Mission San Luis Rey de Francia was founded as the eighteenth mission in 1798. Located in the town of San Luis Rey in a quiet inland valley, the mission closed the critical gap between San Diego and San Juan Capistrano. Described as "gracious, dignified, and expressive," the mission church is an excellent example of what could be created with the help of Indian craftsmen when guided by a talented mission father. Father Antonio Peyri was in charge from the day it was founded, to the sad time of its secularization, thirty-six years later. Mission San Luis Rey was the largest and most populous of all the missions. The plan of the church was cruciform, a structure design used at only one other mission, San Juan Capistrano. One interesting feature of the early mission was an elaborate sunken garden built in a little valley below the mission. Exotic fruits and shrubs grew there. Today, the area is being excavated and may someday be restored to its original state. The first California Pepper tree, now a common sight throughout the state, was planted at this mission.
Painstakingly sculpted by hand, then reproduced in cold-cast porcelain, each Mission de Oro collectible contains the minute details that remind us of their pastoral history. Towering palm trees shelter colorful gardens while red-tiled roofs keep the rain off white stucco walls – each mission tells a warm story of California history.
This “Cameo-sized” mission is approximately 3"W x 3"D x 2"H.