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History of San Jose, California

The San Jose area was once inhabited by the Olhone Indians, because of the abundant supply of water from the Guadalupe River. In 1777, the first Spanish settlers named it Pueblo de San José de Guadalupe in honor of Saint Joseph. Theirs was the first recorded settlement in what is now California. The settlers were attracted to the area not only for the nearby supply of drinking water, but because that same water connected nearby cities that the Spanish government had planned. The area was also home, and still plays host to, much of the farming and agriculture that fed its residents. The San Jose area grew slowly, and the Spanish government scaled back its plans for more people to settle in the area. It was not until the early 1840s that Americans arrived and were attracted to the possibilities that the land offered. After word got out that the land was fertile and available, the area grew rapidly. Owing to the area's rapid growth over the years, San Jose was declared the first capital of California in 1849. Sacramento later became the 48th state's capital. Through the years, San Jose has enjoyed an up-beat economy that has moved from the initial farming and agriculture to such advanced products as materials used in space and high-performance electronics. Although the area is home to many large manufacturing plants, the city continues to play host to many canneries and food-processing centers that feed the country. As a part of Silicon Valley, San Jose has attracted an abundant array of aerospace and electronic manufacturing companies. One of the original schools in the area is San Jose State University, which opened in 1871. Some of the other schools in the area are Stanford University and the nearby University of Santa Clara in Santa Clara. San Jose is home to numerous attractions for visitors and residents. Some of the larger points of interest include the San Jose Convention Center, Center for the Performing Arts, and the San Jose Museum of Art. Other attractions include Alum Rock Park, Kelly Park, San Jose Municipal Rose Garden, Rosicrucian Park, and the Historical Museum.