History Of Monterey

The city of Monterey was established by Father Junipero Serra and Gaspar de Portola in 1770 and served as California's capitol from 1777 to 1849. The Battle of Monterey was fought in the city on July 7, 1846 during the Mexican-American War and in 1848 the territory was ceded to the United States. Monterey's history includes many California 'firsts' such as the first theatre, brick house, publicly funded school, public library and printing press.

The Monterey Bay fishery and cannery row were well known and abundant during the city's early years, but during the 1950's the entire industry collapsed due to overfishing. Cannery Row has since been resurrected as a popular tourist attraction and includes a few historic fishing cabins, restaurants and shops. The famous Monterey Bay Aquarium is located on Cannery Row as well. In the early 19th and 20th centuries Monterey was also known as a mecca for plein air painters such as Percy Grey and Arthur Frank Mathews. In addition, the region is also known for writers who have called the surrounding area home such as Arthur Miller and John Steinbeck.