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

History Speaks Softly

Yorba Cemetery captures Orange County's rich rancho history.

History Speaks Softly Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Adam Margolis, April 14, 2022
1. History Speaks Softly Marker
Inscription.  In 1858, Bernardo Yorba deeded this parcel to the Catholic Church for a cemetery. More than 150 years later, Yorba Cemetery continues to offer a glimpse into Orange County's early rancho days. Long before freeways and housing tracts defined the landscape, Yorba had claimed this land. His Rancho Cañon de Santa Ana became a base of operations for cattle ranching and farming. His large adobe hacienda became the center of activity for those who called the rancho home.

In this cemetery, headstones and grave markers pay tribute to Bernardo Yorba's family and neighbors. It is the final resting place for elders and infants, farmers and ranch hands, a midwife and mason, and others who were connected to this land by birth, marriage, or employment. Over 400 people are buried here- their lives documented in stone or timber. In a cemetery, history is revealed quietly.

The Yorba family's roots run deep in Orange County. Bernardo Yorba was the son of José Antonio Yorba, a soldier who accompanied Gaspar de Portolá on his Alta California expedition in 1769-1770. Descendants of Bernardo Yorba still live in Orange County.

History Speaks Softly Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Adam Margolis, April 14, 2022
2. History Speaks Softly Marker
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Cemetery is one of the oldest private cemeteries in Orange County. The last burial took place in 1939.

[sidebars] In the 1890s, a wooden San Antonio Chapel replaced the original adobe church under construction when Bernardo Yorba died.

At one time, the Yorba Hacienda (1835) was one of the finest and largest adobe houses in Alta California.

Several of the grave sites were once defined with elaborate fencing.

Capturing the view toward the hills and away from the freeway, this photograph shows how largely undeveloped this land was in the 1960s.

Black and white photographs provided by Bowers Museum and the County of Orange
Erected by Orange County Historical Commission.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Cemeteries & Burial SitesSettlements & Settlers. A significant historical year for this entry is 1858.
Location. 33° 51.897′ N, 117° 47.021′ W. Marker is in Yorba Linda, California, in Orange County. Marker can be reached from Westwind Court. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 20142 Westwind Ct, Yorba Linda CA 92886, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Yorba Cemetery (a few steps from this marker); Site of Don Bernardo Yorba Hacienda (approx. 0.2 miles away); Roland E. Bigonger (approx.
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0.8 miles away); Peralta Adobe (approx. 0.9 miles away); This Boulder (approx. one mile away); Space Shuttle Accident (approx. 1.9 miles away); Yorba Linda (approx. 2½ miles away); Richard Nixon Birthplace (approx. 2.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Yorba Linda.
Credits. This page was last revised on April 17, 2022. It was originally submitted on April 14, 2022, by Adam Margolis of Mission Viejo, California. This page has been viewed 135 times since then and 31 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on April 14, 2022, by Adam Margolis of Mission Viejo, California. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.

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Mar. 27, 2023