National Register of Historic Places listings in Alameda County, California
This is a list of the National Register of Historic Places listings in Alameda County, California. This is intended to be a complete list of the properties and districts on the National Register of Historic Places in Alameda County, United States. Latitude and longitude coordinates are provided for many National Register districts. There are 155 properties and districts listed on the National Register in the county, including 8 National Historic Landmarks. Another property has been removed; this National Park Service list is complete through NPS recent listings posted April 5, 2019. List of National Historic Landmarks in California National Register of Historic Places listings in California California Historical Landmarks in Alameda County, California
East Bay Regional Park District
The East Bay Regional Park District is a special district operating in Alameda County and Contra Costa County, within the East Bay area of the San Francisco Bay Area. It maintains and operates a system of regional parks, the largest urban regional park district in the United States; the administrative office is located in Oakland. As of 2015, EBRPD spans 120,000 acres over 1,200 miles of trails; some of these parks are wilderness areas. The trails are used for non-motorized transportation such as biking and horse riding. Nearly 150 miles of paved trails through urban areas link the parks together. A destructive grass fire that broke out in Wildcat Canyon blew west into Berkeley on September 27, 1923, burned down 640 structures homes; the East Bay Water Company was harshly criticized for its failure to deliver enough water to fight the fire. Much of the problem arose from having a system of small private water companies who obtained water either from their own wells or from runoff pumped the water to the water companies wells and Temescal.
A state law was passed that enabled citizens of Alameda and Contra Costa Counties to create a special district that could obtain water from the Mokelumne River and pump it directly to customers. The East Bay Municipal District was approved by the electorate; the EBRPD was founded in 1934, acquired its first land two years when the East Bay Municipal Utility District sold 2,166 acres of its surplus land. The founders of the district included Robert Sibley, a hiking enthusiast, Hollis Thompson Berkeley City Manager, Charles Lee Tilden, among others. William Penn Mott Jr. served as director of the agency from 1962 to 1967, oversaw a doubling of the system's acreage from 10,500 to 22,000. In June 2013, EBRPD purchased a 1,900 acres tract of land known as Roddy Ranch in east Contra Costa County; the tract lies west of Brentwood. The cost was reported as $14.24 million. Funding will be provided by California Wildlife Conservation Board and an unidentified private foundation; the acquisition does not include Roddy Ranch Golf Club or about 240 acres of owned land inside the project boundary.
The East Contra Costa County Habitat Conservancy will install gates and signs around the tract in the coming year, while the sale is in escrow. The new area will be named Deer Valley Regional Park. In 2016, Vargas Plateau Regional Park in Fremont was the first park to have been shut down as the result of legal action in the more than 80-year history of EBRPD. During 2014, EBRPD cut park hours on a temporary and interim basis to reduce public access to Mission Peak in Fremont, using a media strategy designed by political consultant George Manross; the parks administered by the EBRPD vary in size and character. Notable are the string of parks along the Berkeley Hills above and east of both Berkeley and Oakland, including Wildcat Canyon Regional Park, Tilden Regional Park, Robert Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve, Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve, Redwood Regional Park. There are bay shore parks such as the Point Pinole Regional Shoreline north of Richmond, the Coyote Hills Regional Park near Fremont, the Martin Luther King Jr.
Regional Shoreline on San Leandro Bay, the Oyster Bay Regional Shoreline south of the Oakland International Airport. The district includes a former farm, a former coal mine, an extinct volcano, one of the biggest dog-walking parks in the country. Redwood Regional Park contains the largest remaining natural stand of coast redwood in the East Bay. Interpark Regional Trails connect various Regional Parks, their routes may take them through other parks, along creeks and channels, or down streets and sidewalks in urbanized areas. The list below does not include trails. Around 1995, EBRPD acquired 1,200 acres of the Vargas Plateau in Fremont, with 1.5 miles of the Bay Area Ridge Trail and 3 miles of other trails. Subsequently, park use was pushed back; as of 2007, the opening was expected by 2010. In 2010, EBRPD directors were expecting. In 2011, EBRPD put the start in 2012; as of January 2015, EBRPD pointed to late 2015. A 2012 settlement agreement between EBRPD and the owners of two large nearby ranches required the construction of improvements to park access roads.
