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ARIZONA AND SONORA.
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V / Kl Tuertf^
FRANCISCANS IN ARIZONA
Fr. Zephyrin Engelhardt, 0. F. M .,
Author of "-The Franciscans in California,''
WITH A MAP AND NUMEROUS ILLUSTRATIONS.
CUM PERMISSU SUPERIORUM.
Printed And Publtshed At The
HOLY CHILDHOOD INDIAN SCHOOL,
HARBOR SPRINGS, MICHIGAN.
^t&fOBi accordiiiR to Act of Congress in the Year ViSSt, Uar
In the OiEco of the Librarian of Congress-
The Martyrs of the Colorado —
CO Fathers Francisco II. Garces^ Juan Diaz,,
=" ^^an Barreneche^ and Jose M atlas Moreno —
.^ ITiis Volume is Most Affectionately
^ J?£dicated by their Brother in Christ—
^ The Author.
Some hints concerning the pronunciation of Spanish
names and words occurring in this book.
A like ci in a//. E like <> in ///cr.
I like the / in f/f. O like o in so.
U like 00 in tiioon.
C, (in America t^encrally), before / and e
has the sound of .? in so, otherwise
it has the sound of r in care.
G, (before c and /), is sounded like // in In 11:
otherwise like s: in ffix'c.
H is silent.
J is pronounced like // in hall or /////.
LL as in Wi//iam.
n as ni in o])i«/on, or like ny.
Q like k.
X has the sound of // in liat.
Y, when it stands alone, has the sound of pc:
otherwise as in Englis^h.
Z should be pronounced like /// in think
or halh: but it is frequently sounded as '
Ch is pronounced like ch in charily.
Other letters are sounded as in English,
— I —
The present volume may, not inaptly, be regard-
ed as a kind of supplement to "The Franciscans in
California," since much that is related here occurred
on California soil, and will be better understood in
connection with that work.
We have chosen this title, however, because the
Fathers whose missionary labors we have attempted
% to describe, and whose principal field of activity was
Arizona, were sent out from entirely different head-
quarters. The Fathers of Southern Arizona and So-
nora came from the missionary colleges or semina-
ries of Queretaro and Jalisco, whereas the California
Fathers were subjects of the College of San Fernan-
do in the City of Mexico ; and the sons of St. Fran-
cis that entered Arizona in the north were members
of the Custody of the Conversion of St. Paul of New
Mexico. Nor could the author confine this historical
narrative to Arizona alone, because, at the time the
Franciscans labored in that territory, the boundary
lines were not so distinctly defined as now. In fact
the region was known by another name — Pimeria Alta.
This comprised the southern part of Arizona and the
northern part of Sonora, and was in charge of the
Queretaranos, as the Franciscans from Queretaro
As a rule, the author has confined himself to a
recital of such historical facts as he deemed of suffi-
cient importance to preserve the memory of the he-
roic men that braved climate, hardships, and perils
for the honor of the Seraphic Order, the salvation
of the natives, and the love and glory of God. This
course may have rendered the book less entertaining,
— II —
but it secured accurate history in a smfrircoiflpa*ss.
For a long; time the field once cultivated by the*'
old "Padres'' lay deserted; but of late years the
work which Masonic malice and intrigue liad inter-
rupted, has been resumed by members of the same*'
Order that for three centuries made such faerifices in;
Arizona and other Spanish possessions. This time it"
is not the South that furnishes the labors, but the
East. The provinces of the Sacred Heart of Jesus;-
and of St. John the Baptist are now endeavoring to
reclaim the territory so long occupied l)y their Span-
ish predecessors. May the same ardent zeal, persist -
ent energy, and heroic patience that characterized
the Queretaranos animate their brethren of our time. '
The Province of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, St^-
Louis, Mo., has accepted Southern Arizona, and thua-
follows in the footsteps of the College of Santa Cruz,
Queretaro; whilst the Province of St. John the Bap-
tist has embraced the north, once under the jurisdic- -
tion of the New Mexican Fathers.
