Mission Indians of California
Mission Indians of California: When Spanish missionaries, arrived in the Americas, they came with ideas of changing the lives of the indigenous inhabitants they found here. Most of these inhabitants were the red Indians who practiced a life of hunting and gathering (Santoro, 2009). By the mid 16th century, the missionaries had made their way into the current California, and established a couple of missions.
Therefore, the terminology “Mission Indians of California” is used to refer to these indigenous inhabitants of this region. The descendants of these indigenous inhabitants to this date mostly inhabit the coastal plains of California, their adjacent mountains and valleys, and they can also be found in south as well as central California (Santoro, 2009).
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Statistics show that most of these indigenous natives adjusted to their new way of life under the leadership of these missionaries. Some of the natives did not adjust though, and they opted to run away. Statistics estimate that at least 10 to 15 percent of the natives missionaries found in California opted to run away than be under the rule of the missionaries (Santoro, 2009).
The missionaries also taught them Catholicism as a religion and also Spanish as a language. Discipline was also strict and sometimes offenders would be whipped in front of everybody as a lesson for wrong doers. However, most of these missionaries treated the natives as their children, and they were always concerned about their well being.
Harrington, J. P. (1928). The Mission Indians of California. Washington, D.C: Smithsonian Institution.
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