Petaluma Adobe

Park Brochure

brochure Petaluma Adobe - Park Brochure
Petaluma Adobe State Historic Park Our Mission The mission of California State Parks is to provide for the health, inspiration and education of the people of California by helping to preserve the state’s extraordinary biological diversity, protecting its most valued natural and cultural resources, and creating opportunities for high-quality outdoor recreation. When the heavy ranch work was done in the fall, rancheros, their workers, and their families celebrated with a fandango  —  a lively gathering with music and dancing. California State Parks supports equal access. Prior to arrival, visitors with disabilities who need assistance should contact the park at (707) 762-4871. If you need this publication in an alternate format, contact CALIFORNIA STATE PARKS P.O. Box 942896 Sacramento, CA 94296-0001 For information call: (800) 777-0369 (916) 653-6995, outside the U.S. 711, TTY relay service Petaluma Adobe State Historic Park 3325 Adobe Road Petaluma, California 94954 (707) 762-4871 © 2008 California State Parks (Rev. 2015) O n a hill overlooking Petaluma Valley stands the Petaluma Adobe, an impressive two-story adobe building encircled by a veranda. This structure is all that remains of Commandant General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo’s vast Rancho de Petaluma, once the largest and most prosperous private rancho in Mexican northern California. PARK HISTORY Native People The Coast Miwok lived in the resource-rich Petaluma River Valley centuries before European incursions. Village communities sheltered in places near fresh water. The abundant tule rushes along waterways provided ample materials for constructing dwellings and boats. Wildlife, including rabbits, quail, and deer, kept the Coast Miwok supplied with meat, fur, and tools. Seasonally, the women harvested acorns, Some hides were used for saddles. buckeye, fruits, and kelp. The ocean provided the Coast Miwok with a yearround food supply. They used nets, hooks, and traps to catch freshwater and marine fish, and the women gathered crabs, clams, oysters, abalone, and mussels in the tidal zones. Craftsmen transformed the cleaned shells into beautiful ornaments and into strings of beads (dentalium) used as major trade items. European Contact The establishment of missions San Francisco de Asís in 1776, San José in 1797, San Rafael in 1817, and San Francisco Solano in 1823 quickly disrupted the traditional lives of the Coast Miwok. Villages emptied as native people were brought to missions as laborers and craftspeople. Following its separation from Spain, the Mexican government began to secularize the missions into parish churches. The vast mission holdings were divided and sold as land grants. In 1834 Governor José Figueroa ordered Lieutenant Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, commandant of the San Francisco presidio, to secularize Mission San Francisco Solano and to start a pueblo at Sonoma north of San Francisco Bay. Mexico increased its presence in northern California to address the threat posed by the Russian outpost at Fort Ross. Vallejo was promoted to Commandant General and was granted 44,000 acres (later supplemented with another 22,000 acres) of land, which he named Rancho de Petaluma. Rancho de Petaluma Vallejo selected a site on a knoll adjacent to Adobe Creek, with an excellent water supply, gentle climate, and rich soil. In April 1836 building construction began, using adobe bricks and hand-hewn redwood planks. Some walls were plastered and West face of historic adobe whitewashed; the wide, covered second-story veranda protected the adobe walls from the weather. The eastern wing of the complex was never fully completed. The portion of the building remaining today was part of a larger complex forming a quadrangle around a central courtyard. The adobe complex housed a variety of processing and manufacturing operations, with storage and living space for visiting members of the Vallejo family. Ranch managers lived on the second floor. General Vallejo relied on goods and crops produced at the rancho to help support his military command. The rancho’s main income came from the hide and tallow (rendered fat) trade. Cowhides were so common an exchange item that they were called “California bank notes.” Hides were a valuable source for leather goods and machinery belting, while tallow was used to make soap, candles, leather dressing, and lubricants. Rancheros traded the tallow and hides with merchant ships plying the coast of California in exchange for manufactured goods not locally available. Rancho de Petaluma needed a large workforce to tend the vast herds of livestock, to labor in the fields, and to manufacture goods. Vallejo employed hundreds of Indian laborers who lived on the rancho and worked at