Sonoma, California. As we enter Mission San Francisco Solano, we both experience a feeling of conflict: a sense of accomplishing our goal of visiting 21 missions and a sense of let-down, knowing this is the last of our visits. But we are excited about what we have learned.
Mission San Francisco Solano was established in 1823, the last of the 21 California Missions and the only mission built under Mexican rule. In the museum is a display of water-color paintings by Chris Jorgensen. From 1903 to 1905, Chris and his wife traveled up and down the California coast to capture in water-color the remains of each mission. His paintings generated new interest in preserving the missions. The art reveals how badly the missions had deteriorated by the turn of the 20th century. I might be wrong, but I believe the missions are the oldest man-made structures in California. How fortunate we are to have preserved these monuments of history for future generations.