It's bright and early and we are off to visit the San Fernando Cathedral. San Antonio is the second oldest city in the United States. (Can you guess the oldest?)
Founded by the Spanish, who were looking for gold (they found that in Mexico) and converts, San Antonio found it's beginnings. The Indians lived along the river. In 1709 there were various tribes of Indians, peaceful, buffalo hunters. As Spanish soldiers entered their lands, the Indians got many of their diseases, and came to the mission for healing. They lived among the barracks, each tribe speaking a different language. They learned how to farm and did the grunt work for the missions in exchange for living quarters and became "civilized." Also many people from the Canary Islands were transported there to settle the population. The Indians and Canary Islanders became one. Later they intermarried with the Mexicans as well and a new culture was created: The Tejanos.
The Spanish instructed them on how to build the missions and built the Mision de San Antonio de Valero (also known as The Alamo), the oldest of missions among others. The church was built between 1738 and 1750 and forms the sanctuary of the cathedral.
On the left alcove are the remains of those who fought at The Alamo.
24 carrot gold overlay
The baptismal font is believed to be a gift from Charles III, who became King of Spain from 1759, is the oldest piece of liturgical furnishing in the cathedral.
This maks the city center. It is centered between the worship area and the pews.