SAN FRANCISCO


History and Map

Spanish exploration party, led by Don Gaspar de Portolà, arrived on November 2, 1769, the first documented European visit to San Francisco Bay. Seven years later, on March 28, 1776, the Spanish established the Presidio of San Francisco, followed by Mission San Francisco de Asís (Mission Dolores), established by the Spanish explorer Juan Bautista de Anza.

Upon independence from Spain in 1821, the area became part of Mexico. In 1835, Englishman William Richardson erected the first independent homestead, near a boat anchorage around what is today Portsmouth Square and together with Alcalde Francisco de Haro, laid out a street plan for the expanded settlement named Yerba Buena,

Commodore John D. Sloat claimed California for the United States on July 7, 1846, during the Mexican–American War, and Captain John B. Montgomery arrived to claim Yerba Buena two days later. Yerba Buena was renamed San Francisco.
The California Gold Rush brought a flood of treasure seekers (known as “forty-niners”). California was quickly granted statehood.


State Historical Landmarks