Far from Human and Scarcely Civilized

Letters written by California Mission founder Junipero Serra and one of his successors, Fermín Francisco de Lasuén, help create context for the attitude of leaders of the missions toward Indians. Told by church officials to allow Indians to “change their location” and “journey from place to place,” Lasuén protests that this would never work for mission Indians, particularly “our own,” implying that mission Indians were possessions of the Friars.  Read the entire essay by Steven Newcomb appearing in Indian Country Today. 


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