Further Reading

A recommended reading list of books.

1. Brown, Alan K., With Anza to California, University of Oklahoma Press, 2010 is the translation of the field notes or borrador that Fray Pedro Font wrote during the journey of the Juan Bautista de Anza 1775/76 Colonizing Expedition to Alta California. This recently discovered diary was first published in Spanish by José Luis Soto Pérez and was found en el Archivo General de la Orden Franciscana (Roma) M/62; Mexici Missiones 11. fols 177r – 257r.  It resided in the work of Fray Francisco Palou, O.F.M., Recopilación de Noticias De La Antigua y De La Nueva California 1763-1783. While essentially the same in content, as the two previous diaries, it has other pertinent information not included on both.
Submitted by Phil Valdez Jr.

2. Smith, Fay Jackson, Captain of the Phantom Presidio, The Arthur Clark Company, Spokane, Washington, 1993.  Is a history of the Presidio of Fronteras, Sonora, New Spain, 1686 – 1735, which is located forty miles south of Douglas, Arizona. It was established, as Santa Rosa de Corodeguachi in 1701, as a military post. It accounts for the life and times of the Presidio in the aforementioned dates with conflicts between the military, Jesuits, and the abuse of Indians in the mines. Juan Matheo Manje is featured prominently. Don Juan is best remembered as Kino’s friend and escort.
Submitted by Phil Valdez Jr.

3. Garate, Donald T. Antepasados; Publications of Los Californianos. The Juan
Bautista de Anza – Fernando Rivera y Moncada Letters of 1775-1776. Volume XII, 2006. Personalities in Conflict. Transcribed and Translated with Commentary Notes. These letters are between Lt. Colonel Juan Bautista de Anza and the military commander of Alta California, Fernando Javier de Rivera y Moncada, during the 1775/76 Colonizing expedition. Their correspondence begins at Puerto Real de San Carlos and ends at the Santa Anna River crossing when Anza was on his return march. These letters not only tell of the conflict between these two giants of early California history, but of the names of expedition members which were not previously known, the tools used on the trek, and the use of mules for packing, pullings, and/or riding. Soon the reader will realize that these two personalities had egos as big as the state of California and one would have to give way. An excellent addition to anyone’s Spanish California history library.
Submitted by Phil Valdez Jr.

4. Guerrero, Vladimir. The Anza Trail and The Settling of California. Heyday Press, Berkeley, Ca; 2006. This is a very recent book about the 1st exploratory trek in 1774 and then the colonizing expedition to California in 1775-76. The author invokes a novel approach in his retelling of the expedition stories. He researched the original diaries in Spanish, and then told the story through the eyes of four key participants; the criollo Anza, the Spaniard Garces, the Native American guide Sebastian Tarabal, and the Native American facilitator at the crucial Colorado River Crossing, Salvador Palma. The result is very thought-provoking, and this carefully researched book is a solid addition to the growing list of books about Anza and his remarkable achievements.
Submitted by Joseph Myers

5. Bolton, Herbert Eugene. (ed. And trans.) Anza’s California Expeditions, University of California Press, 1930. This is a five volume set; a classic work about the Anza expeditions of 1774 and 1775-76.

In the first volume entitled “An Outpost of an Empire,” Bolton tells the complete stories of Anza’s 1st exploratory expedition to California from Tubac, Arizona, in 1774 and then about Anza leading the colonists to settle California in the winter of 1775-76. The volume contains many black and white photos and other illustrations, and also ten maps. The finest map is in the back of the book; it is his rendition of all of Anza’s routes through Pimeria Alta. Bolton had the foresight to indicate latitudes and longitudes so his best guesses on actual routes and campsites can usually be pinpointed with some degree of accuracy.

