San Ramon has a rich history with many interesting factors that make it the wonderful city it is today. It is the product of many years of development. Our beautiful valley has grown from what was a rural farming area to a bustling community with major business centers, shopping centers and a variety of residential areas. Here is a look into the San Ramon Valley’s deep history…
-The Beginnings-The San Ramon Valley is geologically complex and still seismically active.
-People have lived in the San Ramon Valley for at least 5,000 years. The Tatcan (Bay Miwok) and the Seunen (Ohlone/Costanoan) lived in the valley in historic times.
Louis Choris, drawings of “Three Bay Area Indians”
Courtesy of the Bancroft Library
-1769- Spanish invaded Alta California and first appeared in the San Ramon Valley in 1772.
-1833: On the hillside from Bollinger Canyon and Anza Court, a leaning oak was made a corner boundary for Jose Amador’s rancho San Ramon.
-1834-Jose Maria Amador was granted the Rancho San Ramon. After Mexican Independence, ranchos were granted to former soldiers.
-1846- the Valley’s American settlers began arriving in California, before the Gold Rush (1848) and statehood (1850) San Ramon Pioneers Minerva Fowler, Joel Harlan, and Leo and Jane Norris came to California. They resisted going with the Donner party on their new route and bypassed the early Sierra winter!
-1879- The Glass home in San Ramon was built
-1850 – First permanent American settlers in the San Ramon Valley. Leo and Mary Jane Norris bought the northwest corner of the Amador’s Rancho San Ramon, near the intersection of today’s Bollinger and Crow Canyon Roads.
-1852 First Post office in San Ramon Valley was opened.
-1891- San Ramon Branch Line opened. The Grange brought rail service to serve the San Ramon Valley for many years.
-1900’s New technologies shaped the valley such as electricity, telephones, automobiles, and the electric railway.
-1911 – The Bartlett pear orchard began at Bishop Ranch, and was known as the largest single orchard of Bartlett pears in the world.
-1912- The very few residents in the Danville area, community leaders established a volunteer fire department, protecting 50 square miles.
-1940- San Ramon Valley’s population was 2,126 after World War II. There were new houses and the Bishop Ranch Park.
-1963- San Ramon landowners established the San Ramon Fire Protection District covering a 20 square mile area around San Ramon.
-1966- Interstate freeway was completed.
-1979 – Danville and San Ramon Fire District merged together to the San Ramon Valley Fire Protection District. Today, it services San Ramon, Danville, Alamo, Blackhawk, Morgan Territory, the Tassajara Valley, and Diablo. Approximately 155 square miles.
-1990 – Population became 85,085
San Ramon has proven to be a great place to live for a long time!
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