the trades learned at Mission San Francisco Solano. Harvested crops of grains and vegetables were stockpiled in large storerooms for food and trade. Blankets and carpets were loomed out of coarse wool. The blacksmith supplied tools and metal items necessary for ranch and military operations. The Bear Flag Revolt An American group effort to seize control of Mexican California during the “Bear Flag Revolt” ended Rancho de Petaluma’s prosperity. In June 1846, Vallejo was arrested at his home and taken to the Sacramento compound of Swiss immigrant John A. Sutter. During Vallejo’s imprisonment, John C. Frémont and his soldiers stripped the rancho of all valuables. When the political turmoil had subsided and his legal title to the rancho had been accepted by the U.S. Government, Vallejo leased it to a group of French colonists. Financial and legal problems, as well as squatters on his land, finally forced General Vallejo to sell Rancho de Petaluma, also known as Petaluma Adobe, in 1857. As it passed through the hands of succeeding owners, the adobe complex fell into disrepair. Petaluma Adobe Today In 1910 the Petaluma Chapter of the Native Sons of the Golden West purchased the portion of the Petaluma Adobe that had not succumbed to neglect and the forces of nature. In 1951 the State of California acquired the property. Archaeological excavations and research have unearthed details on construction of the rancho buildings and daily life as well as the Miwok, Wappo, Wintun, Pomo, Spanish, and Mexican inhabitants. Learn their stories in the restored and furnished rooms of Petaluma Adobe State Historic Park. School Programs Petaluma Adobe SHP helps students learn about rancho life in Mexican California. Teachers may make school tour arrangements by calling ReserveAmerica toll-free at (866) 240-4655 at least two weeks in advance. Bear Flag Revolt Candlemaking interpretive program In a hands-on Environmental Living Program, fourth-grade students can take an overnight trip back in time to early Mexican California in the 1840s. Students assume the roles of people living in the area during this time, preparing period meals in large adobe hornos (ovens), making candles and adobe bricks, weaving baskets, working leather and wood, and spinning. For more information, call the park at (707) 762-4871. PLEASE REMEMBER • Operating hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed on Mondays and Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s days. • Docent-led tours are available most weekends from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. • Weather can be changeable; layered clothing is recommended. Sonoma/Petaluma State Historic Parks Association, Inc. provides significant funding and support to this park. Contact the association at 20 East Spain Street P.O. Box 1702, Sonoma, CA 95476 (707) 939-9420 • ACCESSIBLE FEATURES • The adobe is a historic structure with some slightly narrow doors, high thresholds and somewhat uneven dirt floors. • Some dirt paths of travel are usable in dry weather. A 750-foot-long path leads from parking to the exhibits. • An audiovisual program is available. Accessible parking and a no-flush restroom are available. • For more accessibility information, call the park or see NEARBY STATE PARKS • Sonoma State Historic Park Six buildings near Sonoma Plaza 95476 (707) 938-9560 • Annadel State Park 6201 Channel Drive Santa Rosa 95409 (707) 539-3911 • Jack London State Historic Park 2400 London Ranch Rd. Glen Ellen 95442 (707) 938-5216 • Sugarloaf Ridge State Park 2605 Adobe Canyon Rd. Kenwood 95452 (707) 833-5712 Prickly pear Legend Petaluma Adobe Paved Road/Path St at e His t or ic Par k Unpaved Path Fence Park Building SERVICE ENTRANCE ONLY Accessible Site Gate Parking Picnic Area Ma nor Restrooms Historic Foundation Site Adobe Creek Ln P P E TA L U M A A D O B E S TAT E H I S T O R I C PA R K Adobe P Courtyard GROVE Ad OF TREES ob e an de Rd Rd Gr P sa Park Entrance Ca Bay Area District Office, California State Parks 101 116 on to San Francisco or Ma n w L a k e v il l e H y es at 0 0 116 © 2008 California State Parks (Rev. 2015) 580 Golden Gate NRA SAN FRANCISCO 0 0 10 10 20 500 Feet 80 Napa 20 Mi 30 Km 99 Stockton 24 Oakland 680 Mt Diablo SP 580 101 1 5 Vallejo 880 Half Moon Bay 2 Km 150 Meters 400 SACRAMENTO Pacifica 1 Mi to Napa 37 San Rafael Rd de lvd 300 Petaluma Adobe SHP Point Reyes NS P E TA L U M A ADOBE SHP Fr B l vd St ma vd Ca alu Washingt Bl G Rd ran ell 101 e sa ow ulf Ln ield et to 116 , Downtown Petaluma cD ob Petaluma Rd Municipal see Airport detail map B y Ca M P El Ad 100 200 Jack London SHP Sonoma Petaluma 1 Petaluma 50 100 Sugarloaf Annadel Ridge SP SP Sonoma Sebastopol SHP to Santa Rosa 0 Santa Rosa 29 116 Ln 0 280 Pleasanton Tracy Fremont SAN JOSÉ Henry W Coe SP 580

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