidemics spread through the missions, and some 22,000 to 24,000 Guarani militiamen were mobilized by local royal officials to deal with the Comunero Revolt in Paraguay, and the threat of a Portuguese attack from Colonia do Sacramento in the Banda Oriental (modern Uruguay) that reduced the available labor force in the missions. There are also complaints from the Jesuits to royal officials about drought. However, historian Julia Sarreal attributes the negative mission balances to maladministration in the Buenos Aires oficio. In the same years that the Loreto mission account showed deficits in Buenos Aires, there were surpluses in the Santa Fe oficio which seems to substantiate Sarreal?s interpretation.
At the same time a review of the record of tribute payments made by the mission supports an interpretation of a possible economic difficulties in the missions in the mid and late 1730s, at the time of the epidemics, mobilization of the mission militia, and the administrative problems in the Buenos Aires oficio. Tribute paid by the missions dropped between 1734 and 1744. During the years 1728-1734, the Buenos Aires treasury received 66,701 pesos, but only 28,420 pesos in 1734-1736, 28,649 pesos from 1736 to 1739, 28,443 pesos between 1739 and 1742, and 18,880 from 1742-1744. The tribute then increased to 79,992 in the years 1744-1749. There was a decline in the late 1730s in the number of males in the missions over the age of sixteen, but this resulted as much from out-migration from the missions as from increased mortality caused by the epidemics. Moreover, the mission populations rebounded in the 1740s, while tribute payments declined until after 1744.One possible explanation is that international wars adversely affected the mission economies, and delayed recovery from the crisis of the mid and late 1730s. Spain and England were involved in a trade related conflict known as the War of Jenkins Ear (1739-1742), and England?s naval superiority disrupted Spanish trade to the Americas. This conflict merged in 1742 with the War of Austrian Succession (1742-1748). The continued decline in the mission economies as measured by tribute payments most likely reflects the consequences of the outbreak of war with England.
In most years in the 1740s through the 1760s for which there are records, Loreto mission accounts ran small to moderate surpluses. However, there were some exceptions. There were negative balances in the Santa Fe oficio between 1742 and 1745 (the records end in 1745), and in Buenos Aires in 1758 and with smaller surpluses in 1756-1757 and 1759-1761 (see Table 3). The years of decline in the Loreto mission accounts corresponded to two major international wars, the War of Austrian Succession (1742-1748) and the Seven Years War (1755-1763). Spain faced England in both wars, and England?s growing naval superiority adversely affected trade between Spain and the Americas that resulted in sharp increases in the cost for some imported goods. Accounts of goods shipped to the Franciscan missions of Texas and later to the California missions also show rapid increases in prices for certain imported goods during periods of warfare between Spain and England, Price increases in goods such as wine, brandy, spices, and chocolate cut into the budget allotted for the purchase of goods for the missions of northern Mexico, and in the case of the Guarani missions most likely accounted for the deficits or smaller surpluses in the oficio accounts. In the mid-1750s, the Guarani uprising in the seven missions located east of the Uruguay River probably contributed to the problem.
The higher cost of essential imports during periods of international l war continued to recur in the years following the expulsion of the Jesuits. For example, administrative costs for the ex-missions showed deficits to the pueblos from the early 1790s until 1802, years of almost continuous and costly war with England that only ended in 1802 with a treaty in 1802 that granted what proved to be a temporary cessation of hostilities. Missions in northern Mexico also had to cope with price increases during the same years, and often responded by cutting back on other purchases.
Demographic Patterns
The inability to grow crops at Loreto meant that in the early period of the history of the mission most neophytes continued to live in their traditional settlements that shifted seasonally to follow different plant foods. In 1703, the Loreto mission district reportedly consisted of nine indigenous villages, including the cabecera (mission center). North of Loreto was the visita (satellite village) San Juan Bautista de Londo, that served as the center for another four villages. In these early years the Jesuits baptized large numbers of natives, both adults and children. A fragmentary baptismal register survives for the years 1702 to 1717, and in these years 215 adults and 237 children under age nine received baptism. By 1744, the Jesuit missionaries stationed at Loreto had reportedly baptized 1,199 natives, although some most likely were of individuals later transferred to the jurisdiction of other missions. The inability to grow crops at Concho prevented the Jesuits from congregating many neophytes at the cabecera.
Disease reduced the size of the mission population. In 1744, the numbers stood at 150, and over the next six decades the population stagnated. In 1768, Galvez ordered the relocation of neophytes from nearby San Francisco Xavier mission, and the numbers increased to 187 in 1773. However, once again disease reduced the population, and in 1806 only 14 neophytes survived (see Figure 2). The mission co-existed with the nearby presidio, and the presidio became a significant population center in its own right. In 1730, the presidio had a population of 175, and 274 in 1762. The population of the presidio continued to grow during the last years of the eighteenth-century, and stood at 669 in 1806 and 528 in 1808.
The high population densities in the Paraguay missions made the communities vulnerable to epidemics of highly contagious crowd diseases such as smallpox and measles because of the ease of person to person transmission of the contagions, and the pattern of intra and inter-regional trade facilitated the spread of epidemics. Major recorded epidemics struck the missions in 1618, 1619, 1635, 1636, 1692, 1718, 1733, 1735-1736, 1738-1740, and 1764. A measles epidemic in 1695 killed 600 people at Candelaria and 2,000 at San Carlos. The decade of the 1730s proved to be particularly deadly. Reportedly, 18,770 died during the 1733 outbreak, measles killed more than 18,000 Guarani in 1735, and smallpox claimed the lives of some 35,000 between 1738 and 1740. The population of the missions dropped from 141,000 in 1732 to 73,910 in 1740, but then recovered over the next two decades (see Table 2).The recovery or rebound of the Guarani population suggests a major difference from the indigenous populations living in the Baja California missions. The Guarani mission populations were high fertility and high mortality population, similar to contemporary European populations. Birth and death rates were high, and population growth low to moderate. Epidemics slowed or stopped population growth, but the populations did recover and rebounded.
Sacramental registers have not survived for most of the Paraguayan missions, but annual reports do summarize the vital rates of the missions. An analysis of baptismal and burial figures for selected years at Loreto mission confirms the model of the high fertility and high mortality population, as well as the importance of out-migration in population dynamics (see Tables 5-6). A detailed examination of the vital rates of, Loreto provides additional insights to the affect of epidemics on the mission populations in the 1730s. Prior to the first epidemic, in 1724, Loreto mission counted a population of 6,113, and 6,077 in 1733 at the end of the first outbreak. The numbers dropped to 1,756 in 1739, but then grew over the next two decades and reached 4,023 in 1756. Crude death rates in non-epidemic years averaged 36.0 per thousand population, which put in other terms meant that 3.6 percent of the population died on the year. Two years evidenced a mortality crisis, which is defined as x3 normal mortality. The crude death rate in 1733 was 146.3, or slightly more than x4 normal mortality. In 1736, the crude death rate was 239.2, or x6.6 normal mortality. Crude birth rates were moderate to high, except in the years of severe mortality crisis. In 1736, for example, the crude birth rate was 23.4, much lower than in non-epidemic years. The average family size, a crude measure of family size, declined during the decade, and stood at 3.6 in 1739.
