Rancho Encinal y Buena Esperanza

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Rancho Encinal y Buena Esperanza was a 13,392-acre (54.20 km2) Mexican land grant in the Salinas Valley, in present day Monterey County, California.

Two square leagues (Encinal) was given in 1834 by Governor José Figueroa to David Spence, and a one square league addition (Buena Esperanza) given in 1839 by Governor Juan B. Alvarado to Spence.[1]

The three square league grant extended along the north bank of the Salinas River, and encompassed present day Spence.[2]


Scotsman David Spence (1798-1875) came to Monterey in 1824 from Lima, Peru to work for William Hartnell. In 1829, Spence married Maria Adelaida Altagracia Estrada (-1875), a daughter of José Mariano Estrada, grantee of Rancho Buena Vista. Spence was alcalde of Monterey in 1839 in Alta California, and later a member of the California state legislature.[3]

With the cession of California to the United States following the Mexican-American War, the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo provided that the land grants would be honored. As required by the Land Act of 1851, a claim for Rancho Encinal y Buena Esperanza was filed with the Public Land Commission in 1852,[4] and the grant was patented to David Spence in 1862.[5]

His only son, David Steward Spence (1830-1868), who married Refugio Malarin, daughter of Juan Malarin, grantee of Rancho Chualar, died in 1868, leaving three sons and a daughter, who inherited their grandfather’s estate. [6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Ogden Hoffman, 1862, Reports of Land Cases Determined in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, Numa Hubert, San Francisco
  2. ^ Diseño del Rancho Encinal y Buena Esperanza
  3. ^ Hoover, Mildred B.; Rensch, Hero; Rensch, Ethel; Abeloe, William N. (1966). Historic Spots in California. Stanford University Press. ISBN 978-0-8047-4482-9. 
  4. ^ United States. District Court (California : Southern District) Land Case 4 SD
  5. ^ Report of the Surveyor General 1844 - 1886
  6. ^ H. S. Foote, 1888, Pen Pictures From The Garden of the World or Santa Clara County, California, Illustrated, pp. 373-374,The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago

Coordinates: 36°36′00″N 121°31′12″W / 36.600°N 121.520°W / 36.600; -121.520