University of Notre Dame

Diocese of Louisiana and the Floridas 1633








De Perea, el Padre Fray Estevan, Guardian of the Province of New Mexico

to Very Rev. Francis de Apodaca, Commissary General of all New Spain, of the order of St. Francis.

Expedition of twelve soldiers, nineteen priests and twelve lay brothers, Franciscans, from the City of Mexico set out on Sep. 4, 1628. With them was Fr. Estevan de Perea. At the Rio del Norte where the territory of New Mexico begins they took possession on April 7, 1629. At one day's march from Robledo, Fr. Martinez Gonzales died. Arrived at Santa Fe. As it was Pentecost the priests held their chapter after which priests and brothers went to the towns and colonies assigned to them, and to the large town of Humanas and to other towns called Pyros and Tonpiros. His Majesty's alms were distributed among the missions and catechetical stations. In charge of conversions were Fr. Antonio de Artiaga, Fray Francisco, Councelor, Fray Diego de la Fuente, Fray Francisco de Azebedo, priests and Garcia de San Francisco and Diego de San Lucas lay brothers. The Indians eagerly asked Baptism. An escort of twenty soldiers under Don Francisco de Sylva accompanied Fr. Bartholomew Romero and Fr. Francisco Munoz on the first expedition to the Apaches of Quinia and Manases. These Indians showed a great desire for Baptism. On June 23 Fray Roque de Figueredo, Fray Francisco de Porras, Fray Andres Gutierrez, and Fray Augustin de Cuellar, priests and Fray Francisco de San Buenaventura and Fray Cristoval de la Concepcion, also Estevan de Perea and Fr. Thomas Manso, set out for Penal de Acoma and the provinces of Zuni and Moqui. Fr. Juan Ramirez remained at Acoma. Going east they arrived at Zuni. The inhabitants were very exact in superstitious practices. Their villages have streets and continuous houses. These people are clothed. Corn, beans, and pumpkins are produced. The Indians were taught the veneration due to priests. A house was purchased for the priests and this later became the first church of the province. The country was taken possession of in the name of the Roman See and the king of Spain. Fr. Roque de Figueredo was left in charge together with Fr. Augustin de Cuellar, priest and Fray Francisco de la Madre de Dios, a lay brother and three soldiers. The Indians were attentive to Fr. Roque and helped supply the mission with its wants. This narrative will be continued in another account.

IV-4-a A.D. (printed) 4pp. 4to. (Spanish)
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[Another description of the same document.] 1633

Perea, el Padre Fray Estevan de, Guardian of the province of New Mexico.

To Very Rev. P.Fr. Francisco de Apodaca, Commissary General of all New Spain.

Fr. Francisco de Perea with Andres Gutierrez priest and Cristoval de la Concepcion, lay brother left Fr. Roque (de Figueredo) at Zibola. Twelve soldiers were in the company. They arrived at the province of Moqui on the feast of St. Bernard, the name now given to that town. The climate is moderate. The inhabitants are good farmers but are given to drunkenness. A Christian apostate had preceded the fathers and set the Indians against the Spaniards. The disturbed Moquinos secretly summoned the neighboring Apaches. The Spanish frustrated attempts to surprise them. The fathers fearlessly went abroad to preach. Men and women from the town and environs came to hear the priests who then distributed beads, bells, hatchets, etc. which the Indians refused to take. A great miracle whose authenticity is not yet fully established lead to conversions. The apostate returning to Fr. Roque de Figueredo in Zuni ordered the Indians to send away the priests. Two chiefs of a second village placated the chiefs of the first. Not only the chiefs but also the whole village desired baptism. The baptism of several chiefs and eight children took place on the feast of St. Augustine, 1629. The principal chief was baptized Augustin and returned to the town exhorting the people to be baptized. At this time the Apaches also came to ask peace of the Christian Indians and of the Spanish asking for priests although there were already two among them. They gave the priests an escort and one boy to learn the Spanish language and teach his own, which boy the priests took to Santa Fe. There they tried to obtain necessaries for a return to Humanas in the following March. Cattle and fruits abound and the land is fertile. It is also rich in metals, precious stones and silver.

IV-4-a A.D. (printed) 4pp 4to (Spanish)

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