The reports show volatile changes in population that also are an indication of out-migration, as well as the absence of men mobilized in the mission militia to participate in military campaigns in different parts of the larger Rio de la Plata region. In 1740, the population of Loreto reportedly was 2,246, and it grew to 4,505 in the following year. The increase of more than 2,000 in the population reflects the return of migrants, and of militiamen. This dramatic one-year increase occurred following a series of major epidemics that caused large numbers of Guarani to leave the mission, and also during a prolonged period of mobilization of the mission militia.
The population of Loreto grew over the course of a century, until the early 1730s. In 1647, it stood at 1,700, and by 1735 reached a figure of 3,523. The population dropped as a result of the strong epidemics of the 1730s, but had recovered to some 3,200 by 1750. Following the expulsion of the Jesuits, the population of Loreto declined, in part because of out-migration, and was down to 1,000 in 180 (see Figure 3). A part of the decline resulted from desertions from the mission. Reports prepared in the last three decades of the eighteenth-century noted the number of desertions. Moreover, censuses prepared at the end of the century recorded both the nominal and actual populations of the ex-missions. The number of Guarani in residence was lower than the number the administrators had recorded as residents of the community.
The Demise of the Missions
Loreto remained the center of the administration of Baja California into the early nineteenth-century, but the mission languished as the indigenous population died off. The smaller mission populations in the Peninsula missions proved to be more fragile, or in other words with the smaller number of women of child bearing age single epidemics and high mortality rates among women significantly reduced the ability of the population to grow through natural reproduction. In 1806, only 14 neophytes remained. Moreover, the outbreak of the independence wars in central Mexico in 1810 made it difficult for the Dominicans to staff the Baja California missions, and hard choices had to be made as to which missions to staff. The Problem became even more serious after Mexico achieved independence in 1821. The newly independent Mexican republic turned increasing hostile to Spain, leading to orders for the expulsion of many Spaniards from the country. In the 1820s, the Dominicans could staff only a small number of missions. The 1833 secularization order in effect only finished off a mission system in Baja California that was already moribund.
The demise of the Paraguayan missions, including Loreto, was quite different. The order expelling the Jesuits directly affected the Paraguayan missions. One of the immediate consequences was the almost systematic looting of the accumulated property of the missions at the hands of the civil administrators placed in charge of the temporalities. This can be seen most graphically in the total number of cattle. In 1768, they owned head of cattle, but the administrators culled the herds for their own profit. In 1769, 412,169 head of cattle remained, and in 1788 243,906. The missions continued to be administered as autonomous entities until 1848, when the Paraguayan government ordered the seizure of all remaining assets. However, the missions, now called pueblos de indios, had experienced population losses, as discussed above for Loreto. Wars between Portugal, Argentina, and Paraguay for control over the borderlands of the Banda Oriental (Uruguay) and neighboring areas in the first three decades of the nineteenth century also contributed to the demise of the former missions.
In 1801, during a war between Spain and Portugal, a Portuguese militia force occupied the seven missions located east of the Uruguay River, which had been returned to Spain following the Treaty of Madrid fiasco and the Guarani War. The eastern missions served as a base of operations for Portuguese invasions of the region between the Uruguay and Parana Rivers during the turbulent decades of 1810 to 1820. Invasions occurred in 1811 and 1812, and again in 1817 and 1818. During this last invasion 3,190 people in Misiones died and 360 were taken prisoner, and the Portuguese sacked many of the missions including Loreto. Moreover, a major battle occurred in early April of 1818 at San Carlos, and resulted in massive damage to the church and associated buildings. The Paraguayans also attempted to assert sovereignty over missions, and occupied and sacked the mission communities along the eastern bank of the Parana River in 1817 including Loreto. The sacking of Loreto in 1817 spelled the end of a community that had existed for nearly two centuries. Today extensive ruins overgrown by the surrounding tropical forest mark the site of the mission.
Although the Jesuits attempted to implement the same basic plan in the Rio de la Plata region and Baja California, the outcomes were different. One significant factor was the modifications to the blueprint the Jesuits had to make because of the harsh Baja California environment. The potential for agriculture was extremely limited in the Peninsula, and the Jesuits and later the Spanish government following the expulsion of the Black Robes had to import food to support the indigenous populations living on the missions. Agriculture and ranching in the Guarani missions in the Rio de la Plata region, on the other hand, supported the goal of self-sufficiency, and also produced surpluses sold in the regional economy.
A second difference was the fate of the native peoples congregated on the missions. The Guarani living on the missions experienced losses from epidemics, but the populations then rebounded or recovered the losses from the contagion through natural reproduction: increased births. The populations of the Baja California missions did not recover, and faced virtual biological and cultural extinction within about 150 years of the establishment of Loreto mission. The populations of Loreto and the other Peninsula missions were smaller, and thus were more vulnerable to the effects of epidemics that killed off large numbers of the women of child bearing age from the already small pool of potential mothers. Moreover, the transition to life in the missions proved to be more difficult for the small bands of hunters and gathers in Baja California, than it was for the Guarani. The more difficult transition to mission life in Baja California created stresses that also contributed to the demise of the native populations.
There was one final difference between the missions that I wish to highlight, and that was the level of violence in the Rio de la Plata region. That is not to say that there were uprisings among the natives congregated on the Baja California missions, raids by hostile natives, and other acts of resistance, but the Rio de la Plata was a frontier contested between Spain and Portugal, and violence resulting from the rivalry figured prominently in the development of Loreto and the other Guarani missions. Raids by the bandeirantes forced the relocation of Loreto and a number of other missions to sites west of the Uruguay River, and the attempted implementation of the Treaty of Madrid (1750) that attempted to set the boundary between Spanish and Portuguese territories in South America was the direct cause for the uprising in the mid-1750s among the residents of the seven missions located east of the Uruguay River. Finally, conflict between Paraguay, Argentina, and Portugal over the Misiones jurisdiction, the territory between the Parana and Uruguay Rivers, resulted in the sacking of Loreto mission in 1817 by the Paraguayans, that spelled the end of the settlement as a viable community. In contrast, Loreto mission in Baja California slowly faded away with the demise of the indigenous population.

