Why did the Spanish establish missions in the Southwest?

And what happened to the mission land after Mexico gained its independence? Help!

4 Answers

  • Anonymous
    8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    The Missions were actually large rich agricultural estates (Haciendas) owned by a wealthy Spaniard or Mexican born Spaniard. They all have Churches since they are located in the rural agricultural areas along with the numerous Ranchos. The people from the ranchos would travel to the Hacienda (mission) to attend mass at the chapel (parish) church instead of having to travel to the nearest pueblo (village) or town to attend Church.

    If you have watched the Zorro Movies about California when it was part of Mexico? Zorro lived in a Hacienda. Which today americans would call Missions.

    Ranchos are lower in status compared to a Hacienda (Mission)

    And they are not just only in the Southwest. They are in most latino countries where the Spanish colonized.

    Just google Haciendas Mexico or Haciendas Colombia, Haciendas Peru or whatever and you will see lots of old Haciendas that look exactly like the Missions of the Southwest.

  • Athena
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    To stop the Russians from seizing Alta-California.

    Spain claimed all of the western lands in north America, but never really tried to settle them until the Russians started to move east from Kamchatka. It was at that point, as Russian fur hunters were plying waters off the cost of California that Spain moved to hold their claim more securely.

    The missions were just a was of securing that claim. Nothing more.

    As much as mexico like to claim they still have a right to the southwest, the only actual land transaction recorded between native Americans and a foreign power was Ft. Ross to the Russians. So, other than the tribes of California, the Russians have the only legit claim here.

    Source(s): Dasvidaniya
  • Anonymous
    8 years ago

    Besides the Haciendas (what americans call missions) there were numerous ranchos all over and the pueblos and towns such as Pueblo Los Angeles, Sacramento and Monterey. Americans only make opinions. As those of us mexicans who are the descendants of spanish and indigenous that actually owned those Haciendas and Ranchos lived on them all our lives.

    There is a movie about a mexican in Mexico that returns to Texas to try to claim a Hacienda that her great grandfather owned when Texas was part of Mexico, but was kicked out by americans after they took Texas. It is called, "Propiedad Ajena"

    Americans don't dictate our mexican (spanish/indigenous) geneology and history


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  • zaheer
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    To round up the natives which they believed to be under them and forcibly convert them to be Christians/Catholics. The missions were commonly poor places complete of diseases presented by technique of the Spanish which the natives were not info against. there develop into no clarification for them to do this somewhat purely felt like they needed to rigidity their faith and they considered the natives as mere savages.

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