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A Travelling Days Website

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THE SPANISH EXPLORER, VIZCAINO, set foot at this point in 1542 and claimed California for Spain. The name of Monterey was given to it in 1602 and it later became the centre of local Spanish and Mexican regimes.

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On the 7th July 1846 Commodore John Sloat with over two hundred marines and sailors landed at Monterey, then the capital of Mexico's most northern province, Alta California, raised the Stars and Stripes over the Custom House, proclaimed that California, with its 600,000 square miles of territory, was now part of the USA - and declared the start of the Mexican-American war !
    During California's Mexican era the Monterey Custom House presided over Mexico's only port of entry on the Alta California coast. The building was in existence by 1827, but it deteriorated and was replaced by a larger structure in 1841. The construction was done by Thomas O. Larkin. A spit of land to the north of the Custom House was used by Larkin as the approach to a wharf made of rock-filled cribwork. This was completed in 1846. No major additions were made to the Custom House after 1846.
    The building was restored in the early 1900s by the Native Sons of the Golden West. The Custom House is California's first registered State Historic Landmark, and the oldest public building on the west coast. The building is now a part of Monterey State Historic Park.

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The Customs House, seen in the above picture, as it is today (right).

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Fishing boats at Monterey.

Monterey Part 2
Seventeen-mile Drive
Big Sur
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