Unforgettable Experiences in an Extraordinary Place
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Common Name: Cow, steer, or ox
Scientific Name: Bos Taurus
"…Captain Jacinto Roque [Pérez], the present deputy [governor], got him [Captain Juan Fernández de Florencia] to establish a ranch of cattle, swine, and horses, from which we receive considerable injury to our fields from his cattle, as well as [from] those of Diego Florencia and Francisco de Florencia, his brothers-in-law, who reside with him."
Don Patricio, Cacique of Ivitachuco, and Don Andrés,
Cacique of San Luis, to the King, February 12, 1699
Animal Used at Mission San Luis
The study of plant and animals from sites (ethnobotany and zooarchaeology, respectively) is one of the most illuminating aspects of archaeological research. It can reveal details about past environments, resources, settlement patterns, agricultural practices, architecture, social life, and diet unavailable from other types of data.
Since plant remains are so fragile and often difficult to see, we have limited their display to a static exhibit case format (see "Apalachee Life"). However, we have selected some animal bones found at Mission San Luis, along with comparative skeletal materials (Drawers 17-26), to give to a sense of the challenges faced by those researchers who identify, analyze, and interpret these materials.
We have supplemented the skeletal materials with archaeological and documentary information about the use of these animals in Spanish Florida and at Mission San Luis.