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Monterey(mŏntərā`), city (1990 pop. 31,954), Monterey co., W Calif., a port on Monterey Bay; founded 1770, inc. 1850. It is a popular resort, the home of many artists and writers, and one of California's oldest cities. An early whaling and fishing center, Monterey now depends on tourism and the revenues and employment derived from nearby military installations. There is also light manufacturing.
The bay was visited by Juan CabrilloCabrillo, Juan Rodríguez
, Port. João Rodrigues Cabrilho, d. 1543, Spanish conquistador and discoverer of California, b. Portugal. In 1520 he landed in Mexico with Pánfilo de Narváez and joined in the conquests of Mexico and Guatemala.
..... Click the link for more information. in 1542 and entered and named by Sebastián VizcaínoVizcaíno, Sebastián
, c.1550–c.1628, Spanish explorer and merchant. After an unsuccessful attempt to plant a colony in Lower California (1596), he sailed (1602) to explore the California coast, where he discovered and named Monterey Bay.
..... Click the link for more information. in 1602. In 1770 an expedition under Gaspar de PortoláPortolá, Gaspar de
, fl. 1734–84, Spanish explorer in the Far West. After serving in Italy and Portugal, he was sent (1767) to America as governor of the Californias to expel the Jesuits and to save Franciscan missions.
..... Click the link for more information. arrived and established a presidio; Junípero SerraSerra, Saint Junípero
, 1713–84, Spanish Franciscan missionary in North America, b. Majorca. His name was originally Miguel José Serra, and Junípero was his name in religion. For 15 years he taught philosophy in the college at Palma.
..... Click the link for more information. remained to found a Franciscan mission. Monterey was the capital of Alta CaliforniaAlta California
, term used by the Spanish to refer to their possessions along the entire Pacific coast north of the Mexican state of Baja California. California was often represented on maps as an island some 3,000 mi (4,800 km) long until the 18th-century explorations of the
..... Click the link for more information. for many of the years between 1775 and 1846. In 1846 it was taken by a U.S. naval force under Commodore John D. SloatSloat, John Drake,
1781–1867, American naval officer, b. near Goshen, N.Y. He entered the navy as a midshipman in 1800 and resigned after a year's service, but reentered for service in the War of 1812.
..... Click the link for more information. , and in 1849 the state constitutional convention met there.
California's first theater (1844) and first brick building (1847) still stand, and it was in Monterey that California's first newspaper was established in 1846. The city has museums, the presidio, and an aquarium with an unusual deep-sea exhibit. The Monterey Institute of International Studies, the Naval Postgraduate School, and the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center are there.