Volume II is entitled “Opening a Land Route to California.” It contains the actual 1774 diaries of Anza, Diaz, Graces and Palou. The diaries are all translated from the original Spanish manuscripts and edited by Bolton. There are actually three diaries by Anza covering his first trek in 1774; his diary from Tubac to San Gabriel, his return diary, and his complete diary. There are two diaries by Diaz; his diary from Tubac to San Gabriel and his return diary. There are three diaries by Garces; his diary from Tubac to San Gabriel, a brief account, and his diary of his detour to the Jalchedunes. Lastly is the Palou diary of the expedition to San Francisco Bay. Bolton illustrated this volume with a number of black and white photos but he did not include any maps.

Volume III is entitled “The San Francisco Colony.” It contains the diaries of Anza, Font, Eixarch, and narratives by Palou and Moraga. Anza’s diary in this volume covers the 2nd expedition in 1775-76. Font wrote two or possibly three diaries about the trek and his short diary is included here. Eixarch remained at the Colorado River while the Colonists went on to California and his diary highlights his living conditions with the Indians at the Colorado River. Palou and Moraga both wrote an account of the founding of San Francisco. Again it is well illustrated but contain no maps.

Volume IV is entitled “Diary Of An Expedition To Monterey By Way Of The Colorado River, 1775-1776.” It is well illustrated and contains Font’s general map at the back of the book. It also contains a number of general maps made by him and some sketches. In Volumes II and III the day by day accounts are usually brief. Font must have kept additional notes on the journey and when he returned, he spent considerable time writing this greatly expanded version of his diary. It is from this diary that we get most of the insight into the happenings along the way. He also gives us his impression of Anza, with no punches pulled. Font suffered, possibly from a bout of malaria, during the entire journey and often had the ague or flux. A lot of historians tend to smooth over his caustic observations, explaining that he made the trek when he was ill and perhaps only a step or two away from his death-bed. Maybe, but this is probably a little over dramatic.

Volume V is entitled “Correspondence.” It contains twenty letters regarding the
genesis of the expedition. The second sections includes another fourteen letters
written along the way. The third section contains seventeen reports on the 1st expedition. Then regarding the 2nd expedition, there are nineteen letters regarding preparations; another ten “Echoes from the Trail” and another eleven official reports. The last section contains fourteen letters regarding Anza taking Chief Palma to Mexico. Again the volume is well illustrated.
Submitted by Joseph Myers

6. Garate, Donald T. Juan Bautista de Anza, University of Nevada Press, 2003. This is the story of the father of Anza; the two shared the same name. The book is about a “Basque Explorer in the New World.” In his extensive research, Garate found the home town in Spain the Anza family came from, and traced the father from his childhood to the new world and eventually death at the hands of the Apaches. The son Anza was only three when this occurred so there is very little about the son. An excellent book on the early background of Anza Sr in the new world.
Submitted by Joseph Myers

7. Garate, Donald T. Antepasados; Publications of Los Californianos. Anza
Correspondence 1775. Volume Vlll, 1995. Transcribed, Translated and Indexed ( With Commentary Notes ). This is a collection of letters, beginning with a letter from Viceroy Bucareli to Anza from Mexico City, dated January 2, 1775. These are some 61 letters, the last one from Urrea to Anza in October, 1775. Fascinating background material for the colonizing expedition.
Submitted by Joseph Myers

8. Valdez Phil Jr., The Anza Letters, Somos Primos e-Magazine. Translated and edited from the original Spanish letters. These letters were rediscovered by the writer at the Bancroft Library and tell the story of the correspondence between Lt. Colonel Juan Bautista de Anza and the Governor of California, Fernando Javier de Rivera y Moncada. The letters not only shed light on the communications of these two powerful individuals but provide much needed information not found on the diaries of either Anza or Font. An excellent source, that augments the 1775/76 colonizing expedition diaries, and it’s excerpts are a blog posting on this site.
Submitted by Phil Valdez Jr.

