Gualala, California

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For the municipality in Honduras, see Gualala, Honduras.
Gualala
wa-LA-la[1][2]
Unincorporated community
Gualala is located in California
Gualala
Gualala
Location in California
Coordinates: 38°45′57″N 123°31′41″W / 38.76583°N 123.52806°W / 38.76583; -123.52806Coordinates: 38°45′57″N 123°31′41″W / 38.76583°N 123.52806°W / 38.76583; -123.52806
Country United States
State California
County Mendocino
Elevation[3] 49 ft (15 m)
Population
 • Median Age 53.9 (male) / 51.8 (female)[4]
White[5]
African-American
Time zone Pacific (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST) PDT (UTC-7)
FIPS code 06-31428
GNIS feature ID 224701
Website gualala.com

Gualala (formerly, Guadala, Walhalla, and Wallala)[6] is an unincorporated community in Mendocino County in the U.S. state of California.[3] It is located north of The Sea Ranch and south of Point Arena, California. Gualala shares it's southern border with the southern border of Mendocino County.[7] It is located on the Pacific coast at the mouth of the Gualala River, on State Route 1. It serves as a commercial center for the surrounding area. Gualala was once a logging town, but tourism is now its central economic activity.[7]

The Gualala River, and border of Gualala, CA and the Mendocino County line.

Politics[edit]

In the state legislature, Gualala is in the 2nd Senate District, represented by Democrat Noreen Evans,[8] and the 2nd Assembly District, represented by Democrat Wesley Chesbro.[9]

Federally, Gualala is in California's 2nd congressional district, represented by Democrat Jared Huffman.[10]

History[edit]

Indian settlement[edit]

"Gualala" was the name given to the site of today's Gualala by the Pomo who had named the area ah kha wa la lee, meaning "coming down water place"[2]

Land grant[edit]

General Rafael Gracie was given a land grant of 62.5 square miles extending from the Gualala river north to Mal Paso creek in 1836 by Governor Nicolás Gutiérrez[11] which he used for grazing cattle. He later sold the land for $10,000 shortly before it was discovered that his grant was invalid.

Tourism[edit]

About 1861 tourists began coming to Gualala to hunt and fish and get away from the crowded cities. Around that same time Cyrus Robinson filed a homestead for all of the area which is now Gualala where they built a hotel, a saloon and a ferry. They also supervised the Post Office (which was also the stage stop),[6] the Wells Fargo Express and the Western Union. By the end of the 1800s Gualala had become a major commercial hub for the entire area with a dancing school, the Gualala Municipal Brass Band, and an Opera House.[12]

In 1902, Elizabeth Robinson, Cyrus' wife, passed away; and their hotel burned down in a fire the following year. The hotel was later rebuilt to the south of where it had originally been at a cost of $6,000.

In 1907, Mark Pedotti and Antonio Ciapusci bought the Gualala Hotel property which included 636 acres and among them they divided the property with Antonio acquiring the area of Gualala who later passed away in 1932. His son George and wife, Ida inherited the land after his death.[12]

Lumber[edit]

A year after Cyrus Robinson receiving the property he sold part of the land in 1862 to a company so they could build a lumber mill at the mouth of Mill Gulch. The lumber-mill logged the redwood trees until it burned down in a fire on September 14, 1906.[12]

Cyrus Robinson died 2 months later.

Education[edit]

There weren't any schools in the area until 1883. Until that time it was a common custom to send children to live with other families in larger areas to attend school.[12]

Elementary school students are educated at Horicon School in Annapolis, Sonoma County, or Arena Union Elementary in Point Arena. High school students are educated at Point Arena High School.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Gualala? What's that?". Retrieved 24 August 2014. "Some people call it gwa-LA-la, but the natives call it wa-LA-la. This comes from the Kashaya Pomo Indian phrase, "ah kha wa la lee" which means, "Where the water flows down"" 
  2. ^ a b Kroeber, Alfred L. (1916). "California place names of Indian origin" (PDF). University of California Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology 12 (2): 31–69. .
  3. ^ a b U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Gualala
  4. ^ "2008-2012 American Community Survey". US Census Bureau. US Dept of Commerce. Retrieved 24 August 2014. 
  5. ^ Cite error: The named reference census was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  6. ^ a b Durham, David L. (1998). California's Geographic Names: A Gazetteer of Historic and Modern Names of the State. Clovis, Calif.: Word Dancer Press. p. 70. ISBN 1-884995-14-4. 
  7. ^ a b Porter, Paige. "So You Want to Live in ... Gualala, California". Coastal Living. Time Inc. Lifestyle Group. Retrieved 24 August 2014. 
  8. ^ "Senators". State of California. Retrieved 2014-08-27. 
  9. ^ "Members Assembly". State of California. Retrieved 2014-08-27. 
  10. ^ "California's 2nd Congressional District - Representatives & District Map". Civic Impulse, LLC. Retrieved March 1, 2013. 
  11. ^ Ogden Hoffman, 1862, Reports of Land Cases Determined in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, Numa Hubert, San Francisco
  12. ^ a b c d "Gualala History". Retrieved 24 August 2014. 

External links[edit]