May the sons of both provinces vie with one an -
other' as true disciples of St. Francis in rescuing the •
natives from the dense ignorance and cold indilfer -
ence that have so firm a hold upon them now. The
dreams of the intrepid Fr. Mdrcos de Niza and off
the apostolic Fr. Carets may then be realized, and-
Arizona truly become "£/ Uuevo Reino del San Fran-
cisco'''' as the discoverer of the territory na-naed Ari -
zona in 1539.
— I i ^
The DiscoverRr of Arizona. His coursf^ through Sonora and
Arizona. Description of the Seven Cities. Incidents of his
'tour. The Seven Cities. Cibola or Zuni. The New Kin«:dom
of St. Francis. Niza's critics. Bancroft. Shea. Winship Pg,rk-
er. C. F. Lummis ^ !•
Fr. Mdrcos and companions. Franciscans with Ofiate. March
througrh Arizona. First martyr. Other Franciscan martyrs.
The Pimerias. Fr. E. Kino, S. J. Other Jesuits. State of the
missions .^.. 20.
Franciscans of Queretaro and Xalisco called. Ditliculties. The
missions accepted 'in the Pimerias. State of the missions.
Fathers Sarobe and Buena. Don Galvez. Mission temporali-
■Galvez and Buena visit the rebel Seri. Illness of Don Galvez.
Fr. Garc^s at San Xavier. His first trip to the Gila. Illness
of Fr. Garc^s. Guevavi destroyed. Epidemic. Second mission-
ary tour of Fr. Garces. Indian gods. Garc(?s proposes mis-
sions on the Gila. Fr. Buena resif^ns. New missionaries.
The Yumas. Third trip of Fr. Garc(js 15.
Fr. Buena Resis^ns. His death and biography. The missiona-
aries slandered by the governor. Fr. Gil de Bernave made
president. Founding of tke missions among the Seri and the
Tiburones. Indifference of the Indians. Murder ©f Fr. Gil.
His Burial. Biography. The Queretaranos leave Texas.
Fr. Antonio Reyes's Report on the state of the missions in
— IV —
Captain Anza's first expedition overland to Monterey. Fathers
Garc^s and Diaz. The junction of the Gila and Colorado. Fr.
Garces' attempt to reach the Moqui. Appeal in behalf of the
missionaries. Preparations for a second expedition. Transfer
of the Pimeria Baja missions 77.
State of the missions. Petition of the procurador. Expedition
from Sonora to the Port of San Francisco, California. Fath-
ers Garces, Font, and Eyzarch 86.
The missionary tour of Fr. Francisco Garces along the Colora-
do and through southern California. His reception every-
Fr. Francisco Garces and his trip to Moqui. His reception. He
returns to San Xavier del Bac 110.
State of the missions. Indian raids. Destruction of Mission
Santa Maria Magdalena. Murder of Fr. Felipe Guillen.... 120.
Reception of Palma in Mexico. Change in the government.
Promises to Pahua. De Croix's letters. Orders of the king.
Missions delayed. Indians and Fathers disappointed. Change
in the plans. Fathers Garces and Diaz go to the Colorado.
The situation on the Colorado. Fr. Juan Diaz visits De
Croix at Arizpe 124.
De Croix. Two pueblos to be founded on a new plan. Remark-
able regulations. Protest of Fr. Garces. Bancroft's opinion.
Spanish contempt for the Indians. Rage of the Yumas. Ef-
forts of the Fathers. Palma arrested. The Yumas. Don Rive-
Indians grow insolent. Grief of the Fathers. Their efforts.
