The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 36, July 1932 - April, 1933 Page: 7
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Forerunners of De Leon's Expedition to Tewas
rected doubtless by Brother Manuel, the Indians erected a brush-
wood chapel and on the following day Father Larios celebrated
Holy Mass in the presence of the Indians. Thereupon, besides
attending to the sick Indians, the missionaries began to instruct
those who were not stricken with the disease." The hardships
endured by the friars during these first days at San Indefonso
are graphically described by an eyewitness, Rodrigo Morales, ser-
geant in the detachment of soldiers under Captain Elizondo, who
reached San Ildefonso four days after the arrival of Larios and
his companions. "Here," he testified, "a great epidemic of
smallpox attacked them [the Indians], during which I witnessed
and assisted at the baptism of more than three hundred persons,
adults and children, who were in danger of death from the dis-
ease. The number of people was very great. Here I saw the
friars going about, consoling the sick and serving them. Their
habit was so tattered that it reached only to the knees, and from
the roughness of the roads their legs and feet were covered with
blood. In addition to many hardsips, they had nothing to eat;
and I saw them begging food from the Indians who gave them
mescal and some roots which they ate."1'
As previously stated, Captain Francisco de Elizondo and his
detachment of twenty soldiers reached San Ildefonso on January
27. Commissioned by the Governor of Nueva Viscaya to act in
the name of the civil authorities, Elizondo interviewed the In-
dian chiefs, received their promise of allegiance to the Spanish
king, promised them in return the support and protection of
Spain, and finally proposed that they select a site for their hab-
itat, where he would place them in legal possession and where
they would be expected to live peacefully in organized towns and
'"Juan Larios to the Commissary General, Saltillo, February 26, 1674;
same to same, Saltillo, March 2, 1674; same to Captain Francisco de
Elizondo, January 23, 1674, contained in "Autos . . . de la entrada
que hizo el Capitan Francisco de Elizondo la tierra adentro"; MSS.-Arch.
San Fr. Gr., Bib. Nac., I, 82-85, 111-113, 63-78., U. T. L. Nowhere in his
correspondence does Larios say that on this occasion he named the settle-
ment San Ildefonso. From this it would seem that the place had been
previously visited and named by him, especially since some of the Indian
captains were already baptized, having doubtless received the Sacrament
during the earlier activity of Larios in these regions.
'6Investigacion . . . Aio de 1690," MS.-Manuscritos Historicos-
Arch. Bib. Pub. del Est. Jalisco," I, pp. 691-692, U. T. L.-Practically the
same was testified by another eyewitness on this occasion, the ensign of
the detachment, Ger6nimo Juan Ramos (Ibidem, pp. 702-703).
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 36, July 1932 - April, 1933, periodical, 1933; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101093/m1/15/: accessed February 23, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.