Did we just find the Secret Lair of Zorro? (page 3)

About José de la Guerra

José de la Guerra
José de la Guerra. Portrait by Leonardo Barbieri (c.1856)

So a quick look at the history of José de la Guerra y Noriega shows a man with a good military career. He was born in 1779 in Spain, and then at the age 13 came to live with his maternal uncle in Mexico City. Which at the time was part of New Spain. His uncle was a wealthy merchant so he was not living poorly by any means.

In 1793 José joined up with the frontier army working for the paymaster general. Five years later in 1798 he is appointed a cadet at the Presidio of San Diego in Alta California. From here he moves slowly through the ranks and throughout Alta California. Serving at both Presidio of Monterey and Santa Barbara.

The last being of note because it was at the Santa Barbara presidio where he is eventually named as Commandant and remains as such until he retires from service after 52 years in 1842. Even after he retired among the Californios de la Guerra is now as El Capitán.

From grants and purchases of land he ends up with a significant amount of land in the central coast. Somewhere over the ½ a million acre mark. We will talk more about some of these and rest assured as I post more about the travels in the central coast El Capitán will come back up. For right now we are concerned with one specific piece of land called Rancho Los Alamos.

Los Alamos Ranch House
Los Alamos Ranch House in 1968. Photo from National Parks Service

There is a home built on the land. It is called Los Alamos Ranch house. It is still today listed as a historical land mark. Which is eventually part of the Mexican Land grants that is honored by the Americas after California becomes the 31st of the union. The rancho is then owned by a son of José

"Did we just find the Secret Lair of Zorro?" table of contents

  1. Did we just find the Secret Lair of Zorro?
  2. The History of Los Alamos, CA
  3. About José de la Guerra
  4. Speculative History

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