Attack on Concepcion. Fr. Barreneche's heroic deed. General
massacre at San Pedro y San Pablo. Slaughter of Rivera
and his men. Return of the savages to Concepcion. Murder
of Fathers Garces and Barreneche. Burial. Discovery of the
bodies of the four martyrs. Transfer of the bodies to Tubu-
The martyrs of la Purisima Concepcion. Fr. Francisco Garcps
and Fr. Juan Barreneche l-^l.
Tho martyrs of San Pedro Y San Pablo. Fr. Juan Diaz and
Fr. Jose Matias Moreno 163.
Founding of the Cnstodia de San Cdrlos. Magnanimity of the
defim'tors. Death of the first custos. His successor. The
statutes. Petition of the Fathers. The College of Queretaro.
Dissolution of the custody. Indian priests. Franciscan Bish-
ops in Souora 1^*^-
Arricivita's "Cronica Serafiea." Missions and visitas. Mission
de Caborca. Fr. Ambrose Calzada. Fr. Pedro Font. Fr. Iba-
nez. Mission de Ati. Fr. FeUx Gamarra. Mission de Tubuta-
m:i. Fr. Guillen. Mission de Saric. Mission de Caburica. Fr.
Carrasco. Mission de Suamca. Mission de Guevavi. Tumaca-
cori. Mission San Xavier del Bac. Tucson. State of the mis-
sion. Church of San Xavier and its builders 179.
San Xavier's modern history. Means to build churches. Des-
cription of the church. Secularization 190.
San Xavier del Bac. Bishop Bourgade's anxiety and generous
offer. Phoenix accepted. First Fathers and Brothers. Histo-
ry of St. Mary's. Improvements. Changes. Work of the Fja-
The Moquis. Various efforts to christianize them. Their stub-
bornness. Their misfortunes. The Navajos. Rt. Rev. J. A.
Stephan. Rev. Mother Katharine. Founding of the Navajo
mission. The first Fathers. Prospects 201.
I.— Petition of Fr. President Barbastro, and reply of Don Fa-
ges regarding the martyrs of the Colorado 212.
II.— The Colorado River Mission Sites 216.
III.— Indians in Arizona 219.
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
Map of Arizona and Sonora Missions 1.
San Xavier del Rac 6.
Yumas, Young Men 26.
Pima Indians and Chapel 34.
Papago dwellings, (two) 47.
Fr. Francisco H. Garces 49.
Yuma Village 60.
Fr. Junipero Serra 78.
Mission San Francisco 89.
Casa Grande 92.
Giant Cactus 92.
Fr. Jayme's Death 96.
Mission San Gabriel 105.
Mission San Diego 117.
Yuma Boys 152.
College of Santa Cruz, Queretaro 168.
Very Rev. Fr. Kilian Schloesser 178.
Chapel at Tempe 179.
Nave of San Xavier 191.
Sanctuary of San Xavier 194.
Church at Phoenix 198.
Franciscan Community at Phoenix 199.
Most Rev. P. Bourgade 200.
School at Tempe 204.
Very Rev. Fr. Raphael Hesse 209.
San Miguel de los Navajos 210.
Navajo Indians 221.
The Colorado River 22.^.
The Discoveree Of Arizona— His Course Tirr.ouGii Soxora A\d Arizo-
na—Description Or TiiE SEVE>f Cities -iN'ciDENTS Of His Tol-r-The
Seven Cities-Ctbola Or Zuni-The New Kingdom Of St. Francis -
Nizi's C.-itio3-3\N':?.J?r— j,iE\— WiX3!ii? Parcs-i-'J. F. L-j.m.ii3.