EBRPD and the city of Fremont agreed in 2013 to undertake them jointly, using $260,000 of funding by EBRPD and performed by the city. The park opened on May 5, 2016. However, the park was closed by a court-issued preliminary injunction on July 13, 2016; the court found that the park district “did not complete the improvements required by the settlement agreement prior to opening,” which had “very specific road widening requirements.” The order applied to access by motor vehicles, as well as to access by non-motorized users for hiking and horse riding, with immediate effect. "The park could remain closed for years," until the improvements are completed. On May 2, 2017, EBRPD announced that it had settled the lawsuit, that the park would reopen on May 15, 2017. EBRPD said that it agreed to construct a paved shoulder along Vargas Road, a vehicle turnaround on the upper part of Morrison Canyon Road, it announced that the City of Fremont had agreed to contribute part of the necessary funds. One quarter of the District is designated as “land banks,” with no public access.
San Francisco Bay
San Francisco Bay is a shallow estuary in the US state of California. It is surrounded by a contiguous region known as the San Francisco Bay Area, is dominated by the large cities of San Jose, San Francisco and Oakland. San Francisco Bay drains water from 40 percent of California. Water from the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers, from the Sierra Nevada mountains, flow into Suisun Bay, which travels through the Carquinez Strait to meet with the Napa River at the entrance to San Pablo Bay, which connects at its south end to San Francisco Bay; the Guadalupe River enters the bay at its southernmost point in San Jose. The Guadalupe drains water from the Santa Cruz mountains and Hamilton Mountain ranges in southernmost San Jose, it enters the bay at the town of Alviso. It connects to the Pacific Ocean via the Golden Gate strait. However, this entire group of interconnected bays is called the San Francisco Bay; the bay was designated a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance on February 2, 2012. The bay covers somewhere between 400 and 1,600 square miles, depending on which sub-bays, wetlands, so on are included in the measurement.
The main part of the bay measures three to twelve miles wide east-to-west and somewhere between 48 miles 1 and 60 miles 2 north-to-south. It is the largest Pacific estuary in the Americas; the bay was navigable as far south as San Jose until the 1850s, when hydraulic mining released massive amounts of sediment from the rivers that settled in those parts of the bay that had little or no current. Wetlands and inlets were deliberately filled in, reducing the Bay's size since the mid-19th century by as much as one third. Large areas of wetlands have been restored, further confusing the issue of the Bay's size. Despite its value as a waterway and harbor, many thousands of acres of marshy wetlands at the edges of the bay were, for many years, considered wasted space; as a result, soil excavated for building projects or dredged from channels was dumped onto the wetlands and other parts of the bay as landfill. From the mid-19th century through the late 20th century, more than a third of the original bay was filled and built on.
The deep, damp soil in these areas is subject to soil liquefaction during earthquakes, most of the major damage close to the Bay in the Loma Prieta earthquake of 1989 occurred to structures on these areas. The Marina District of San Francisco, hard hit by the 1989 earthquake, was built on fill, placed there for the Panama-Pacific International Exposition, although liquefaction did not occur on a large scale. In the 1990s, San Francisco International Airport proposed filling in hundreds more acres to extend its overcrowded international runways in exchange for purchasing other parts of the bay and converting them back to wetlands; the idea was, remains, controversial. There are five large islands in San Francisco Bay. Alameda, the largest island, was created when a shipping lane was cut to form the Port of Oakland in 1901, it is now a suburban community. Angel Island was known as "Ellis Island West" because it served as the entry point for immigrants from East Asia, it is now a state park accessible by ferry.
Mountainous Yerba Buena Island is pierced by a tunnel linking the east and west spans of the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge. Attached to the north is the artificial and flat Treasure Island, site of the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition. From the Second World War until the 1990s, both islands served as military bases and are now being redeveloped. Isolated in the center of the Bay is Alcatraz, the site of the famous federal penitentiary; the federal prison on Alcatraz Island no longer functions, but the complex is a popular tourist site. Despite its name, Mare Island in the northern part of the bay is a peninsula rather than an island. San Francisco Bay is thought to represent a down-warping of the Earth's crust between the San Andreas Fault to the west and the Hayward Fault to the east, though the precise nature of this remains under study. About 560,000 years ago, a tectonic shift caused the large inland Lake Corcoran to spill out the central valley and through the Carquinez Strait, carving out sediment and forming canyons in what is now the northern part of the San Francisco Bay and Golden Gate strait.
