A Brief History of San Juan Capistrano

    Before it became known as the birthplace of Orange County, and a well-known Spanish mission in the mid 1770’s, the San Juan Capistrano area was home to a tribe of Native American Indians who spoke a Takic dialect while Indians in the San Luis Rey area spoke Luiseño.

    Many reports estimate that close to 10,000 Native Americans lived in the San Juan Capistrano at the time.

    Knowing the length of the journeys between missions in California at the time, Father Serra motivated Captain Rivera and Father Fermin Lasuen to create a mission in San Juan Capistrano to interrupt the long, hard journey between San Gabriel and San Diego.

    Early Years  Basilica_San_Juan_Capistrano_

    After it was officially established as a Spanish Mission, San Juan Capistrano Mission was a productive mission which produced hundreds of thousands of pounds of wheat and corn every year.

    In the early 1800’s the San Juan Capistrano Mission went through a lot of turmoil including earthquakes, and attacks from pirates whose native countries were at war with Spain, but the mission prevailed.

    Entering the 20th Century

    Throughout the 1880’s Mission San Juan Capistrano all but ceased to exist due to political and social strife in the area.

    By 1910 the Mission was lying in ruins until Father John O’Sullivan came to San Juan Capistrano and begin to rebuild the mission, then turn it back into an active church.

    San Juan Capistrano Today

    As of 2015 Mission San Juan Capistrano still is an active church and work continues to rebuild and stabilize it for future generations. Serra Chapel right next to the mission is the oldest, in use, building in California.

    One of the most notable events which happens in San Juan Capistrano every year is the migration of the swallows who take up residence there from October 23rd to March 19th.

    Today San Juan Capistrano is also one of the top destinations in Southern California for music, live events, fine dining and so much more.

    To learn more about San Juan Capistrano, or to view homes for sale across Orange County, contact Fred Sed & Associates at (949) 272-0125.

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