"Old Town San Diego State Historic Park" Old Town San Diego State Historical Park by Yaqui

Old Town San Diego is considered the "birthplace" of California. San Diego is the site of the first permanent Spanish settlement in California. It was here in 1769, that Father Junipero Serra came to establish the very first mission in a chain of 21 missions that were to be the cornerstone of California’s colonization. Father Serra’s mission and Presidio were built on a hillside overlooking what is currently known as Old Town San Diego. At the base of the hill in 1820’s, a small Mexican community of adobe buildings was formed and by 1835 had attained the status of El Pueblo de San Diego

Settled by Pensioned Soldiers and their families from the Presidio, Old Town grew in the early 1800's into a cluster of adobe houses and garden plots. By 1835, "It was composed of about 40 dark brown looking huts." The Stars and Stripes were first raised over the Plaza in 1846 by Marines from the U.S.S. "Cyane."

  • Last visit to Old Town San Diego State Historical Park: Dec 2010
  • Intro Updated Nov 19, 2011
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Reviews (33)

Comments (6)

  • balhannah's Profile Photo
    Mar 4, 2013 at 8:36 PM

    Excellent page Dee! You have sold this "old town" to me! Just what I like to find on holidays. Being able to browse all around those craft shops and the market.....What fun that would be, but I probably would spend too much money!

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Apr 21, 2012 at 3:56 PM

    I love those old wooden houses. Good that they were saved from destruction and moved to the historical park from their original locations. I suppose the one that came the longest distance was the former newspaper and now museum building that was prefabricated in Maine and shipped around the Horn in 1851.

  • toonsarah's Profile Photo
    Feb 24, 2012 at 9:50 AM

    Trying to work out how we managed to miss all this when we visited San Diego some 20 years ago! Wish VT had been around back then so that you could have told me all about it before our visit ;-) I love the old store in particular, and the school sounds great. The Heritage Park houses remind me of Cape May's "painted ladies"!

  • deecat's Profile Photo
    Dec 25, 2011 at 3:42 PM

    Museums galore, outstanding historical spots, unique architecture, and lovely churches and chapels. Loved all of it.

  • Kuznetsov_Sergey's Profile Photo
    Dec 4, 2011 at 9:25 AM

    Great page with very interesting historic reviews about the "birthplace" of California! Thank you Dee for this perfect VT-job!

  • csordila's Profile Photo
    Nov 24, 2011 at 7:15 AM

    Amazing place, nice photos! Thanks!

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