Scenic Byways / Copper Harbor Scenic Highway In Michigan’s Upper Peninsula

Michigan’s beautiful Upper Peninsula is a summer paradise. The peninsula is surrounded by Lake Superior to the north and Lake Michigan to the south. The northern woods scenery is spectacular and a road trip through the Copper Country and the scenic routes through the western section of upper Michigan is a perfect addition to any  vacation planner.

copper harbor michigan bridge

Upper Michigan's Copper Scenic Highway bridge

Make special note of the Copper Harbor Scenic Highway. This is a 27 mile stretch of highway, U.S. Hwy 41, running from Phoenix Michigan to Copper Harbor on the Keweenaw Peninsula. Much of this scenic route was first traveled by the pioneers to the region. Today, it’s one of North America’s most scenic byways.

The western section of Michigan’s upper peninsula is steeped in the history of copper mining and iron ore mining. Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula is another small land area that represents the very northern tip of the upper peninsula. Stretching into blue lake Superior, the Keweenaw Peninsula itself is quite a historic site. The scenic byways through this peninsula are one of a kind.

Iron ore was found in Michigan’s upper peninsula about 1840 and copper was discovered in Michigan’s upper peninsula in 1841. Copper was to become a major export of Michigan. At first, the iron ore usage was fairly small, some being found in swamps and used in charcoal furnaces to produce pig iron. While the first deposits were small, beginning in 1844, iron ore was found in large deposits and the country started taking it more seriously. In fact, the U.S. thought it important enough to establish Fort Wilkens on the tip of the Keweenaw Peninsula to protect the resource.  Fort Wilkens was no doubt one of the army’s more frigid outposts during the winter months. While quite a lot has been written about America’s wild western frontier, much less has been publicized about this part of Michigan which represented the northern frontier. As it turned out, the economic necessity of gaining access to and the transportation of iron ore would eventually lead to the construction of the Soo Locks on the eastern end of Michigan’s upper peninsula and would usher in the era of the Great Lakes ore carriers.

copper loaded on steamer

Steamer loading copper at Houghton Michigan in 1905

The Copper Harbor Scenic Highway is an all weather blacktopped roadway. While you drive this route you’ll be able to view an 1850’s era general store, a blacksmith shop, historic churches and ghost towns from the old mining boom days. A underground copper mine tour is also available. The Copper harbor Scenic Highway in upper Michigan offers motorists the chance to really see the heart of Michigan’s copper mining country. Another added Michigan vacation adventure while on the Keweenaw Peninsula is a ferry ride to the Isle Royale National Park. Isle Royale National Park  is a rugged island in Lake Superior, northwest of Copper Harbor, with abundant wildlife. It’s very popular during the summer months with backpackers, hikers, boaters, kayakers, canoeists and scuba divers.

Visitors to Fort Wilkens will get a good idea of what it was like for the troops that manned this very northerly outpost. Having Lake Superior bordering both sides of the Keweenaw Peninsula, the weather, particularly during winter, could be trying. Tourist to the Fort Wilkens State Historical Park can take advantage of both camping and day use activities. It also features one of the very first lighthouses on Lake Superior. The Copper Harbor Lighthouse, a round tower built in 1848 and put into operation the following year, was replaced in 1866 by the current structure.There is a Copper Harbor excursion that starts out from the marina and includes a boat tour and a visit to the lighthouse museum. At Fort Wilkens, interpreters will explain the history of this Keweenaw Peninsula fort.

copper harbor michigan sign

Sign at the terminus of the Copper Scenic Highway east of Copper Harbor Michigan

The Estivant Pines, a stand of virgin white pines, and The Delaware Mine, an old copper mine with guided tours, are located near the park. The Keweenaw Peninsula also offers a challenging nine hole golf course layout. Plenty of fun things to do and add to your Michigan vacation planner.

Two articles on scenic byways in the western U.S. are the Chief Joseph Scenic Byway just to the northeast of Yellowstone National Park and the Beartooth National Scenic Byway in Montana.

Anyone taking a summer vacation to northern Michigan will also pass by several other very scenic and historic sites. One of them of course is the Mackinaw Bridge which connects the upper and lower peninsulas of Michigan. Another is the fascinating Soo Locks at Saoult Ste.Marie  Michigan on the border of Ontario Canada. The locks connect Lake Superior with Lake Huron and allows for the traffic between the two Great lakes. The Soo Locks were completed in 1855. It’s estimated that the Soo Locks handle about 10,000 vessels per year. Connecting the United States to Canada is the International Bridge which spans over the locks. The map below shows the location of Copper Harbor and the Keweenaw Peninsula.