Table 1: Livestock Reported at Loreto Mission,
Year Cattle Sheep Goats Horses
1755 1300 100
1761 3000 116
1771 86
1773 135
1774 115
1782 122 73
1784 191 80
1788 300 99
1793 200 60 260 195
1794 330 158
1795 474 174
1796 474 174
1797 367 183
1798 340 160
1799 200 74 53 182
1800 230 209
1801 130 120
1803 132 123
1805 140 103
*Includes goats.
Source: 220; Joseph de Urera, S.J., ?Nuevo estado de las Missiones de esta Prov[inci]a de la Comp[ani] de Jesus de Nueva Espana,? W.B. Stephens Collection, General Libraries, University of Texas at Austin; Ignacio Lizasoain, S.J., ?Noticia de la visita general de P. Ignacio Lizasoain Visitador General de las Misiones de esta Prov. De Nueva Espana,? W.B. Stephens Collection, University of Texas at Austin; ?Baja California Mission Statistics,? The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

Table 2: Number ofr Livestock Reported at Loreto and Neighboring Missions in 1768
Livestock Candelaria Sta Ana Loreto S I Mini Corpus San Jose S. Carlos
Cattle 14,538 33,796 30,000 33,925 12,292 39,121 2,500
Oxen 1,788 3,331 551 1,026 1,936 1,693
Sheep 4,648 6,564 1,227 7,981 4,079 5,931 5,000
Horses 1,480 628 196 1,423 597 816 763
Mares 2,751 1,941 2,760 3,953 1,723 139 653
Mules 501 800 73 858 500 497 861
Mares for Mules

