Encyclopædia Britannica, Ninth Edition/San José (California)

SAN JOSÉ, a city of the United States, capital of Santa Clara county, California, lies 40 miles south-east of San Francisco and 8 miles from the southern end of San Francisco Bay, in the heart of the beautiful Santa Clara Valley. It is at this point that the railways from the two sides of the bay meet. The main part of the city occupies a gently rising plateau between the Coyote and Guadalupe rivers. Among the principal buildings are a fine court-house, a theatre, a city-hall, two markets, a music-hall, the State normal school, the Methodist “university of the Pacific,” and a number of large colleges and schools. Besides three public parks in the city San José possesses a tract of 400 acres in Penitencia Cañon, 7 miles east, reserved for a similar purpose. The Lick Observatory (founded in 1884 on the top of Mount Hamilton) is 12 miles distant, and the Almaden quicksilver mines about 14 miles. The population of the city was 9089 in 1870, and 12,567 (township 18,103) in 1880.

Founded by the Spanish missionaries in 1777, San José remained a small village of adobe huts till the annexation of the country to the United States. The first session of the legislature of California was held in the town in 1849-50.