Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Junction in Kimble County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Spanish Road to Santa Fe, 1808

 
 
Spanish Road to Santa Fe 1808 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Richard Denney, May 16, 2012
1. Spanish Road to Santa Fe 1808 Marker
Inscription. Most direct road from San Antonio to Santa Fe, during Spanish era in Texas, 1519-1821. Charted for closer ties between Mexico City and New Mexico, after American explorer Zebulon Pike blazed trail from U.S. to New Mexico. Spanish road of 1808 was mapped by Capt. Francisco Amangual and 200 soldiers.

Amangual, veteran of 46 years of service to Spain, left San Antonio on March 30, 1808. On April 8, coming into this valley 5 miles to the south, he followed the East James (then called El Chimal Creek, for its bordering bluffs that resemble Indian headdresses), and camped that night by this red bluff. The party saw much game, including buffalo, and killed a bear.

Stampedes and losses of horses and mules (some loaded with crude sugar and other food) made the trip difficult. The route pointed north-northwest.

The party reached Santa Fe on June 19, and six months later returned to San Antonio.

Although Zebulon Pike (discover of Pike's peak) had traveled with only eight men, Amangual had to field a large party. One goal of his expedition was to impress the wild and fierce plains Indians with the might and glory of Spain. The road measured in 1808 has traces visible today, parallel to auto roads.
 
Erected 1967 by State Historical Survey Committee. (Marker Number
Marker in context image. Click for full size.
By Richard Denney, May 16, 2012
2. Marker in context
Looking from marker (right) north on FM 385 where it crosses the Little Devils River. Red bluffs like those referenced on marker, and shown in separate photo here, are just (left) up the river.
5002.)
 
Location. 30° 26.543′ N, 99° 22.213′ W. Marker is near Junction, Texas, in Kimble County. Marker is on Farm to Market Road 385 north of County Road 432, on the right when traveling west. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Harper TX 78631, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 1 other marker is within 13 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Site of the McDonald Massacre (approx. 12.3 miles away).
 
Also see . . .  A Guide to the Francisco Amangual Diary, 1808. Dolph Briscoe Center for American History,The University of Texas at Austin (Submitted on June 17, 2012, by Richard Denney of Austin, Texas.) 
 
Additional comments.
1. Little James River, Little Devil's River
The James River, referenced on the marker flows west to east, just northwest of here. The crossing shown on RR 385 is called the Little Devil's River which runs into the James about 3+ miles northwest of the marker location.
    — Submitted June 17, 2012, by Richard Denney of Austin, Texas.

 
Categories. ExplorationHispanic AmericansNative AmericansRoads & Vehicles
 
Red Bluffs image. Click for full size.
By Richard Denney, May 16, 2012
3. Red Bluffs
Red bluffs referenced on marker where Capt. Francisco Amangual and party camped.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Richard Denney of Austin, Texas. This page has been viewed 334 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Richard Denney of Austin, Texas. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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