History of California: The Spanish Period | Charles Edward Chapman | Early Modern | Book | 6/12

History of California: The Spanish Period | Charles Edward Chapman | Early Modern | Book | 6/12

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If you have ever wondered why Spain (and not Japan, which was so so much better positioned to do it) was first to “settle” the Golden State, this book is for you. Professor Chapman has produced a comprehensive and highly entertaining popular history of “the Californias,” beginning with a nod to geography and the native races and carrying on through to the arrival of Old Glory in 1848.
What might in less capable hands have proved a heavy historical loaf to digest is lightened and leavened with the yeast of “interesting incident” throughout. Consider the plight of the newly-appointed Governor of Alta California, Pedro Fages, whose own wife, the fiery Catalan Doña Eulalia Callis, who, when she wasn’t giving away to the “naked indians” all of her own clothes (and the Governor’s, too) secretly petitioned the authorities in Mexico for his removal from office. The author relates at some length the romantic story of beautiful Conceptión Argüello, who chose to wait faithfully all her life for the return of the rascally Razánov the Russian, with whom she had fallen in love. The tragic conclusion of this affair is touchingly imagined in an extended quote from the famous poem by Bret Harte.(1)
But not all is frivolity. The historical meat is here as well, in breadth and in detail. The author’s stated purpose is “to show that California history is important as well as interesting,—that the great Anza expedition of 1775-1776 and the Yuma massacre of 1781 demand inclusion in any comprehensive history of the United States,—that California, while it indeed has a romantic history to tell, has also a great deal more than that to contribute to the cherished traditions of the American people.” (Preface)
(1) Conceptión de Argüello. by Bret Harte, Presidio de San Francisco, 1800.
– Summary by Steven Seitel

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chapter 15 a history of California the Spanish period this LibriVox recording is in the public domain chapter 15 progress of the idea of Overland advance to the California's 1687 to 1765 the establishment of the Jesuit missions in Baja California was in conformity with government projects but was far from being as thorough going and extensive a settlement as the authorities could have wished the basis of their desires the strategic importance of the California's with reference to New Spain has already been alluded to several times but in the face of the difficulties in the way of occupying the land the impelling causes and the motive agencies of conquest had to be very strong in order to achieve the wisp or result it is well at this point to get these factors clearly in mind before proceeding with the detail as to the governmental plans and activities the mere lust or vainglory of conquest in itself without the inducement of profits had never appealed to the Spaniards in the Americas conquests involved expenditures and the government had no funds for expeditions that promised no clearly recognizable advantage the northern mystery still lived in the 18th century in the minds of many individuals at least in its milder forms of wealth and precious metals kingdoms of kuvira and straits of an eon though fountains of youth and amazon islands were no longer urged seriously but the government was utterly unmoved by these tales or at any rate declined to open the royal purse in order to investigate them a definite discovery of wealth in precious metals might indeed cause it to assume the expense of a conquest but the evidences of discovery had to be convincing before it would start mere wealth and natural resources of the kind that would require time and capital to develop did not interest a state precious metal would yield immediate returns through the exaction the royal 5th or through the sale of Quicksilver which was a royal monopoly for extracting gold or silver from the ores but Spain had other uses for her long term capital than its employment in a distant frontier province of the Empire there was one perennial cause for conquest the fear lest some other European power might occupy lands that would threaten those already possessed by Spain that is the element of foreign danger which had made its appearance as a factor in Spanish Imperial counsels when Drake's visit to the Pacific coast had inaugurated the area of the aggressive defensive in California affairs in this matter Spain was unceasingly distrustful enter fear was constant indeed skepticism was thrown to the winds where foreign aggressions were concerned and mere unauthenticated reports were sufficient to produce expensive efforts from which no financial profit was expected to be derived hardly a year passed without some governmental project on this account but the advances between 1687 and 1769 except for the Jesuit activities in Baja California were more in the way of improving the eventual line of communications than in taking over new territories all of this was essential work if the details are not dwelt upon here it is not because the founding of a Presidio or the suppression of an Indian war in Sonora was a matter of no importance what might have happened if incontrovertible evidence of foreign aggression in California's had been received as a question but no such proofs were obtained in this period suspicions there was always down to 1761 it was directed primarily against the French but the English were at all times suspected in the fear of Russian encroachments began to be a factor from about the middle of the 18th century in any event the government had to have fit instruments to carry out its policies of defensive conquest the relative importance of the millet very the religious and the civilian settler as agencies of conquest has already been discussed but it should be emphasized that the conversion of Indians to Christianity is to be regarded distinctly as an agency rather than the cause of conquest on this point Father angle Hart says quote the Kings indeed desired the conversion of the Indians to Christianity and frequently declared this to be the chief aim of the conquest nevertheless the object for which alone expenses were incurred was political in quote and again quote the man who presumed to guide the destinies of Spain cared not for the success of religion or the welfare of its ministers except insofar as both could be used to promote political schemes in quote anybody who has made an extensive study of the documents of the period will recognize that these statements are essentially true unquestionably the conversion of the Indians was the principle object to the missionaries but with a government it was merely a means to an end if funds were provided permissions it was because some political advantage was expected or in the order that some danger to the state might be averted as an agency of conquest however the work of the religious as already indicated was very important one other important agency of conquest had to combine with these elements which were permanently in the field if a striking advance were to be made toward and into the California's especially in the absence of definite information of a foreign invasion to act as an exceptional spurred conquest the difficulties to be overcome geographical barriers the insufficient funds which the government was willing to apply the hindrances of graft and administrative cumbersome nests the numerous Indians to be encountered in the competition of Europeans were so great that only a leader of extraordinary energy and ability could push ahead of the normal march of conquest Salvatierra vinegar they demonstrated the necessary qualities of Baja California but no other great leader appeared until the arrival of Jose de gálvez in 1765 there are many however who paved the way for later conquests by their explorations of little known lands or by their propaganda in favour of an advance three factors should be considered then in dealing with the Spanish approach to Alta California projects for in advance including the activities of individuals and the plans of the government the obstacles in the way of an advance and the normal march of conquest by the land route through Sonora the initial impulse for the Spanish advance over the last stretch of land that separated New Spain from California's was