Until the last ice age, the basin, now filled by the San Francisco Bay was a large linear valley with small hills, similar to most of the valleys of the Coast Ranges. As the great ice sheets began to melt, around 11,000 years ago, the sea level started to rise. By 5000 BC the sea level rose 300 feet; the valley become a bay, the small hills became islands. From 15,000 – 10,000 years ago, the Ohlone tribe inhabited the area, now the San Francisco Bay; the natives were displaced 5,000 years ago as the bay filled with water due to the rising sea level at the end of the ice age. The first European to see San Francisco Bay is N. de Morena, left at New Albion at Drakes Bay in Marin County, California by Sir Francis Drake in 1579 and walked to Mexico. The first recorded European discovery of San Francisco Bay was on November 4, 1769 when Spanish explorer Gaspar de Portolà, unable to find the port of Monterey, 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 sighted San Francisco Bay.
Portolá and his party did not realize what they had discovered, thinking they had arrived at a large arm of what is now called Drakes Bay. At the time, Drakes Bay went by the name Bahia de San
San Francisco Bay Area
San Francisco Bay Area is a populous region surrounding the San Francisco, San Pablo and Suisun Bay estuaries in the northern part of the U. S. state of California. Although the exact boundaries of the region vary depending on the source, the Bay Area is defined by the Association of Bay Area Governments to include the nine counties that border the aforementioned estuaries: Alameda, Contra Costa, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano and San Francisco. Other sources may exclude parts of or entire counties, or expand the definition to include neighboring counties that don't border the bay such as San Benito, San Joaquin, Santa Cruz. Home to 7.68 million people, Northern California's nine-county Bay Area contains many cities, towns and associated regional and national parks, connected by a complex multimodal transportation network. The larger combined statistical area of the region, which includes twelve counties, is the second-largest in California, the fifth-largest in the United States, the 41st-largest urban area in the world with 8.75 million people.
The Bay Area's population is ethnically diverse: for example half of the region's residents are Hispanic, African American, or Pacific Islander, all of whom have a significant presence throughout the region. The earliest archaeological evidence of human settlements in the Bay Area dates back to 3000 BC. In 1769, the Bay Area was inhabited by the Ohlone people when a Spanish exploration party led by Gaspar de Portolà entered the Bay – the first documented European visit to the Bay Area. After Mexico established independence from Spain in 1821, the region was controlled by the Mexican government until the United States purchased the territory in 1846 during the Mexican–American War. Soon after, discovery of gold in California attracted a flood of treasure seekers, many using ports in the Bay Area as an entry point. During the early years of California's statehood, state legislative business rotated between three locations in the Bay Area before a permanent state capital was established in Sacramento.
A major earthquake leveled the city of San Francisco and environs in 1906, but the region rebuilt in time to host the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition. During World War II, the Bay Area played a major role in America's war effort in the Asiatic-Pacific Theater, with San Francisco's Fort Mason acting as a primary embarkation point for American forces. In 1945, the United Nations Charter was signed in San Francisco, establishing the United Nations, in 1951, the Treaty of San Francisco ended the U. S.'s war with Japan. Since the Bay Area has experienced numerous political and artistic movements, developing unique local genres in music and art and establishing itself as a hotbed of progressive politics. Economically, the post-war Bay Area saw huge growth in the financial and technology industries, creating a vibrant and diverse economy with a gross domestic product of over $800 billion, home to the second highest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the United States. Despite its urban character, the San Francisco Bay is one of California's most ecologically important habitats, providing key ecosystem services such as filtering pollutants and sediments from the rivers, supporting a number of endangered species.
The region is known for the complexity of its landforms, the result of millions of years of tectonic plate movements. Because the Bay Area is crossed by six major earthquake faults, the region is exposed to hazards presented by large earthquakes; the climate is temperate and very mild, is ideal for outdoor recreational and athletic activities such as hiking. The Bay Area is host to seven professional sports teams and is a cultural center for music and the arts, it is host to several institutions of higher education, ranging from primary schools to major research universities. Home to 101 municipalities and nine counties, governance in the Bay Area is multifaceted and involves numerous local and regional actors, each with wide-ranging and overlapping responsibilities; the borders of the San Francisco Bay Area are not delineated, the unique development patterns influenced by the region's topography, as well as unusual commute patterns caused by the presence of three central cities and employment centers located in various suburban locales, has led to considerable disagreement between local and federal definitions of the area.
Because of this, professor of geography at the University of California, Berkeley Richard Walker claimed that "no other U. S. city-region is as definitionally challenged."When the region began to develop during and after World War II, local planners settled on a nine-county definition for the Bay Area, consisting of the counties that directly border the San Francisco, San Pablo, Suisun estuaries: Alameda, Contra Costa, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Sonoma counties. Today, this definition is accepted by most local governmental agencies including San Francisco Regional Water Quality Control Board, Bay Area Air Quality Management District, the San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, the Association of Bay Area Governments, the latter two of which partner to deliver a Bay Area Census using the nine-county definition. Various U. S. Federal government agencies use definitions that differ from their local counterparts' nine-county definition.
