The official repository of the Franciscan Order in California, the Santa Barbara Mission Archive has attracted scholars, historians and California history buffs, including noted historian Hubert Howe Bancroft, since 1877.
The Mission Archive warehouses such items as mission registers, texts the Franciscans brought to California in 1769 and a collection of materials from the De La Guerra family. It has housed the Franciscans' records since 1833 and is an invaluable source of information about California missions and the Chumash community under the mission system.
The Rev. Virgilio Biasiol will take UCSB History Associates members and other guests through the Mission Archive from 11 a.m. to noon on Dec. 11. Sponsored by the History Associates, this special event tour is open to the public and includes a boxed lunch. The mission is located at 2201 Laguna St.
Biasiol has been archive director since 1979. He has a keen interest in library science and the preservation of sacred and historical items from California's missions.
Educated in Rome, Biasiol holds a Ph.D. in philosophy. He came to the United States to study English and Chinese and in 1948, taught philosophy at the San Luis Rey Mission. From 1961 to 1966, he taught at the Santa Barbara Mission. He was then assigned as pastor at Stockton where he served for more than a decade before returning here.
Tickets are $10 for UCSB History Associates members and $13 for non-members. Reservations required. Call 893-4388 for more information.