Nancy's Travelblogue

... there isn't a train I wouldn't take, no matter where it's going. -- Edna St. Vincent Millay

Location: California, United States

Tuesday, June 07, 2005


St. Francis of Asissi Mission Church in Ranchos de Taos is billed as the most photographed and painted church in the US. I cast my lot this afternoon with the greats -- Ansel Adams, Georgia O'Keefe and a whole lot more. In fact there is a book on the art inspired by this church: Spirit and vision : images of Ranchos de Taos Church, by Sandra D'Emilio (Museum of New Mexico Press, 1987).

The town of Ranchos de Taos (directly south of the real Taos) was settled by the Spanish in 1716 and the church was built in the early 1800s. The courtyard surrounding the church has not been modernized or gentrified in any way. Low lying buildings in their own tumbledown disarray surround the church on three sides. If you can suspend your modern sense of order and regard the plaza as a look backwards into history, then it comes to life as little spot on this isolated plain where human history has played itself out for more than two centuries.

Here is a link to some more photos, and another one to a description.


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