9. Smestad, Greg Bernal-Mendoza. Antepasados; Publication of Los Californianos.
A Guide to the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail Guide. Volume XI, 2005. This is an outstanding trail guide; part 1 describes the trail as it exists today and contains directions for the auto route, hiking/biking ideas, and well researched comments on camp sites along the way. Especially appealing are the maps and photograph which abound in the guide. In a very systematic fashion it covers the entire trail from Arizona to San Francisco. One segment not included but still needed is on horse trails within the overall trail system. Part 2 is entitled “The Anza Trail Guide” and presents resources for understanding the expedition. There is a through explanation of the expedition and the background on what it took logistically to make it work. This is followed with a county-by-county activity/question/answer section. Lastly, the author included a CD with sounds from the trail such as sea and bird sounds, O’ odham language, the Alabado, Font’s Te Deum, Desert Fandangos, etc. All in all a very entertaining and informative book. Some of the costs were defrayed by the cost share program of the Department of the Interior and contents of the guide are under the watchful eye of the Superintendent of the Historic Trail (National Park
Service). Hopefully it will be updated at some point as the trail descriptions will surely change in time.
Submitted by Joseph Myers

10. Martinez, Wilfred O. Anza and Cuerno Verde, Decisive Battle, El Escritorio, Pueblo,CO; 2001. The author is a 13th generation descendant of an original Mexican colonist of New Mexico under Onate in 1598. In addition his 6th generation great-grandfather was a mapmaker for Anza (Mier y Pacheco). This book describes the expedition Anza took as governor of New Mexico against the Comanche in 1779. The decisive battle was fought just south of Pueblo and the author feels he has found the elusive site. There is still some controversy about the site but convincing arguments are presented in this very brief but throughly researched book about the expedition of some 800 men, including Native American allies, against the Comanche. (His appendix contains several lineages and explanation of the name Martinez.
Submitted by Joseph Myers

11. Erskine, Dorothy Ward, North with De Anza, Thomas Y. Crowell Co. New York,
1958. This was written from the perspective of some of the children on the colonizing expedition of 1775-76. It opens with Pedro Peralta and his mother, and brings into the story a number of other children and their families that went on the expedition. It is a very good book for children interested in history and adventure.
Submitted by Joseph Myers

12. Conley, Frances. Journey To A Distant Shore; in which a captain in the army of Spain brings the first settlers to California. San Pablo Historical Museum Society, 1984. This story was written to tell the story of the first settlers who came to San Francisco. The author traveled over most of the territory, researching the book. It opens, however, perpetuating the myth that the grandfather of Anza served Spain for thirty years as a soldier on the frontier of (Mexico-Arizona border). It is well written in general and tell the story of colonizing expedition in a brief but complete manner.
Submitted by Joseph Myers

13. Conley, Frances. Long Road to Ranch San Pablo. East Bay Blue Print, Oakland, Ca,.1989. This story is of Francisco Castro, who came to California as a small child 1776, and who lived to be the owner of a vast estate on the shore of San Francisco Bay. The Castro family is followed from the expedition in 1776, to the settlement, and then describes some of their trials as a family through the Mexican era in California.
Submitted by Joseph Myers

14. Bankston, John. Juan Bautista de Anza, Mitchell Lane Publishers, Hockessin,
Delaware 19797, 2004
Submitted by Lou Fulen

15. Comstock, Esther J, Feliciana’s California Miracle, Bonanza Books, Grass Valley, Ca., tells the story of Feliciana Arballo’s, decision to go on the expedition despite much advise to the contrary. The darling of the 1775/76 colonizing expedition sang and danced at the San Sebastian campsite where Father Font chastised her for dancing and singing songs which where not nice. She left the expedition at Mission San Gabriel, and married Juan Francisco Lopez. Her daughter, Eustaquia, went on to become the mother of the last Governor of California under Spanish rule, Pio Pico. Ms. Comstock says “The story of Feliciana is romantic, touching and amusing and is one that will surprise many”.
Submitted by Phil Valdez Jr.