The honor of having' discovered the territory cova-
prising; Arizonn, and of havin«>; first phmted the Cross
in the very heart of the American continent, more
than a thonsand miles from either ocean, the Mexi-
can Gulf, or Hudson Bay, is due to the zeal of a
son of St. Francis. The survivors cf te ill-fated Flo-
rida expedition under Paniphilo do Narvaez, 1520-
]528, had given such glowing descriptions respecting
the populous towns of which they had heard on their
inarch across the country to Sinaloa, that Fr. Marcos
de Niza, a Franciscan friar, offored to explore those
regions and preach the Gospel to the natives. His o'-
fer was accepted by Viceroy Mendoza of Mexico, who
directed the Father to advance and penetrate into
the interior. "K God, Our Lord, is pleased," said the
pious Mendoza in his instructions, "that you find any
large town where it seems to you that there is a
good opportunity for establishing a convent, and of
sending religious to be employed in the conversion,
you are to advise me by Indians, or to return in per-
son to Culiacan. With all secrecy you are to give no-
tice, that preparations be made without delay, be-
cause the service of Our Lord and tlie good of the
people of the land is the aim of the pacification of
wdiatever is discovered." (1) "The religious was duly
(1) Cronica (le Xalisco, :!05 - :«7 ; 325 ; Arricivita, Prol. : "Tlie Spanish PiO'
neers," 78-85; Shoa, Hist. Catli. Church, Vol. 1,114-115 "Soldiers of the
Cross," p. 28-29; Banc, Hist. Ariz. p. 27; Marce'liuoda Civozza. Vol. Vi.
authorized for his mission by letters of obedience
from the Superior, dated at Mexico Aug;ust 27th,
1538. The document also states that Fray Marcos de
Niza was a regular priest, pious, virtuous, and devot-
ed, a good theologian, and familiar Vv-ith the sciences
of cosmography and of navigation." (2)
(21 Salpointe "Soldiers of the Cros.*," paB3 2S ; "1-lth An. Eep." p. 352.
If Fr. .ViTicivita's stitoment in his "Croaica Spraflca," p. 3, bo correct,
tlio honor of being tho first wliito mon that entered Arizona is due to two
othor Francisciuis: Fr. Jaaa da l.i A-*uticiou aud Fr. Pedro Nadal. Thoy
nro faid to linvo loft Mexico in January l.'iUS, and liavo reached a point
on tlio Colorado River at about thirty-flvo dosreos latitude. Fr. .Vrricivita
pays: "El afio do quiuieiitoo treint » y ociio por Etiero salieroa do Mexico,
por el oi'den del Seilo:' Virrey, los Padres Fr. .Juan de la Asuncion y Fr.
Pedro Nadal; y carainando al noruasta conjo soidcientas lepuas, llesaron a
uu rio muy caudalo^o qua no padioron pasar; y el Padre Nadal, que era
muy inteliKent-? en las matamiticas, ob3arv6 1 1 altura del polo en treinta
y cinco prados." From this it seems clear that the two Fathers did not
po boyoud the Oila, thouprh Fr. Arricivita claims that they reached lati-
tude thirty-five, whicli is more liliely an error due to the imperfect iu-
btruments used to make the calculation,
Archbishop Salpointe, followinp Arricivitn, "Soldiers of tho Cross," pa-
pes 0, 2G. r29-i:i(), writes; "The Franciscan Fathers ware the first missiona-
ries who trod tlio soil of the country now called Arizona in its full lensth
from south to northeast. Two of tliesc rclifrious. Fray .Juan da la Asun-
cion and Fray Pedro Nadal, left Mexico in January ITkiV, by commission
of the viceroy, and went as far as a larj-e river which they could not
cross. Tliere Fray Pedro Nadal tooiv the latitude and found it to be thir-
ty five desreos. Tlio next year InWJ, Fray Mftrcos de Niza witli three other
religious joined tlio military (?) espHlitlo-.i, and, travelling north some
ClX) leagues, arrived at the same river, wliich thoy called the ' Rio de las
IJalsas,"' the river of rafts, on account of tho floating apparatus on whicli
tho Indians used to crossed it. The same author adds that this river had
been since called the Eio Colorado. Tlie latitude as they found it was
thirty-four and a lialf dogreos. Nobody will doubt tho identity of the riv-
er on account of the difference of latitude between tho two experiments,
which can bo accountad for by the difference of the instruments of that
time and of those of our day. Another proof of that identity is that the
Fathers, on botli occasions, found the same Indians, the .Vlquedunes (Jal-
clieduuesi, perhaps the same as tliose we call now tlie Algodoiies, who in
17S0 yet lived at the junction of the Gila with the Colorado Eiver."
