The Story of Santa Barbara - Spanish Settlements and The Legend of Saint Barbara

Santa Barbara Historical Museum

Breastplate, Spanish, c. 17th century
Gift of Dudley C. Backus

Cabasset (helmet); Buffe (chin guard);
Cup-Hilt Broadsword; Main Gauche (left-handed dagger)
Spanish, circa 17th century
Lent courtesy Jim Jeter

Lance Blade, Spanish, c. 17th century
Gift of Jim Jeter

Spur, Spanish, c. 17th century
Gift of Antoinette Delpy Carrillo

Silver Scale Weights, Indo-Persian, c. 17th century
Anonymous gift

Seal of Spain, c. 1840
Gift of Catherine Lataillade

Reales & Escudos, (Spanish coinage), c. 16th & 17th century
Recovered from the 1622 wreck of the Nuestra Señora de Atocha.
Gift of James and Mary Carrigan

Santa Barbara Historical Museum

Miguel Cabrera was one of Mexico's most prolific artists. He served as court painter to the archbishop of Mexico and in 1756, led several groups of painters in an official examination of the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe

The Immaculate Conception
Miguel Cabrera (Mexican, 1695-1768)
Oil on Canvas
15 ½ x 23 ½ inches
Anonymous gift in memory of Edward Oreña de Koch

Santa Barbara Historical Museum

Typical attire for upper-class women in the Americas during the late eighteenth century included fluffy powdered wigs and elaborate hats perched high on the head. The custom of wearing two watches or lockets suspended from the waist was a conceit of women's fashions.p>

Portrait of a Woman [Doña Beatriz], c. 1794-95
Attributed to Rafael Jimeno (Ximeno) y Planes
(Spanish, 1757-1825)
Oil on canvas
46 x 31 inches
Gift of Albert Falvy

Santa Barbara Historical Museum

The Franciscans brought this statue and the adjoining candlesticks for use in the Santa Barbara presidio chapel. The figure sustained damage in the earthquakes of 1812 and 1925. Monsignor P. J. Stockman later gifted these objects to Lucinda Trussell.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Spanish, c. late 17th century
Gilded, polychrome on wood
Candlesticks, Mexican, c. late 17th century
Polychrome on wood
Gift of María Lorenza Trussell
xx.11.55.55 and x.55.2.1 & 2

Santa Barbara Historical Museum

A 1483 story tells of a beautiful woman named Barbara who was born in Asia Minor in 218 AD. Her father, Dioscorus of Nicomedia, regarded his daughter a gift from a goddess. To protect her from the glances of men, he began construction of a tower with a bathhouse, courtyard and gardens. While he was away with the Roman army, Barbara instructed the builders to add a third window to her tower. Questioned by her father, Barbara confessed her conversion to Christianity, stating three windows represented the Trinity. He then demanded she worship his gods or be put to death. She chose the latter, and was taken to a mountain where her father beheaded her with his sword. For this deed, he was instantly struck dead by lightning.

Saint Barbara, French, c. 16th century
Artist unknown
Oil on board
47 x 21 inches
Gift of Paul McCoole

Santa Barbara Historical Museum

In December 1602, on the eve of St. Barbara's Feast Day, Spanish explorer Sebastián Vizcaíno sailed into the channel, whereupon the priest aboard the ship christened it Santa Barbara.

Ste. Barbe [Saint Barbara]
Artist unknown
French, c. 18th century
Polychrome on wood
Gift of Helen W. Huber Real Property Trust
In memory of Helen W. and George J. Huber

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