Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Two Ts & a S (Tubac, Tumacacori & San Xavier Del Boc)

We were able to cross three more sightseeing places off the bucket list for Grant.  He had researched these on the internet and wanted to check them out before he left Tucson.  

TUMACACORI We headed for Tumacacori first since it was the longest drive from the motorhome.  Grant likes to know how far everything is and I guessed 25 miles away, but it was more like 50 miles away.  He noticed the longer drive.
The Tumacácori Mission was established in 1691 by Father Eusebio Francisco Kino. It was established one day before the Guevavi Mission, making it the oldest Jesuit mission site in southern Arizona. The mission was originally called San Cayetano de Tumacacori. It was established at an existing native O'odham or Sobaipuri settlement on the east side of the river.
After the Pima rebellion of 1751, the mission was moved to the present site on the west side of the Santa Cruz river and renamed San José de Tumacácori. Father Kino was a Jesuit missionary and was instrumental in the building of Mission in this area.  When Portugal, France and Spain withdrew the Jesuits from New Spain and other places, Franciscan missionaries took their place.  It was almost 75 years before the present day church was built.  Mexico made all non-Mexican born people depart after they gained their independence and by 1848, the mission was abandoned and began falling into severe disrepair. Preservation and stabilization efforts began in 1908 when the area was declared a National Monument by President Theodore Roosevelt and continue today.

The area was used by cattle ranchers as a corral, grazing and other uses for many years and many of the buildings were destroyed.  The graveyards were destroyed and it still remains a mystery where they were.  One small graveyard is behind the church, but over 375 recorded burials took place at Tumacacori.

Gerry & Grant

Homemade tortillas

Grant taking a closeup of Mexican Poppy

Side view of church and food storage area on right.

Typical O'odham Indian house with shade porch in front.

Front view of house
 TUBAC- History
Established in 1752 as a Spanish presidio, the first Spanish colonial garrison in what is now Arizona, Tubac was one of the stops on the Camino Real (the "Royal Road") from Mexico to the Spanish settlements in California.
Tubac's most famous Spanish resident was Juan Bautista de Anza. While stationed at Tubac (1760–1776), de Anza built the chapel of Santa Gertrudis, the foundations of which lie beneath today's St. Ann's Church.
Apaches attacked the town repeatedly in the 1840s, forcing the Sonoran Mexicans to abandon both Tumacacori and Tubac.
Tubac was the scene of a four-day siege in 1861, between Tubac's male population, Confederate militia and Apache warriors
Tubac is now an artsy town with a lot of craft goods, jewelry, paintings, clothing, etc. on sale in the many shops there.  We stopped there for lunch and to give Grant a chance to pick up some souvenirs for his mom & dad.  It would be easy to write a complete blog about Tubac, but that will have to be at another time.

Grant kissing a frog,  finally!


A little of everything

Grant & Gerry looking for bargains.

 San Xavier Del Boc -  It was late in the afternoon by the time we got to San Xavier and they were closed for the day.  We did want Grant to see how beautiful the mission church was there, so we stopped by for a few minutes.  Once again, we did give it the time deserved to fully appreciate the beauty of the church.  I have photos from other visits and will do a blog on it later.

 The current church dates from the late 1700's, when Southern Arizona was part of New Spain. In 1783, Franciscan missionary Fr. Juan Bautista Velderrain was able to begin construction on the present structure using money borrowed from a Sonoran rancher. He hired an architect, Ignacio Gaona, and a large workforce of O'odham to create the present church.

Following Mexican independence in 1821, San Xavier became part of Mexico. The last resident Franciscan of the 19th Century departed in 1837. With the Gadsden Purchase of 1854, the Mission joined the United States. In 1859 San Xavier became part of the Diocese of Santa Fe. In 1866 Tucson became an incipient diocese and regular services were held at the Mission once again. Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet opened a school at the Mission in 1872. Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity now teach at the school and reside in the convent. The Franciscans returned to the Mission in 1913.

Since it was Wednesday, Grant reminded us of the free pie at that restaurant.  He couldn't remember the name, but he did remember the free pie.  So, at the end of the long trip we stopped once again at the Village Inn and had dinner plus the pie.  Gerry's chicken pot pie left a lot to be desired and she returned it for another one.  It was ok, but not up to previous experience with their chicken pot pie.  They let us pick whatever pie we wanted from the menu as a way to compensate us and also comped a portion of the meal.  The real pies are shown below.

I'm a fast eater and the small piece of cherry pie was mine.  The other two pies slices were very rich and tasty.  Gerry brought half of hers home and Grant managed to finish his off.

That was our interesting, busy day, how was yours?


  1. I think it is so fantastic that Grant wants to visit all these wonderful places. Free pie really made an impression. Off to the skin doc for me today so that's how my day goes.

  2. It is so nice that Grants wants to spend time with his grandparents. Sure looks like you all are having a great time. Yes pie for sure especially since it is free.