Franciscan Frontiersmen: How Three Adventures Chartered the West
Monday, Nov 27, 2017 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
The Book Club of California
312 Sutter Street (cross street Grant)
San Francisco, CA
An illustrated talk by Robert Kittle, journalist and historian.
Seating is limited. Visit the BCC web site for a link to RSVP.
Based on a newly published book of the same title, this presentation explores the lives of three pioneering friars, Pedro Font, Francisco Garces, and Juan Crespi, who accompanied Junipero Serra to California in the last half of the eighteenth century. Drawing on the long-forgotten journals, extensive trail observations, and correspondence of the three padres, as well as the author’s own exhaustive field research, the presentation will provide fresh insights into the rigors of daily life on the frontiers of New Spain. These three Franciscans were the chaplains and official diarists of Spain’s pathfinding expeditions on the West Coast of North America. In the tumult of the Spanish crown’s colonization, Font, Garces, and Crespi endured terrifying storms at sea, blood-soaked Indian attacks, starvation, scurvy, and lonely isolation as they carved trails through uncharted lands. Together, they explored a swath of the continent that was larger and more important than that explored by Lewis and Clark a generation later. But their exploits have been overlooked, because Americans are eager to learn their English past but largely ignore their Spanish past.