|Mission Santa Clara padrón, 1839 December 31, Vault B-101, courtesy, California Historical Society, Vault_B-101.jpg.|
Father Vásquez del Mercado appears to have been a violent character: according to Hittell, the padre was accused of murdering a group of unarmed Indians in cold blood, and Governor Figueroa (in an unprecedented move) demanded that he be prosecuted for the crimes in secular courts. According to Bancroft, Vásquez del Mercado instigated an uprising at Mission San Antonio de Padua two years later, in 1835. These acts, and the civil government's response, point to escalating tensions between Church and State around the time of secularization.
Archivist & Manuscripts Librarian