Burros 205 963 222 272 612 421 367
Source: Rafael Carbonell de Masy, Estrategias de desarrollo rural en los pueblos Guaranies (1609-1767). (Barcelona, 1992), 286-287.
Table 3: Balance Recorded for Loreto Mission in the Oficio de Misiones de Buenos Aires and the Oficio de Misiones de Santa Fe in Pesos and Reales, in Selected Years
Year Buenos Aires Santa Fe
1730 7,187p 4r
1731 -865p 7r 2,524p 2r
1732 2,037p 6r
1733 104p 5r
1734 469p 2r
1735 -2,917p 1,634p 2r
1736 384p 6r
1737 586p 6r
1738 -7,620p 6r 586p 6r
1739 -9,311p 6r 582p 2r
1740 -4,918p 7r 1,597p 7r
1741 1,597p 7r
1742 -819p 5r -829p 6r
1743 -829p 6r
1744 1,116p 7r -2,449p 2r
1745 1,685p -1,974p 2r
1746 1,720p 1r
1748 2,137p 1r
1750 575p 6r
1751 409p 6r
1752 1,538p 7r
1753 2,286p 8r
1755 3,250p 3r
1756 1,498p 3r
1757 1,178p 1r
1758 -109p 8r
1759 1,022p 3r
1760 1,496p 5r
Jan. 1761 1,958p 5r
July 1761 1,062p 4r
Dec. 1761 2,632p
1762 2,632p
1763 1,625p 6r
Source: Rafael Carbonell de Masy, Estrategias de desarrollo en los pueblos Guaranies (1609-1767) (Barcelona, 1992) pp. 338, 347.

