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    Franciscan Missions Franciscan Missions Queretaro, Mexico
    in 2003, the Franciscan Missions of the Sierra Gorda in Queretaro, Mexico was made a World Heritage Site, and had been constructed under the leadership of Friar Junipero Serra that gained fame in Alto California by building many missions along the west coast. The facade of the church located here is significant for its beautiful mestizo baroque style that showcases the indigenous influence that was incorporated into the design from the Pames that had built them. There would be five of these magnificent churches constructed in the region, with their most significant attributes being the ornate decorations showcased on the main portals, with more adornment installed on the bell towers and on other churches, it would be extended to other parts. This decoration was installed to help teach the local indigenous people about the new religion the Spanish were bringing and teaching, but under Serra's tutelage, the churches would be mixed with the local influences so that the indigenous peoples wouldn't feel as if they were being conquered, as much as having parts of their culture interwoven with the church's doctrines. One such element would the usage of yellow, red and orange colors, as well as the inclusion of jaguars and rabbits. The facade is elegantly created in stucco and stone work, with the local red ochre of the pilasters being contrasted by the yellow of the various details, with a majority of vegetation decorations as well as eagles and small angels.

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    El Cerrito Archeological SiteEl Cerrito Archeological Site Queretaro, Mexico
    El Cerrito means archaeological site and this one is located in Queretaro, Mexico and had been a place of worship for the local cultures of Chupicuaro, Toltec, Teotihuacan's, Otomies, Tarascan and Chichimeca well into the mid 17th century. The original Queretaro human settlements would be part of the Chupicuaro culture that had migrated here from the margins of the Lerma River. Their culture would include a low platform architecture with elaborated funeral rites and elegant pottery decorations. There has been many discoveries of their evidence on the banks of the Pueblito River along sites that were located on the base of Cimatario Hill. In the valley of Queretaro, there are further examples of this evidence on the west in Magdalena and to the east, La Griega. These early settlements were related to the Chupicuaro culture from the Mesoamerican period and would influence the particular cultural expressions of the region that is still visible today. In this site, that is also called El Pueblito pyramid, the natives would use stone plates to construct it, with decorative engravings in the sidewalks. walls and altars, with beautiful motifs of historical and mythical characters, symbols, calendar glyphs, and many attributes of the astral, aquatic and terrestrial Quetzalcoatl deity. They also used bas-relief engraved slabs that would be finished in paint made from mineral pigments of black, blue, red and white.

January 5, 2014