Today Jan had to leave due to illness. She made an appointment with her doctor for Wednesday.
This morning Regina, Ann and I went to the historic section of Goliad. Most of the shops around the square were closed but we did visit three that were open. At the Soho Goliad Antique Emporium I bought a silver bracelet with red coral daisies. At the Goliad Pharmacy I got some allergy medicine. At a dress shop I drooled over a beautiful denim pant suit but it was not in my size. By the time we had finished our little exploration, it was time to head back to the campground to rendezvous with our other friends.
We had a guided tour of the nearby Presidio La Bahia ("The Fort of the Bay"). This fort, which was restored in the 1960s, has been designated a National Historic Landmark and is considered the world's finest example of a Spanish frontier fort. The Royal Presidio La Bahia was established in 1721 and was first founded near present-day Lavaca Bay. In 1726 it was relocated near Victoria and finally, in 1749 it was moved to its present location. This is where the first Declaration of Texas Independence was signed on December 20, 1835 and then where the Goliad Massacre of March 27, 1836 took place.
"Our Lady of Loreto" chapel was erected in the Presidio quadrangle for the sole use of the soldiers and Spanish settlers living in the town of La Bahia which surrounded the fort. It is the oldest building in the compound in continuous use since the 1700s and is one of the oldest churches in America. The fresco behind the altar was done in 1946 by Antonio Garcia, the "Michelangelo of South Texas". The statue of Our Lady of Loreto above the entrance was sculpted by Lincoln Borglum, of Mount Rushmore fame. Mass still is celebrated here every Sunday.
Also in the compound is a memorial to and burial site of Colonel James Walker Fannin and 341 men under his command who were executed on Palm Sunday, March 27, 1836, in what came to be called the Goliad Massacre.
Afterwards we returned to Goliad State Park, where we were treated to a tour of the Mission Nuestra Senora del Espiritu Santo de Zuniga near the park entrance. It was founded in 1722 by the Aguayo Expedition on "La Bahia del Espiritu Santo" near present-day Lavaca Bay. It was moved to this site in 1749. The church, granary and workshop were partially restored in 1936-1939. The granary now houses a museum. On weekends volunteers give demonstrations of crafts used during colonial times.
When we had finished our tour, we went to Jorgie's Pizzeria for dinner. The food was delicious and the service excellent. When we got back to the campground, it was drizzling; so we all went to our separate rigs.
All in all, this has been a very good day.