Books
Elias Castillo

A Cross of Thorns

A Cross of Thorns challenges this mythologized history and presents the facts of the Spanish occupation of California, describing the dark and cruel reality of Mission life. Beginning in 1769, California Indians were en­ticed into the missions, where they and their descendents were imprisoned for 60 years of forced labor and daily beatings. The chilling depictions of colonial cruelty in A Cross of Thorns are based on little known church and Spanish government archives and letters written by the founder of California’s mission, Friar Junipero Serra (who advo­cated the whipping of Mission Indians as a standard policy), and published first-hand accounts of 18th and 19th century travelers.
375 printed pages
Original publication
2015

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