• East view from Crissy Field overlook with old Coast Guard station on left and city on right

    Presidio of San Francisco

    California

History & Culture

The Presidio has a rich history spanning back to the time of the native Ohlone people. The Spanish arrived in 1776 to establish the northernmost outpost of their empire in western North America. The Presidio fell under Mexican rule for 24 years before the U.S. Army took control in 1846. Over 148 years, the U.S. Army transformed the Presidio grounds from mostly windswept dunes and scrub to a verdant, preeminent military post. Since 1994, the Presidio has been a part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.

Use the links to the left to learn about the Presidio's people, places and stories.

 
Painting of Mexican Presidio by Richard Beechey in 1826
Painting of Mexican Presidio by Richard Beechey in 1826.
Illustration courtesy of the Mr. and Mrs. Henry S. Dakin Collection

Did You Know?

The San Francisco National Cemetery at the Presidio

The National Cemeteries Act was based on the principles articulated by President Lincoln in his Gettysburg Address--"that these dead shall not have died in vain." Passed by Congress in 1863, the law established thirteen cemeteries to inter veterans of the Armed Forces and their families.