given by father Eusebio Francisco Pino of the Jesuit Order in 1687 when he established the Mission Dolores on one of the upper branches of the Sonora River he took the first step toward bringing primera Alta within the frontier and extending the Spanish occupation to its Pacific coast objectives of Baja California and Monterey his major interest aside from the immediate problems connected with his missionary labors in primo de Alta was the discovery and development of a supply route to Baja California as a member of the O'Donnell colony of 1683 to 1685 as already stated he had acquired an interest in the peninsula which thereafter he never ceased to have he it was who inspired Salvatierra to make the attempt which had resulted in the Jesuit occupation of Baja California in 1697 after exploring the Gila and Colorado valleys Kino became interested in the northern lands as well hoping to reach Monterrey he trusted that the Manila galleon might be ordered to stop there and send goods overland to Sonora and he grew to believe that a settlement should be founded on the Colorado River to serve as a base for operations against the Apaches and moki's to the east and northeast and for the conquest of the California's on the one hand and the lands intervening between Sonora and New Mexico on the other these ideas constituted in effect the program of Spanish northwestward conquest for the next hundred years the partial fulfillment of this plan by the Anza expeditions of 1775 to 1783 was to have tremendous consequences to the eventual advantage of California and the United States just as a failure of the Colorado gila settlements in 1781 was to have equally important and as it turned out equally fortunate results Pinot is therefore one of the headlights in the list of those men who contributed to the founding of Spanish California not only did he possess these ideas himself but he also disseminated them in his voluminous writings including correspondence memorials and a volume recounting his experiences in the quarter of a century following his appearance in Primaria Alta Kino and his companions pushed the frontier of mission work and the exploration of the Gila and the Lower Colorado by 1695 Kino had established a chain of missions up and down the valley of the out are his repeated journey sub X raishin took him among other places to the borders of the California's and enabled him to help clear up the geographical puzzles about those lands keno had come to America in the belief that California was a peninsula but under the influence of current teachings had accepted the idea that it was an island during his last journey to the gila however he had been given some blue shells such as he had seen on the western coast of Baja California and nowhere else he now reasoned that California must after all be a peninsula and that it might be possible to find a land route over which to send supplies to Salvatierra struggling missions to test this view was the principal object of his later explorations in 1700 he for the first time descended the healeth to its junction with a Colorado in the following year accompanied by Salvatierra he tried to reach the head of the gulf by going up the coast from Sonoita failing in this he went to the Gila Junction descended the Colorado nearly to its mouth and crossed over on a raft in 1702 he again descended the Colorado this time reaching the Gulf he had now proved to his own satisfaction at least that California was a peninsula meanwhile Tino and his brother friars had pushed the missionary frontier to the Gila in 1700 he founded the mission of san xavier del BAC and within the next two years those of two mccrory in Gua Valley all in the santa cruz valley and within modern arizona he knows exploring tours were also itinerant missions and in the course of them he baptized and taught in numerous villages up and down the Gila and Colorado and throughout from area alpha Tino had blazed the trail the record of the next half-century after the completion of his own labors in 1711 amounts to accumulation of achievements along the lines that he had already laid down fathers Agustin Campos Juan de jugar thing Ignacio Keller Jacobo settle Meyer and Fernando con sack of the Jesuit Order carried on explorations in the Colorado gila country and in the Gulf of California the most important result of their work was the definite proof obtained by who Garth day and cons AG that there was no straight separating the California's from the mainland development of overland routes for further settlements and a carrying of supplies was therefore possible noteworthy too were the problems in imaginary geography arising from settle Meyers journey of 1744 when he ascended the Colorado to Bill Williams Fork fears arose lest the French and after 1763 the English might be near the sources of the Colorado settle Meyer had also heard that there was a certain real Amarillo a little further on beyond where he had gone and that it flowed westward out of the Colorado people wondered whether this might be the Carmello which emptied near Monterey a tiny stream which Vizcaino had exaggerated the proportions of a mighty river the proximity of the French or of the English and the watercourses by which they might advance against New Spain were used henceforth as leading arguments for an occupation of the Colorado gila country and Monterey the names of those who fell erred akeno's ideas are legion the Jesuits Jose Ortega in 1754 on various Morel 1757 and Francisco Xavier Alegre 1767 published books in which were set forth similar arguments to those that Kino had made the same things came out in the memorials of Campos settle Meyer Escobar head of the Jesuits in New Spain bather Altamirano head of the order in Spain and Juan Antonio Balthazar also at the Jesuit Order and of other individuals such as Captain Juan Bautista De Anza father of the Anza who had the expedition's of 1774 and 1775 76 to Alta California Bishop Veneto Crespo of Puebla a certain jose de mesa captain Fernando Sanchez and another military officer named pedro de la barquera royal officials in Mexico City and Spain were distinctly interested nearly every Viceroy and of his Scalise of the Audencia of Mexico and the Council of the Indies gave these projects their serious consideration and so also did Spanish ministers of state such as Cardinal al biruni Fernando trivial and the marques de Ensenada anhu Leon de Arriaga footnote the feast calles were individuals attached to the old NCOs and the councils who matters were referred to for an opinion they were lawyers but their advice was not confined to the legal affairs in practice during the 18th century they were among the most important individuals in the Spanish administrative system whether in Spain or in the colonies as a general rule the opinions of the few Scalise were followed verbatim particularly was this true of the two Scalise of the Council of the Indies in footnote King Philip v was so much interested that he attended meetings of the Council of the Indies in which these matters were discussed among the outstanding memorialist s' of the other government officials were Jose Guyardo vicita daughter and Sonora in 1748 to 1749 and the Marcos they Altamira an official of the Audencia of Mexico it should be stated that very few of these individuals recognized that they were following in quino's footsteps but the fact that so many of them reached virtually the same conclusions though independently proves how important the matter of an advance to the California's by way of the Gila and Colorado was regarded it will not be possible to give in detail the views of these men but a reference to some of their recommendations may well be made the entire period under consideration was filled with royal decrees evincing interest in the extension of conquests in the California's and in the occupation of the Colorado and HeLa basins especially notable was one of January 29th 1764 which al-biruni then dominant in Spanish politics is said to have been responsible although it is likely that he was influenced by the memorials of keno whose ideas appear in the decree the decree itself was like many another asking information as to the progress of conversions in the California's referring to the great importance of promoting the spiritual conquest there and ordering the Viceroy to fulfill a degree of July 26th 17:08 requiring him to take steps in the matter at the same time orders were given to promote the advancement of