Raymond Starr, Book Review Editor
Father of the Mission: A Documentary History of San Carlos Borromeo. Compiled and Edited by Francis J. Weber. Hong Kong: Libra Press Limited. 1984. 225 Pages. $18.00
Francis J. Weber’s series of documentary collections on the California missions reaches a peak of romanticization with the volume on the mission at Carmel, Mission San Carlos Borromeo. The tone is set in the preface with a description by Robert Louis Stevenson of the Carmel Creek: “a clear and shallow river, loved by wading kine; and at last as it is falling toward a quicksand and the great Pacific, passes a ruined mission on a hill…” Weber’s sixty-five documents cover the usual range from original records to a heavy dose of secondary literature and poetry. The book will provide future historians with less of a foundation for the history of the Carmel mission than data for studies of the romanticization of the mission experience.