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Friday, October 12, 2012

A Brief Introduction to California

My little house on the desert is in California on the west coast of the United States.

A brief introduction to the state:  It has more that one desert; it has mountains including two major ranges; it has valleys broad and narrow; it has a variety of lakes including high and crystalline and low and salty; and it has a long Pacific Ocean coastline.
~ population is just under 34 million
~ area is just under 159 thousand square miles
~ it's the 3rd largest state of the Union
~ the capital, Sacramento, is eastish of San Francisco
~ the lowest point is Death Valley, 282 feet below sea level

A time-line with some historic points high in the consciousness of many Californians
1769 - 1823 Catholic fathers Junipero Serra and Lasuen led the building of 21 missions extending from San Diego to Sonoma. Earlier missions had been built i Baja California. Mission building north of Sonoma was stopped by Russian interests.
1848 James Marshall discovered gold a Sutter's Mill; the following year fortune seekers rushed into California.
1850 California became the 31st State.
1890 Yosemite National Park was established
1906 Earthquake and resulting fire destroyed the city of  San Francisco
1945  Representatives of 51 countries met in San Francisco to sign the charter forming the United Nations
1962 California became the most populous state in the Nation
1989 A 7.1 magnitude earthquake centered 51 miles south of San Francisco caused $6 billion in property damage
1992 An acquittal verdict in the Rodney King beating trial sparked riots in Los

1994 an earthquake centered 20 miles northwest of Los Angeles left 22,000 persons homeless
2003 Facing a fiscal crisis, voters recalled Governor Davis and elected Arnold Schwarzenegger as his replacement.

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