133Lieutenant Colonel Ortiz Parrilla, being merely an interim governor of the Provinces of Sinaloa and Sonora, and knowing that the antagonism of certain frontier fort commanders for the provincial governor he had been sent t o replace, made haste to inform the viceroy at the City of Mexico of the delicate situation created by the Pima Revolt in 1751 just as soon as he reached San Ignacio Mission and had time to assess the condition of the refugees there and at Santa Ana, and the number and quality of troops at his immediate disposal. Ortiz Parrilla wrote his estimate of the situation on December 1, 1751 (Revilla Gigedo Jan. 19, 1752:22). The dispatch service of the king was such that the viceroy received the governor's report six weeks later on January 14 of 1752.
The Count of Revilla Gigedo suffered a handicap common to vice kings sent out to administer colonial possessions-he had no first-hand knowledge of his dominion outside the capital city. He was therefore forced to rely on the reports of subordinates, but he did not need to trust them blindly. The Count was quite aware that the Pima Revolt would add 134greatly to the difficulties his interim governor in the Provinces of Sinaloa and Sonora had been sent out to resolve. He desire d to aid Ortiz Parrilla as effectively as possible, but he wanted some expert advice on Sonora.
In the middle of January of 1752 the only person in the City of Mexico of proper social status with any significant personal experience in far-off Sonora seems to have been the Provincial of the Society of Jesus, Father Juan Antonio Bal thasar. He had been Father Visitor a few years previously, and toured the Sonoran missions to inspect them. Had the viceroy read Balthasar's secret reports to church officials, which were largely scathing denunciations of royal officials (Dunne 1957:95-10 7), he might not have been so ready to request the priest's advice. But he did ask the Provincial for suggestions, and the Jesuit replied on January 18 on the same day his advice was solicited.