Mission Churches of the Sonoran Desert

Santiago y Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Cocóspera
Cocóspera, Sonora, Mexico

ruins of Santiago y Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Cocóspera

A small adobe church was under construction here in 1695, but was burned three years later in the first of a series of Apache attacks that finally led to the village being abandoned around 1845. The ruins that now stand on a hilltop, guarded by a Mexican government representative, show that the Jesuit church of raw adobe was engulfed in a later Franciscan construction of fired brick.


interior looking towards the altar, Santiago y Nuestra Señora del Pilar de Cocóspera

The interior looking towards altar. Most of the visible brickwork dates from the early l9th Century. The ruined condition of the church is due in part to the depredations of treasure hunters from both Mexico and the United States, seeking the legendary (and non-existent) gold of the missionaries.

Caborca | Cocóspera | Magdalena | Oquitoa | Pitiquito |
San Ignacio
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Go to the San Xavier del Bac mission page Go to the Tumacacori mission page Go to the Pitiquito mission page Go to the Caborca mission page Go to the Tubutama mission page Go to the Oquitoa mission page Go to the Cocospera mission page Go to the San Ignacio mission page Go to the Magdalena mission page