(Photos are from the public domain)


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Deadliest Storm on the Great Lakes / The 1913 Storm and the Loss of the SS Wexford

The Great Lakes have always been treacherous to navigate on during the fall period. Many ships have been lost both in the 1800’s as well as the 1900’s. The storm that hit the entire Great Lakes basin in the year 1913 was unlike any other storm in it’s destructive fury. The storm has been given many different names including being called the “Big Blow“. All in all, more than 250 people lost their lives and some 19 ships were lost. The estimated loss of ship value alone was some $5 million dollars in 1913 money. A particularly peculiar facet of the 1913 storm was that it lasted some sixteen hours where most Great Lakes storms tend to last about four hours. No doubt that this added to the death total and loss of vessels. The storm was most powerful on November 9, 1913 with waves battering and overturning ships on four of the five Great Lakes. Lake Huron appeared to be the hardest hit..

cleveland 1913 storm

Cleveland Ohio during the November 1913 Great Lakes Storm

The Great lakes region often has a confluence of different weather fronts meeting together and as a result has some unpredictable and fierce storms. Most come during the months of October through December. It’s a well known fact that that Great Lakes seamen have long felt that the storms and wave action are equal to or can surpass anything experienced on the oceans. Lake Michigan as an example can be quite dangerous. Most shipping travels on a north to south direction and storms coming from the west, which is more common, hit the vessel with waves from the side. Lake Michigan, especially on it’s southern half, offer few harbors or bays to take refuge. The modern day breakup and sinking of the Carl D. Bradley was just one example. Anyone living in the Great Lakes Region for an extended period of time can become all too familiar with the tremendous storms, or low pressure areas, that can settle over the Great Lakes Region in the fall. In short, as Polar outbreaks become more regular and intense, surging south into the Great Lakes area, they meet up with the warmer, moisture laden air from the Gulf of Mexico.

The story of the SS Wexford and it’s fatal demise on Lake Huron in 1913 exemplifies the dangers. Remember, that in 1913 maritime weather forecasting and warnings were not as sophisticated as what we now have in the 21st century. According to records from NOAA, the November 1913 weather map pattern of storm development was  not unlike the storm development of another more recent monster low pressure system that formed during the period of January 25-27th, 1978. Both systems involved an Arctic shot of cold air moving south across the Lakes area, while at the same time, an intensifying low pressure area took shape over the southern Appalachians. The 1913 great storm produced 90 mph winds, waves over 35 feet, and whiteout snow squalls.

ss wexford

SS Wexford

The SS Wexford was a steel hulled, propeller driven bulk freighter that was built in Great Britain in 1883. She was 250 feet long and 40 feet wide. At the time the SS Wexford went down on November 10, 1913, she was hauling a load of steel rails and was owned at the time by the Western Steamship Company of Totonto.  According to NOAA, eight out of eighteen ships that battled the 1913 storm on Lake Huron were lost. In the  book, The Wexford: Elusive Shipwreck of the Great Storm, 1913, author Paul Carroll points out that there was a lot of evidence pointing to the fact that the SS Wexford had actually traveled further north heading up Lake Huron than where she eventually sank. The speculation is that the ship was pushed far southward by the fierce northerly winds before she went down. All 22 of her crew were lost in the sinking. Bodies, life jackets and debris washed up on the shores of Ontario for some time afterwards. Another vessel, the 524-foot steamer, the Charles S. Price was found floating upside-down off Port Huron Michigan. Some artifacts of the SS Wexford were actually discovered along the Canadian shoreline some years later. Another good book regarding this storm is White Hurricane by author David G. Brown.

detroit news 1913 great lakes storm headline

Detroit News headline, Nov. 1913

The story of what exactly occurred with the eight lost vessels on Lake Huron will never be completely known since there was not one survivor from any of them.

Very interesting is that the wreck of the SS Wexford was actually discovered in the year 2000, 8.6 miles NNE of Grand Bend Ontario Canada. The ship was lying upright in 75 feet of water. Of the eight ships lost on Lake Huron to the November storm of 1913, the Wexford is the only ship sitting fully upright. It sits on the bottom of Lake Huron in a north/south orientation. The wreck is being explored today by divers although I have read of a few prosecutions made for removing artifacts from the wreck. At the relatively shallow depth that the SS Wexford lies, it affords a excellent experience for skilled divers.

