Carmel Mission Foundation
Carmel Mission Foundation


The Carmel Mission Foundation, Inc. is an independent non-profit organization formed to fund the restoration and preservation of the historic properties, art, and artifacts of the Carmel Mission. Deterioration due to age, structural integrity, and infrastructure needs to be addressed on the various historic buildings in the Mission’s complex. This is a multi-year/multi-million dollar project.

The Carmel Mission (Mission San Carlos Borroméo del Rio Carmelo) was established in 1771 by Junípero Serra, and is both a State and National Historic Landmark. It was the headquarters for the California mission system, consisting of 21 missions, and the foundation for the State of California. Under Junípero Serra’s leadership, the missions introduced industries, trades and services; agriculture, including viticulture and livestock; international trade; and the gift of literacy.

In June of 2013, Phase I, of the Carmel Mission complex restoration was completed. This consisted of the $5.5 million restoration of the 220-year-old Basilica, which included the seismic strengthening of its walls and roof; exterior repairs to the walls, buttresses, towers, and dome; new electrical and fire suppression systems; new interior lighting; heating system upgrade; and a new restroom building.



The Foundation is now raising funds for the next phase, a multi-million dollar effort to restore the Mission’s five museums and other historic properties. After seismic work and infrastructure upgrades are accomplished, museum displays will be improved to provide a state-of-the-art museum experience. In addition, improvements will be made to enable better visitor accessibility and traffic flow throughout the Mission complex. The objective is to tell the story of the California missions and, in particular, the Carmel Mission and its significance to the history of California.

With its historic structures and 3,400 pieces of art and artifacts, the Carmel Mission complex contains a treasure-trove of California history, including California’s first library, oldest continuously occupied residence, and Junípero Serra’s 400-year-old Bible, used by Ronald Reagan when first sworn in as governor of California.



We enjoy this treasure today, because of the legacy of those who have gone before us. It is now our turn to preserve this historic treasure, as our legacy to future generations.

Please help us now, as others have done in the past, to restore and preserve this national historic treasure by making your tax-deductible donation today.

To learn more about how you can help, please visit our How to Help web page or contact the Foundation office.

Thank You!