Thursday, November 13, 2008

Carmel Mission

(Photo: Reduced from a photograph taken in 2004, courtesy of Stephen Lea, subject to the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.)

Spanish-American culture fell into disfavor in California in the mid-1800s as "Yankee culture" came to dominance, with the seizing of California by the U.S. from Mexico in 1846-48 and the arrival of new settlers. The Carmel Mission crumbled to ruin, one of many Spanish-American sites to suffer. But then, in the 1880s, gifted writers fell in love with the old ways – Helen Hunt Jackson with her seminal book, "Glimpses of California and the Missions," George Wharton James, Hubert Howe Bancroft, and others. They ushered in a new era of appreciation for the state's past. Loving restoration of the Carmel mission began in 1884.

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