Mr, Wiuship Parker, "14tli Annual Report of the Bureau of Etlinolopy,"
p. ;i')J, refers to the same story in these words: "About this time, 1537-15;}.H,
Friar Juan da la Avancioa seams to hava vi-iitad the inland tribes north
of the Spinish settlemauts. Tha most probable interpretation of the staff-
m>ntj which rafor t:i his wanderings is that Friar Juan went alone and
without otiicial assistance, and that lie may hava travelled as far north
a; tha River Gila. Tin datiils of his jourasy are hopelessly confused. It
is more than probable that there were a number of friars at work a-
mouc; tho outlyinj; Indian tribas, and tliera is no reason why one or more
of t'.iom may not have v>-antlercd north for some considerable distance."
— n —
"Tlie instructions of the viceroy, a model of care-
ful and explicit directions, Avere lianded to the zeal-
ous missionary in November 15^38. The choice ot a
leader was beyond question an excellent one, and
Mendoza had every reason to feel confidence in the
success of his undertakinji." (3)
After an ineffectual attempt by way of the prov-
ince of Topiza, Fr. Mrircos set out from the town
of San Miguel, in the province of Ouliacan, on
Friday March 7th, ICOO, "willi the assistance and
the favor of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, Our La-
dy, and our Seraphic Father St. Francis," as he him-
self writes in his narrative. Accompanied by Father
Honorato (-i), and taking with him the negro Este-
van, or Estevanico, one of the survivors of the Flori-
da expedition, togetlior with a number of Indians
from Cuchillo, Fr. Mrircos proceeded north to Petat-
Ian, or Rio Sinaloa. Here his companion, Friar Hor^o-
rato, fell sick, so that it was necessary to leave him
Thence, after tlirce days, "following as tiic Holy
Ghost did lead," lie travelled twenty-live or thirty
leagues, always kindly received l)y the natives. He
saw notliing worthy of notice, except that he met
some Indians from the island of Santiago, (Lower
California) where Cortes luid been.
Continuing for four days througli an uninhabited
district, wliich is the barren tract between the Kio
Yaqui and tlie liio Sonora, a distance of sometliing
more than one hundred miles, he came to a people
who had never heard of the Cliristiaiis. They enter-
tained him kindly, however, and called him "Havo=
(3) Parker, 14 Ann. Rop. papos :'jr,i-:i^:,. "Tlio ins^tructiotis trivcii to l^ri;lr
Marcos have been translated by Handelier in his "rontiibu: 'uiii'^ to tli >
History of the Southwest," p. 100. Tlie best account if Friar Marc<)s aiid
his explorations is tiiven in tliat volume." Ibid. [I) "IW.i \ i. Kj^>n-r.,
:!r)5, Friar Honorato is styled "lay brother."
Salpointo "Soldiers of the Cross," p. 26, ;i(). says that Fr. de Niza was hc
conipauiod on this trip by tho lay-brothers Daniel and Antonio de Siijt.i
Maria. I was unable ta find this informatiou anywhere olsc.