For example, the Federal Communications Commission which regulates broadcast and satellite transmissions, includes nearby Colusa and Mendocino counties in their "San Francisco-Oaklan
Bay Area Rapid Transit
Bay Area Rapid Transit is a rapid transit public transportation system serving the San Francisco Bay Area in California. The heavy rail elevated and subway system connects San Francisco and Oakland with urban and suburban areas in Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo counties. BART serves 48 stations along six routes on 112 miles of rapid transit lines, including a ten-mile spur line in eastern Contra Costa County which utilizes diesel multiple-unit trains and a 3.2-mile automated guideway transit line to the Oakland International Airport. With an average of 423,000 weekday passengers and 124.2 million annual passengers in fiscal year 2017, BART is the fifth-busiest heavy rail rapid transit system in the United States. BART is operated by the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District, formed in 1957; the initial system opened in stages from 1972 to 1974. As of late 2019, it is being expanded to San Jose with the Silicon Valley BART extensions; some of the Bay Area Rapid Transit system's current coverage area was once served by an electrified streetcar and suburban train system called the Key System.
This early 20th-century system once had regular transbay traffic across the lower deck of the Bay Bridge, but the system was dismantled in the 1950s, with its last transbay crossing in 1958, was superseded by highway travel. A 1950s study of traffic problems in the Bay Area concluded the most cost-effective solution for the Bay Area's traffic woes would be to form a transit district charged with the construction and operation of a new, high-speed rapid transit system linking the cities and suburbs. Formal planning for BART began with the setting up in 1957 of the Bay Area Rapid Transit District, a county-based special-purpose district body that governs the BART system; the district began with five members, all of which were projected to receive BART lines: Alameda County, Contra Costa County, the City and County of San Francisco, San Mateo County, Marin County. Although invited to participate, Santa Clara County supervisors elected not to join BART due to their dissatisfaction that the peninsula line only stopped at Palo Alto and that it interfered with suburban development in San Jose, preferring instead to concentrate on constructing freeways and expressways.
In 1962, San Mateo County supervisors voted to leave BART, saying their voters would be paying taxes to carry Santa Clara County residents. The district-wide tax base was weakened by San Mateo's departure, forcing Marin County to withdraw a month later. Despite the fact that Marin had voted in favor of BART participation at the 88% level, its marginal tax base could not adequately absorb its share of BART's projected cost. Another important factor in Marin's withdrawal was an engineering controversy over the feasibility of running trains on the lower deck of the Golden Gate Bridge, an extension forecast as late as three decades after the rest of the BART system; the withdrawals of Marin and San Mateo resulted in a downsizing of the original system plans, which would have had lines as far south as Palo Alto and northward past San Rafael. Voters in the three remaining participating counties approved the truncated system, with termini in Fremont, Richmond and Daly City, in 1962. Construction of the system began in 1964, included a number of major engineering challenges, including excavating subway tunnels in San Francisco and Berkeley.
Passenger service began on September 11, 1972 just between MacArthur and Fremont. The rest of the system opened in stages, with the entire system opening in 1974 when the transbay service through the Transbay Tube began; the new BART system was hailed as a major step forward in subway technology, although questions were asked concerning the safety of the system and the huge expenditures necessary for the construction of the network. Ridership remained well below projected levels throughout the 1970s, direct service from Daly City to Richmond and Fremont was not phased in until several years after the system opened; some of the early safety concerns appeared to be well founded when the system experienced a number of train-control failures in its first few years of operation. As early as 1969, before revenue service began, several BART engineers identified safety problems with the Automatic Train Control system; the BART Board of Directors was retaliated by firing them. Less than a month after the system's opening, on October 2, 1972, an ATC failure caused a train to run off the end of the elevated track at the terminal Fremont station and crash to the ground, injuring four people.
