Positioned in the mountains north of Santa Fe on the high road to Taos, the pueblo of Pícuris remains small and quiet. Fray Francisco de Zamora was charged with the establishment of the permanent mission, which was built around 1620. It served several surrounding villages in addition to Picuris it self. The mission church was rebuilt several times, being the last preservation effort made in 1986.
During much of the Spanish colonial period, Santo Domingo was an important Franciscan mission center and the ecclesiastical capital of New Mexico. A mission church erected here before 1607 by Fray Juan de Escalona, was considered one of the largest and finest in New Mexico.