Other Projects

The Californios

Photographs and Stories about the Descendants of the Mission Era in Baja California

The photographs and stories in this book are about a dozen ranch families who live around isolated mountain communities in the central peninsula of Baja California: Santa Gertrudis, Santa Martha, Guadalupe, and San Javier. It is also a personal history of a culture that is rapidly disappearing—a culture that values family, work, strength of character and a deeply rooted connection to the land.

In 1991 I began to photograph the historic stone churches of Baja California to produce a portfolio of color photographs and accompanying letterpress text entitled Stone Legacy. During the course of that project I became acquainted with the Californio ranchers who live in the mountains around the mission sites.  The friendships that developed during repeated visits over a period of seven years led to this collection of images and stories.