Pasados del Presidio

This past weekend, the Anza Trail participated in the Pasados del Presidio event at the Presidio in San Francisco. It was two-day commemoration of the Presidio’s founding as a Spanish Army post, and honored the heritage of early Californian cultures—Native American, Spanish and Mexican—and the founding of El Presidio de San Francisco in 1776.

There was Ohlone Basket weaving, candle making, yarn spinning, Tortilla Making and Tasting, Ballet Folklorico de Mexico, Zazpiak Bat Basque Dancers, singers, and more! 

The Anza staff had an Adobe Brick making stand to emphasize how the early settlers used adobe bricks as building material for their sturdy and safe housing. It was fun getting down and dirty with the little kids that came to visit!

On Saturday, the descendants of the original founding families of the Anza Expedition commemorated the journey of their ancestors and the founding of El Presidio de San Francisco. There was a color guard presentation, procession by the Amigos de Anza horse-mounted riders, and a roll call of the people who made the 1200+ mile trek from Sonora and Sinaloa (in modern Mexico).



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Pasados del Presidio!

Last week I had the fortune of being part of Pasados del Presidio! This is an event that takes place at the Presidio National Park every year celebrating the people of Early California. Pasados del Presidio represents the descendants of the original founding families of the Juan Bautista de Anza Expedition (1775-76) return to the Presidio to recognize the journey of their forefathers and the founding of El Presidio de San Francisco. Pasados1 In 1776, while American patriots fought for their independence from England, Anza led about 240 people more than 1,800 miles to settle Alta California. Their journey was the first colonizing expedition from New Spain to come overland into California. Juan Bautista de Anza’s father had a dream. He wanted to find an overland route to Alta California beyond the Spanish frontier, but he died in an Apache ambush in 1740 when Anza was three years old. Anza followed in his father’s footsteps and joined the Spanish military, eventually becoming a captain on the frontier at the Tubac Presidio. Spain had been struggling to secure its outposts in Alta California from Russian and English exploration and colonization. Existing sea routes were dangerous and difficult. Just like his father, Anza requested permission from the Viceroy of New Spain, Antonio Maria Bucareli, to prove a land route to Alta California was possible. Permission was granted. Following Indian trade routes, Anza scouted a path in 1774 that would allow for a colonizing expedition, including much-needed livestock and supplies. Upon this success, he was granted permission to recruit and lead a group of settlers to Alta California. Spain’s goal was to establish the first colony in a place they called el río de San Francisco. Anza’s goal was to safely deliver the settlers, thus fulfilling his father’s dream.Pasados3 On June 27, 1776, the expedition families arrived in what is now San Francisco. Anza ensured the settlers reached their destination, and Spain successfully established its northernmost colony in Alta California.In the new land, many of the colonists obtained the better life Anza had promised. The journey’s success was due in part to Anza’s ability to forge alliances with a few of the Native American communities encountered along the route. Some were very generous in their assistance. This day I was able to see some of the things they do that is related to this event. We had bailes folkloricos, Story telling, tortilla and chocolate making, and other activities. It was really nice to see different groups encouraging the Latino community in being part of this activity at the park. Pasados5

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