Sunday, July 24, 2016


  •  Juan Cabrillo discovered the area where Old Town is today in 1543. In 1602 Sebastian Vizcano named it San Diego de Alcala.  A military post was established on Presidio Hill.

    By 1820 a small pueblo was developed below the Presidio using adobe bricks to build the homes.   Fiestas were held in the plaza.

    By 1846 the U.S. declared war on Mexico and a new constitution was written in 1849 and California was a state in 1850.  By then the American flag was raised in the plaza and San Diego was incorporated as a city.
    From 1868-1874 the San Antonio and San Diego Mail Line stage coaches came through San Diego.
    There were a series of misfortunes with fire, floods a severe earthquake.  In 1907 Spreckles bought the remains of  La Casa de Estudillo and started to restore Old Town

    Paul and I visited several of the restored adobe buildings around the plaza.  Many have small museums with docents who tell stories about the early history.  Some of the buildings are used for shops with merchants in period costume who provide a  peak into what life was like in the 1800’s. 
    The cigar shop had an interesting collection of historic pipes.

    The Wells Fargo Museum had early coins, a stage coach and mail route maps- click photo for details

    La Casa de Estudillo is a fine example of a home of a leading family of that era.  It  was built by Jose Estudillo with an inner courtyard with bedrooms,  servants quarters, a kitchen, storage rooms, a living and dining room and a chapel.  It was the social and religious center during the Mexican and early American periods.

    The docent at the blacksmith shop had many tools to demonstrate            

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