Historical author Herndon Williams will talk about his research including the following findings:
• The Reconstruction of the Refugio Mission in 1817. His talk accompanied by a physical model of the entire Mission compound.
• The appearance of this Mission has been of interest since there are no ruins, no sketches, no plans and no adequate descriptions in the historical record.
• Archaeological excavation by Msgr. Oberste and collaborators in Refugio in 1936 and follow-up digs by Jim Warren in 1995-1997 uncovered part of the Mission’s foundation. But it was only in 1998-1999 when TxDOT excavated under Highway 77 that the footprint of the final church was revealed.
• Inventories made by the Franciscan missionaries at Refugio in 1796, 1802, 1817 and 1820 showed the evolution of the mission over its life and provided some architectural information. Then began the ferreting out of the design of the Mission at its zenith in 1817.
• The reality of the Mission compound in 1817 far exceeds the speculation and earlier models of the Mission. The Refugio Mission was the last major structure built by the Spanish in their Texas colony. It represents the end of an era and the abandonment of the dream of Karankawa civilization.
The meeting is open to the public. The Bayside Community Center is at 909 First St. in Bayside. The talk will be followed by refreshments, and a door prize.
For more information or directions, call 361-529-8944.