The Peralta Adobe near San Pedro Square, which is the oldest address in San José, is the site of a birthday party. The 233rd anniversary of the 1777 founding of El Pueblo de San José de Guadalupe will be held on Sunday, November 28 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. And it is a chance to get a sneak peak of San José’s new San Pedro Square Market—San José’s first public market— slated to open in the first quarter of 2011.
The public is invited to this free event by History San José to join the celebration, and discover the new surroundings at the Peralta Adobe, see the makings of the new urban marketplace and visit the neighboring historic Fallon House.
“The Peralta Adobe is the perfect centerpiece for the soon-to-be-open San Pedro Square Market,” said Alida Bray, President and CEO of History San José. “And it is apt that we celebrate the birthday around Thanksgiving. November 29 is truly the day of the founding, as proven in the Pueblo Papers, copies of which are on display at San José City Hall.”
The Peralta Adobe and the Fallon House will be open for docent-led tours from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, November 28.
This 233rd San José Birthday event includes tours of the two-room Peralta Adobe. The recamera or bedroom showing the very earliest lifestyle of the settlers and the sala or living room illustrating the Mexican Rancho period. On display on the adobe site is an example of straw-bale construction.
On Sunday, November 28 visitors may tour the newly-restored 1855 Fallon House, across the street from the Peralta Adobe. This fully furnished fourteen-room Victorian mansion was the home of Carmel Cota Lodge Fallon (a member of the Castro family) and Thomas Fallon, former mayor of San José.
“This year’s birthday celebration of San José will be held in the Peralta Plaza,,” said Steve Borkenhagen, General Manager of the soon-to-be San Pedro Square Market. “The plaza will be a focal point of entertainment, music and live theater, so this year’s celebration is a precursor of many more events to come.”
San José was the first city (pueblo) in California. That San José was the first civil settlement, separate from any mission or Spanish presidio (military site), is a significant part of the history of the South Bay. San José was attractive to settlers because of the fertility of the Santa Clara valley and the availability of water in the Guadalupe River. Back in its day, San José was a prime location to grow crops providing needed support to the presidios of San Francisco and Monterey. Today it serves as the centerpiece of the new San Pedro Square Market.
The Peralta Adobe was built in 1797, twenty years after the first settlers arrived. It is located at 175 West St. John Street, near San Pedro Square, in downtown San José.
The Peralta Adobe is named for Luis María Peralta, who held the highest office in the small community, comisionado. Peralta’s former home is now the only remaining adobe from the first pueblo in Alta California.
“The (Peralta Plaza) site includes the magnificent Peralta Adobe, San Jose’s oldest building, which is surrounded by an 18,000 square foot outdoor plaza,” added Borkenhagen. “The plaza is the centerpiece of the three market buildings, which total about 25,000 square feet and are bordered by North San Pedro Street, West St. John Street, and North Almaden Avenue.”