Mission San Luis Rey
The first complete story of one of California's most important historical and archaeological sites.
By Harry Kelsey
Mission San Luis Rey: A Brief History explores the story of this important Mission and its people starting with the pre-European era, followed by the arrival of a Spanish expedition in 1769 to establish military garrisons and Indian missions in Upper California. The book features over 70 historic photos, maps, and drawings, many previously unpublished.
Separate chapters detail the founding of the mission, mission life, the end of the mission with secularization in the 1830s, and the decay and destruction of the original buildings over the following decades. The book concludes with the return of the Franciscans in 1892, the restoration of the mission church, the rebuilding of the entire compound in the first half of the twentieth century, and the ongoing archaeological discoveries.
This book sets forth the engaging story of what is arguably the finest mission church in California, retaining most of the features that it had when it was finished nearly two centuries ago. As the author notes, "There are not half a dozen buildings in the state with that sort of history."
Harry Kelsey is a historian and research scholar at the Huntington Library. He is the author of many books including Sir Francis Drake, Sir John Hawkins, Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, Mission San Juan Capistrano, and Discovering Cabrillo.
Softcover, 154 pages, 5.5" x 8.5".