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Title Letters [manuscript]: San Xavier del Bac, to Juan de Pineda, 1768 July 29-1769 July 23
Author Garcés, Francisco Tomás Hermenegildo (1738-1781)
Document Type Correspondence
Description From the Newberry Library Catalogue: Three letters, written between July 1768 and July 1769, from Father Garces to Juan de Pineda, governor and capitan general of the provinces of Sonora and Sinaloa, concerning affairs of the missions at San Xavier del Bac and Tucson. In his letter of July 29, 1768, Garces, newly-arrived at San Xavier, congratulates Pineda on his promotion to the rank of colonel. He reports that the two missions are quiet and the Indians peaceful, although he laments their lack of religious instruction. He describes conditions at each mission, indicating number of baptisms, deaths, marriages, and confirmations since 1755. He also requests basic furnishings for the mission such as a chest, 2 locks, a box for the holy oils, and communion utensils, and suggests establishing a school in the future. His letter of February 21, 1769 describes an attack on the mission by Apaches the day before, and although no one was killed, many horses and cattle were taken. Garces points out that measures must be taken to control the Apaches who terrorize the settlements. The last letter, dated July 23, 1769, reports on the continuing problems with the Apaches who threaten the Pima Indians, destroy their crops, resulting in severe food shortages during the winter, and raid the mission supplies and livestock. The Apaches have sworn to destroy the mission settlement and also jeopardize plans for a new village near the junction of the Gila and Colorado Rivers. Garces pleads for more soldiers to patrol the territory and protect the mission and settlements. In addition , he requests more oxen to increase their harvests, as there are 150 families to support.
Names Pineda, Juan de
Places Sonora, Sinaloa, Mexico; Gila River, Colorado River, San Xavier del Bac, Tucson, Arizona, United States; Spain
Keywords religion, church, Francsican, governor, missionary, peace, education, observation, death, supplies, livestock, cattle, horse, horse stealing, school, attack, soldiers, territory, settlement, Spain
Theme Missionaries and Education; Military Encounters: Conflicts, Rebellions and Alliances
Tribe / Nation
Culture Area Southwest
Language Spanish
Additional Information

BOUND WITH: Letter [manuscript]: [San Xavier del Bac?], to Padre Guardián Diego Jiménez, [Querétaro, Mexico?], [ca. 1776] and Letter [manuscript]: San Xavier del Bac, to Juan Bautista de Anssa, 1768 July 29 Newberry Library references Ayer MS 1092 and Ayer MS 1093.

Garcés was a Spanish Franciscan missionary and explorer of the Southwest. Garcés served as head of the mission of San Xavier del Bac, where, from 1768 to 1781, he lived among the Apaches, Yumas, Gilas, and Mojaves, working to convert them to Catholicism. He made many journeys into Indian territory to the west and north between 1768 and 1779. In 1781, Garcés was brutally murdered by Yuma Indians.

Library The Newberry Library
Copyright The Newberry Library
Collection The Edward E. Ayer Collection
Reference VAULT box Ayer MS 1094
Catalogue Link The Newberry Library Catalogue