The “Fremont Flyer” led to a comprehensive redesign of the train controls and resulted in multiple investigations being opened by the California State Senate, California Public Utilities Commission, National Transportation Safety Board. Hearings by the state legislature in 1974 into financial mismanagement at BART forced the General Manager to resign in May 1974, the entire Board of Directors was replaced the same year when the legislature passed legislation leading to the election of a new Board and the end of appointed members. Before the BART system opened, planners projected several possible extensions. Although Marin county was left out of the original sys
Oakland International Airport
Oakland International Airport is an international airport in Oakland, United States. It is located 10 miles south of Downtown Oakland and across from San Francisco, situated on the other side of the San Francisco Bay, it is owned by the Port of Oakland and features passenger services to cities in the United States and Europe with additional cargo destinations in China and Japan. In 2018, 13,594,251 people traveled through OAK. Oakland is a focus city for Allegiant Air; as of August 2015 Southwest has 120 daily departures on peak-travel days of the week making it Southwest’s largest operation in California. Alaska Airlines combined with sister-carrier Horizon Air has been the second-busiest carrier at the airport through 2013. In January 2014, Delta overtook Alaska as the airport's No. 2 carrier. The city of Oakland looked into the construction of an airport starting in 1925. In 1927 the announcement of the Dole prize for a flight from California to Hawaii provided the incentive to purchase 680 acres in April 1927 for the airport.
The 7,020-foot-long runway was the longest in the world at the time, was built in just 21 days to meet the Dole race start. The airport was dedicated by Charles Lindbergh September 17. In its early days, because of its long runway enabling safe takeoff rolls for fuel-heavy aircraft, Oakland was the departing point of several historic flights, including Charles Kingsford Smith's historic US-Australia flight in 1928, Amelia Earhart's final flight in 1937. Earhart departed from this airport when she made her final, ill-fated voyage, intending to return there after circumnavigating the globe. Boeing Air Transport began scheduled flights to Oakland in December 1927, it was joined by Trans World Airlines in 1932. In 1929, Boeing opened the Boeing School of Aeronautics on the field, which expanded in 1939 as part of the Civilian Pilot Training Program. Thousands of pilots and mechanics were trained before the facility was changed into the United Air Lines training center in 1945. In 1943, the U. S. Armed Forces temporarily opened Naval Air Station Oakland.
It was transformed into an airlift base for military flights to the Pacific islands, ordering all scheduled service to move to San Francisco International Airport. After the war, airlines returned to Oakland; the airport's first Jet Age airline terminal was designed by John Carl Warnecke & Associates and opened in 1962, part of a $20 million expansion on bay fill that included the 10,000-foot runway 11/29. The May 1963 OAG showed 15 airline flights arriving in Oakland each day, including nine from San Francisco. During the Vietnam War, World Airways shuttled thousands of military passengers through Oakland to their bases in Southeast Asia, an international arrivals facility was built, allowing the airport to handle international flights for the first time. World Airways had broken ground on the World Airways Maintenance Center at Oakland International Airport; the maintenance hangar could store four Boeing 747's. It opened in May 1973. After the war Oakland's traffic slumped, but airline deregulation prompted several low-fare carriers to begin flights.
This increase prompted the airport to build a $16.3 million second terminal, the Lionel J. Wilson Terminal 2, with seven gates for PSA and AirCal service. In 1987 an Air France Concorde visited Oakland to provide supersonic two-hour flights to the Pacific halfway to Hawaii and back to Oakland. FedEx Express opened a cargo base at OAK in 1988, now one of the busiest air freight terminals in the United States. In the 1990s, Southwest Airlines opened a crew base in Oakland, expanded its flights to become the airport's dominant passenger carrier; the airport has international arrival facilities, including U. S. Customs and Border Protection officials. Mexicana Airlines flew between cities in Mexico for many years. In the past Corsairfly flew Orly Airport to OAK to Papeete, Martinair flew to Schiphol Airport and CityBird flew to Brussels Airport in Brussels. United Airlines vacated its 300,000 sq ft Oakland Maintenance Center in May 2003 and transferred work to its base across the bay at San Francisco International Airport.
Oakland International Airport began a $300 million expansion and renovation project in 2004, including adding five gates in Terminal 2. The new concourse opened in fall 2006, was opened by spring 2007, a new baggage claim in Terminal 2 opened in summer 2006; the former Terminal 2 baggage claim has been replaced by a renovated and expanded security screening area. As part of this program, airport roadways and parking lots were renovated by the end of 2008. In 2008 Oakland saw a series of cutbacks due to high fuel costs and airline bankruptcies, more than other Bay Area airports. In just a few days, Oakland's numerous non-stops to Hawaii were eliminated following the liquidation of ATA Airlines and Aloha Airlines, although Hawaiian Airlines started a daily flight to Honolulu a month later. Skybus Airlines stopped flying to Columbus, OH when it ended operations on April 5. American Airlines and Continental Airlines both dropped Oakland on September 3, United Airlines ended service to Los Angeles on November 2, TACA ended service to San Salvador on September 1.
