Sunday, April 30, 2006

Book Review: California Missions

California Missions
The Earliest Series of Views Made in 1856.

Bellerophon Books, 2000

This book is a series of drawings of the California Missions hand sketched in 1856. It also has the artists diary entries made as he went down the California coast making the drawings.

In 1823 the new Mexican government closed and expropriated the Missions and handed the land over to it’s political supporters. These drawings were made when enough of the original buildings were still standing to make a picture of them. They are very well done.

The text provides a glimpse of what life was like at that time. Lawlessness seems to have been the major social condition. The author survived several adventures along the way.

This is published as children’s book but the pictures and text should be enjoyable to children from 8 to 80.

NOTE: The mission on the cover is San Carlos Borromeo from the orginal with color by a later artist.

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