Thursday, February 20, 2014

Some early Arizona history

Southern Arizona was once part of New Spain and the Spanish culture and Catholic faith were spread by Catholic priests. Tuesday we visited Tumacacori National Historical Park. The first Catholic mission was established in 1691 by Fr. Eusebio Kino. Construction on the church that is featured at the historical park began in 1820.

This is the carved entry door.

Some of the interior decorations are still visible.

The mission priests taught new farming methods to the Pima Indians. These pots show where they kept seeds from the harvest for the comming year's plantings.

We saw some granding stones.

This is the kind of shelters they would have used in the farm fields.  The fence and ramada are made from ocotilla branches.

And here is what remains of a water trough as part the irrigation system.

They are developing an orchard, using seeds from trees that existed in the mission days. Look at the rocks hanging from this tree. It shows the historic methods of shaping the pruned trees.

Some local residents were demonstrating how they make corn and flour tortillas. It was interesting to see how tender and light their hand-made tortillas were. We were able to sample them, served with beans and salsa.

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