If you came to this page directly and do not see a navigation frame on top, please go to the home page.
|UNITED STATES OF AMERICA|
|San Francisco County|
San Francisco, certainly one of the world's most famous cities, is situated at the northern end of the peninsula separating the San Francisco Bay from the Pacific Ocean. The area had been inhabited for at least 1020,000 years before the first European explorers arrived here. The coastal area stretching from San Francisco to Monterey Bay was home of some forty culturally diverse native tribes, which are today known collectively as the Oholones. In 1579 Captain Francis Drake discovered a cove surrounded by cliffs and stayed 5 weeks at this place which he called Portus Nova Albionis (whether Drake's Bay, Marin Co., is the actual location is still a matter of debate). The entrance to San Francisco Bay was first sighted by Sergeant José Ortega in 1769 who called it La Boca del Puerto. In 1776 the two Spanish missionaries, Francisco Palou and Benito Cambon, arrived and founded Mission Dolores (La Misión de San Francisco de Asís). At the same time a few houses were built at the site of the present city. This settlement was called Yerba Buena because a herb of that name, which was used as medicine or as substitute for Chinese tea, was found in abundance on the hills surrounding the place.
During the early 1800's trading ships from the east coast began to arrive and the first pioneers of the west settled here although they had to submit to surveillance by the Spanish governors. In 1847 the chief magistrate Washington A