Tumacácori's Timeline

Indians kill pioneering Jesuit missionaries in Florida and on Chesapeake Bay. These failures, and a rebellion by Indians at a mission in what would become Carolina, cause Jesuits to shift efforst to New Spain

Father Eusebio Francisco Kino is first Jesuit missionary permanently assigned to Pimería Alta

Father Kino first visits Tumacácori and Guevavi at request of Indians from those villages and San Xavier del Bac. The Father Visitor there with Kino, impressed by this tribe of the Pima nation and their land, decides to expand the missionary effort there.

At Guevavi, in February and March, disease kills nearly two neophytes daily.

Pima Revolt: Indians kill two priests and more than 100 settlers and destroy buildings at several missions. Tumacácori and Guevavi temporarily abandoned.

In response to the revolt, a presidio is built at Tubac, and Tumacácori is moved to the west side of the river. Name is changed from San Cayetano de Tumacácori to San José de Tumacácori.

New missionary completes a small church that serves for 65 years.

Jesuits are expelled from New Spain. Franciscans are assigned to former Jesuit missions.

Mission headquarters is moved from Guevavi to Tumacácori; for the first time the mission has a resident priest.

early 1770's
Franciscans redecorate church, build adobe dwellings for Pimas, and wall-in the mission.

circa 1800
Franciscans begin building larger church. Lack of funds soon brings construction to a halt.

A June Apache attack nearly wipes out all of Tumacácori's livestock.

Mexican Independence: Church construction resumes, but Spain withdraws aid to missions, and the work ceases.

Final phase of church construction begins.

Mexico orders Spanish-born residents to leave the country. Only the native-born Mexican priests are left to care for missions, causing an extreme shortage of priest administrators. Tumacácori becomes a visita again.

War with Mexico cuts supply lines. The Apache increase attacks, and the winter is extremely cold. In December soldiers abandon Tubac; the last residents leave Tumacácori.

Gadsden Purchase: The Tumacácori sites becomes part of the United States.

President Theordore Roosevelt proclaims Tumacácori National Monument on 10 acres of land relinquished by local homesteader Carmen Mendez.

First custodian (Frank Pinkley) assigned to Tumacácori. Clean-up and stabilization begins a year later.

Visitor Center and Museum are built according to traditional mission style as observed in northern Sonora.

Congress creates Tumacácori National Historical Park which includes the old monument land and the missions of Guevavi and Calabazas.

Approximately 310 acres of neighboring land is authorized by Congress to be added to Tumacácori National Historical Park. This includes the historic orchard area, one mile of Santa Cruz River corridor, and a section of the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail.

Last updated: February 24, 2015

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P.O. Box 8067
Tumacacori, AZ 85640


(520) 377-5060

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