The Great Storm of 1913 not only devastated Great Lakes shipping but rained havoc on Great Lake communities as shown on the photo on top of Cleveland Ohio which had a 22 inch snowfall. Power was out in vast areas of Michigan and Ontario. In regards to lake Erie shipping during the brutal storm, Buffalo New York on the east end of Lake Erie offered shelter and an end to Lake Erie’s constant, brutal wave action.

You will want to read two additional articles relating to Great Lakes shipping disasters. The sinking of the Carl D. Bradley in Lake Michigan and the G.P. Griffith tragedy on lake Erie.

Michigan is a vacation wonderland during the summer and there are several Great Lakes museums that offer a lot of information about the history of this shipping region. One is the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum located at Whitefish Point on the very southeastern part of Lake Superior on Michigan’s upper peninsula. Another is the  Steamship William G. Mather Maritime Museum in Cleveland Ohio. The museum is located just north of the Great Lakes Science Center at Dock 32. Detroit Michigan offers the Dossin Great Lakes Museum  located on at Belle Isle which is in the middle of the Detroit River.

(Photos are from the public domain)

 

 

 

Luther Burbank and a Tour of His Historic Gold Ridge Farm

Luther Burbank was America’s preeminent horticulturalist and his historic work is one of the reasons we have the tree and plant and vegetables we enjoy today. The Burbank flowers are some of the world’s most beautiful displays.

luther burbank gold ridge farm cottage

Gold Ridge Farm Cottage

Luther Burbank conducted his experiments in primarily two locations, both in the region north of San Francisco California. In Santa Rosa California about 60 miles north of the Goldengate Bridge was the Luther Burbank Home and Gardens. The second location was in Sebastolpol, about 10 miles due west of Santa Rosa and much closer to the Pacific coast. We’re very fortunate that the historic societies have preserved these two sites for all to enjoy. Both locations are in Sonoma County California, one of the most scenic county in the state. The Luther Burbank Home and Gardens is located at 204 Santa Rosa Avenue in downtown Santa Rosa, CA. You’ll enjoy touring this site if your California trip takes you up to the Sonoma wine country. Gold Ridge Farm in Sesastopol is located just north of Bodega Highway and about a half mile west of the town’s downtown area. Gold Ridge Farm is very unique for several reasons.

Even though the distance from Burbank’s home in Santa Rosa was only about 10 miles east of Sebastopol, the climate was different. Being closer to the pacific Ocean meant that Sebastopol had a generally cooler climate than Santa Rosa. Climate of course is very important to anyone growing trees and plants and for Burbank’s experiments it meant a difference.

luther burbank farm trail

Walking path through Gold Ridge Farm

Some of Luther Burbank’s plant breeding achievements are truly remarkable. During his life Burbank developed over 800 strains and varieties of plants. These included over 100 varieties of plums and prunes. and over 50 varieties of berries and much more. At any one Burbank managed some 3,000 experiments involving millions of plants.There was the Burbank potato in 1871 and later the Burbank russet. It was said he sold the rights for the Burbank potato and used the proceeds to help build his home and gardens and farm in Sonoma County California. Luther Burbank had originally been from New England.

When Luther Burbank purchased the Gold Ridge Farm, that had already been the farm’s name and he chose to keep it. Burbank however referred to the farm as an Experiment or the Experimental Farm. Today, it’s commonly referred to as The Luther Burbank Experimental Farm. While Luther Burbank always kept his residence in Santa Rosa, he journeyed to the farm by bicycle or by horseback. The distance being about 10 miles or so. At his site from 1886 until his death in 1926, Luther Burbank had the climate, soil and enough space to experiment with plantings of trees and fruit as well as grapes, vegetables, shrubs, bulbs  and more. When Burbank purchased Gold Ridge Farm, the area was about 10 acres. In regards  was to the climate, Burbank had stated that the climate in Sebastopol was more favorable for growing some types of plants and to conduct his plant cross breeding experiments. Trees that covered about two-thirds of the area were cleared to make way for Burbank’s experiments. In 1904, an additional 5 acres were added to the farm. At the time, Burbank marveled at the scenery of the area with the valley and Mount St. Helena to the west and the gentle slopes of beautiful Sebastopol.

