By Thomas S. Bremer
Greater than 1000000 travelers stopover at non secular landmarks in San Antonio, Texas, every year, watching and infrequently partaking in non secular actions there. The San Antonio Missions nationwide old Park--managed through the nationwide Park provider, in cooperation with the Catholic Church--is one in every of 1000's of non secular areas in the United States and worldwide the place travelers became a well-recognized presence. In Blessed with travelers, Thomas S. Bremer explores the intersection of tourism and trade with faith in American, utilizing the missions and different San Antonio websites as leading examples.Bremer recounts the historical past of San Antonio, from its local American roots to its improvement as a non secular middle with the expansion of the Spanish colonial missions, to the trendy transformation of San Antonio right into a vacationer vacation spot. using either ethnographic and ancient methods, Bremer examines the suggestions of position, identification, aesthetics, and commercialization, demonstrating various ways in which sleek marketplace forces have an effect on non secular groups. via opting for vital connections among non secular and touristic practices, Bremer establishes San Antonio as a particular resource for a person trying to comprehend the interaction among the non secular and the secular, the normal and the fashionable.
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Additional info for Blessed with Tourists: The Borderlands of Religion and Tourism in San Antonio
Colonial Texas European space relied on Christian assumptions and ecclesiastical sources of authority. ’’ 20 The primary motive of the Terán expedition was to convert native peoples to Christianity. ’’ 21 In practice, this also meant converting native peoples into European subjects according to the Spaniards’ understanding of what constituted a civilized people. 22 The missionaries set out for Texas to bring the indigenous people there into the European world by inculcating in them not only the Christian religion but also European tastes, standards, and assumptions about the world.
By the s, an oﬃcial ‘‘custodian’’ of the place served the dual role of protecting the site and greeting tourists. William Corner’s guidebook described the tour this man provided to visitors. A visitor to-day at ‘‘The Alamo,’’ will be met at its entrance by the worthy janitor, Capt. Tom Rife, a Texan of pioneer days. He guards the building with a jealous care[,] it is indeed a pleasure to note in these days of the irrepressible relic hunter and wall scribbler. The visitor will be given in short the particulars of the foundation of the Mission and the church.
76 Dr. Ferdinand Roemer, for instance, a German who visited Texas in , reported being soaked in a thunderstorm while riding in an uncovered stagecoach between San Antonio and Houston. The driver of the coach subsequently ordered all male passengers to walk in order to lighten the load so that the wagon could continue to pass along the muddy road. ‘‘We waded in this black mud, a foot deep, for about a half hour,’’ Roemer complained. 77 Roemer found little to recommend traveling by stagecoach in Texas.