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Mission San Rafael Arcangel, San Rafael
(3.7/5 based on 50+ reviews on the web)
Mission San Rafael Arcángel was founded in 1817 as a medical asistencia of Mission San Francisco de Asís. It was a hospital to treat sick Native Americans, making it Alta California's first sanitarium. The weather was much better than in San Francisco, which helped the ill get better. It wasn't originally intended to be a stand-alone mission but nevertheless grew and prospered and it was granted full mission status on October 19, 1822.HistoryMission San Rafael Arcángel was founded in the present day location of San Rafael, California, on December 14, 1817, by Father Vicente Francisco de Sarría, as a medical asistencia ("sub-mission") of the San Francisco Mission to treat their sick population. It was granted full mission status in 1822.This was one of the second missions turned over to the Mexican government in 1833 after the Mexican secularization act of 1833. In 1840, there were 150 Indians still at the Mission. By 1844, Mission San Rafael Arcángel had been abandoned; what was left of the empty buildings was sold for $8,000 in 1846. The Mission was used by John C. Fremont as his headquarters during the battles to make California a United States possession. In 1847, a priest was once again living at the Mission. A new parish church was built near the old chapel ruins in 1861, and, in 1870, the rest of the ruins were removed to make room for the City of San Rafael. All that was left of the Mission was a single pear tree from the old Mission's orchard. It is for this reason that San Rafael is known as the "most obliterated of California's missions."
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  • Went during the weekday. Was busy with school. Didn't go in. Beautiful grounds. Walked around and enjoyed the experience. 
  • We traveled there last week with a small group. It has a lovely Chapel and larger church with stunning stained glass. It's a beautiful piece of history. There is literature available for grade school ...  more »
  • The original church fell into direpair and decay rapidly after the secularization of the churches. Kit Carson was here and Fremont headquartered here shortly, using the church to stable his companies ...  more »
  • i now ha so cool I even went to it for two whole day
  • Interesting historic site, although the mission is basically a reconstruction with only limited fidelity to the original. Nice little museum.
  • I love it because a I have to do a project about missions.
  • So awesome! Because I have to do a report!
  • I place luminaries here every year with Troop 200, great people.