luther burbank trifliate orange

Close up view of Luther Burbank's Trifoliate orange

To highlight a few of the hybrid plants now to be seen at Gold Ridge Farm, the photo at left is Trifoliate Orange,  This is a Chinese hybrid, used by Luther Burbank. It is a very thorny plant. Mr. Burbank thought he could work with this plant to improve its fruit. He thought that the trifoliate orange’s ability to withstand harsh cold winters would allow it to be grown in the Midwest. Unfortunately, Luther Burbank gave up his citrus experiments when his entire citrus orchard was destroyed by three bad winters in a row. He determined that if Sonoma County California could have winters this rough on the trifoliate orange, it would be extremely difficult for this fruit to withstand the heavy snows and low temperatures of the Midwest. Climate was a key consideration in plant cross breeding.

 

Another interesting creation of Luther Burbank was the Shasta Daisy or “Crazy Daisy”. Luther Burbank loved the oxeye daisies that grew in front of his early family home in Massachusetts.  Many years later, Burbank was inspired to develop these wildflowers for use as garden flowers. He began by cross-pollinating the oxeye daisy with the English field daisy. Burbank then dusted the best of his hybrids with the Portuguese field daisy.

crazy daisy

Burbank Yellow Crazy Daisy

The result was very good but to have brighter flowers Burbank then pollinated them with the Japanese field daisy. The Shasta daisy hybrids were finally introduced in 1901 after 17 years in development.

The fact is, the work and experiments of Luther Burbank gave us a great many of the tree, fruit and vegetable varieties we enjoy today. One of Burbank’s goals was to increase the world’s food supply by manipulating the characteristics of plants. This he succeeded in doing. Luther Burbank ranked with the best scientists and mechanical developers of the America. Burbank was a friend of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford and both men visited at the Burbank home in Santa Rosa California. When Luther Burbank passed away in 1926 he was buried near his greenhouse on the grounds of his home.

Another article you’ll want to read is a tour of the Burbank Home and Gardens in Santa Rosa. Included are photos of the site. Another fun Sonoma County wine country stop is the historic town of Healdsburg California, just about 15 miles north of Santa Rosa on U.S. Hwy 101.

Both Santa Rosa and Sebastopol California have honored the work accomplished by Luther Burbank with the designation of highways, schools and entertainment venues in his name.

If your western trip takes you near to or near Sonoma County California, I think you’ll want to include a visit to both the Luther Burbank Gold Ridge Farm in Sebastopol and the Luther Burbank Home and Gardens in Santa Rosa to your trip planner. There’s many of fun and interesting places to explore in Sonoma County, and these two historic sites are good examples.

(Photos are from author’s private collection)

High Piracy on the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers

Today in the news we hear a good deal about piracy at sea. Somalia of course is one good example. Another is the piracy that continues to be a threat to ocean freighters in the area of Indonesia. While most of these crimes involve the stealing of ships and cargo not too many, but still some, involve the capturing of ship crews. To help prevent ocean hijacking and outright piracy, several nations including the United States have begun patrolling the most dangerous of these sea lanes. What is a story that hasn’t been publicized too much is the piracy and murder that took place on the inland waterways right here in the U.S. The river pirates at the turn of the 19th century were an obstacle to westward immigration.

keel boats

Flatboat and keelboat on Ohio River, public domain image

There was a time when traveling down the Ohio River was akin to journeying on the Oregon Trail by wagon train. The dangers were every bit as great. The threat on the inland waterways didn’t come from a party of raiding Indians. It came from ruthless pirates who had no qualms at all to hijack a river boat, steal the boat itself and murder crew and passengers. Piracy attack along the Ohio River bank took many lives. The dangers on the Ohio went all the way down to Cairo Illinois where it merges with the Mississippi River.  An article written in the book, Waterways West, by author Robert West Howard, estimates that between the early years of 1785 and 1805, more than two-thousand men, women and children lost their lives at the hands of these violent river pirates. Think about it. That is an astoundingly high figure of deaths at a time when our nation’s population was a fraction of what it is today. During that period of time, rivers like the Ohio and Mississippi represented what we often call the Wild West. The Ohio River was the original home of the legendary figure Mike Fink, probably the most famous boatman on the early Ohio.

