The history of the city of San Francisco , California, and its development as a center of maritime trade have been shaped by its location at the entrance to a large natural harbor. San Francisco is the name of both the city and the county, both of which share the same boundaries. At first, after becoming the base for the gold rush of 1849, the city quickly became the largest and most important population, commercial, naval, and financial center in the American West. San Francisco was devastated by a major earthquake and fire in 1906, but was quickly rebuilt. The San Francisco Federal Reserve Branch opened in 1914, and the city continued to develop as a major commercial city throughout the first half of the 20th century. Starting in the latter half of the 1960s, San Francisco became the city most famous for the hippie movement. San Francisco has become an important center of finance and technology in recent decades. The high demand for housing, driven by its proximity to Silicon Valley and its limited availability, has made the city one of America's most expensive places to live in. San Francisco is currently ranked 16th in the Global Financial Center Index.
The indigenous inhabitants of the San Francisco Bay were Ohlone. The first European to see the Bay of San Francisco is probably N. De Morena left at New Albion, Drakes Bay, Marin County, California, by Sir Francis Drake, in 1579, and then went to Mexico.
The first recorded European discovery of the Bay of San Francisco took place on 4 November 1769, when the Spanish explorer Gaspar de Portolà, unable to find the port of Monterey , California, continued north close to what is now Pacifica and reached the summit of the 1,200-foot-high Sweeney Ridge, now marked as the place where he first saw the Bay of San Francisco. Portolá and his party did not realize what they had discovered, thinking that they had arrived at a large arm of what is now called the Drakes Bay. At that time, Drakes Bay was named Bahia de San Francisco, and thus both bodies of water became associated with the name. Eventually, the larger, more important body of water fully appropriated the name San Francisco Bay.
The first European to enter the bay is believed to have been the Spanish explorer Juan de Ayala, who passed through the Golden Gate on 5 August 1775 on his ship, San Carlos, and moored in the Bay of Angel Island, now known as Ayala Cove. Ayala continued to explore the Bay Area and the expedition's cartographer, José de Cañizares, gathered the information needed to produce the first map of the San Francisco Bay Area. A number of location names survive (anglicized) from the first map, including Point Reyes, Angel Island, Farallon Islands and Alcatraz Island.
The United States seized Mexico during the Mexican-American War (1846–1848). On February 2, 1848, the Mexican province of Alta California was annexed to the United States by the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. A year and a half later, on 3 December 1849, California applied to join the United States and was accepted as the 31st State of the Union on 9 September 1850.
The Bay became the center of American settlement and commerce in the Far West for most of the rest of the 19th century. During the California Gold Rush (1848–1855), the Bay of San Francisco suddenly became one of the largest seaports in the world, dominating shipping in the American West until the last years of the 19th century. The regional importance of the Bay increased further when the First Transcontinental Railroad was connected to its western terminal at Alameda on 6 September 1869. Two months later , on November 8, 1869, the terminus was moved to the Oakland Long Wharf.
During the 20th century, the bay was subject to the Reber Plan, which would have filled parts of the bay to increase industrial activity along the waterfront. In 1959, the United States Army Corps of Engineers published a report stating that if current infill trends were to continue, the bay would be as large as the shipping channel by 2020. This news led to the Save the Bay movement in 1960, which mobilized to stop the infill of wetlands and the bay in general, which had shrunk to two-thirds of its size in the century before 1961.
San Francisco Bay continues to support some of the densest industrial production and urban settlements in the United States. The San Francisco Bay Area is the second-largest urban area in the American West with approximately seven million residents.
These amazing landmarks are must-see and must-visit places located in San Francisco, California:
- Camera Obscura
- The Vulcan Stairway
- Labyrinth at Lands End
- Tank Hill
- Yerba Buena Gardens Sculptures
- Seward Street Slides
- Urbano Sundial
- Shakespeare Garden at Golden Gate Park
- Balmy Alley
All of these wonderful attractions are located just a short distance from our location, conveniently located just down the freeway at 1261 Locust St, Walnut Creek! Stop by for a visit anytime!