Víctor Castro (landowner)

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Víctor Ramón Castro
Don Víctor Castro.jpg
Contra Costa County Supervisor
In office
Personal details
BornFebruary 2, 1820
San Francisco, California
DiedMay 5, 1900
El Cerrito, California
ResidenceRancho San Pablo
ProfessionRanchero, businessman

Don Víctor Ramón Castro (February 2, 1820 – May 5, 1900) was a Californio ranchero, politician, and businessman. He was one of the largest landowners in Contra Costa and served as a Contra Costa County Supervisor.[1] He operated one of the first ferries in the Bay Area.[2]


Castro was born at the Presidio of San Francisco in 1820, as the son of Francisco María Castro, who later served as Alcalde of San Jose. His father was later granted Rancho San Pablo.

Castro married Luisa Martinez in 1836, the daughter of Don Ygnacio Martinez, grantee of the neighboring Rancho El Pinole.

Víctor Castro and his brother Juan José Castro were the grantees of Rancho El Sobrante in 1841.

Víctor Castro was elected as a juez de campo (field judge) in 1840[1] which gave him authority over roundups and branding of cattle in the area.

He was a renowned horseman and helped battle indigenous raiders who attacked other Mexican ranchos.[1] He also warred with American immigrants who squatted on his land after the California Gold Rush.[1] Castro was a local leader in times of both peace and conflict.

He remained active as a community leader after the annexation of California and was elected a Contra Costa County supervisor in 1852.[1]

Castro was initially buried, along with four of his children, in what is now the El Cerrito Plaza shopping center. According to Findagrave, Victor's remains were re-interred in the 1950s to the Sunset View cemetery, along with several family members.[3]


Castro Street in Martinez is named after Victor Castro, and is one of five consecutive streets in the downtown Martinez area that are named for the five sons-in-law of Ygnacio Martinez.

Point Isabel promontory and Point Isabel Regional Shoreline are named after his daughter Isabel.[4][5]

Castro Street, Castro Creek, the Castro Rocks, Castro Point, Castro Cove and Castro Ranch Road in Richmond are named after his family.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d e Don Víctor Castro Fights the French, Brentwood Press, by William Mero, retrieved August 1, 2007
  2. ^ El Cerrito Historical Society – Castro Adobe
  3. ^ [1] Findagrave
  4. ^ El Cerrito Historical Society, Point Isabel, retrieved July 31, 2007
  5. ^ [2] April 21, 1956, Richmond Independent article