— 4 -
ta,*' or "Sayota," Avhicli in their language signifies
"a man from heaven." Tiiese Indians occupied the
valley of the Sonora River, called by Coronado the
Valley of the Corazones. Here Fr. Mdrcos was in-
formed that four or five days' journey into the coun-
try, at the foot of the mountains, "there was an ex-
tensive plain, v^iierein were many great towns and
people clad in cotton." When lie showed them cer-
tain metals which he had with him, ''they took the
mineral of gold," and told him tliat thereof were
vessels among tlie people of that plain, and that
they carried certain green stones hanging at their
nostrils and at their ears, and that they had certain
tliin plates of gold wherewith they scrape off their
sweat, and that the walls of their temples are cov-
ered therewith;" but as this valley or plain was dis-
tant from the sea-coast, he deferred "the discovery
thereof" until his return. By a reference to modern
maps, it will be perceived that this valley, which
Fr. Marcos was informed lies four or five days' travel
within the country, corresponds nearly with the llio
de las Casas Grandes, where at this day are ruins a-
bout one hundred and fifty miles east of the valley
of Rio Sonora. The ruins at the time of Fr. Mdrcos
must have been famous cities among the Indian
The seraphic explorer now travelled three days
through towns inhabited by the people of the Cora-
zones, and then, two days before Passion Sunday,
which in 1539 fell on March 28d, arrived at a town
of considerable size, called Yacupa or Vacapa, forty
leagues distant from the sea, i. e., the Gulf of Cali-
fornia. This place corresponds nearly with the pres-
ent Magdalena on the Rio San Miguel, (6) and its in-
(5) Shea, I. 115; Lieutonant A. W, Whipple in 'Pacific, Kail Boad Reports.'
Vol. III. p 10.5.
(6) Shea says, "San Luis de Vacapa in Sonora." Ibid. ; lltli An. Report
355; Bandelier identified Vacapa with the Eudevc settlement of Matapa
in central Sonora: Banc, agrees with Whipi)le; Hist, del Na.varit, 315;:W0.
habitants were probably the ancestors of tlie Cocopa
Indians, now scattered over the deserts northeastwaid,
and residing near the mouth of the Ixio (yolorado.
The people of Vacapa, he states, showed liini "great
courtesies, and give him large quantities of provis-
ions, because the soil is very fruitful ;;ud may be ir-
Fr. Marcos remained at A^acapa until April 6tli, in
order to send to the sea coast and summon fome In-
dians from whom he hoped to secure further inform-
ation about the pjarl islands of w'aich Oabeza de
Vaca had heard on his way from Florida. Meanwhile
he ordered the negro Estevan towards the north, in-
structing him to proceed lifty or sixty leagues and
see if he could find anything that might help them
in their search. If he found any sign of a rich and
populous country he was not to advance farther, but
to return to meet the Father, or else to wait where
he heard the news, sending some Indian messengers
l)ack to his superior witli a white cross the size of a
palm of his hand. If the news was very promising,
the cross was to be twice this size; and if the coun-
try about which he heard promised to 1)0 larger and
better tlian New Spain, a cross still larger than this
was to l)e sent liack.
Estevan started on Passion Sunday after dinner.
Four days later messengers sent l\v him lirought to
the Father "a very large cross, as tall as a man."
One of the Indians who had given the negro his in-
formation accompanied tlie messengers, and afhrmed,
as the friar carefully recorded, "that there are seven
very large cities in the first province, all under one
lord, with large houses of stone and lime; the small-
est one story higli, with a flat roof above, and others
two and three stories high, and the house of the lord
four stories high. They are all united under his rule,
(7) Whfpple p. 1C5.
nnd on the portals of the principal houses there are
many designs of turquoise stones, of which he says
tliey have a great abundance. And the people in
these cities are very well clothed Concerning other
provinces farther on, he said that each one of them
amounted to much more than seven cities."
''All that the Indian told Fr. Marcos was true,"
says Parker," and, what is more, the Spanish friar
seems to have correctly understood what the Indian
meant, except that the idea of several villages having
a common allied form of government was interpret-
ed as meaning the rule of a single lord, who lived in
what was to the Indians the chief, because the most
populous village. These villages of stone and lime,
or rather of stone and rolls or balls of adobe laid in
mud mortar, and sometimes whitened with a wadi of
; ypsum, were very large and wondrous alfairs when