#0210 Camilo Ynitia Adobe


#0210 Camilo Ynitia Adobe

Site information:

Olompali State Historic Park, end of Redwood Hwy, N of Novato


Plaque information:

No plaque, but there is informational signage about the site.

Sign text:

Camillo Ynitia's Adobe

A shingled shed now protects the ruins of Camilo Ynitia’s adobe home from further weather damage. Dating from the late 1830’s this structure represents a period when the Wiwok were abandoning their traditional dwellings in favor of more sheltered adobe houses.

Encouraged by his friend, Mariano Vallejo, Ynitia sought and was granted title to 8,800 acres around Olompali village by the Mexican government in 1843. In addition to raising over 600 head of cattle, he cultivated grain fields and a small vineyard. Ynitia became a successful rancher through trade with the Mexicans, the Russians and early American settlers. His land grant was confirmed in 1852 by the United States Government, thus becoming the only Native American in Northern California to have his land grant ratified.

The only skirmish of the Bear Flag Rebellion occurred here on June 14, 1846, between Mexican soldiers and the Bear Flaggers from Sonora. The short lived Battle of Olompali resulted in the death of a Mexican officer.

OHP description:

This house was built in 1776 by the father of Camillo Ynitia or Unitia, the last chief of the Olompali Indians. The Indians were taught to make adobe bricks by Lieutenant Bodega and his party while they were surveying and charting the harbor of San Francisco Bay. The old adobe house is inside the house now on the site.

Updated description:

Formerly known as "Oldest House North of San Francisco Bay." Reportedly built as a one room adobe in 1776 with the assistance of Lieutenant Bodega's survey party under the King of Spain, further research indicates a more likely two-part construction beginning in 1834. The Camilo Ynitia Adobe is named in recognition of the only U.S. land grant owned and maintained by a Native American in Alta California.
Registered 6/20/1935