Escondido History

The area around what  is now the city of Escondido was first settled by native American Indian tribes.   The Spanish government controlled the land from the late 1700’s to the early 1800’s, and many missions were established in the North County real estate area.  When Mexico obtained its independence from Spain the land belong to Mexico.  The governor of Mexico gave out large land grants for ranchos in the area with one of the largest being Rancho Rincon del Diablos.  Today in Escondido, the name Rincon is often used and is found in names such as the Rincon School or the Rincon water district which serves much of the Escondido homes for sale area.

In the mid 1800’s was the war between Mexico and the United States.  One of the key battles in the San Diego area was fought in the San Pasqual valley near what today is Lake Hodges.  The Mexican army was led by the governor’s brother and the American army was led by Kearny, Gillespie, and Kit Carson.  Again, these are all famous names around San Diego today.  Near the area of the battle, is a beautiful park with picnic tables, baseball and softball fields, an Amphitheater, walking trails, a skate park and more.  The park is appropriately named Kit Carson Park.  Because of the origin of Escondido, the city has always had a large Spanish speaking population. 

After America won the Mexican-American War more settlers moved to the area. In 1886, the Escondido Land Company was formed and started dividing up over 12,000 acres of prime Escondido real estate.  The City of Escondido was incorporated two years later. 
In the late 1800’s, the railroads came to the area, both the Santa Fe and the Southern Pacific.  These railroads, not wanting to  haul railroad ties great distances, planted large groves of Eucalyptus trees to be uses as railroad ties.   They thought the straight growing trees would be perfect for railroad ties.  However, no one knew that the wood would not hold the railroad spikes and would split under the pressure. Since they were not being used for ties, these groves can be seen in Escondido, Rancho Santa Fe, and Scripps Ranch until this day.

Escondido, which had started with large ranches, quickly turned to agriculture and started growing Muscat grapes for wine, raisins, and table grapes.   Lake Wohlford was built in 1895 bringing much needed water to the area. Soon oranges and lemons became important crops.  In the 1900’s, highway 395 was built connecting San Diego with Escondido and parts north.  In 1960 avocados were introduced to the area and soon became the largest and most important crop.  The hills surrounding the city were perfect for the avocado trees which require about 50 gallons of water each day, but which can’t be grown in the flatlands since their roots can’t sit in water.  The dark green trees covered the granite boulder hills making a beautiful backdrop for the “hidden” valley below.  Throughout the 20th century Escondido continued to diversify and grow.  The Escondido real estate area now has over 140,000 people.
Gary Harmon is part of Escondido history by being one of the  top Escondido Realtors for over 20 years.  For more information about Escondido homes for sale,  contact Gary Harmon your Escondido Realtor.   Content by .