Sunday Shrine– 9/14

This is the Historical Photography edition of Sunday Shrine. I found some wonderful photos on photogrammar. This is”San Jose de Gracia Church, the best preserved Mission church in the USA. It is in Trampas, New Mexico. It is January, which is why everyone is bundled up. The landscape reminds me of the area around Cloudcroft, but further reading puts in Taos County– in the Sangre de Cristo mountains.  These were taken by John Collier, for the US Government. As far as my research tells me, they are in public domain.  They were taken in 1943.


⇑Proof positive that leaving the church after mass has long been a slow and social process.  Also, hats.


⇑This is what the mission church looks like from the outside, front. The photo above this one was taken inside the courtyard. Note the vegas sticking out the side. They serve a dual purpose of draining off rain, and supporting the roof slats.  The house I grew up in was built in the same school of architecture, but with updated construction techniques.

31904v⇑This is the portal. You can orient yourself by the placement of the bell in the photo above. I’m seriously considering doing a painting of this shot, it is so interesting. Did I mention I love that bell?

8d24604v⇑This is the inside of the front entrance. Also, I suspect the photographer set up this shot just so he could get that gorgeous light effect. His gamble paid off! Oddly, the rest of these are taken at the same time, but are in color.  On to the interior!


⇑Here is the a picture of the sanctuary. Looking closely you can see a panapoly of Saints, including St. Michael and Gabriel.  I’m afraid I’m not as familiar with this iconography, and the footnotes from this picture aren’t helpful.  I’m told that these were painted by the famous Santero Jose de Gracia Gonzales in 1860.

…Imagining kneeling on that floor.  Note that chairs were brought in for older folks. At least that was done in the Spanish colonial period.

1a34481vSide altar in the church dedicated to San Lorenzo and San Felipe de Jesus

1a34484vAltar dedicated to Madonna and to Santiago Matamoro.



An altar in the church dedicated to the Trinity. I think the fellow below is St. Augustine, or, more likely (based on the clothes)  St Bonaventure? The documentation on the photographs doesn’t say.

1a34485vThe altar of Nuestra Senora del Carmel on the south wall of the church

Aren’t these gorgeous?

Wikipedia also brought up this photograph of the ceiling.

⇑Author: Cqui of Wikimedia Commons, distributed under a creative commons license.

These special folks need your help. The church needs to be restuckoed every year in a special way. It was done poorly last year, and with many rains there is danger of this precious monument getting badly damaged. Please tell your friends and help out a parish in need! Here’s a link for more information.



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