Table 4: Total Population of the Jesuit Reducciones in Selected Years
Year Population Year Population Year Population
1648 30,548 1733 128,389 1750 95,089
1677 58,118 1737 104,473 1768 88,864
1702 89,500 1739 81,159 1772 80,891
1717 121,168 1740 73,910 1784 57,949
1732 141,242 1743 81,355 1801 45,637
Source: ?Reductions of Paraguay,? Catholic Encyclopedia, Internet File; Thomas Whigham, ?Paraguay?s Pueblos de Indios: Echoes of a Missionary Past,? in Erick Langer and Robert H. Jackson, eds., The New Latin American Mission History (Lincoln, 1995), 168; Herencia Misionera, Internet site, url:

Table 5: Population of Loreto Mission (Rio de la Plata) in Selected Years
Year Population Year Population
1641/1643 1,476 1741 2,422
1647 1,700 1750 3,276
1657 1,920 1756 4,023
1667 2,089 1767 3,200
1676 2,358 1768 2,912
1682 2,772 1784 1,300
1702 4,060 1785 1,457
1724 6,113 1796 1,095
1733 6,077 1801 1,000
1740 2,246 1802 1,046
Source: : Ernesto Maeder, ?La poblacion de las misiones de Guaranies (1641-1682). Reubicacion de los pueblos y consecuencias demograficas,? Estudos Ibero-Americanos 15:1 (June 1989), 49-80. ,? ; Ernesto Maeder, ?Fuentes Jesuiticas de informacion demografrica misional para los siglos XVll y XVlll,? in Dora Celton, coordinator, Fuentes utiles para lose studios de la poblacion Americana: Simposio del 49o Congreso Internacional de Americanistas, Quito 1997 (Quito, 1997), 45-57; Guillermo Furlong Cardiff, S.J., Misiones y sus pueblos de Guaranies (Buenos Aires, 1962), 175-179.

Table 6: Table 6: Vital Rates of Loreto Missions in Selected Years
Loreto Burials
Year Families Population Baptisms Adults Par. CBR CDR AFS
1724 1543 6113 380 46 119 64.4* 28.0* 4.0
1733 1484 6077 263 525 471 38.6* 146.3* 4.1
1736 549 1937 129 779 542 23.4 239.2 3.5
1739 486 1756 122 17 50 54.6 54.6 3.6
1740 560 2246 163 11 44 92.8 31.3 4.0
1741 635 2422 209 15 94 93.1 50.8 3.8
1744 703 2789 246 29 93 92.3* 45.8* 4.0
1745 738 2855 195 19 84 69.9 36.9 3.9
1756 853 4023 216 40 74 55.1* 29.1 4.7
Sources: Individual annual censuses of the Jesuit missions for 1724, 1733, 1736, 1739, 1740, 1741, 1744, and1745, titled ?Catologo de la numeracion annual de las Doctrinas del Rio Parana Ano; Catologo de la numeracion annual de las Doctrinas del Rio Uruguay; Archivo General de la Nacion, Buenos Aires; ; Ernesto Maeder, ?Fuentes Jesuiticas de informacion demografrica misional para los siglos XVll y XVlll,? in Dora Celton, coordinator, Fuentes utiles para lose studios de la poblacion Americana: Simposio del 49o Congreso Internacional de Americanistas, Quito 1997 (Quito, 1997), 45-57

or examples of studies written by scholars in Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay that view the missions in isolation, see the following studies: Guillermo Furlong Cardiff, S.J., Misiones y sus pueblos de Guaranies (Buenos Aires, 1962); Ernesto Maeder, Misiones del Paraguay: Conflictos y disolucion de la sociedad guarani (1768-1850) (Madrid, 1992); Rafael Carbonell de Masy, Estrategias de desarrollo rural en los pueblos Guaranies (1609-1767) (Barcelona, 1992); Arno Alvarez Kern, Utopias e missoes jesuiticas (Porto Alegre, 1994); Arno Alvarez Kern, org., Arqueologia historica missioneira (Porto Alegre, 1998); Moacyr Flores, Reducoes jesuiticas dos Guaranis (Porto Alegre, 1997); Artur H. F. Barcelos, Espaco e arqueologia nas missoes jesuiticas: O caso de Sao Joao Batista (Porto Alegre, 2000); Bartomeu Melia, Las reducciones jesuticas de Paraguay: Un espacio para una utopia colonial (Asuncion, 1978); Bartomeu Melia, El Guarani conquistado y reducido: Ensayos en etnohistoria (Asuncion, 1988). Recent English language studies of missions in the Rio de la Plata region include Barbara Ganson, The Guarani Under Spanish Rule in the Rio de la Plata (Stanford, 2003), and James Saeger, The Chaco Mission Frontier: The Guaycuruan Experience (Tucson, 2000). Examples of studies of the Baja California missions include Zephyrin Engelhardt, O.F.M., Missions and Missions of California: Lower California (Santa Barbara, 1929), and Peveril Meigs, The Dominican Mission Frontier of Lower California (Berkeley, 1935)