the Sonora missions and verbal instructions were issued to the Viceroy to explore the Pacific coasts and to found colonies and Presidio's there in addition to these colonies al biruni planned quote in like manner to advance the Spanish domain with the new settlements in the vast unknown territories to the north of Sonora from the Gila and Colorado river's onward in quote the last-named settlements might send their products to the new colonies on the coast and receive in exchange what they needed he argued these regions were not to rely on New Spain and Europe for trade but were to develop commerce with the Philippines al-biruni was not left in peace to work out his ideas and a few years later after a stormy career in power he found himself an exile from Spain the viceroy called ohonta however to act upon the decree of 1716 and all but one member approved a plan to found at least one colony on the west coast of the california's footnote who Hunta rial asana of the Viceroyalty was one of the most important institutions in Spanish colonial administration its consent was necessary for the expenditure of royal funds and it was often called upon to deliberate whether a given project should be ordered or not it was however very human in its workings in that a viceroy could override the law and dominate or even dispense with the juntao if he so desired number of members varied but it was usually about ten or twelve most of them held administrative posts connected with financial affairs and were in the capacity of the subordinates of the viceroy ordinarily the viceroy welcomed the council's of the hooda and followed them just as on other matters he accepted the suggestions of the fiscal special hunters of experts in a given matter were also called from time to time but these bodies were purely consultative in footnote the member in opposition was a Jesuit and his views supported by others of his order were allowed to prevail the Jesuits feared that the new colonies would prove a detriment to the work of conversion then being carried on by them in Baja California the next capital moment along the line of the Overland advance came as a result of a most extraordinary incident in 1736 a remarkable silver mine was discovered at ordinary place called Arizona or Arizona just south of the border of the present-day state of Arizona the more usual name for the mine at that time was Bullis that Plata balls of silver or plunge a state playa nuggets of silver because the precious metal was found in balls or nuggets of almost pure silver these were on or near the surface and were of immense size some of them weighing a ton or more accounts differed but there were several stating that the largest nugget weighed 3,500 pounds one of the reputed finders fair mean spoke of a 4,000 pound nugget said that there were many of about 500 pounds there was an immediate rush of miners to that spot captain Anza of prone Thetis interfered with them claiming that the bolus belonged properly to the king according to the law one-fifth of the silver accrued to the king if the discovery were a mine but if it were a hidden treasure the King was entitled to all odds have claimed that if it were not a hidden treasure it was at least a Clio dado or growing place of silver and therefore belonged to the National Treasury the Viceroy reversed ANZUS decision but the Royal Decree of 1741 sustained the from dead us captain it is doubtful whether Anza could have held back the miners if the mines had proved to be extensive and it is said that his interference was not very effective anyway the greater part of the wealth going to the discoverers Hansa himself stated that he had difficulty in saving any for the king although the region was rich in mineral wealth of the ordinary type the bulla seemed to have been but a superficial deposit and nothing is heard of them after 1741 nevertheless the bolas incident did lead to an official consideration of northwestward conquest by way of the Colorado and Gila rivers the Bullis that plateau were a definitely proved item of wealth which was infinitely more important than for example a fabled mountain of gold where so much silver had been found there was good reason to expect that more existed it was this incident that gave rise to the memorials of Anza Bishop Crespo and Meza recommending an extension of the Spanish conquest writing to the Viceroy On January 14th 17:37 about the discovery of the Bullis Anza said quote the discovery of these balls of silver most excellent sir an unprecedented wealth under the circumstances and right at the limits of Christian conquest has come so like a bolt from the blue that many learners zealous and prudent men deem it a sign from the ever merciful God author of all things that we should push farther into the interior though indeed the quantity of wealth discovered is not overwhelming an amount it is in such form that it is strong evidence that greater riches may be found by which the reduction of souls may be brought about just as has happened elsewhere in both Americas I am aware of the fact that many projects which were proposed in entire earnestness in former years have not been successful on account of the difficulties experienced in practice in various provinces and in different cases and much money has been expended but in order that there shall be a beginning and here my project begins of a discovery up to the Colorado River and some leagues beyond it need not cost much the funds can be procured perhaps from pious individuals and I shall contribute horses cattle mules and small articles as gifts for the Indians this project is in my opinion the best way to bring about what shall in the future seem desirable and as the inhabitants of the Colorado Gila country are industrious it is to be presumed that it will not be difficult to reduce them it would be otherwise if they live by hunting with a bow and arrow and upon the wild fruits and roots for it would then be almost impossible to conquer them as I know from experience in quotient anza also quoted a number of reports of early explorers and reviewed the evidence for belief in the wealth of the north the vast ruin on the Gila known as the Casa Grande and an even greater one in Chihuahua built he thought by Aztec kings in the course of their migration southward were mentioned by him and supported this belief Indians of the Gila had told Jesuit visitors of the existence of Quicksilver in the North Anza had something to say – of the island California of the straight through the continent and of the Seven Cities grant Aguayo and kuvira and as usual has already indicated the vast number of Indians awaiting conversion was adduced as an argument for an expedition favorable action was taken on Anza's proposal in 1737 1738 both in Mexico City and in Spain but before matters had reached the stage of an expedition the Frome fetes captain lost his life in 1739 in a battle with the Apaches it was in any event too early for the execution of this plan who the limited resources Spain would have been willing to apply the situation in Sonora was not yet favorable for an advance unless the government were ready to make an extraordinary effort or unless a man of exceptional ability should appear on the scene to make slender means serve great ends important action was taken however though not precisely what Anza had proposed the government's hand in Sonora was strengthened through the founding of DU Presidio's and the day of land communications with Alta California was advanced in just the ratio that contributed to the peace of regions along the line of march there to from New Spain meanwhile the government never lost sight of the project of occupying the California's through the means of Spanish settlements as well as by strengthening the Jesuit missions George Anson commander of an English naval vessel had contributed to this attitude a part of Spain for he had appeared off the west coast of New Spain in 1742 and had subsequently captured the galleon in the Philippines this period was also one of great activity on the part of the French at least the Spanish government was much worried lest they should push their conquests to the headwaters of the Colorado and down that river to the Gulf of California the discussions eventually came to revolve about five memorials drawn up in 1751 by Fernando Sanchez a captain of quitter Sears in Sinaloa and Sonora four of them combined in one document and addressed to the king and the fifth directed to