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Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail

The Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail is a 1,210-mile U.S. National Historic Trail that runs from the city of Nogales, Arizona, on the U.S.-Mexico border, to the city of San Francisco, California. The Juan Bautista de Anza Trail commemorates the 1775/1776 historic taken route that Spanish commander Juan Bautista de Anza took overland to build a presidio outpost and mission near San Francisco Bay.

On January 7, 1781, Father Garcés built the Mission San Pedro y San Pablo de Bicuñer and a nearby pueblo was to protect the established Anza Trail where it crossed the Colorado River. The outposts and buildings were very inadequately supported, and Spanish colonists seized the best lands, destroyed the local Indians' crops, and generally ignored the human and property rights of the local natives. In retaliation, the Quechan (Yuma Area) Indians and their local native allies attacked and destroyed the built installation between July 17th and July 19th, 1781. The natives' attack closed this important crossing and seriously slowing future overland communications between Alta California and Mexico.

Along the old Trail route, trail trekkers can experience the varied California landscapes similar to those the expedition saw back in 1775; learn the stories of the expedition, its adventurous members, and past descendants; better understand the important Native American role in the expedition and the diversity of their almost lost cultures; and appreciate the extent of the effects of Spanish colonial settlements in Arizona and California. The Juan Bautista de Anza Trail was listed a National Historic Trail in 1990 and a National Millennium Trail in the year 1999. In 2005, Caltrans road workers began posting marker signs on road routes that overlap with the famous trail path, so that California drivers can now follow the trail and be reminded of the important past history that shaped their state.

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