Mission San Carlos Borromeo Historic Images
Mission Carmel, which was called San Carlos Borromeo de Monterey during the mission era, fell into ruin in the last half of the 19th century. The noted mission restorer, Sir Harry Downie guided the mission restoration for almost five decades.
As the headquarters of the California Missions, located near the major port of San Francisco, Mission Carmel was frequently illustrated in paintings, drawings, lithographs, and early photographs. The earliest artistic renditions we have of a California mission show early stages of the Carmel mission.
This gallery displays a generous sample of the large body of work that exists and includes contemporary photographs of this special mission.
Serra Saying First Mass in Monterey in 1770
La Perouse is greeted in 1786
At Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Monterey (the name by which the mission was known in the mission era).
From an original painting by Gaspard Duche de Vaney.
The Carmel mission in 1792
Based on a drawing by John Sykes, colorized. The modest church shows on the left. The stunning final Carmel church would not be completed and dedicated for another five years.
San Carlos Borromeo
After a painting by Richard R. Beechey, made in 1826. Beechey was a British naval officer.
Mission San Carlos Borromeo and the Bay of Carmel
A lithograph of a painting by William Smyth, 1827. Originally published 1839 in A History of Lower and Upper California by Alexander Forbes, and subsequently colorized.
A lithograph of Mission Carmel Viewed From the Rear
Mission San Carlos Borromeo by Edward Vischer
Created in 1861
The Mission Carmel Church
A view of the church interior after the roof collapsed in 1853
Mission Carmel by Edward Deakin
The man in the field photograph of Mission Carmel Mission
Photograph taken before 1936 and showing the pointed roof on the church
Carmel Mission by Will Sparks
Mission Carmel Photograph
Photographed early in the morning by David J. McLaughlin, 2014
Carmel main altar in the church
The Serra Memorial Cenotaph
This is a monument and not a tomb. Sculpted in 1924 by Jo Mora.