National Register of Historic Places in Monterey County

National Register #70000137: Monterey Old Town Historic District 22 November 2012
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National Register #70000137
Monterey Old Town Historic District

From 1770 until 1849, Monterey was the stronghold of European civilization on the American Pacific Coast and the hub of social, economic and political activities in Alta California.

Founded on 3 June 1770, Monterey was the second of the four presidios established by the Spanish in California. (The other presidios founded by Spain were San Diego, Santa Barbara and San Francisco. The Sonoma Presidio was built when Alta California was ruled by Mexico.)

Early in the 1820s, the inhabitants began to construct their houses outside the adobe walls of the fort and Monterey was formally authorized as a pueblo by the Mexican government in 1827. By 1830, the population was about five hundred. In 1845, it was about seven hundred and fifty. Old Monterey was then a tangle of narrow streets irregularly laid out, and its some two hundred buildings were widely scattered.

In the 20th century, Monterey expanded, demolished and rebuilt, until only a few dozen of the 19th century historic structures remained. Many are widely scattered with the former open areas between them now occupied by modern structures that impair the historic scene.

Two pockets of historic structures have survived.

The southern section is bounded roughly by the four blocks surrounding the intersection of Madison and Pacific Streets.

The northern section borders on the bay and includes the blocks surrounding the intersections of Scott, Pacific, Olivier, Calle Principal and Alvarado Streets.

Monterey Old Town Historic District ia a National Historic Landmark.

Source: Adapted from the NRHP nomination submitted in 1970.

Name Year Address Remarks Sort Address Sort Name
Old Custom House1827Custom House PlazaNorthern SectionCustom House PlazaOld Custom House
Pacific House1847200-222 Calle PrincipalNorthern SectionCalle Principal 0200Pacific House
Casa del Oro1845Olivier and Scott StreetsNorthern SectionOlivier ScottCasa del Oro
First Theater in California1846Pacific and Scott StreetsNorthern SectionPacific ScottFirst Theater in California
Old Whaling Station1855391 Decatur StreetNorthern SectionDecatur 0391Old Whaling Station
First Brick House1847351 Decatur StreetNorthern SectionDecatur 0351First Brick House
Casa Alvarado1836510 Dutra StreetSouthern SectionDutra 0510Casa Alvarado
Vasquez Adobe546 Dutra StreetSouthern SectionDutra 0546Vasquez Adobe
Casa de la Torte1852502 Pierce StreetSouthern SectionPierce 0502Casa de la Torte
Gordon House1849527 Pierce StreetSouthern SectionPierce 0527Gordon House
Colton Hall1847Pacific Street Between Jefferson and MadisonSouthern SectionPacific Colton Hall
Underwood-Brown Adobe1845Pacific Street Between Jefferson and MadisonSouthern SectionPacific Underwood-Brown Adobe
GutiƩrrez Adobe1841590 Calle PrincipalSouthern SectionCalle Principal 0590GutiƩrrez Adobe
House of Four Winds1835540 Calle PrincipalSouthern SectionCalle Principal 0540House of Four Winds
Sherman's Headquarters1834464 Calle PrincipalSouthern SectionCalle Principal 0464Sherman's Headquarters
Larkin House1837500 Calle PrincipaleSouthern SectionCalle Principale 0500Larkin House
Alvarado House494-498 Alvarado StreetSouthern SectionAlvarado 0494Alvarado House
Cooper-Molera Adobe1829525 Polk StreetSouthern SectionPolk 0525Cooper-Molera Adobe
Casa Amesti1834516 Polk StreetSouthern SectionPolk 0516Casa Amesti
First Federal Courthouse1836599 Polk StreetSouthern SectionPolk 0599First Federal Courthouse
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