SANTA BARBARA PRESIDIO CEMETERY (1782-1850)
The Santa Barbara Presidio chapel functioned as a parish church and primarily served the spiritual needs of Santa Barbara's "razon" (non-Indian) population. The presidio chapel was where they worshipped, and where they were married, baptized, and buried. The first burials at the Presidio of Santa Barbara were inside the chapel, subsequent burials were beyond the presidio wall behind the chapel and in a small cemetery for infants and young children adjacent to the chapel. After February 1807 the presidio chapel's parishioners were buried in the Santa Barbara Mission Cemetery, with the exception of two burials early in 1824. Burials at the presidio resumed in December 1838, but decreased sharply following the American invasion and occupation of Alta California in 1846.
The first burial in the Presidio Cemetery was that of María Antonia Quijada y Armenta, who was only two months old when she died. Antonia was buried inside the chapel on December 29, 1782 (BP Death 00001). There is a tile plaque mounted on the wall inside the presidio chapel that lists others who also were interred inside the chapel. The last identified burial inside the Presidio Chapel was that of Manuel Den on March 27, 1846 (Death 00683). The last identified burial in the Presidio Cemetery was for the infant Aniceto on July 24, 1850 (BP Death 00970).
Please note that the spelling of Hispanic names during the Spanish Colonial and Mexican Republican periods was not standardized, often resulting in different phonetic spellings for the same individual. To make it easier to find an individual, use a modern, standardized spelling of the name. Letters most frequently interchanged in early spelling of Spanish names were the consonants B-V, F-PH, C-S-Z, J-X, CH-X, LL-Y, and the vowel I-Y.
A complete list of pre-1850 Santa Barbara burials can be found at the : Huntington Library's 'Early California Population Project' database (ECPP). Presidio records use BP, to search Mission records use SB. Burial records (usually) include the place of burial, either at the Presidio Cemetery or the Mission Cemetery. If the record is unclear, or does not specifically indicate burial at the Presidio, then the remains were more than likely interred in the Mission Cemetery. The following indicate a burial at the Presidio Cemetery or inside the Presidio Chapel:
- Capilla de este (Real) Presidio
- Capilla del (Real) Presidio
- Cementerio del (Real) Presidio
- Cementerio de esta Iglesia
- Iglesia de este (Real) Presidio
- Iglesia del (Real) Presidio
- Yglesia de este (Real) Presidio
- Yglesia del (Real) Presidio
GPS Coordinates: 34.42288, -119.69915
- Added: 17 Mar 2011
- Find A Grave Cemetery: #2393253
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