See Erick Langer and Robert H. Jackson, eds., The New Latin American Mission History (Lincoln, 1995); Robert H. Jackson, From Savages to Subjects: Missions in the History of the American Southwest (Armonk, 2000); Cynthia Radding, Cynthia Radding, ?From the Counting House to the Field and Loom: Ecologies, Cultures, and Economies in the Missions of Sonora (Mexico) and Chiquitania (Bolivia),? The Hispanic American Historical Review 81:1 (February, 2001), 45-87.

Elionor Melville, A Plague of Sheep: Environmental Consequences of the Conquest of Mexico (Cambridge, 1994).

Cynthia Radding, Wandering Peoples: Colonialism, Ethnic Spaces, and Ecological Frontiers in Northern Mexico, 1760-1850 (Durham, 1997).

Cynthia Radding, ?From the Counting House to the Field and Loom: Ecologies, Cultures, and Economies in the Missions of Sonora (Mexico) and Chiquitania (Bolivia),? The Hispanic American Historical Review 81:1 (February, 2001), 45-87; Cynthia Radding, ?Comunidades en conflicto: Espacios politicos en las fronteras misionales del noroeste de Mexico y el oriente de Bolivia,? Descatos 10 (Otono-Invierno, 2002), 48-76, among others.

?Reduccion Jesuitica Nuestra Senora de Loreto,? Secretaria de Estado de Cultura, Provincia de Misiones.

Harry Crosby, Antigua California: Mission and Colony on the Peninsula Frontier, 1697-1768 (Albuquerque, 1994), 269-271.

Ibid., 272-273.

1795 Annual Report, Archivo General de la Nacion, Mexico, D.F. (hereinafter cited as AGN), Misiones 2.

Alfredo Poenitz, Edgar Poenitz, and Jorge Machon, Herencia Misionera, Internet site, url:, chapter 15.

?Reduccion Jesuitica.?


Quoted in Engelhardt, Missions and Missionaries, 472-473.

Radding also found the participation of the Jesuit missions of Sonora and the Chiquitos region in regional markets. In Cynthia Radding, ?From the Counting House to the Field and Loom: Ecologies, Cultures, and Economies in the Missions of Sonora (Mexico) and Chiquitania (Bolivia),? The Hispanic American Historical Review 81:1 (February, 2001), 45-87.

Herencia Misionera, chapter 8.

?Las reducciones misionales del Paraguay,? ARBIL, anotaciones de pensamiento y critica 43 Internet site:

?Reduccion Jesuitica.?

Maeder, Misiones del Paraguay, 128.

Ibid., 152.

Ibid., 153.

Julia Sarreal, ?Economic Decline in the Paraguayan Jesuit Missions, 1730-1745: A Consequence of demographic crisis, the Comunero Revolt, or administrative deficiencies,? paper presented at the the annual meeting of the Southwest Historical Association, San Antonio, Texas, April 18, 2003.

Santa Fe was the principal market for yerba mate in the seventeenth and a good part of the eighteenth century, but the product from the missions constituted only a part of total exports through the city.. Exports to Santa Fe from Asuncion reached a high of 68,982 arrobas or 862.28 tons. The missions shipped lesser amounts to Santa Fe (annual average):
Years Yerba Mate/arrobas Tons
1653-55 1,500 18.75
1667-69 2,588 32.35
1671-73 5,556 69.5
1674 6,074 75.9
1675-76 2,170 27.1
1678-82 5,180 64.8
1685-88 6,600 82.5
1693-98 6,600 82.5
1708-09 9,200 115
1710-13 9,200 115
1714-16 9,200 115
1717-18 9,200 115
1747-49 5,200 65
Rafael Carbonell de Masy, Estrategias de desarrollo rural en los pueblos Guaranies (1609-1767). (Barcelona, 1992), 371.

