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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
San Diego in San Diego County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Old Town San Diego

Timeline

 
 
Old Town San Diego Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 29, 2015
1. Old Town San Diego Marker
Inscription.

See individual photos for text
 
Location. 32° 45.209′ N, 117° 11.758′ W. Marker is in San Diego, California, in San Diego County. Marker is on San Diego Ave.. Click for map. In Old Town San Diego State Historic Park in front of the Old Town Market (Casa de Aquirre). Marker is in this post office area: San Diego CA 92110, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Father Antonio Ubach (here, next to this marker); Don Antonio Aguirre (here, next to this marker); Adobe Construction (within shouting distance of this marker); Original Foundation Casa de Aguirre (within shouting distance of this marker); Birthplace of The San Diego Union (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Birthplace of The San Diego Union (within shouting distance of this marker); 1906 Old Town Convent (within shouting distance of this marker); Casa de Pedrorena de Altamirano (within shouting distance of this marker). Click for a list of all markers in San Diego.
 
Also see . . .  Old Town San Diego State Historic Park. California State Park's page for the park. (Submitted on July 21, 2015.) 
 
Categories. Colonial EraIndustry & CommerceSettlements & Settlers
 
Old Town San Diego Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
2. Old Town San Diego Marker
Pre-1542 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
3. Pre-1542
Prior to the arrival of explorers, Native people live along the coast, hills and mountains, moving seasonally as food and water supplies change.
1542 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
4. 1542
Seeking a more direct way to the Orient and the "Northwest Passage," Spanish explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo sails along the west coast of North America, landing at what he names "San Miguel," and claims the area for the King of Spain.
1602 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
5. 1602
Sebastian Vizcaino seeking sites described in Cabrillo's logbooks, fails to recognize “San Miguel,” and coming ashore in the shallow bay, renames the area San Diego.
1769 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
6. 1769
Fearing colonization by the Russians and the English, San Diego becomes “Birthplace of California” when the King of Spain sends men to establish a fort and a mission on the hill above present-day Old Town. The settlement is the first permanent European presence on the west coast of the United States. Mission San Diego de Alcalá, is founded by Father Junerpero Serra.
1774 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 29, 2015
7. 1774
Uncertain water supplies and a lack of fertile ground cause the relocation of Mission San Diego de Acalá to its current site, six miles east of Old Town alongside the San Diego River.
1821 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
8. 1821
Word finally reaches San Diego that, following years of skirmishes and disputes, Spain has ceded its control of Alta California to Mexico. This change means little to the tiny settlement on the hillside, the beginnings of Old Town
1820s-1850s image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
9. 1820s-1850s
A handful of foreigners from France, Russia, England and the United States arrive by sea, joining Mexican ranchers arriving from the south to establish trading ventures. Don José Antonio Aquirre, builder of Casa de Aquirre on this site, is one of these traders.
1835 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
10. 1835
New England author Richard Henry Dana, arriving on a sailing ship involved in the cowhide and tallow trade, finds a rough town where buildings made of mud cluster around an ill-defined central plaza, a settlement that would become Old Town.
1846 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
11. 1846
Convinced of its “Divine Right” to control the lands west and south of its borders, the United States begins a war with Mexico that causes divided loyalties in San Diego. A heated battle between “Californios,” those loyal to Mexico, and the “Americans,” sends young scout Kit Carson on foot to Old Town, seeking reinforcement for the defeated American Troops.
1847 & 1848 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 29, 2015
12. 1847 & 1848
1847

United States Congress decrees that San Diego will be one of the scheduled stops for steamboat service by the Pacific Mail Steamship Company from San Francisco. The first ship arrives two years later.

1848

California becomes a United States territory, and an international border is created between Mexico and the United States
1850 & 1851 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 29, 2015
13. 1850 & 1851
1850

California is admitted us the 31st state of the United States. The population of the little town of San Diego is recorded at 650, but this does not include Native-Americans living in the surrounding area.


1851

Following the failure of New Town, a short-lived settlement on the Bay, the only printing press is moved to Old Town and the first San Diego newspaper, the San Diego Herald, begins weekly publication.
1867 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
14. 1867
Preparing to move away from San Diego, Rosario Aquirre, widow of Don José Antonio Aquirre, donates the Casa de Aquirre to the Catholic Church. Within two years, Father Antonio Ubach is using the Casa de Aquirre as his residence.
1867 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
15. 1867
Recognizing the business opportunity offered by San Diego, entrepreneur Alonzo Horton buys land on the Bay and lays out a new city closer to where the merchant ships bring people and goods.
1870 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
16. 1870
San Diego's own gold rush is started in the backcountry near Julian when rancher Fred Coleman finds gold in a local stream. Hundreds of miners descend on the valleys nearby . Over $2 million in gold is taken from one mine alone.
1872 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
17. 1872
Struggles for control between Old Town and New San Diego are finally put to rest when a fire in Old Town in 1872 destroys several buildings on the main plaza, putting an end to Old Town's attempts to hold on to political power.
1884 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
18. 1884
Hoping to draw attention to the plight of Indians, Helen Hunt Jackson publishes her novel Ramona. Much of her research is conducted in San Diego County, and the fictional parish priest is based on local pastor Father Antonio Ubach. The powerful book heightens sympathy for the American Indian just as Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin raised awareness of the injustices of slavery thirty years before.
1885 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
19. 1885
The arrival of California Southern's railroad fuels land speculation in San Diego that comes to be known as the “Great Boom of the Eighties.” The 1880 population of 2,637 swells to 40,000 in 1885.
1886 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
20. 1886
On this site, parish priest Father Antonio Ubach converts the Casa de Aquirre for use as St. Anthony's Indian School. The school opens with 50 children, and teachers arrive daily by horse drawn buggy from the Academy of Our Lady of Peace in New Town.
1888 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
21. 1888
A network of wooden flumes is constructed to carry water from distant sources. California's Governor Robert Waterman and other dignitaries ride in small boats down the man-made channel during the opening ceremonies.
1890-1920s image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
22. 1890-1920s
San Diego's ideal harbor stimulates the building of military bases in San Diego. The Navy develops a coaling station and a radio station on the Bay.
1909 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
23. 1909
Transplanted San Franciscan John D. Spreckels restores the Casa de Estudillo in Old Town. Capitalizing on the enormous popularity of the Ramona novel, Spreckels advertises the restored adobe as “Ramona's Marriage Place” and visitors flock to the site of this fictitious event.
1914 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
24. 1914
Many of Old Town's early buildings are in poor condition. The Casa de Aquirre is demolished, and the lot sits empty for 26 years.
1937 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
25. 1937
A plan to replicate an old Mexican town around Old Town plaza is presented to the City Council by a group led by architect Richard S. Requa. Terms like “historic” and “romantic” are used to describe future plans for developing Old Town as a tourist destination.
1940 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
26. 1940
The Rectory of St. Joseph's Church, a redwood frame structure built in 1908, is moved from its downtown location through the streets of San Diego to its present site. Here, the building becomes known as the Old Town Convent.
1968 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
27. 1968
The California State Legislature passes a bill to create Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.
2003 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 31, 2015
28. 2003
Historic Tours of America, Inc. and Old Town Trolley Tours of San Diego reconstruct the Casa Aquirre and restore the Old Town Convent. The buildings open to the pubic as the Old Town Market San Diego.
Birthplace of California image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, May 30, 2015
29. Birthplace of California
Welcome to Old Town
at Old Town Avenue and Moore Street
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. This page has been viewed 233 times since then and 24 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29. submitted on , by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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