a hunter which had been called in Mexico City the first three aimed at the internal development of Sinaloa and Sonora as the necessary prerequisite to an advance of the frontiers Sanchez recommended the secularization of the missions in Sinaloa and southern Sonora the removal of unruly elements undesirable whites and some of the malcontents tribes such as the Cerys pima's and Apaches especially the last-named from the province and a better provision for agricultural and mineral development footnote the secularization of the missions meant their removal from missionary rule and the succession of the secular clergy to spiritual authority the Indians were emancipated from economic control and given the lands of the missions in theory it indicated that the conversion and civilization of the native were reasonably complete in fact it meant that the region in question had ceased to have the characteristics of a frontier province in quote the fourth memorial looking toward conquests in the region of the Colorado and Gila contained the matter of chief interest to Sanchez who devoted the letter with which he remitted the four representations to a summary mainly of the fourth in this letter he said quote Sir Francis secretly taking great strides to extend her settlement to the frontiers of ours encircling us from our borders on the east until now she find herself along that of the north in the vicinity of New Mexico and she has only to turn slightly to the west to come upon the South Sea the Pacific Ocean where the Carmello River empties it is very important to your crown to resolve upon the founding of strong settlements in the regions of the Colorado and Gila when this is done it will serve three ends one to prevent the French conquests from ever penetrating to the South Sea second the great advantage it will be as a base of operations for our conquests along those nations of Indians in the regions of the Colorado and the Gila and third so that we vassals of your majesty shall occupy Alta California the richest and most abundant land that this vast Kingdom contains in this way it will follow that within a few years it will be necessary to place a Viceroy in San Juan Sonora for the Royal mining camp and city of chaiwalla whose jurisdiction shall comprise the governments of Sonora New Mexico and the wave of Disgaea and the conquests of the Colorado River according to this arrangement the troops in those parts will be governed by quick and more efficacious measures to the advantage of your royal service and in course of time many other favorable considerations will accrue in quote footnote the matter in brackets was supplied from the original of the memorial which combines the four representations of the King in a document of one hundred and fourteen pages in footnote in the memorial proper Sanchez referred to a westward branch of the Colorado which might prove to be the Carmello thus furnishing the French with an easy route to Monterrey in the document that he directed to the Hunter Sanchez urged an expedition to explore a route to the sea at the point where the Carmel emptied though the Colorado River settlements should first be made secure and he added that an establishment on a carmella would be useful both for the Manila galleon and as a check against foreign enemies particularly the French the French were very near the mother range of the American mountains and if they ascended that they would find the Pacific before them the Spanish government now displayed more interest than ever before Jose de Goya NH a/c skull of the Council of the Indies said of the Sanchez proposals that they seemed to him to be quote so important especially that of the prompt conquest and settlement on the Colorado River because of the grave damage that may be occasioned to the kingdom of New Spain and its provinces by any post of Vantage that may advance the French nation that it will be fitting to charge the Viceroy to devote his primary attention to the conquest and settlement which Don Fernando Sanchez proposes in as much as by the conquest and dislodgement of the Cerie people our own Carrizo and salan aro indians the way to the Colorado and Gila rivers has become free in quote the Indians referred to were all resident in Sonora and it had recently been reported that governor Ortiz that is Diego Ortiz Berea often referred to as Berea that overwhelmed them in 1750 in fact Ortiz's conquests had far from removed the fangs of these enemies the Council of the Indies adopted the view of Goya and H a and proceeded to discuss the advantages of occupying Monterrey if only to forestall the French meanwhile the same interest was being shown in Mexico City one new note appears in a voluminous memorial of 1751 by the marquez de Alta Mira he pointed out correctly that the problems of occupying the Colorado gila country could not be separated from those of the frontier as a whole from the California's to taxes the conditions of which he reviewed this to be sure was not the first time that Spaniards had grasped the unity of the frontier as a result of the wide spreading Indian Wars it was this idea that it caused the government to send out a thorough dirty data in the years 17 24 to 17 28 to inspect the Presidio's of the whole northern frontier altimeters service lay in pointing out that this problem affected projects of conquest to the northwest as well as that of directly defending what spain already possessed the bulk of his memorial however was devoted to the proposed conquest by way of the Colorado and HeLa he favored the founding of settlements there as a nucleus for in advance to the California's and in time to New Mexico matters seemed right for the extraordinary effort which could have overcome the hindrances to conquest when a revolt to the pima's of pre media Alta in 1751 cooled Spanish harder on hearing of this the fee scale of a council recommended in 1750 to that action on Sanchez's proposal should be postponed until Sonora were restored to peace and such was the decision of the council several additional procedures were established in Sonora however furthermore Sanchez had formulated a plan which with the addition of the suggestion contained in Alta Mia's memorial became the program of the government during the next 30 years though Sanchez's ideas and the credit therefore were taken over by Jose de gálvez but Sanchez in turn had merely fitted quino's program to the new circumstances of his own times after 1750 to the authorities gave their principal attention during the next 20 years to the question of establishing good order in Sonora but the plans for northwestward advance were at no time given up between 1753 and 1761 the spur of the French conquest toward New Mexico and the Pacific coast was more active than ever in 1757 father Andres bloody ell published anonymously the three-volume noticias de la California which has usually been ascribed to Father Miguel Venegas in addition to the old ideas of the Jesuits as to the necessity of developing the land route to Baja California around a head of the Gulf Buddha L stated more clearly than any other writer ever has why Baja California the most disagreeable barren and wretched country in the world should have been a matter of so much concern to the Spanish crown in the Jesuits it was because of its location said blue/yellow that the conquest of California had long been preferred to that of any other American country if the peninsula were unoccupied the whole western coast of New Spain quote from Acapulco to the Colorado River would be unsafe especially if some European power should erect colonies forts and Presidio's on the coast of the California's unquote this consideration led him to desire that the Spanish missions of Sonora and the California's should be connected with those of New Mexico and extended beyond the Gila and Colorado to San Diego Monterey and even the reputed aqua large river in Alta California almost as important in its effects of burials suggestions into themselves was the notice which the work attracted in European countries it was almost at once translated into the leading tongues of Western Europe and the English translator showed a smug appreciation of the great strategic advantages England would enjoy if his countrymen might discover the Northwest Passage and established themselves in Alta California a land of quote a pleasant climate and fruitful soil from whence they the English may with certainty command the most valuable branches of Commerce