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Eusebio Francisco Kino

Kino, Eusebio Francisco (āōsāˈbyō fränsēsˈkō kēˈnō) [key], c.1644–1711, missionary explorer in the American Southwest, b. Segno, in the Tyrol. He was in 1669 admitted to the Jesuit order. A distinguished mathematician, he observed the comet of 1680–81 at Cádiz, publishing his results in his Exposición astronómica de el [sic] cometa (1681). He arrived as a missionary in New Spain in 1681 and was appointed royal cosmographer to accompany the expedition to colonize Lower California. When the settlement in S California was abandoned, he went to Pimería Alta (now N Sonora and S Arizona), where he labored as a missionary, explorer, and colonizer until his death. He made more than 50 journeys from his base, the mission of Nuestra Señora de los Dolores in Sonora, frequently with only Native American guides as companions. He established agriculture at the missions he founded and brought in cattle, horses, and sheep; he distributed cattle and seed grain among the Native Americans. In 1701–2 he made two expeditions down the Colorado, on the second reaching the head of the Gulf and proving anew that California was not an island. He was the first to map Pimería Alta on the basis of actual exploration, and his map, published in 1705, and many times reproduced, remained the basis for maps of the region until the 19th cent. His valuable historical and autobiographical chronicle, Favores celestiales, was edited by H. E. Bolton as Kino's Historical Memoir of Pimería Alta (1919, repr. 1948).

See E. J. Burros, Kino and the Cartography of Northwestern New Spain (1965); F. J. Smith, J. L. Kessell, and F. J. Fox, Father Kino in Arizona (1966).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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See more Encyclopedia articles on: U.S. History: Biographies


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