By Steve Johnson, September 18, 2000
Coop's Maps [http://www.coopsmaps.com],
maker of specialty maps, has released it's latest offering, "Roadmap
Guide to the Mission Churches". I've always been fascinated
with Spanish Missions of the desert south west. Most have graveyards
containing burials dating back to the 1600s. I plunked down my $6.95
at Amazon.com and received it the very next day.
The map portrays states of California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas,
and the northern states of Mexico. Major highways are marked along
with small to large cities, state and national forests, rivers,
grasslands, and refuges.
Missions are marked with either a solid cross, indicating a standing
mission, or a dotted cross, indicating mission ruins. Some 87 standing
missions and over 100 mission ruins are identified. The map includes
a bibliography citing its sources, as well as a brief history and
timeline of the mission system.
On the reverse side of the map is a guide providing some useful
information, noting whether there is a museum on the premises, indicating
if a fee is required, and if the church is still active. It also
tells you how old the mission is, who founded it, and some historical
facts. For example, regarding the Nuestra Senora de los Angeles
de Porciuncula de los Pecos in New Mexico, it says:
"The mammoth, multi-storied adobe church at Pecos
was completed in 1625, but was subsquently destroyed in the 1680
revolt. A replacement was built on the foundations and completed
by 1718. The mission was completely abandoned by 1838. In 1967 the
foundations of the pre-Revolt mission were discovered"
Each mission listing includes the street address, phone number,
and hours of visitation.
Only those missions that have reached "cabacera" status
are marked on the map. Asistencias are not marked. Says Bryan Cooperrider
of Coop's Maps, "There are many asistencias throughout the
mission system, and they are unfortunately, not as well documented
as the cabaceras. One exception is the California asistencias. It
became impractical to include all of the asistencias, and once we
included some, we felt obligated to include all of them. This is
why we chose to leave them off the map."
Nonetheless, if you are a mission aficionado, this map will become
a well used tool for locating missions.
Coop's Maps publishes other specialty maps including those for
Railroad Museums, Microbreweries, Dinosaur Sites, and Rollercoasters.
They are working on others maps for Hotsprings and Volcanoes.
- Steve Paul Johnson
the Map Online.