One day while exploring the Lompoc Valley we visited La Purisima Mission State Historic Park. Here is a place to learn about the history of California including the native Americans and how they lived before the coming of the Europeans.
This story is told at the Visitor Center with its historical exhibits of the native Chumash people and then the Mission way of life that followed.
The La Purisima Mission was founded in 1787, flourished for some years and then was destroyed by an earthquake. A second Mission was built in 1812 but soon fell into decay.
Then in the 1930s the C.C.C., Civilian Conservation Corp. set about restoring the Mission to its original condition. This took seven years of work by almost 200 young men of the Corp.
Their story and way of life during this period is also told in exhibits at the Visitor Center.
Ranger Ann Boggess was our guide as we toured the Mission and learned how the priests and craftsmen lived and marveled on how the church and other buildings had been restored.
La P:urisima State Park is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is located at 2295 Purisima Road in Lompoc. Guided tours are conducted at 1 p.m. daily. Telephone 888 877-5379.