MissionTour Logo Visual Tour Logo


blank blank blank blank blank blank blank blank blank blank
- -
- Home - Mission Related Topics - Bookstore - E-mail - -
- - - - -

Navigation for San Diego de Alcalá:

Mission San Diego de Alcalá

In Brief

Founded: 16 July 1769 by Blessed Junípero Serra 
Named for: Saint Didacus of Alcalá
Number in Series: 1st
Indian Name: Nipaguay (original site: Cosoy)
Brand: San Diego Brand


date: Item.



Reed boat
Picture taken 11:50am 23 Jul 2002


1774: Mission moved to present location.

1775: Mission revolt. Chapel and buildings burned.


Picture taken 11:50am 23 Jul 2002


Early Drawing
Picture taken 11:50am 23 Jul 2002


1780: Reconstruction started.

1798: Indian revolutionaries from Santa Cruz (1794) die in captivity at the Presidio.

1800: Mission destroyed by earthquake.  -- date?

1813: Quadrangle construction.

1818: Establishment of asistencia San Ysabel.

Church barracks
Picture taken 11:50am 23 Jul 2002


1862: Mission returned to Church.


Return document
Picture taken 11:50am 23 Jul 2002


1924: Reconstruction of asistencia San Ysabel (or just new church?)

1931: Mission restoration.



1932 picture
Picture taken 11:50am 23 Jul 2002


Padres felt they held land in trust for Indians until they could support themselves. Rule was that those who were christians for 15 years were given land and animals. 59 Indians qualified at San Diego when secularization occurred (only 2 chose to leave).


1976: The church is officially called Basilica of Mission San Diego de Alcalá. A Basilica is a Church of historic significance as determined by the Pope.



  • California Missions by Sunset Editors. (September 1979) Sunset Pub Co
  • Mission Info Page at url
  • Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record San Diego Mission Data Sheet at the Library of Congress


Holding place for random notes:


No tiles before 1790.


Engineering Report:

Date of Erection: The erection of the present church was started in 1808 and finished in 1813.

Architecture: Padre Sanchez.

Present condition: The church as now rebuilt, is well preserved and cared for and is used only as a show place for visitors at present. It fell into ruin in the course of many years and was restored in 1930-31. Foundation, the front wall, butresses on front and a few feet of the side walls at the front were the only remaining parts when restorations were started.

Materials of construction: Foundations of field stone.

Old front wall appears to be of solid brick. Buttresses on front are of stone, brick faced & plastered. Walls as restored of adobe brick, stone and concrete, plastered inside and out, wood framed balcony and roof, tile floor and roofing. Walls are white washed.

Additional Data: This was the first Mission in California, being founded in 1769, on what is known as Presidio hill in Old Town. Several structures were erected to serve as a church before 1808. The present church was erected about eight miles inland from the coast from the site of the original.

Public subscriptions sponsored by the San Diego Parlor, Native Sons of the Golden West, with Albert V. Mayrhoffer as chairman of the Restoration Committee made possible the restoration. I.F. Loveless was Architect And J. Marshall Miller gave direct supervision to the construction.


Navigation for Mission San Diego de Alcalá:

Mission Home :: History :: Map :: Asistencia :: First Mission :: Start Tour :: Church :: Garden :: Pieta Garden :: Museum :: Quadrangle

Please use the feedback link for questions or comments about this web site.
Copyright © 2002 Tom Simondi, All Rights Reserved
Pray the rosary for peace!