Etymology - origin?
The lead paragraph defines the term as being "in North America", but the body of the article links to examples in Italy. Which is it?
Every Spanish dictionary I can get ahold of translates a presidio as a penitentiary or imprisonment. A fort is a fuerte or a fortaleza. I live about 20 miles from Presidio La Bahia de Loretto and Indians were encouraged to give up their ways live in the fort and accept the food from the missionaries which hastened the decline of tribal life. It certainly smacks of a dark purpose if one thinks of a penitentiary as a prison. However, it could have meant a place to become penitent and reform which is the dictionary definition of the adjective form penitentiary. If so it begs the question were there "penitentiaries" in the Old World that functioned like something akin to a monastery. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 18.104.22.168 (talk) 00:18, 21 May 2010 (UTC)