that have been hitherto discovered unquote with the signing of the two treaties of 1761 and 1769 jointly as the family compact the peril from the French disappeared as France and Spain then leagued themselves together in opposition to England danger from the English almost immediately succeeded to the same or even greater place in Spanish councils for in 1763 England added the vast American possessions of France to her already large colonial domain England was also a far more threatening enemy by sea than France had been nevertheless it was natural to expect that less attention would be paid to an advance of the Spanish conquest toward Alta California than in former years Spain's crushing defeat in the war of 1762 to 1763 against England and her preparations for a renewal of the contest took about all in the way of funds that Spain could get together furthermore it had by this time been proved that Sonora was not in a sufficiently settled state to permit of a normal and reasonably easy advance so once again Spain confined her efforts for a while to strengthening her Garrison's in that rich but Restless province along the northwestern border of the kingdom of New Spain it remains to give brief consideration to those factors on which the permanence of the settlements eventually founded in Alta California was in fact to depend the obstacles or more particularly the hostile Indians that stood in the way of an establishment of communications between Sonora and Alta California and the internal development of Sinaloa and Sonora which were in time to provide the more northwesterly province who the sinews of continuous existence Indian wars were a continual factor attending to retard the development of the frontier provinces and thereby to check the spanish northwestward advanced the Apaches began their raids into Sonora before the close of the 17th century though northern nueva vizcaya modern Chihuahua to the east was their principal object of attack in 1695 there was a serious revolt of the Pima sap from area Alta and in 1699 the wars with the series in the region between the yaki and Sonora rivers commenced it would be profitless to recite the many Wars of the next half century or more hardly a year passed without at least one military campaign and frequently there were serious outbreaks at every crucial moment in plans for northwestward advanced the Indians by the revolts were sure to provide the authorities with unanswerable arguments as to the untimeliness of the projects in 1737 when Anza Aafrin Thetis made a suggestion of an expedition to the Gila and Colorado the pima's of the coast revolted and took refuge in the Serra Prieto an almost impregnable Mountain stronghold in the vicinity of Guaymas Anza subdued them but soon had to turn about to meet the Apaches losing his life in the battle against them in 1739 in 1742 1741 the miles and yaki's in the south rose against the mission system to which they had for many years been reduced Indian wars in Sonora were even more prominent in the period of the Sanchez representations governor Ortiz had to undertake a campaign against the series in 1750 alluding to this in a letter of 1751 the viceroy referred to the series and their neighbors as the disturbing factor which for over a century had proved a hindrance to further exploration of the Gila and Colorado rivers and to the establishment of communications between the for Gnaeus and the mainland another letter of the same year made mention of northeastern sonora as one of the regions where the Apaches were want to commit their depredations then came the Pima revolt of 1751 which caused the shelving of Sanchez's projects all of the missions villages mining camps and ranches in the Northwest were destroyed and two missionaries and perhaps a hundred other whites lost their lives troops were rushed to the scene and the rebellion was crushed in 1752 but it was 20 years before prosperity returned to primera Alta the series had risen again in 1751 and from that time until 1771 they were almost constantly at war with the Spaniards taking refuge when hard-pressed in the Cerro create though Apache warfare was equally continuous and annoying indeed for the frontier provinces as a whole it was far worse for it ranged from Sonora to Texas one of the best descriptions of Apache warfare was provided by Pedro de la bikina who probably in 1760 or 1761 petitioned the king for a right to make explorations in the vicinity of Arizona back and for the command of a Presidio in that region this petition he accompanied by three memorials which make it manifest that he was a direct heir of Sanchez's ideas but as no action seems to have been taken upon them they need not be discussed except as they bear upon the Apaches the memorial about the Apaches which shows a keen knowledge of frontier conditions in accounting for the failure to conquer these Indians has been summarized in a recent work as follows quote the Apaches when attacked habitually retired to the mountains which were inaccessible to the Presidio troops this was due not merely to the fact that the latter were cavalry men but to the nature of the soldiers themselves most of them were mulatos a very low character without ambition and unconquered Leon willing to travel on foot as was necessary in a mountain attack moreover their weapons carried for so short a distance that the Apaches were want to get just out of range and to make hope ingest of the Spaniards furthermore some Presidio captains were more interested in making a personal profit out of their troops arising from the fact that part of the latter's wages was paid in effects than they were in subjecting the enemy nor did the various captains work in harmony went on campaigns continuance of the Apaches an Apache area was in the highest degree prejudicial not only were they a hindrance to conquests toward the Colorado and in the direct route between Sonora and New Mexico but also they endangered regions already held by Spain leading subjected Indians either from fear or from natural inclination to abandon missions and villages and whether an alliance with the Apaches or by themselves to commit the same kind of atrocities as the Apaches dead la vaque de recommended that 200 Mountain Fusiliers of Spanish blood be recruited in Spain equipped among other things with guns of La Grange and dispatched a New Spain for service against the Apaches these men under a disinterested leader would quickly subject the Apaches and might then be given lands in that region being of a higher stamped and the procedural soldiers they would be eager to develop the lands and would be a permanent source of strength to that country in quote in fine expeditions against the Apaches accomplished little as the Indians could never be brought to a general engagement often the Apaches took advantage of the expeditions against them to raid the country about the Presidio's thus deprived of its usual guard it is impossible to estimate the damages suffered in Sonora rights boreal especially since the death of the brave captain Anza in villages settlements farms roads pastures woods and mind many of which have been abandoned on that account although very rich even the Mission Indians could no longer be controlled and the Jesuits feared to discipline them lest it should provoke a revolt the Jesuits had very greatly lost influence since the Pima revolt of 1751 though this was in a large measure a reflection of the world campaign being waged against them and their conflicts with the military and the settlers had now reached the proportions of a serious problem in itself affecting the good order of Sonora the missions themselves showed the effects for a few converts were obtained after 1751 the old and the infirm and the women and children resided at the missions but the able-bodied men rarely came in unless impelled by hunger or by fear of the Apaches they remained in the mountains or aided the series and stirring up trouble meanwhile demands of the white settlers for secularization of the missions became more insistent and by 1755 22 missions of Sinaloa had been taken away from the Jesuits and placed under the authority of the Bishop of Durango a review of the internal conditions of Sinaloa and Sonora shows that at no time were the affairs in such a state as to warrant an extension of the frontiers unless a more than ordinary effort were to be made nevertheless there was much progress by 1763 Sinaloa had undergone adjustment to white rule and could