Pablo Cota Documents MS-42

Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation. Presidio Research Center
215 East Canon Perdido St.
Santa Barbara 93101

Language of Material: Spanish; Castilian
Contributing Institution: Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation. Presidio Research Center
Title: Pablo Cota Documents
Identifier/Call Number: MS-42
Physical Description: 1 folder
Date (bulk): 1787-1798
Abstract: Certified copies of military service records for Pablo Cota from 1787-1798
Physical Description: 13 pages
Container: 1

Scope and Contents

Certified copies of 9 documents received from the Archivo General de Simancas in Spain. The documents detail Cota's service record at El Presidio de Santa Bárbara in Alta California and indicate various posts and ranks he held. The documents are signed by Felipe Goycoechea, Pedro Fages, and others.

Existence and Location of Originals

Archivo General de Simancas, Spain

Conditions Governing Use

Material may be consulted for research only. No reproductions are allowed.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Ignacio Cota

Biographical / Historical

Pablo Antonio Cota was born in 1744 at Loreto in the California territory of New Spain. On July 4, 1768 he enlisted as a soldier at the age of 24. In March of 1769 he traveled with the historic Gaspar de Portolá expedition to establish a settlement and mission in San Diego. Cota was with the second land party that discovered the Port of Monterey in May of 1770.
Pablo Cota was stationed at Monterey from 1771-1774. In 1774 he was transferred to Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa as a cabo (corporal). He witnessed the arrival of the Anza expedition, which came overland from New Spain in March of 1776, at San Luis Obispo. In November of 1776 Pablo Cota married Rosa María Lugo at the Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa.
Pablo Cota was cabo de la escolta (corporal of the mission guard) in 1778 at Mission San Antonio de Padua. Felipe de Neve promoted Cota to Sergeant at San Gabriel in 1781 and listed him as one of the soldiers destined for Santa Barbara. Pablo was one of the original soldiers, along with Francisco de Lugo, his wife Rosa's father, who founded the Pueblo de Los Angeles.
Cota was in charge of the escolta at Mission San Buenaventura from its very beginning. In 1782 he was formally listed as Sargento de Compañia Presidial de Santa Bárbara (Sergeant of the Presidial Company of Santa Barbara).
In March of 1788 Sergeant Cota established the new mission La Purísima Concepción in what is now Lompoc. He was promoted to Alférez that same year. He continued to supervise work at Purísima and served as paymaster at the Santa Barbara Presidio in 1792. In 1793 Cota supervised the construction of a crossing on the Pajaró River (near Watsonville). He inspected escoltas at various missions and served as acting commandant of Santa Barbara in 1797. He headed a survey party for Mission Santa Inés in 1789.
Alferez Cota died December 30, 1800, and was buried at the Presidio of Santa Barbara. He was 55 years old at the time of his death having served as a presidio soldier for 32 years.
Source: Alfarez Pablo Antonio Cota accessed 31 Oct. 2016.

Existence and Location of Copies

Digital copies also available.

Preferred Citation

Pablo Cota Documents, MS-42, Presidio Research Center, Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation.

Conditions Governing Access

All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Archivist. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation Research Center as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Santa Barbara Presidio (Santa Barbara, Calif.) -- History
Cota, Pablo Antonio