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Monterey County History Overview



California Local Pin Marker Get To Know A Group

Do you want to know where Monterey got its name? The history-loving volunteers of the Old Monterey Foundation are here to answer all your questions about Sebastián Vizcaíno's big idea in 1602.

California Local Pin Marker Local History Digest

A Private Calif. Ranch Holds Important State History — And It Might Be in Danger

04/19/2024

Some residents fear development could destroy parts of the historic land.

Western Flyer Artifacts to be Sold

04/01/2024

Original parts from the storied Western Flyer still held by the previous owner are to be sold.

California Local Pin Marker Recent Articles

Image caption: The California mental health crisis is tied to both homelessness and rising crime.
UPDATE: California’s Mental Health Crisis: How We Got Here

How the California mental health crisis emerged out of the state’s history of deinstitutionalization and laws designed to protect the mentally ill, as well as the communities around them.

Monterey County Weekly logo LOCAL NEWS
Historic or Just Old? A Housing Project in Monterey Hinges on the Answer.

Usually, Monterey’s history is an asset, something to highlight, but in some cases, it’s complicated. History is part of what’s holding up a 42-unit affordable housing project on a 0.5-acre city-owned site adjacent to the Vasquez Adobe and behind Monterey’s…

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Publishing in Paradise

Based in California’s most iconic vacation spot, Katherine Hill celebrates Tahoe Guide’s 42nd birthday.

Image caption: The 1965 law known as the Williamson Act has been responsible for keeping about half of California's farmland out of the hands of developers.
The Williamson Act: How the Law That Protects California’s Farmland Works

The Williamson Act, passed in 1965, now keeps more than 16 million acres of farmland out of the hands of developers. Here's how the law puts the brakes on the development of California agricultural properties.

Monterey County Weekly logo LOCAL NEWS
Monterey mourns the loss of its "champion," former mayor Peter Coniglio.

Peter Coniglio described himself as a "Monterey guy," and he was, with deep roots that run back to his Italian immigrant grandfather who came to Monterey and found success as a fisherman and founder off the first cannery. Coniglio branched…

Monterey County Weekly logo LOCAL NEWS
Starting today, First Theatre in Monterey will open for public tours.

The First Theatre in downtown Monterey, hosted California's first-ever paid theatrical production in 1848, but wasn't regularly used for that purpose until 1937.

Image caption: The Baldwin Hills area in South Los Angeles is one region where a state conservancy would keep open land accessible to the public.
California’s 10 State Conservancies: How They Protect Parks and Open Land

How California’s 10 state conservancies buy up open land and shield it from developers to preserve the natural environment for public use.

Image caption: The version of Mickey Mouse seen in the 1928 animated short “Steamboat Willie” is now free for public use.
Mickey Mouse Enters Public Domain. What That Means for California

Disney icon Mickey Mouse is now in the public domain, meaning anyone can create their own Mickey Mouse cartoons. Here’s what that means, and how it could affect the California economy.

Featured

History Row
Natural history, state history, and cultural history combine to make Monterey County remarkable.
Old Sacramento Historic District Sacramento is an open-air museum of historic buildings.
Capital Collections
Sacramento’s rich past can be explored by visiting its many and varied historical museums.
Access to abortion in California is limited in many areas, though state laws protect a woman’s right to choose.
Abortion Rights in California, Explained
But even in California, access to abortion services in many areas remains limited.
California continues to work on legislation that would make voting easier.
Voting Rites
And more bills are on the way to help you make your mark on Election Day.
Over two weekends last October, residents of Santa Cruz and Watsonville  participated in demonstration rides aboard an electric streetcar on rails.
The ‘Rail Trail’ Movement, Explained
The heated controversy over what to do with abandoned railroad tracks
California transportation history runs from railroads to today’s car culture.
California’s History of Transportation: From Railroads to Highways
The history of transportation in California has shaped the state, from the earliest stagecoach to today’s car culture.
The California mental health crisis is tied to both homelessness and rising crime.
UPDATE: California’s Mental Health Crisis: How We Got Here
The making of Gov. Newsom's plan to help get mentally ill Californians into treatment.
Like ripples in a pond, the hip impulse moved through Santa Cruz and beyond, and continues across generations.
How Did Santa Cruz Get So Hip?
Looking back at the Sixties and Seventies in America's Hippest Little City.
Moss Landing in Monterey Bay is the world’s largest battery storage facility for solar and other renewable energy.
Solar Power and California’s Clean Energy Goals
How the sun is helping push the state toward 100 percent renewable energy.
From nitrates to arsenic to “forever chemicals,” California’s water supply faces a serious pollution threat.
Dirty Water: California Faces a Water Contamination Crisis
In a state that declares water a “human right,” more than 2 percent of its residents have no drinkable water.
A 1911 production of “Twelfth Night” at the Forest Theater.
Arts History
Performing arts centers, galleries, theater troupes, music festivals and more.
The California Supreme Court has defined the state’s legal and political agenda for more than 170 years.
How the California Supreme Court Blazes Legal Trails
From its beginnings in the Gold Rush, the state Supreme Court continues to define the state today.
Among the events commemorated by E Clampus Vitus is the founding of the group’s first California chapter.
Atlas Absurdum
More than 1,400 markers across the state point the way to the past.
How California reclamation districts turned millions of acres of wetlands into fertile agricultural land, starting in the earliest days of the Gold Rush.
Reclamation Districts: Turning ‘Swamps’ Into Farmland
From its earliest days as a state, California has been trying to turn marshes into productive land.
Since the Gold Rush era, land reclamation has cost California 90 percent of its wetlands.
How Land Reclamation Hurts California’s Environment
The hidden price tag of “reclaiming” swamps and marshes as usable land.
Translated from the Greek, “Democracy” means “people power.” How much power do the people have in California?
People Power! What Is Democracy, and How Does It Work in California?
The Goddess of Democracy is alive and well in California, but that hasn’t always been true.
The Baldwin Hills area in South Los Angeles is one region where a state conservancy would keep open land accessible to the public.
California’s 10 State Conservancies: How They Protect Parks and Open Land
Starting in 1976, the legislature began creating agencies to buy up open land, and keep it open.
The 1965 law known as the Williamson Act has been responsible for keeping about half of California's farmland out of the hands of developers.
The Williamson Act: How the Law That Protects California’s Farmland Works
More than half of California farmland is under contracts that prevent its development.
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