Mission San Francisco Solano in Sonoma California was the 21st, last and northernmost mission in Alta California. It was the only mission built in Alta California after Mexico gained independence from Spain. The difficulty of its beginning demonstrates the confusion resulting from that change in governance. The California Governor wanted a robust Mexican presence north of the San Francisco Bay to keep the Russians who had established Fort Ross on the Pacific coast from moving further inland.
Padre Jose Altimira, a young spanish Franciscan friar from Mission San Francisco de Asis in San Francisco wanted to move to a location with a better climate and access to a larger number of potential converts. So Mission San Francisco Solano was founded 4 July 1823 by Padre Jose Altimira. The Mission is named for St. Francis Solano, missionary to the Peruvian Indians. The Indian name was thought to be Sonoma. Now part of the Sonoma State Historic Park
The Mission was successful given its short eleven year life but was smaller in number of converts and with lower productivity and diversity of industries than the older California missions.
March 5th, 2015
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