Herencia Misionera, chapter 8.

?Jesuit Reductions,? Catholic Enclyclopedia On Line, Internet site:

Herencia Misionera, chap. 8.

Branislava Susnik, El indio colonial del Paraguay, 2. vols (Asuncion, 1966), vol. 2, 188-189.

Herencia Misionera, chap. 8.

Sarreal, ?Economic Decline.?

Sarreal also estimates mission income between 1732 and 1745:
Year Estimated Income Year Estimated Income
1732 -18,515p 2r 1740 68,687p 5r
1733 -18,515p 2r 1741 28,074p 3r
1734 51,068p 4r 1742 28,074p 3r
1735 2,202p 2r 1743 8p 2r
1736 -11,700p 5r 1744 8p 2r
1737 3,309p 4r 1745 10,726p 1r
1738 3,309p 4r
1739 19,504p 8r

Rafael Carbonell de Masy, Estrategias de desarrollo rural en los pueblos Guaranies (1609-1767). (Barcelona, 1992), 343.

Sarreal analyzes the work force in the missions during the crisis period, and discounts labor shortages as a cause for the decline in the Buenos Aires oficio balance at the end of the 1730s, and hence economic decline. See Sarreal, ?Economic Decline.?

Jackson, From Savages to Subjects, 10-23.

Maeder, Misiones del Paraguay, 107.

Rodero, in Ernest Burrus., S.J., Jesuit Relations-Baja California (Los Angeles, 1984), 189.

Robert H. Jackson, ?Demographic Patterns in the Missions of Central Baja California,? Journal of California and Great Basin Anthropology 6:1 (1984), 91-112.

Robert H. Jackson, Indian Population Decline: The Missions of Northwestern New Spain, 1687-1840 (Albuquerque, 1994), 58.

Ibid., 169-171; Jackson, ?Demographic patterns,? 93.

Crosby, Antigua California, 266-267.

Miguel Gallegos, O.P., Loreto, December 31, 1806, ?Noticia de las Misiones?,? AGN, Californias 2; Ramon Lopez, O.P.;, Loreto, February 25, 1808, ?Noticia de las Misiones que ocupan los Religiosos de Sto Domingo en Dha Provincia,? AGN, Provincias Internas 19.

?Jesuit Reductions;? Herencia Misionera, chapter 10.

The appended tables summarize crude birth and death rates per thousand population in 1733, 1736, 1739, and `1740, all years that evidence increased mortality caused by epidemics.

Crude Birth and Death Rates per Thousand Population in 1733 & 1736

Mission 1733
CBR* 1733
CDR* 1736
CBR 1736
Guasu 49.5 56.5 35.3 33.5
La Fe 86.1 40.7 49.5 28.8
S Rosa 76.2 49.1 55.6 44.9
Santiago 33.1 22.5 48.2 36.8
Itapua 53.3 18.9 50.0 43.8
Candelaria 43.2 53.2 45.5 50.2
S Cosme
S Ana 55.3 26.2 33.8 79.6
Loreto 92.8 31.3 25.2 239.2
S I Mini 84.9 39.3 24.6 169.8
Corpus 69.4 25.1 28.0 88.2
Trinidad 43.7 50.3 45.9 72.2
Jesus 56.8 121.1 47.0 57.6
S Carlos 44.5 70.8 62.1 74.6
S Jose 43.4 93.7 38.3 84.1
Aposteles 27.2 60.0 58.7 41.5
Concepcion 41.1 55.5 48.1 47.3
Martires 51.2 124.2 55.0 58.3
La Mayor 48.6 133.3 33.1 91.3
S Javier 33.1 115.5 42.1 94.2
S Nicolas 64.1 103.5 32.9 103.9
S Luis 42.5 148.9 35.6 56.7
S Lorenzo 36.3 99.9 34.2 50.0
S Miguel 30.1 110.4 53.0 32.4
S Juan 42.1 94.7 39.4 43.5
Stos Ang. 38.3 66.3 44.7 48.7
S Tome 63.3 57.6 56.1 54.8
S Borja 38.0 92.8 56.1 49.1
La Cruz 52.8 174.5 73.2 47.1
Yapeyu 56.4 126.8 96.0 40.5

