History of San Jose, CA
A group of indigenous people known as the Tamien group made the area around modern-day San Jose home for more than 4,000 years. So, when the Spanish colonized the area in the 1700s, they moved or integrated those peoples as they set up missions, forts, and towns. In 1777, San Jose became the first official settlement in California, and it played an important role in connecting military, agricultural, and eventual commercial communities in the area.
When Mexico became independent of Spain, San Jose was part of the First Mexican Empire. It was still a fairly small town, with only a few hundred people. The population only came close to 1,000 people by around 1845. A few years later, the Mexican-American War ended, and California became a territory of the United States. San Jose was the capitol at that time.
Though the city didn’t hold its capitol status as California journeyed into statehood and the future, it continues to play an important role in the area. By the mid-20th century, the city’s economy had moved from agricultural to industrial, and later that century, the area evolved again as technology became a main driver.