The History of Napa County Makes it a Special Place

Napa County has a long history of agriculture, commerce and tourism that makes it an ideal place to live today. The story of Napa Valley began far before the 1800’s, when tribes of various origins including the Patwin and Wappo tribes inhabited the valley year-round in nomadic villages that were moved as the seasons changed. The Napa valley provided these ancient occupants with wild roots, various nuts, fish, and small animals to eat, and lots of fresh water. They lived in huts constructed of branches which were moved closer to the waterways in the summer, where they shed their animal skin wardrobes in favor of a more natural look.

Tribal rivalry, homesteaders, and an unfortunate outbreak of small pox in the 1800’s thinned out their numbers, until eventually all that was left were legends and the names that they gave to the regions of Napa County. The name “Napa” seems to be derived from the Patwin word “napo” meaning house, although locals favor a different translation which means, “you will always return.”

This phrase is more fitting, because Napa County is certainly one of the most beautiful and bountiful areas in Northern California. In the 1800’s, California became a Province of Mexico and the land that was to become Napa county was divided into 12 ranchos. By this time, European settlers begun to homestead the valley and with the Mexican Cession in 1848, California became a state in 1849. Napa was one of the original counties formed and the settlers were titled the deeds to the land they occupied. This encouraged the original settlers to develop the agriculture, commerce, tourism and wine making that would lead to the modern day success of Napa County.

Today Napa County enjoys a mixed economy of wine making, agriculture, tourism, and light industry. One unique quality that differentiates it from other parts of the country is the strict zoning laws that citizens have been enacting and enforcing since the early 1960’s. All wildlife, agriculture and natural resources are protected by state and local laws that prohibit commercial overdevelopment of the county in favor of preserving the landscape that makes Napa County so beautiful. These laws even go so far as to limit the amount and types of homes that can be built in the area. The result is real estate that holds its value, a lower population, and a quality of life that is fitting for the region.

The modern day Napa Valley is a region famous throughout the world for its award winning wineries, diverse terrain and international festivals. The wineries, which date back to 1840 rival their European counterparts in Italy and France; while the hot springs and lava mud of Calistoga attract those wishing to pamper themselves with highly sought after spa treatments. The agricultural festivals, like the tomato and mustard festivals draw international headliners, and a lot of the real estate is purchased by famous entertainers, authors, and political figures. All of these qualities of Napa County, along with its rich history, definitely point to an optimistic future for this well-known valley in Northern California.

We can help you with your questions on Napa County Real Estate and find homes for sale in Napa County.

Share This Post

Post Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.