|Elevation||49 ft (15 m)|
|• Median Age||53.9 (male) / 51.8 (female)|
|Time zone||Pacific (UTC-8)|
|• Summer (DST)||PDT (UTC-7)|
|GNIS feature ID||224701|
Gualala (formerly, Guadala, Walhalla, and Wallala) is an unincorporated community in Mendocino County in the U.S. state of California. 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. 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.
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 which he used for grazing cattle. He later sold the land for $10,000 shortly before it was discovered that his grant was invalid.
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), 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.
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.
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.
Cyrus Robinson died 2 months later.
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.
- "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""
- Kroeber, Alfred L. (1916). "California place names of Indian origin" (PDF). University of California Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology 12 (2): 31–69..
- U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Gualala
- "2008-2012 American Community Survey". US Census Bureau. US Dept of Commerce. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
- "American Fact Finder (ZIP 95445)". US Census Bureau. US Dept. of Commerce. 2010. Archived from the original on
|archivedate=(help). Retrieved 24 August 2014.
- 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.
- Porter, Paige. "So You Want to Live in ... Gualala, California". Coastal Living. Time Inc. Lifestyle Group. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
- "Senators". State of California. Retrieved 2014-08-27.
- "Members Assembly". State of California. Retrieved 2014-08-27.
- "California's 2nd Congressional District - Representatives & District Map". Civic Impulse, LLC. Retrieved March 1, 2013.
- Ogden Hoffman, 1862, Reports of Land Cases Determined in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, Numa Hubert, San Francisco
- "Gualala History". Retrieved 24 August 2014.
- Friends of the Gualala River
- Redwood Coast Chamber of Commerce
- TripAdvisor Travel Information
- Gualala Arts Center
- Town Website