San Antonio Missions in the Late 18th Century - Decline or Success?

Author(s): Susan R Snow

Year: 2018


Discussion of the Spanish Colonial period in San Antonio in the last quarter of the 18th century often focuses on the decline of the missions, the lack of indigenous people in the missions and the crumbling structures.  This characterization contradicts the successful completion of some of the most significant colonial structures in San Antonio such as the church at Mission San José. This paper will begin to look at evidence from the archeological and archival records that suggest that rather than a decline during this period we see evidence of the success of the missions in transforming this area into new Spanish settlements with the expansion of buildings within the mission compounds, successful export of agricultural products, and growing settlements outside of the missions including private ranches.  Through this lens we see this time period as really marking the beginning of what we call Tejano or South Texas culture today.

Cite this Record

San Antonio Missions in the Late 18th Century - Decline or Success?. Susan R Snow. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, New Orleans, Louisiana. 2018 ( tDAR id: 441214)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 428