Situated between the Diablo and Santa Cruz mountain ranges, San Jose [†] encompasses approximately 181 square miles at the southern tip of the San Francisco Bay. San Jose's central location between San Francisco to the north and Monterey/Carmel to the south makes the "Capital of Silicon Valley" a gateway to adventures throughout California.
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With a population of one million, San Jose is the 10th largest city in the nation.1 Over 1 million people reside in Santa Clara County, of which San Jose is the county seat. In November 1777, El Pueblo San Jose de Guadalupe became the first civil settlement in California. The settlement was mostly occupied by the Ohlone Indians along the Guadalupe River and Spanish settlers. At that time, San Jose was a farming community cultivating a number of different crops, which served the military communities in San Francisco and Monterey. In 1850, San Jose became the first capital of California, but this honor remained for only two years due to flooding in downtown and the lack of hotel capacity. Furthering San Jose's difficulties, the city was plagued with floods, earthquakes, and fires in the early 1900s. However, over the next century, San Jose experienced one of the most significant economic changes in California history, transforming from an agricultural community to what is known today as the "Capital of Silicon Valley."
† Capital Budget 2018-2019, City of San Jose, www.sanjoseca.gov, accessed July, 2021.
Nearby Towns: Campbell City • Santa Clara City •