This gallery is of images taken at the first established of the California Mission system, Nuestra Señora de Loreto Conchó and the second mission San Francisco Javier de Biaundó. The California Missions were connected by el Camino Real (the Royal Road) which starts at Loreto and travels to its northern limit at Sonoma, California USA. Fray Juan Maria Salvatierra founded Loreto on October 25, 1697 and Fray Francisco Piccolo founded the first mission site near San Javier in June of 1699. Fray Pedro de Ugarte moved the San Javier mission to its present location in 1706.
The historic mission building at Loreto was started 1740 and completed by 1752 with full adornments. The Loreto mission was damaged during the great earthquake of 1877 and sat in ruins until its reconstruction in 1955 paid with by the parish priest Fr. Modesto Sanchez’ own lottery winnings! The construction of the mission at San Javier, an architectural miracle considering its placement, was started in 1744 and completed in 1758. Of all the California Missions, San Javier is considered to be the most pristine and beautiful example.