The way to determine how rich and successful a mission was was to look at the size and extravagance* of their main fountain. This fountain was usually located in the center of the patio, right through the main entrance. The water for these fountains was not, as you might think, from the wells located on the mission. Actually, the wells provided very little of the water used at the mission. The Spanish brought with them from Spain the knowledge of aqueducts, and they built a huge system of them throughout California. With the exception of the Mojave, this was the first time irrigation had been used in the new world. (note) Because of this important technology even the arid parts of California soon supported thriving missions.