In the mid 1700's Spain had claimed the land of Alta California and Baja California and wanted to do something or build something to strengthen their claim on the land. The goal of the Spanish mission system was to make Indians except the Spanish ways and to become loyal subjects of the Spanish king. The priests at the missions tried to convert the Indian populations in the area of the missions to Catholicism so that they would be religious and dress and behave as the Spaniards did. Their thought was that after about 10 years at the missions the Indians would be able to make or invent a way to govern themselves as the padres did and run the missions on their own. This however never happened and a very different pattern of events took place.