16. Kessell, John L. Pueblos, Spaniards, and the Kingdom of New Mexico,
Kessell is a retired history professor from the University of New Mexico and lives near Durango, Colorado. He grew up in Fresno, CA and spent time in Arizona, before his tenure in New Mexico. Two books were written during that era: Mission of Sorrows: Jesuit Guevavi and the Pimas, 1691-1767 (Tucson, 1970) and Friars, Soldiers, and Reformers: Hispanic Arizona and the Sonora Mission Frontier, 1767-1856 (Tucson 1976). Collaborating with others, a six volume series emerged on Diego de Vargas, a two term governor of New Mexico around 1700. Two more comprehensive and well written books of his on the southwest include Kiva, Cross, and Crown: The Pecos Indians and New Mexico, 1540-1840 and Spain in the Southwest: A Narrative History of Colonial New Mexico, Arizona, Texas, and California.

This is a narrative history of New Mexico, spanning over four hundred years. It
opens with a 35,000 foot elevation view of the pueblo world along the Rio Grande
River in modern-day New Mexico – before Coronado in 1540 and Onate and his colonists arrived in 1598, changing the life of the pueblo Indians forever. The remote territory was about 200 miles south to north and over 300 miles east to west. And at the time of Coronado in 1540 it was occupied by some 60-80,000 Native Americans. In just over 200 years, by 1750, the native population and Spanish population were about equal, at 10,000 each. The book ends noting that the two cultures now were forced to aid and abet one another in surviving against a new, common enemy – the Comanche.

Kessell provides a lot of detail as he introduces character after character in his narrative, and balances the Spaniards skillfully with the Native Americans, treating both cultures with insight not usually found in ordinary history books on the southwest. During his brief summary of the pueblo world during the time of Coronado, he introduces Juan Troyano, a Spanish soldier having served in Italy and now on the expedition with Coronado. In Chapter 2, Captain Gaspar Perez de Villagra is introduced. He was a criollo, born in Mexico and educated in Spain. Now he is at Acoma in 1599, having arrived in 1598 as chief supply officer for the 129 households that made up the Onate colonization effort. In January, he was involved in the force sent to subdue the rebellious natives at Acoma,. After days of fierce fighting, the Spanish proved their mettle, returning toward Santa Fe with some 500-600 prisoners. A trial was held just south of modern-day Santa Fe at Santa Domingo pueblo. The deaths of the Acoma warriors and the severe punishment (older boys and men had a foot cut off according to orders) left a deep scar on the Natives at Acoma, and even today they refuse to forget their past grievances and forgive the Euro descendants.

Kessell brings in character after character, and sheds a lot of light on the reasons for the pueblo uprising in 1680. There are ties to Arizona as well. When Kino entered the Papaguria in 1687, it was not long before he was accompanied by a nephew of General Jironza. That history is detailed in Rim of Christendom by H. Bolton. We learn in this book a lot more about Jironza, and how he was a two term governor of the colonists as they tried to survive the 1680s in El Paso. Kessell’s real forte though is Governor Vargas and the Pecos pueblo. The native population and leaders come to life as he weaves them in and out of the narrative during the uprising and then the reconquest in 1692-94. It is much easier to understand the role of the inquisition and the power of the church after reading the book. It is also easier to appreciate the fact the natives were real people. For example, Bartolome de Ojeda figured prominently in the narrative. His grandmother, a mestiza, was a Christian and Bartolome was educated by the Franciscans, at Santa Ana or Zia pueblo. He was instrumental in the success of Vargas in returning with colonists to retake Santa Fe and resettle the area. The epilogue deals with the pueblo world in about 1760, some
18 years before Anza arrived to serve as governor for 10 years and made a stable
peace with the warring Native Americans, including the Comanche, Apache, Ute, Navaho and Hopi.

All in all, the book is a welcome addition to the history of the southwest. Colin Calloway probably said it best: “A thoughtful and illuminating narrative of conflict and coexistence lucidly written by a distinguished scholar of colonial New Mexico. “
Submitted by Joe Myers