New air traffic control tower A groundbreaking ceremony for a new control tower took place October 15, 2010. A grant awarded to the Federal A
Marin County, California
Marin County is a county located in the San Francisco Bay Area of the U. S. state of California. As of the 2010 census, the population was 252,409, its county seat is San Rafael. Marin County is included in the San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco; as of 2010, Marin County had the fifth highest income per capita in the United States at $91,483. The county is governed by the Marin County Board of Supervisors; the county is well known for its natural environment and liberal politics. San Quentin State Prison is located in the county. Autodesk, the publisher of AutoCAD, is located there, as well as numerous other high-tech companies; the Marin County Civic Center was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and draws thousands of visitors a year to guided tours of its arch and atrium design. In 1994, a new county jail facility was embedded into the hillside nearby. Marin County's natural sites include the Muir Woods redwood forest, the Marin Headlands, Stinson Beach, the Point Reyes National Seashore, Mount Tamalpais.
The United States' oldest cross country running event, the Dipsea Race, takes place annually in Marin County, attracting thousands of athletes. Mountain biking was invented on the slopes of Mount Tamalpais in Marin. Marin County is one of the original 27 counties of California, created February 18, 1850, following adoption of the California Constitution of 1849 and just months before the state was admitted to the Union. According to General Mariano Vallejo, who headed an 1850 committee to name California's counties, the county was named for "Marin", great chief of the tribe Licatiut". Marin had been named Huicmuse until he was baptized as "Marino" at about age 20. Marin / Marino was born into the Huimen people, a Coast Miwok tribe of Native Americans who inhabited the San Rafael area. Vallejo believed. Marino did reside at Mission Dolores much of the time from his 1801 baptism and marriage until 1817 serving as a baptism witness and godfather. Starting in 1817, he served as an alcalde at the San Rafael Mission, where he lived from 1817 off and on until his death.
In 1821, Marino served as an expedition guide for the Spanish for a couple of years before escaping and hiding out for some months in the tiny Marin Islands. Another version of the origin of the county name is that the bay between San Pedro Point and San Quentin Point was named Bahía de Nuestra Señora del Rosario la Marinera in 1775, that Marin is an abbreviation of this name; the Coast Miwok Indians were hunters and gatherers whose ancestors had occupied the area for thousands of years. About 600 village sites have been identified in the county; the Coast Miwok numbered in the thousands. Today, there are few left and fewer with any knowledge of their Coast Miwok lineage. Efforts are being made. Francis Drake and the crew of the Golden Hind was thought to have landed on the Marin coast in 1579 claiming the land as Nova Albion. A bronze plaque inscribed with Drake's claim to the new lands, fitting the description in Drake's own account, was discovered in 1933; this so-called Drake's Plate of Brass was revealed as a hoax in 2003.
In 1595, Sebastian Cermeno lost the San Agustin, while exploring the Marin Coast. The Spanish explorer Vizcaíno landed about twenty years after Drake in what is now called Drakes Bay; however the first Spanish settlement in Marin was not established until 1817 when Mission San Rafael Arcángel was founded in response to the Russian-built Fort Ross to the north in what is now Sonoma County. Mission San Rafael Arcángel was founded in what is now downtown San Rafael as the 20th Spanish mission in the colonial Mexican province of Alta California by four priests, Father Narciso Duran from Mission San Jose, Father Abella from Mission San Francisco de Asís, Father Gil y Taboada and Father Mariano Payeras, the President of the Missions, on December 14, 1817, four years before Mexico gained independence from Spain. According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 828 square miles, of which 520 square miles is land and 308 square miles is water, it is the fourth-smallest county in California by land area.
According to the records at the County Assessor-Recorder's Office, as of June 2006, Marin had 91,065 acres of taxable land, consisting of 79,086 parcels with a total tax basis of $39.8 billion. These parcels are divided into the following classifications: Geographically, the county forms a large, southward-facing peninsula, with the Pacific Ocean to the west, San Pablo Bay, San Francisco Bay to the east, – across the Golden Gate – the city of San Francisco to the south. Marin County's northern border is with Sonoma County. Most of the county's population resides on the eastern side, with a string of communities running along San Francisco Bay, from Sausalito to Tiburon to Corte Madera to San Rafael; the interior contains large areas of open space. West Marin has beaches which are popular destinations for tourists year-round. Notable features of the shoreline along the San Francisco Bay include the Sausalito shoreline, Richardson Bay, t