Liberty! Liberty! For a half-century we have done nothing but repeat this word, and one would say that those mouths which pronounce it belong to the heads which are ignorant of its meaning, or rather that it has no meaning; for, if one says: ‘We are free!’ ten others cry out at once: ‘We, we …read more

The Flight of Padre Peyri

One of the few settlements of the old mission Indians remaining in California is Pala, a little village tucked away amidst some of the most charming scenery to be found in the southern part of the state. It is twenty miles east from Mission San Luis Rey, of which mission it was an asistencia, or …read more


The overland mail-tram from San Francisco, on the way to New Orleans, came to a stop for a minute or two at the little old town of San Gabriel, ten miles east of Los Angeles. It was a hot July afternoon, in the year 1890; the car windows were open, and the passengers were gazing …read more

The Indian Sibyl’s Prophecy

In the southern part of the Mojave Desert a low hill stands somewhat apart from the foot-hills beyond, and back of it. Although not more than two hundred feet above the surrounding plateau, on account of its peculiar location, a commanding view may be had from its top. In front, toward the south, and extending …read more

Father Zalvidea’s Money

Father Zalvidea was in despair! After having lived for twenty years at Mission San Gabriel, devoting himself all that time to bringing the mission to a condition of so great size and wealth that it took its place at the head of nearly all of the missions of Nueva California, toiling from morning until night …read more

Old Mission Stories of California

Of the last six stories comprising the seven in this little collection of Stories of the Old Missions, all but one have, as a basis, some modicum, larger or smaller, of historical fact, the tale of Juana alone being wholly fanciful, although with an historical background. The first story of the series may be considered …read more

La Beata Juana

It was a bright summer morning in the month of June of the year 1798. All was bustle and excitement at the wharf in the harbor of the town of Acapulco, on the western coast of Mexico, for at noon a ship was to sail away for the province of Nueva California, in the far …read more

Father Uria’s Saints

“Therefore I went to Father Uria and told him your story. He was very kind, and bade me write to you that you might trust him to find you something to do if you should decide to come here. Have no fear; there are not enough men at San Buenaventura to prevent a single man …read more