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Navigation for Santa Bárbara:

Tour map

You enter the cemetery through the side door of the church. As you exit the church be certain to turn around and look back at the door...

Door to cemetery
Picture taken 11:15am 5 Jul 2001

No, it's not a pirate symbol. The skull and crossbones was often used to designate a cemetery in Spanish colonial days.

The cemetery was laid out in 1789, after the original church was completed. The first Chumash burial was Cristobal of Saspili, 2 December 1789. Over time around 4,000 Chumash were buried here. Exploration of the grounds also shows crypts for Spanish settlers and others. Some of these are family burial sites and, for them, the cemetery is still active as I noticed one burial date in the year 2000 and several in the late 1990s.

Do walk around the cemetery as there are a number of interesting sights (even if you don't want to peer into crypts or note names and dates). It's really a very pleasant garden area.

Here you see the large cross that dominates the back end of the cemetery and, next to that, a view from the cross toward the front of the cemetery and the tree that dominates that end.

Cemetery cross
Picture taken
11:15am 5 Jul 2001

Cemetery tree
Picture taken
11:20am 5 Jul 2001

Along the outer wall you will also see this statue of St. Francis of Assisi and the side gate to the cemetery (closed and locked now).

St. Francis
Picture taken
11:20am 5 Jul 2001

Cemetery gate
Picture taken
11:20am 5 Jul 2001

When finished, head to the front of the cemetery; that's where the exit is. Be certain you want to exit, the gate locks behind you.

The tour ends at the aqueduct at the side of the church...Trail

Navigation for Mission Santa Bárbara:

Mission Home :: History :: Map :: Front :: Museum :: Museum (cont) :: Garden :: Church :: Cemetery :: Aqueduct

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Copyright © 2002 Tom Simondi, All Rights Reserved
Pray the rosary for peace!