no longer be considered a frontier province much the same thing could be said for southern Sonora and part of the Sonora River Valley the advances to the northwest did not need to be stayed on account of these regions northwestern Sonora and the primera Alta though rich in mineral wealth were far from being adjusted to an orderly state either governmental effort or else an unusual impulse to settlement such as rich discoveries and precious metals was needed there the same thing was true of the coast regions where the series and other mal content live but there the problem was in a measure more serious as wealth and gold and silver did not exist wherefore there was no great lure to attract white colonists indeed as already stated the line of conquest in the northwest had always followed that of mineral wealth it would seem therefore that the situation in Sonora was not hopelessly bad if only the government would exert itself to conquer the series and repulse the Apaches but this it did not do at this time consequently the authorities were frequently memorialized as to the best methods of saving the province and many of the riders showed a great deal of pessimism and despondency footnote internal conditions of Sinaloa and Sonora are well illustrated by the statistics of population obtained by Bishop tomorrow well on the diocesan tour from 1759 to 1763 at that time there were in the two provinces 32,000 of Spanish or mixed blood and 31,000 indians professing Christianity of whom 25,000 lived admissions there were 50 missions most of them in Sonora the number of unconverted Indians was very large but no estimate of them was made the greater part of the white population lived in Sinaloa white settlements were the rule they're the exception being a few Indian villages along the coast where there was not the inducement of mineral wealth to draw the Spanish settler there were some considerable towns in Sinaloa San Felipe de sinaloa had a white population of 3,500 birthday otherwise San Juan de Montes Claro's 1886 Rosario 24:59 San Sebastian 2,500 Culiacan 22:16 and Mazatlan 966 these places had nearly half the total white population of the two provinces secularization of the missions had taken place in most of Sinaloa although the Jesuits were more numerous than the secular clergy but they usually served as parish priests the mission system prevailing but little much of this change came as a result of the Sanchez memorials having occurred prior to tomorrow's visit there were probably not many unconverted Indians in Sinaloa or if they were they caused no trouble in us the Moody as that part of the sonora below the yaki was then called conditions were almost as good as in Sinaloa Alamos had a population of 3400 of white her mixed-race by Orca 1004 her Leo Chico or 1,400 Trinidad de plata 715 and say oppa or San Antonio de la witha 300 all of these were mining towns farther north in the mountain districts near the Sonora Valley there were a number of mining towns at considerable distances from a procedure such as aravt Sahu Arriba the quarry and our reefs Bay in northeastern Sonora where the Apaches were want to make raids most of the white population was grouped around Presidio's there and nearby in Nueva Vizcaya they're being 484 and from Venice near the coast where the series and their allies were numerous and precious metals not plentiful there were no whites the case with primary Alta was a little better due to the existence of gold and silver there were eight missions Swamp koala V Bock sorry to boot amma AA t Caborca and san ignacio and three Presidio's tara not a two by an out our subsidiary – these were a number of lesser settlements in the mission districts there were 4223 Indians and 348 whites the latter being at the mining camps of Cueva V Santa Barbara Buena Vista Arizona and Santa Ana at the Presidio's there were no Indians but there were 1117 White's including Garrison's of 50 men at each precedium all of the white settlements of premedia Alta were within easy reach to the Presidio's without which they could not have existed in footnote nevertheless incontrovertible evidence is at hand that if conditions in Sonora were lacking in stability it was because the government would not go to the expense or rather reduce its profits in order to apply a remedy the principal financial institution of the government in its dealings with the frontier provinces was the real kaha royal treasury of wala la Jara a study of its operations over the period from 1743 to 1781 shows that it sent eighty-six percent of its receipts to the parent Correa in maickel or occasionally small sums to others of this amount from half to a third was subsequently returned to provide for the expense of the frontier provinces the rest from forty to sixty percent of the total was either sent to Spain or at any rate used elsewhere than in the provinces of origin Sonora to be sure was not responsible for any great share of this profit but if a larger portion of the total might have been applied in that province it would not have been very difficult to overcome the obstacles that were withholding the northwestward advance the reason for Spain's policy is not hard to find during these years she was straining every nerve to cope with European problems and especially to defend herself from the imperialism of England thus many other objects which were desirable in themselves had to be sacrificed and the extension of her frontier beyond the Gila and Colorado to ALPA California was one of them Spain's choice then was only one more of the myriad of factors tending to hold back the occupation of the rich northern province and to delay its populous development and all this played into the hands of the as yet unborn united states end of chapter 15 chapter 16 a history of California the Spanish period this LibriVox recording is in the public domain chapter 16 Jose de gálvez the coming of Jose de gálvez as facetted or general of New Spain marks a turning point in the history of northwestward advance in him had appeared the long needed forceful energetic man who was able to overcome obstacles in the way of conquest and extend the frontiers to the north footnote the visited or or visitor was one of the most typical of Spanish administrative agencies the vicita or visit is defined by Joaquin escuche a leading authority on Spanish law as follows quote the act of jurisdiction through which some superior informs himself of the proceedings of ministers of lower rank or of subjects or of the state of affairs in the districts of his jurisdiction going in person to investigate or sending some other to do it in his name in quote the official making the vicita was called a vicita door or if engaged in a vicita of major importance of a seated or general the vicita was frequently employed in Spanish colonies and military civil and religious affairs and for purposes both great and small no two visitas were exactly alike for everyone depended on the particular circumstances which the vicita was designed to meet nevertheless all proceeded on much the same lines and the vicita door ordinarily superseded all other powers and authority within the jurisdiction of his vicita in footnote to be sure the primary aims of his vicita were financial with a view to increasing the revenues of the crown and this caused him to give the larger share of his attention to the already well settled parts of the Viceroyalty but at no time during the six years of his stay 1765 to 1771 did he fail to show a most extraordinary interest in the problems having to do with the advanced to the California's and some two years of his time from 1768 to 1770 were devoted mainly to those questions true even in these matters he was probably interested chiefly in the possibilities from the standpoint of revenues believing that the wealth of the frontier provinces and the California's could be developed to the advantage of the royal income if peace might be established and an extension of the frontier is obtained perhaps there was just a shade of something quixotic in his occupation of Alta California in 1769 but if so his tilting at windmills justified itself in the light of history for the name of Hosea de gálvez would almost have passed out of memory in the Americas had it not been for the expedition's he sent out to take possession of San Diego and Monterey who was this man who now appeared as an outstanding figure in the affairs of the California's Hosea de galis was an Andalusian Spaniard