Cliffs north of Davenport Beach.
|• Total||2.844 sq mi (7.368 km2)|
|• Land||2.834 sq mi (7.341 km2)|
|• Water||0.010 sq mi (0.027 km2) 0.37%|
|Elevation||259 ft (79 m)|
|• Density||140/sq mi (55/km2)|
|Time zone||Pacific (PST) (UTC-8)|
|• Summer (DST)||PDT (UTC-7)|
|GNIS feature ID||2582991|
|U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Davenport, California|
Davenport is a census-designated place (CDP) in Santa Cruz County, California. Davenport sits at an elevation of 259 feet (79 m). The 2010 United States census reported Davenport's population was 408.
It lies along the coast of the Pacific Ocean, situated about 9 miles north of the town of Santa Cruz, on Highway One. Originally on the banks of San Vicente Creek, the town expanded to the north during the twentieth century.
The town is presently noted for the spectacular cliffs and bluffs above the Pacific, beaches in between cliffs, surfing opportunities, the cement plant run by Cemex (shuttered in January 2010), and the former headquarters of Odwalla, a company that makes fruit juices.
History and attractions
A whaling captain named John Pope Davenport settled at El Jarro Point, about half a mile from today's town, in 1867. Davenport built a 400 foot wharf at the mouth of Agua Puerca Creek ("agua puerca" translates to "muddy water"). This wharf was built to load the lumber brought down from the hills for shipment to Santa Cruz. A small village grew up around the port and was known as Davenport Landing. The local post office began operations in 1874, but was known only as Davenport. Agua Puerca Creek lived up to its name by bringing down so much mud that the port filled up and steamers could not tie up to the wharf to load lumber. A small extension did not solve the problem. Then a competitor built a longer wharf, but it was destroyed in a storm. Captain Davenport went bankrupt and moved to Santa Cruz. The post office in Davenport Landing closed in 1889.
When Captain Davenport went bankrupt, his assets were auctioned off to pay creditors. Among the items auctioned off were whaling items leading to speculation that he carried out whaling activities from the port, especially after he started losing money. However, no eyewitness reports of whaling activities at Davenport Landing have been found.
In 1905, an east coast businessman named William Dingee bought the Santa Cruz Lime Company, which had a lime quarry on the banks of San Vicente Creek, south of Davenport Landing. In the following year, the Santa Cruz Portland Cement Company manufacturing plant was built nearby. At that time, the closed Davenport Landing post office opened up in the settlement that grew up around the cement plant. It again only used the name of Davenport; hence, the name of the town.
St. Vincent DePaul Church, in Davenport, was built entirely of cement from the local cement factory in 1914 and is the subject of a famous photograph by Ansel Adams.
Of historical interest is the Davenport Jail. It has two cells, and was used only twice from the time of its construction in 1914 until its decommissioning in 1936. Today it is a museum featuring coastal history supported by volunteers from the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History.
Davenport has three restaurants, two art galleries, a store, a post office, the Davenport Cash Store, and an elementary school - Pacific School, the only school in the Pacific Elementary School District.
Davenport is also home to American Abalone, which is a producer of farm raised California Red Abalone. California farm raised abalone has been selected by the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Sea Watch program as an excellent choice for environmentally conscious seafood consumers.
It lies at United States Census Bureau, the CDP covers an area of 2.8 square miles (7.4 km²), 99.63% of it land and 0.37% of it water.. According to the
Davenport has mild weather throughout the year, enjoying a Mediterranean climate (Köppen Csb) characterized by cool, wet winters and warm, mostly dry summers. Due to its proximity to Monterey Bay, fog and low overcast are common during the night and morning hours, especially in the summer.
|Climate data for Davenport, CA|
|Average high °F (°C)||60.6
|Average low °F (°C)||40.8
|Precipitation inches (mm)||6.40
|Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in)||10.6||10.9||10.0||5.9||3.3||1.3||0.3||0.7||1.5||3.5||7.5||10.7||66.2|
The 2010 United States Census reported that Davenport had a population of 408. The population density was 143.4 people per square mile (55.4/km²). The racial makeup of Davenport was 272 (66.7%) White, 6 (1.5%) African American, 5 (1.2%) Native American, 12 (2.9%) Asian, 82 (20.1%) from other races, and 31 (7.6%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 172 persons (42.2%).
The Census reported that 349 people (85.5% of the population) lived in households, 59 (14.5%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 0 (0%) were institutionalized.
There were 123 households, out of which 36 (29.3%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 51 (41.5%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 16 (13.0%) had a female householder with no husband present, 11 (8.9%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 15 (12.2%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 3 (2.4%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 30 households (24.4%) were made up of individuals and 13 (10.6%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.84. There were 78 families (63.4% of all households); the average family size was 3.36.
The population was spread out with 79 people (19.4%) under the age of 18, 41 people (10.0%) aged 18 to 24, 115 people (28.2%) aged 25 to 44, 132 people (32.4%) aged 45 to 64, and 41 people (10.0%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40.3 years. For every 100 females there were 137.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 141.9 males.
There were 139 housing units at an average density of 48.9 per square mile (18.9/km²), of which 56.1% were owner-occupied and 43.9% were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.4%; the rental vacancy rate was 1.8%. 49.5% of the population lived in owner-occupied housing units and 36.0% lived in rental housing units.
- Davenport oral history, (videorecording, series), Community Action Board, (Santa Cruz: Community Television of Santa Cruz County, 1998).
- Awaswas language
- List of birds of Santa Cruz County, California
- U.S. Census
- U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Davenport, California
- Clark, Donald Thomas. Santa Cruz County Place Names: A Geographical Dictionary. [Santa Cruz, CA: Santa Cruz Historical Society, 1986]. See pages 90-91.
- Bertao, David. The Portuguese Shore Whalers of California 1854-1904. [San Jose, CA: http://portuguesebooks.org/, 2006]. See pages 184-186.
- Clark, Donald Thomas. Santa Cruz County Place Names: A Geographical Dictionary. [Santa Cruz, CA: Santa Cruz Historical Society, 1986]. See pages 90-91
- "NowData - NOAA Online Weather Data". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved 2012-03-03.
- "2010 Census Interactive Population Search: CA - Davenport CDP". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2014.