Berkeley is situated along the eastern shore of San Francisco Bay. It was valued farm and grazing land until the 1860's, when it was considered for the relocation of the College of California. To complete the college, officials collaborated with the state, creating the University of California in 1868.
The Town of Berkeley was incorporated in 1878. It was then served by a branch of the Central Pacific Railroad. The town’s population swelled in the years following the San Francisco earthquake of 1906, as much of that city was destroyed. Berkeley became a haven for survivors of the disaster as most of the displaced needed to be close to friends, families, businesses, and services during the city’s lengthy reconstruction period. By a vote in 1909, Berkeley was reincorporated as the City of Berkeley.
This bird’s-eye-view of Berkeley was drawn by Charles Green and published in 1909. It shows streets, buildings and waterways. The University of California is prominently located in the foreground with San Francisco, the Golden Gate, and Mount Tamalpais in the distance.