Dos Palos, California may not be the most notable or talked about location in the Golden State, however, the small town has witnessed its fair share of historical events over the years. From natural disasters to notable figures, Dos Palos has seen it all. Here are seven historical events that have taken place near Dos Palos.
1. Santa Fe Railroad arrives in Dos Palos
In 1891, the Santa Fe Railroad made its way to the small town of Dos Palos, marking the beginning of a new era. The town's residents now had access to faster transportation and communication thanks to the expansion of the railroad.
2. The San Francisco Earthquake of 1906
The 1906 San Francisco earthquake was one of the most significant natural disasters to ever hit the United States. Although the earthquake occurred over 150 miles away from Dos Palos, the town still felt the repercussions. The quake was so powerful that it caused buildings to shake, and people to lose their footing in Dos Palos as well.
3. The New Deal arrives in the Central Valley
During Franklin D. Roosevelt's presidency, his administration's New Deal program helped reshape the nation in response to the Great Depression. In the Central Valley, this program brought increased employment and infrastructure projects. As part of the New Deal program, four dams and reservoirs were built throughout the Central Valley. One of these was the Los Banos Creek Reservoir, located just minutes away from Dos Palos.
4. Patty Hearst's Kidnapping
In 1974, Patty Hearst, granddaughter of newspaper magnate William Hearst, was kidnapped from her Berkeley apartment by the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA), a radical leftist group. The group later released a video of Hearst, where she declared herself a member of the SLA. A few months later, Hearst was arrested in San Francisco. At the time of her capture, Hearst was living in an apartment in Los Banos, which is around 20 minutes from Dos Palos.
5. Great Flood of 1997
The Central Valley has a long history of flooding. In 1997, California was hit by a record flood event that lasted for several weeks. Modesto, a city about 45 minutes from Dos Palos, experienced significant flooding, causing damage to the town's infrastructure and inhabitants.
6. South Dos Palos Incorporation
For years, residents of South Dos Palos had been pushing for the town to become incorporated. It took until 2017 for the state government to recognize the town. Now, South Dos Palos is an independent city with its own local government.
7. Alice Paul stops in Dos Palos
Alice Paul was a feminist pioneer who played a significant role in advancing women's rights throughout the 20th century. In 1919, Paul visited Dos Palos as part of a campaign to pass the 19th amendment, which granted women the right to vote. Today, you can visit the Alice Paul Memorial Park, which sits just a few blocks from Dos Palos' main street.
In conclusion, from the arrival of the Santa Fe Railroad to the incorporation of South Dos Palos, the small town has experienced many notable historical moments. Dos Palos may fly under the radar in terms of significance, but the town has a rich and fascinating history that many Californians are unaware of.
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