Carlsbad in San Diego County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
Welcome to Agua Hedionda
The lands around you have been inhabited by people for over 10,000 years. The rolling hills and canyons cradling the lagoon provided shelter and food with an abundance of native plants and trees.
For centuries, these people spent their winters where you stand, making salt and gathering shellfish for food, jewelry, tools, and trade. They spent their summers inland at higher, cooler elevations. To the Luiseño, this area was Palmai, or “place of big water.” The Luiseño culture is noted for its mysticism and religious practices. As in many families today, their children were taught to respect their elders, bathe frequently, eat sparingly, and share their food with others. Their peaceful coexistence with natural forces created a culture whose openness and adaptability left them vulnerable to aggressive invaders.
The Luiseño greeted the Spanish expedition of Don Gaspar de Portola and Father Juan Crespi with curiosity and good will. While many resisted the authority of the Spanish, many did not. Whether by preference for the Franciscan ways or in submission to Spanish force, the Luiseño lost much of their ancient relationship with nature and drifted into a new pattern of life.
What’s in a name?
“...the tired troups (sic) bolstered lagging spirits with jokes about the miserable place their leaders had chosen for a rest stop. Taking special exception to the scent of decaying fish and other debris, it was the soldiers who unwittingly christened the lagoon for posterity: ‘Agua Hedionda,” the ‘stinking waters’.”
From “Seekers of the Spring – A History of Carlbad” by Marje Howard-Jones
Erected by Agua Hedionda Lagoon Foundation.
Location. 33° 8.388′ N, 117° 18.445′ W. Marker is in Carlsbad, California, in San Diego County. Marker can be reached from Cannon Road near Faraday Ave., on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1580 Cannon Road, Carlsbad CA 92008, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the Agua Hedionda Lagoon (within shouting distance of this marker); Carlsbad Santa Fe Depot (approx. 2.8 miles away); Twin Inns (approx. 2.8 miles away); Carlsbad by the Sea Retirement Community (approx. 2.9 miles away); Capt. John A. Frazier (approx. 2.9 miles away); St. Michael's By-the-Sea Episcopal Church (approx. 3 miles away); The Magee House (approx. 3.1 miles away); Leo Carrillo Ranch (approx. 4.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Carlsbad.
More about this marker. This marker is locate at the Agua Hedionda Lagoon Nature Center.
Additional keywords. Portola Expedition
Categories. • Exploration • Native Americans • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on January 7, 2014, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 300 times since then and 50 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 7, 2014, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.