possessing many of the lively traits of his native province together with an energy and ability which had enabled him to rise from obscurity to a position of power and influence he was born on January 2nd 1720 at the village of Mathura Vai near villas Malaga on the southern coast of Spain his family was noble and of ancient lineage being of the ring he hosts algo or Hidalgo but that meant little in a land where the nobility of this grade was numbered by the hundreds of thousands if there were others of lower degree and poor the verge of poverty the Galvez family was at least not well endowed with worldly goods and Jose and his brothers were simple country boys without opportunities for education and advancement eking out a living through tending the paternal flocks when Jose was only 11 or 12 years old he had the good fortune to attract the attention of the bishop of Malaga who took him to Malaga to educate him for the priesthood it was this that gave Galvez his start in life with the aid of his clerical sponsors he at length became enrolled as a student in the University of Salamanca where he began the study of law as chewing the holy calling for witches first patron had wished to educate him from the University he went to Madrid to practice law for many years he was inconspicuous but eventually opportunity again knocked at his door apparently as a result of his finding a new and powerful patron his second wife was a French woman and through her Galvez became acquainted with the most eminent Frenchmen in Madrid his own knowledge of the French tone and His grace and facility of expression helped him to retain the friendships he had made and it was thus that he became the legal counselor of a secretary in the French Embassy utilizing his opportunities in this capacity he attracted the notice of the Spanish Minister of State the Marquess that a Grimaldi who employed him as one of his secretaries it was in 1765 when Galvez was in his 45th year that the great chance of his life came to him a visitation of New Spain for the purpose of increasing the revenues from that kingdom had been determined upon but there was some difficulty in finding a suitable individual to do the work several appointments were considered or even made but with the death of the most recent appointee in 1764 the post was still unfilled it was then that the name of Galvez was brought forward and on February 20th 1765 he was named vicita d'Or Honora of New Spain in the month of July of the same year he reached Veracruz and soon afterward took up the work of his visitation with his manifold activities in the General Affairs of the Viceroyalty such as his visitation at Veracruz in Acapulco his institution of the tobacco monopoly his expedition DeWanna Watteau and the expulsion of the Jesuits this volume has no concern at the outset he was handicapped by the opposition of the Viceroy Julius but the latter was superseded in 1766 by the French descended Marcus Francisco de Croix with whom Galvez was able to work in entire harmony indeed they were the best of friends and it was Galvez rather than Croix who must be considered the virtual ruler of New Spain during Croy's incumbency 1766 to 1771 of special concern then is the character of this very human individual to whom the Californians oh so much enough has already been said about his ability this had to combine however with certain other traits ordinarily regarded as weaknesses in order to produce the expeditions to Alta California just as in later years the same traits served to diminish the value of his work from the standpoint of his own times Galvez had risen from nothing partly through currying favor and had developed an insatiable personal ambition and a kind of egotism which if it did not express itself in his ordinary daily speech was always at hand for the purposes of feathering his own nest he was also capable of malignant vindictiveness against those who opposed him or belittled his achievements on the other hand he was amiable in personality and in some respects generous to a fault his concern for the advancement of his own relatives townsmen and personal friends if indeed it evidenced a certain kind leanness and gratitude was nevertheless of the worst sort of nepotism and not altogether dissociated from what would at the present time be termed graft it seems likely that Galvez is desired when personal distinction entered into his plans for conquests in the California's he knew from burials noticia of the importance of such conquests and he also knew that no other region offered him a better opportunity therefore he bent his energies to the accomplishment of this task using methods that savored distinctly of indirection some instances of which will be given in the course of this in the next chapter as well as those which were less open to objection his Enterprise was blessed with success and but for the serious illness of the vicita door it would have been an even more striking achievement than it turned out to be the expeditions of 1769 made use of the sea route from the mainland to Baja California and from there and to divisions by sea again and up the peninsula to Alta California nobody more than Galvez knew that this was a departure from the normal line of advance by the overland route through Sonora but the vicita door felt sure of his own measures in Sonora would soon link up the Alta California extremity with that province almost from the moment of his arrival in New Spain Galvez began to give attention to the problems of the far northwest largely through his instrumentality plans were made in the fall of 1765 for an expedition to Sonora to suppress the Indian insurrection Aires there at his own request Galvez was entrusted with the task of obtaining money to finance the expedition for there was nothing in the royal treasury that the government was willing to devote for this purpose the funds were to be raised by voluntary subscriptions troops were to be enlisted and ships were to be built on the Pacific coast to carry the Spanish forces to Sonora once the Indians were defeated the ground was to be held by the founding of a number of settlements the human material for which was to be drawn from the hopelessly poor or undesirable elements of the cities Galvez is quarrel with kruis delayed fulfillment of these plans but after Croy's arrival in 1766 they were again taken up the King meanwhile had given a reluctant consent for he did not share in Galvez his belief in the efficacy of a formal expedition or of the particular kind of colonists it was proposed to send nevertheless a force of 350 men was recruited and placed under the command of Colonel Domingo Elizondo who might also count on enough more Spanish soldiers and Indian auxiliaries in Sonora to swell as numbers to more than a thousand in April 1767 Elizondo and his men left Mexico City for Depok where they were to be quartered until the boats could be gotten ready to take them to Sonora not until March 1768 did they at length disembark at Guaymas ready to begin the campaign that the expedition was undertaken and all had been due to Galvez for there were few who shared his enthusiasm to the seat the door however had left no stone unturned to gain his ends a letter by him to Governor Juan Pineda of Sonora in the fall of 1766 shows the trickery he was willing to employ even to deceive his good friend Croix after giving some inexpensive flattery to Pineda Galvez went on to tell of the opposition of his enemies to the project of the Sonora expedition and of the need for some counterbalancing arguments to influence the new viceroys decision continuing Galvez said quote from this information which I give you informally and confidentially you will infer how Nessa seria is that you impress upon his excellency at once the indispensable need of the expedition and inform him that it is not impossible to conquer the Indians once and for all by force if the plan is adopted of sending their veteran troops you may add anything else which will remove the fear or hesitation which perverse envious persons desire to instill into his Excellency's mind through sheer malignity the Marquis de Croy I repeat to you esteems my discourse above that of all others but as he observes that I am of another profession not military and as he knows that I have not been in that country he may lack confidence in the success of the expedition to which he sees me with the greatest arter committed hence it is fitting that you in your report to