This was the era before steamboats. The description of a typical vessel in this era was a flatboat perhaps forty to seventy feet in length and twelve to fifteen feet wide. The hull was raised maybe seven feet out of the water. On the deck was built a log cabin. Wagons and livestock might have been carried on the flat roof of the cabin. Two large rudder/oars were fixed on the front and back. These boats or arks depended on the river current for power. Basically, it served the same as a wagon train wagon except it floated down the river. These powerless barges with valuables onboard were prime targets for the river pirates and murderers.

River pirates had a few ways to commandeer these floating arks. They would hide out in a cave along the river. Perhaps one would offer to help navigate the relatively helpless barge over some supposed dangerous rapids downriver. He might get aboard and suggest that they maneuver to a cave where there was also supposedly good clean water and a marvelous sight. When the boat entered the cave area it would be set upon violently by the pirate gang. Once inside the cave the immigrants would be slain, the vessel looted of everything and perhaps then floated downriver to the Cumberland River and sold in Tennessee. It was that ruthless and in many ways more deadly than the attacks that occurred decades later on the Oregon Trail.

mississippi river

Today's Mississippi River near confluence of Missouri River

To say these murderers were chased is an understatement. This was a time when the United States was a very new nation. The frontier Wild West was the region of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. There was no established law enforcement and the only method to deal with these deadly pirates were as vigilantes. Vigilante groups were the law enforcement of that era and in that place. They were similar to the later groups in Montana, Wyoming and other frontier territories.

One particular event probably illustrates best as to how these pirates were dealt with when captured or killed. The Harpe brothers led a small gang of pirates/robbers who moved around the lower Ohio and upper part of the Mississippi. The Harpe brothers, sometimes described as actually cousins, didn’t only rob and kill people on the rivers but also did the same by ambush on land. They were both river pirates and cold blooded killers. The Harpes roamed the entire area of Kentucky and down to the Cumberland Gap and on the Natchez Trace. The Harpes were also connected with a shady robber named Wilson. The Harpes with all their wisdom decided to kill Wilson and bring his head in to Natchez to collect a bounty. The problem was, the boatmen of Natchez recognized the Harpes for who they really were. They were both promptly arrested, tried and beheaded. So to discourage other would be pirates, the heads of all three were displayed on stakes along the Natchez Trace. A strong statement by the people and boatmen of Natchez was truly made.

old cincinnati ohio

Early Cincinnati Ohio with the Ohio River running through

Eventually, and as a protective measure, flatboats began traveling down the Ohio as a flotilla. This of course was very similar to the wagon trains that flowed across the prairie decades later. Some believe the idea for the wagon trains went all the way back to these river flotillas. Obviously, there was strength in numbers. Additionally, the flotillas had a keel boat in the middle of the chain of flatboats as protection. Keelboats were first built in Pittsburgh PA around 1775. The keel boat had a deck house with bunks and cargo space which in the case of protecting the flotilla included a one pound cannon, rifles and cutlasses and a crew not shy to use them. You can see the better maneuverability the keel boat had from the picture at the top of this page.The keel boat was positioned in the middle of the flotilla so to guard against trouble downriver and upriver. The keel boats assured that the flotilla would make it safely past known plunder points. There were many hidden ambush points on the river banks. The Keelboats were largely successful in protecting the defenseless flat boats..

Pirates operated on the rivers during the last part of the 18th century and during the early part of the 19th century. They also operated on the Great Lakes during the 1800’s. Wherever there was an opportunity to plunder and a lack of law enforcement, the pirates/robbers will appear. In the violent events that took place on the Ohio River at the turn of the century, a good argument could be made that the perpetrators were vicious murderers rather than pirates. In many instances they were both. Pioneers have always been in harms way. It went with the territory. At the time of the piracy and murders along the Ohio River, the river represented the American frontier very similar to what the Dakotas were in the 1830’s.

A few other interesting stories you will be interested in. The Great Train Robbery and The Yellowstone Steamboat in Texas.

The river piracy and violence on the early Ohio River was an unfortunate part of history. Essentially it was a violent and dangerous part of American westward expansion which would repeat itself over and over with pioneer immigrants who would travel the old Santa Fe Trail after 1821 and the various Overland trails beginning in the late 1830’s.

