California Historical Society

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First established in 1871, and reestablished again, the California Historical Society has been collecting documents, art, and records of California heritage for more than 140 years. These records cover California economic, social, political, and cultural heritage, including 50,000 books, and 500,000 photos. There are also state, county, and local histories, early California immigrants' overland and sea diaries and letters, ethnic histories, Mexican California early fort, presidio, and mission life, Mexican War, Gold Rush diaries and guidebooks, logging, mining, women's issues and rare books.[1] [2]

Here are some strengths of the Historical Society collection:

  • Early Exploration
  • Gold Rush
  • Immigration and Migration
  • Landscape and Geography
  • Community Organizations
  • Arts and Culture
  • San Francisco and the Greater Bay Area
  • Los Angeles and Southern California
California Historical Society San Francisco.jpg
California Historical Society
North Baker Research Library
678 Mission Street
San Francisco, California 94105
Telephone: 415-357-1848
Fax: 415-357-1850

California Historical Society


  1. William Dollarhide and Ronald A. Bremer. America's Best Genealogy Resource Centers (Bountiful, Utah: Heritage Quest, 1998), 19 and 21.
  2. Collection Overview in California Historical Society (accessed 5 May 2014).