him express yourself as forcefully as you did for the purpose of arousing enthusiasm in me ago Lila a mere lawyer in this case this will be the easier to do as his instincts are all military in quote no doubt Pineda complied with this virtual order Galvez his character was such that it might have gone hard with him if he had not for the vicita door did not easily forgive those who opposed him at any rate cry supported the expedition more readily than Galvez had anticipated and the project was given full and fair trial footnote during his expedition of 1767 tuwana Watteau Galvez punished the inhabitants of that region with a ruthless hand for the rebellion they had engaged in but even in this case he did not neglect to employ his usual methods of indirection and self exculpation it is said that he would pray long hours and would ask the Virgin what to do with their rebels at length he would lift his hand for a pen to write down the judgment of the virgin and the sentence was one of death history records a few more extreme instances of shifting the burden from one's own shoulders than this in footnote the suppression of Indian warfare in Sonora was only an incident in the vast program of the vicita door who intended to go to Sonora himself to put his ideas into execution as soon as Elizondo should have triumphed in the military campaign the keynote of his plans was his proposed establishment of a new government independent of the Viceroyalty of New Spain to embrace the frontier provinces of nueva vizcaya Sonora Sinaloa and the California's similar plans had frequently been suggested in earlier years on the ground at the Viceroy at Mexico City was too far away to give these distant regions their proper share of attention the direct ancestors of Galvez s plan were the Sanchez recommendations of 1751 and a proposal of 1764 a Viceroyalty made up of the provinces within the jurisdiction of the allodynia of wala la jara the Galvez projects were embodied in four important documents of the years 1768 the seat the door maneuvered so as to make it appear that he was agreeing to suggestions made by others or at least merely sharing in the origination of ideas of which it happened that he heartily approved in fact he was the prime mover in all of these matters as is clearly set forth in the correspondence of the Viceroy in the case of the Hunta of February 25th which granted wide powers to Galvez the vicita door made a showing of modesty by refraining from casting a vote but his secretary tells us that he had in fact dominated the Hunta and had dictated its decision three days before it meant the first of the four great documents was the recommendation of the vicita door on January 15th for the establishment of a system of Nancy's in New Spain designed to increase the profits of the crown this aimed at the collection of internal revenues by officials called in tendance of whom there were to be eleven three of these were to be in the new frontier government in Durango Sonora and the California's the inclusion of the California's is the noteworthy feature of the plan for that territory had figured heretofore only as a drain on the royal estate galva is intended that it should be more thoroughly occupied and developed On January 21st a hunter was called to decide who should head the expedition to the frontier provinces and it is not surprising that Galvez was selected since he had so determined he was to wait until the troops had restored peace and was then to reorganize the government and establish colonies two days later the Galvez plan signed also by Croix for a new government of the frontier provinces was ready has already stated the Galvez plan provided for a government of the provinces of nueva vizcaya Sinaloa Sonora and the California's apart from the Viceroyalty it was to be called a commandant see general ruled by a commandant general who was to be a viceroy in all but the social distinction which went with the latter title it was expected that the plan would restore peace to the frontier and that then in a few years those vast provinces which were described as undoubtedly richer in mineral products than any that had been discovered in North America might equal or even surpassed those of New Spain great emphasis was placed upon the preventative importance of the plan as against the dangers of foreign attack attention was called to the opportunity and the keen desire of European powers to establish themselves at Monterey or elsewhere along the coast of the California's and the government was reminded of the efforts the French and English had made during two centuries to find a passage to the Pacific from their colonies on the Atlantic now that England had taken the colonies of France said galvez she would not rest until she had pushed forward her discoveries to the lake of the woods whence a great river flowed westward if this river should prove to be the Colorado or should reach the Pacific then the English were already near New Mexico and not far from the Pacific reports had also been published in recent years continued galvez showing that the Russians were encroaching upon the California coasts and since Anson's voyage the English and the Dutch had been acquiring information about Spain's ports in the Pacific especially those of the California's any one of these three peoples might easily plant the colony in Monterey a part with excellent facilities for a settlement thus Spain's possessions in the Pacific might be invaded and exploited as those of the Atlantic from Virginia to Georgia had been Monterey ought to be occupied by Spain at once through the dispatch of a seee expedition later the common Nancy General should extend its frontiers in that direction and set up colonies and other ports the capital of the common Nancy General should not be in Durango as the plan of 1760 had proposed because that was too far from Sonora and farther still from the California's the capital ought to be on the Sonora frontier at or near the Gila while it was being established the government should set up at Caborca the nearest settlement to the California's or at the junction of the Gila and Colorado rivers the emphasis on conquering the California's it is to be noted was one of the principal factors in the galvez plan clearly to the vicita door intended to make Sonora the province upon which the new conquest should depend though as a temporary expedient to sea expedition was to occupy Monterey on February 25th a hunter was again called to authorize the plans Galvan had made for his visit to the frontier among the provisions of the decision of the hooter which confirmed verbatim all that Galvez had asked were the following Galvez was to act not only in his capacity of the seat the door but also with the authority of the viceroy he was to found a number of frontier settlements with armed colonists among these was to be the future capital of the common dancy general on the sonora frontier midway between the california's and nueva vizcaya and free commerce between sonora and the california's was to be permitted every one of these important documents received the sanction of the king the common dancy general was not actually established until 1776 and the system of in tendencies was postponed until 1786 but they formed the basis of Spanish action from the time of their enactment onward the common Nancy General would very likely have been put into effect in 1769 or 1770 if Affairs in Sonora had gone to the vicita doors liking and if he had maintained his health during his visit there in the meantime however he had planned to wait before going to Sonora until elizondo's expedition should have triumphed over the Indians not understanding the difficulties of frontier warfare he expected victory would be quickly obtained any left Mexico City on April 9th 1768 intending to make his way to the frontier and taking with him a number of persons who were to settle there before going to Sonora he proposed a founded Department at the port of some blas and pay a visit to Baja California these activities proved in fact to be preliminary to the great expeditions to Alta California of 1769 which merit separate treatment footnote the principal Authority for the material in this chapter is Priestley Herbert Ingram Jose de gálvez visitor general of New Spain 1765 to 1771 Berkeley California 1916 in University of California publications in history vol 5 into footnote end of chapter 16


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