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

San Mateo’s First Residents

 
 
San Mateo’s First Residents Marker image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, March 15, 2010
1. San Mateo’s First Residents Marker
Inscription.
There are few traces left of
San Mateo’s First Residents

Before the Europeans arrived, Native Americans living in the San Mateo area were known as the Salson. The Salson have been grouped with the Ohlone or Costanoan people. The Salson triblet was the largest of several small groups in the region that stretched from the present-day South San Francisco to Belmont and from San Francisco Bay to the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains. When the first Spanish explorers arrived, the largest Salson village was located behind the present Crystal Springs Dam.

The Salson lived in tule houses whose frame was made from native willows that grew along the banks of creeks and whose roofs were made from marsh reeds.

The region offered a mild climate, abundant game and vegetation, and fresh water from the nearby San Mateo Creek, which was one of the larger freshwater creeks along the west side of the Peninsula.

The Salson hunted deer, rabbit, elk, antelope, and birds with bow and arrow, snares, and traps. They also fished for salmon and sturgeon and gathered shellfish, berries, seeds, and acorns to supplement their diet.
 
Location. 37° 34.518′ N, 122° 18.413′ W. Marker is in San Mateo, California, in San Mateo
San Mateo’s First Residents Marker image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, March 15, 2010
2. San Mateo’s First Residents Marker
County. Marker is on J. Hart Clinton Drive. Touch for map. Marker is located at Ryder Park near the children's play structure. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1801 J. Hart Clinton Drive, San Mateo CA 94401, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. History of San Mateo’s Bridges (approx. 0.3 miles away); Morse’s Corners (approx. 1.1 miles away); Central Park Veterans Memorial – Japanese American Combat Team (approx. 1.2 miles away); Central Park Veterans Memorial (approx. 1.2 miles away); Central Park Veterans Memorial - Screaming Eagles Grove (approx. 1.3 miles away); Central Park and The Kohl Pumphouse (approx. 1.3 miles away); Central Park Veterans Memorial – World War I (approx. 1.3 miles away); a different marker also named Central Park Veterans Memorial (approx. 1.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in San Mateo.
 
Regarding San Mateo’s First Residents. Appearing on the marker is the question:
Did You Know?
The Ohlone people once numbered about 10,000 and occupied lands from Contra Costa to Monterey Counties.
 
Also see . . .  The Ohlones. General information on the Ohlone tribelets in Northern California. (Submitted on April 6, 2010.) 
 
Categories. Native AmericansNatural ResourcesNotable Places
 
Sketch Displayed on Marker image. Click for full size.
3. Sketch Displayed on Marker
Ohlone tule houses ranged between 6 to 20 feet in diameter and between 7 and 8 feet in height. The frame of this tule house encompasses an excavated area inside the house to allow for more living space.
Photo Displayed on Marker image. Click for full size.
4. Photo Displayed on Marker
This picture, taken during a government survey in 1865, shows San Mateo Creek still unchanged from the days of Spanish exploration.
Sketch Displayed on Marker image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, March 15, 2010
5. Sketch Displayed on Marker
Wash of an Ohlone woman in native dress by José Cardero, September 1791. (Courtesy Museum of New Mexico.)
Map of the Ohlone Villages Displayed on Marker image. Click for full size.
By Syd Whittle, March 15, 2010
6. Map of the Ohlone Villages Displayed on Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on April 6, 2010, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California. This page has been viewed 829 times since then and 32 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on April 6, 2010, by Syd Whittle of El Dorado Hills, California.
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