Father Juan Crespí (March 1, 1721–January 1, 1782) was a Spanish priest who explored what is now the state of California. He entered the Franciscan order at the age of seventeen. He came to America in 1749, and joined Francisco Palóu and Junípero Serra in exploring. In 1767 he went to the Baja Peninsula and was placed in charge of the Misión La Purísima Concepción de Cadegomó. In 1769 he joined the Portola expedition of Gaspar de Portolà and traveled by land, while Father Serra went by boat and got there 8 days later to occupy Monterey; he was the first to write about Franciscan friars meeting with people who already lived there. Later, he went through the area known today as Ventura County, in January and Orange County on July 22 of that year. He was priest of the expedition to the North Pacific led by Juan José Pérez Hernández in 1774. His diaries, first published in H. E. Bolton's Fray Juan Crespi (1927, repr. 1971), and published in the original Spanish with facing page translations as A Description of Distant Roads: Original Journals of the First Expedition into California, 1796-1770 (2001) provided valuable records of these expeditions. One chapel he built, at the Misión San Francisco del Valle de Tilaco in Landa, is reported as still standing.
|Died||January 1, 1782 (aged 60)|
|Resting place||Mission San Carlos Borromeo de Carmelo|
|Occupation||Roman Catholic priest, missionary, explorer|
- Kielbasa, John R. (1998), "Rancho Los Encinos", Historic Adobes of Los Angeles County, Pittsburg: Dorrance Publishing Co., ISBN 0-8059-4172-X.
- "BC Book World - Juan Crespi". Retrieved 2007-12-03.
- Crespí, Juan: A Description of Distant Roads: Original Journals of the First Expedition into California, 1796-1770, edited and translated by Alan K. Brown, San Diego State University Press, 2001, ISBN 1879691647
- *Gross, Ernie. This Day in Religion. New York: Neil-Schuman Publishers, 1990. ISBN 1-55570-045-4.