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Museum - Part 2

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Continuing the tour of the Mission Museum we now see what other items are on display. We'll start with a painting that appears to be a window into the world at mission times...

Mission PictureExpand
Picture taken 10:28am 22 Feb 2012

Most displays in this area are of individual items used during mission times.

Lenten CoverExpand
Picture taken 10:28am 22 Feb 2012

On major holy days the Padres would cover the reredos behind the altar with a special painted backdrop. The backdrop might be cloth or a solid piece. To the left is one small piece if this sort of painted scene.

The Dolores Mission in San Francisco has a complete cover against the wall in the Church should you wish to see one in total.

The altar rails in the reconstructed Church were modeled after this original part of the altar rail which was found with its original paint. Similar colors were given to the baptisimal font in the Church. Altar Rail PostExpand
Picture taken 10:30am 22 Feb 2012
Candle HoldersExpand
Picture taken 10:29am 22 Feb 2012
Candles were used for many things; mostly for light but also for ceremonial uses. These candle holders were of the type used on the altar.
Icon lamp with chance reflection of a cross appearing to hold it up. An icon lamp is a glass or metal oil container placed in front of a votive painting or statue. The cross is not part of the lamp but a reflection in the glass of the display case. Just seemed like a more interesting picture with the cross included.[Smile] Icon LampExpand
Picture taken 10:30am 22 Feb 2012
Picture taken 10:31am 22 Feb 2012

This cross was described in the general inventory of the Mission dated 1850:

"1 more (cross) with no staff of varnished wood, with a crucifix of gilt metal in half-relief, for (funerals of) the deceased infants"

Again, the smaller cross is another reflection that simply enhances the picture.

The feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe is celebrated every December 12th. She is considered the Patroness of the Americas. This particular painting has a number of vignettes of Juan Diego's encounter. This is not a mission era painting but, instead, an early twentieth century picture. Our Lady of GuadalupeExpand
Picture taken 10:31am 22 Feb 2012
Sick Call SetExpand
Picture taken 10:31am 22 Feb 2012
This is a sick call set. It was kept in many Catholic households and set up with a priest came to give Holy Communion or bless someone confined to home. Again, this is not mission era but dates from about 1900.
These are altar cards. Texts often used during Mass were placed on cards so that the priest did not always have to refer to a large missal for the words. Mass CardsExpand
Picture taken 10:32am 22 Feb 2012

The museum also has a number of building supplies displays. For example, there are redwook logs standing in one corner. These are from the convento attic and were part the Mission's original construction. Another display compares part of one of the original adobe bricks with a modern adobe brick. It's clear than machine mixing produces a much more uniform product. Pieces of wood and a nail from the convento building are also on display. The corbel, with curves on each edge, was designed to hold beams. Look in the top left of the picture. There you will see a rather large nail; the largest kind of metal part used in the building as nails were quite rare.

Picture taken 10:33am 22 Feb 2012
Old and New AdobeExpand
Picture taken 10:33am 22 Feb 2012
Building PartsExpand
Picture taken 10:34am 22 Feb 2012

Other exhibits show things used in daily living. Below, from left to right and top to bottom you have...

  • A water filter (destilador de aqua) made of porous stone. Place a pitcher below the pot and then pour water into the pot and after some time for the water to filter through the stone, you would have a pitcher of clean water.
  • The Mission brand.
  • A small bell that could have been used to signal various times of the day or tasks to be performed.
  • A Harmonium that might have been used in the original adobe Church. It dates from 1850 in France and may have been played by Encarnacion Vallejo and one of the daughters of Joseph Sunderer.
  • A tallow pot where beef tallow was rendered. This kettle was purchased in 1843 by Rober Livermore.
  • A saddle.
  • A cooper's bench. Sitting on the bench one can use the lever to serve as a vise to hold wood in place for shaping. It was used for many tasks including staves for wine barrels.
  • An array of smaller tools is also shown.
  • One of those tools is a carpet stretcher. The carpet stretcher holds personal interest. My father installed capets for a large part of his life and used a tool similar to this; it was larger and had a place to "knee" the stretcher to move the carpet into place but in concept the two devices worked the same way.
Water PurifierExpand
Picture taken 10:36am 22 Feb 2012
Picture taken 10:36am 22 Feb 2012
Small BellExpand
Picture taken 10:37am 22 Feb 2012
Picture taken 10:39am 22 Feb 2012
Tallow PotExpand
Picture taken 10:41am 22 Feb 2012
Picture taken 10:41am 22 Feb 2012
Cooper's BenchExpand
Picture taken 10:42am 22 Feb 2012
Small ToolsExpand
Picture taken 10:43am 22 Feb 2012
Carpet StretcherExpand
Picture taken 10:43am 22 Feb 2012

A small room in the Museum is dedicated to artifacts and pictures from the Normandy-style parish church built after the 1868 earthquake and used until 1965 as the parish church.

Relics from Wooden ChurchExpand
Picture taken 10:48am 22 Feb 2012

In front of this three-picture panorama is a portion of a pew and the curved portion of the altar rail. The straight portions of the altar rail are installed in Christ Church; the round portions stayed here in the Mission Museum.

Altar RailExpand
Picture taken 10:46am 22 Feb 2012

Below are individual pictures of some of the items in the panorama.

Picture taken 10:49am 22 Feb 2012
Picture taken 10:49am 22 Feb 2012
Picture taken 10:49am 22 Feb 2012
St. PatrickExpand
Picture taken 10:50am 22 Feb 2012
Madonna cna ChildExpand
Picture taken 10:49am 22 Feb 2012
Picture from Wooden ChurchExpand
Picture taken 10:52am 22 Feb 2012

The pictures in the lower right corner are from the wooden church that was moved across the bay. For more current pictures of the same objects see the MissionTour Christ Church page.

Tucked away in a corner of a Museum room is one of the original El Camino Real bells. El Camino Real BellExpand
Picture taken 10:57am 22 Feb 2012

The final Museum room we'll exhibit is one that is not aways available; the audio-visual room. Presentations are sometimes given in this room with people sitting in pews. During the mission era the room was used for various purposes. During the Gold Rush Henry and Napoleon Smith kept a store in thie room, providing supplies for the miners and local residents. In 1950 the room became a chapel when Father John A. Leal remodeled it. It was converted to audio visual use after the reconstructed Church was dedicated.

AudioVisual RoomExpand

On the walls of this room are paintings of various missions. Found no descriptive material and so can only say that they appear to be paintings made around 1912, about 10 years after the Jorgensen watercolors at the Sonoma mission. Only have 17 photos so this is not a complete set and, there was little time to take these pictures so a few of them have a small amount of motion blur. Apologies in advance for that. Maybe on a future trip I can get more time and a tripod into that room. Click on any one of the pictures for an expanded view in a lightbox. There were no labels on the paintings nor any descriptive material so not all of these mission paintings are identified and some of those identifications are best guesses. The names will appear above the picture in the lightbox.

San Juan Bautista? === === Sonoma Soledad?
La Purisima San Luis Rey San Fernando? Santa Barbara? Santa Ines?
San Diego? San Francisco? Carmel San Juan Capistrano San Gabriel
===       San Luis Obispo

Pictures taken 11:00am 22 Feb 2012

Next, start your tour of the Church...Trail

Navigation for Mission San José:

Mission Home :: History :: Museum-1 :: Museum-2 :: Church-1 :: Church-2 :: Cemetery :: Garden/Exterior :: Christ Church

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Copyright © 2012 Tom Simondi, All Rights Reserved
Pray the rosary for peace!