Crude Birth and Death Rates per Thousand Population in 1739 & 1740

Mission 1739
CBR 1739
CDR 1740
CBR 1740
Guasu 84.5 47.7 68.2 56.5
La Fe 106.5 53.3 86.1 40.7
S Rosa 68.9 44.9 76.2 49.1
Santiago 51.2 24.3 33.1 22.5
Itapua 52.0 97.4 53.3 18.9
Candelaria 96.6 52.3 43.2 53.2
S Cosme 32.7 37.6 46.9 15.4
S Ana 60.8 28.3 55.3 26.2
Loreto 63.6 30.0 92.8 31.3
S I Mini 58.4 118.0 84.9 39.3
Corpus 73.6 28.9 69.4 25.1
Trinidad 53.7 115.4 43.7 50.3
Jesus 81.5 50.0 49.4 31.6
S Carlos 11.4 12.2 88.0 32.3
S Jose 29.5 47.4 86.7 20.9
Aposteles 26.6 25.1 79.1 22.4
Concepcion 7.1 35.0 64.1 27.0
Martires 40.9 184.2 61.2 34.2
La Mayor 39.6 565.4 85.8 23.9
S Javier 34.7 37.3 74.3 22.2
S Nicolas 10.7 336.8 120.8 50.2
S Luis 20.3 565.1 87.0 36.0
S Lorenzo 33.2 556.9 46.2 50.3
S Miguel 47.8 32.3 52.9 20.3
S Juan 64.5 75.0 14.4 485.0
Stos Ang. 52.4 52.4 46.3 27.1
S Tome 30.4 230.8 113.6 19.4
S Borja 46.4 43.0 58.3 21.0
La Cruz 16.9 416.6 88.1 85.8
Yapeyu 73.8 38.5 68.8 37.5

Herencia Misionera, chaps. 18, 20.

Richard White, Paraguay?s Autonomous Revolution 1810-1840 (Albuquerque, 1978), 27.

Thomas Whigham, ?Paraguay?s Pueblos de Indios Echoes of a Missionary Past,? in Erick Langer and Robert H. Jackson, eds., The New Latin American Mission History (Lincoln, 1995), 179.

Herencia Misionera, chap. 21.

Ibid., chaps. 26-28.

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[*] posted on 9-7-2003 at 08:06 AM

Dr. Jackson -

Excellent stuff - I'd recommend that folks interested in your paper read it at Timsbaja where the references are linked and the tables are a little more readable:

I'm curious why you selected these two missions (or these two geographical areas) - was it simply that they shared the same name or were you trying to show similarities between missions kind of randomly selected from the far reaches of the spanish empire - that is similarities between missions founded in different environments.

Thanks sir.

O - and thanks to Sr. Johns also.


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Stephanie Jackter
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[*] posted on 9-7-2003 at 02:08 PM
Interesting article

What an opus! I have to admit I did some serious skimming as my attention span, sadly, just aint what it could be these days.

I think I found a little typo or accidental omission you might want to be made aware of, though. When detailing the decline in the cattle numbers at the end of the mission's reign at the southern mission, you seem to have left out the pre-decline number.

Nice job though.

Just out of curiosity, how many hours of research does it take to produce a piece like that? And do you do it all yourself or have students or other assistants contributing? - Stephanie

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[*] posted on 9-7-2003 at 04:47 PM

I included all of the figures on livestock. We are talking here about 100 hours of research that I did myself. I do not trust research assistants.
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[*] posted on 9-7-2003 at 05:06 PM
mission research

To answer two questions. There were 3,000 cattle at Loreto in Baja in 1761, before the herd was culled for the Alta California expedition. The version of the paper at Tim's web site is an earlier version. What I posted is the most recent version. I am completing a book that compares missions in northern Mexico and Paraguay, including the Baja California missions. I consciously chose to compare two missions of the same name in the two regions, as a part of the development of my comparison.
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