The story of the development of the California missions under Father Junipero Serra is told in firm detail with Aptos, an Indian boy, as central character. One of the first converts at the Carmel Mission, Aptos soon becomes Father Serra's friend and helper, journeying with him to the various other missions along the coast and to the Spanish seats of government, both in Mexico and San Diego, to persuade governors and viceroys that the work of the missions should go on. There is a connection with the Revolutionary War too as Nat, a New England sailor, is shipwrecked and becomes Aptos' friend before he can return to fight. And at the last Aptos returns to his tribe in the Yosemite Valley to teach them the ways of the devout, long suffering Father Serra. A faithful tribute.