(Photos and images are from the public domain)

 

Juan Bautista de Anza and the Expedition that Established San Francisco / The National Trails System

There is a very historic old Spanish trail that eventually established what is today San Francisco California, the historic Mission Dolores and the Presidio. Today, this trail is administered by the National Park Service through a partnership with other federal, state, county and municipal parks and volunteer groups. Some of the areas of this Spanish trail are in the hands of private ownership but there is a remarkably large amount of the trail that is ideal for a California auto tour. In 1990, Congress established the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail as a part of the National Trails System.

juan bautista de anza

Juan Bautista de Anza, public domain

This very important Spanish trail was blazed by a Spanish military officer by the name of Juan Bautista de Anza. Ther idea actually originated with Anza’s father who dreamed of finding an overland route to Alta California. This was an important route for Spain who was trying to secure their stronghold in the region. Spain’s concerns were the explorations of both the Russians and the English. The Russians had a thriving trade operation in the area about 100 miles north of San Francisco Bay at Fort Ross on the Pacific coast. The English of course had operations in what is today Oregon at the mouth of the Columbia River.

Using mission and Indian trading routes, Juan de Anza found a path into Alta California in 1774. This route would allow passage of supplies, livestock and much needed settlers. When Anza identified the route he secured permission from the Viceroy of New Spain to make the Spanish expedition.

Juan Bautista de Anza’s expedition was quite different from a mere exploration. Some of the earlier expeditions were for simple exploration. This expedition was to help colonize a distant land. This essentially went hand in hand with the Spanish Mission system being established around the same years. Traveling through Sonora New Spain, Anza put out a call to men to join him and be paid as soldiers. His men told about the lush land to the north which was greatly different than the desert region around Sonora. Interest was high but Anza placed certain requirements to many of the prospective recruits. There were two primary conditions. The men would agree not to return to New Spain and they were obligated to bring along their families.

de anza trail map

Route of the Juan Bautista de Anza Expedition, public domain

Anza’s expedition departed from Tubac Presidio on October 23, 1775. The expedition included thirty families which amounted to some 240 men, women and children. The expedition had a purpose. The purpose in general was to safely deliver the settlers and their livestock to el Rio San Francisco, the first Spanish settlement in that key area. There was no guarantee of success but the travelers put their full faith in Anza. The families who joined the expedition, after weighing their current opportunities in Sonora, felt strongly that a better life could be found in Alta California. They risked everything for a chance to be among the very first settlers to California.

As with just about all Spanish expeditions, religion and the Franciscans played a large role. Most days began with Mass and hymns of praise. These were conducted by Franciscan priest Pedro Font. In addition to Font’s religious duties, he kept a very detailed diary and recorded latitudes using a quadrant. His journals were a running historic record recording locations, miles traveled and supplies used. It is from his diary and one written by Anza himself  that today we have an excellent record of the Anza expedition. Coming up from present day Mexico around the Nogales area, the expedition which included some 1,000 head of cattle crossed the Colorado River into Alta California at present day Yuma Arizona. Anza was fortunate to have received able help from the local Indians and this included finding the Yuma Crossing. The trail went through Riverside and north of present day Los Angeles to the coast near Oxnard. Then it was up the Pacific coast past San Luis Obispo and to the east of Monterey before reaching present day San Francisco. Much of the route fairly follows US Hwy 101. It’s interesting that riders on Amtrak’s Coast Starlight train from Los Angeles to Oakland also follow a section of this trail.

juan bautista de anza interpretive center in martinez california

The Juan Bautista de Anza Interpretive Visitor Center in Martinez, CA, from author's collection

The Juan Bautista de Anza expedition was a great success for Spain. After Juan de Anza selected a site for both a presidio and a Spanish mission, on June 27, 1776 a Lt. Moraga led the settlers to what is today the city of San Francisco. This marked the establishment of Mission Dolores on the San Francisco peninsula. This also marked the very northernmost settlement to that date for Spain. What’s very interesting to the tourist is that many of the names of settlers and military involved with Juan de Anza’s expedition are still seen today throughout northern California. These are names such as Moraga, Berryessa, Bernal and Peralta. Today, these are names of towns, highways, landmarks and counties. De Anza’s name can be found on buildings, schools and streets.

The National Park Service has sixteen sites along the de Anza Trail where many visitors like to collect stamps showing their visit. These stamps are given out by the NPS to officially confirm the visit. The National Park Service administers the Anza Historic Trail Exhibit Visitor Center located at John Muir National Historic Park in Martinez California. This is the historic adobe on the Muir grounds that has been made into the Anza Historic Trail Center. This center has some great exhibits and would be a fine addition to any san Francisco area trip planner. Martinez is located northeast of San Francisco opposite the town of Benicia California.