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Kern County, California Points of Interest

Map of California State Historical Marker Locations in Kern

Kern County Historical Markers

Kern County Historic Homes & Houses
Home of Elisha Stevens
Near this spot stood the last home of Elisha Stevens, noted American pathfinder and scout. Born in Georgia April 5, 1804, he learned blacksmithing dur... [click for more]

Last Home of Alexis Godey
Near this site stood the home of Alexis Godey, frontiersman and scout, who lived here from 1883 until his death on January 19, 1889. Born in St. Louis... [click for more]

Mountain House
One and one-half miles north of this point stood the Mountain House Station on the route of the Butterfield Stage. Operating through present Kern Coun... [click for more]

Kern County - General Interest
20-Mule-Team Borax Terminus
Just west of this point was the Southern Pacific terminus for the 20-mule-team borax wagons that operated between Death Valley and Mojave from 1884 to... [click for more]

Edward Fitzgerald Beale, serving under Commodore Stockton in 1846, established his home here on Rancho le Libre in 1855. He also engaged in mining and... [click for more]

Buena Vista Refinery
Eight miles due west of this marker stood one of California's first commercial oil refineries. Between August 1864 and April 1867, approximately 4,000... [click for more]

Buttonwillow Tree
This lone tree, which gave the town of Buttonwillow its name, served as a landmark on an old trans-valley trail. An ancient Yokuts Indian meeting plac... [click for more]

Originally known as Allen's Camp after Gabriel Allen, who in the 1870s had a cabin and stock pasture near here, the settlement was named Caliente when... [click for more]

California Standard Oil Well 1
This well was one of the early wells that in 1899 started a new oil field called the McKittrick Field. The well pumped about 150 barrels of oil per da... [click for more]

Campsite of Edward M. Kern
Near this spot at the confluence of the north and south forks of the Kern River, the Theodore Talbot party of Captain John C. Frémont's third e... [click for more]

Colonel Thomas Baker Memorial
In 1863 Colonel Baker, friend to all travelers, came here to found 'Bakers Field.' His motto was, 'Time will justify a man who means to do right.' Thi... [click for more]

Desert Spring
This spring was on an old Indian horse thief trail and later (1834) Joe Walker Trail. The famished Manly-Jayhawk Death Valley parties (1849-50) were r... [click for more]

Discovery Well of Kern River Oilfield
Oil was discovered at 70 feet in 1899, when Tom Means persuaded Roe Elwood and Frank Wiseman, aided by Jonathan, Bert, Jed, and Ken Elwood, George Wis... [click for more]

Fages-Zalvidea Crossing
In 1772, Don Pedro Fages, first recorded non-Indian to visit the southern San Joaquin Valley, crossed this spot on his way from San Diego to San Luis ... [click for more]

Flight of the Gossamer Condor
This plaque at Shafter Airport commemorates the world's first man-powered flight to complete the Kremer Circuit, August 23, 1977. The circuit, a figur... [click for more]

Fort Tejón
Fort Tejon military post was established by the United States Army on June 24, 1854, to suppress stock rustling and protect the Indians in the San Joa... [click for more]

Freeman Junction
Explorer Joseph R. Walker passed this junction of Indian trails in 1834 after discovering nearby Walker Pass. After their escape from Death Valley, '4... [click for more]

Garcés Baptismal Site
Three miles north of this point was the site of the first recorded Christian baptism in the San Joaquin Valley. On May 23, 1776, Padre Francisco Garc&... [click for more]

Garcés Circle
This is the approximate site of the Indian rancheria visited by Franciscan friar Padre Francisco Garcés on May 7, 1776. Padre Garcés nam... [click for more]

Glennville Adobe
This is Kern County's oldest residence, built before the Civil War by Thomas Fitzgerald as a trading post at the junction of two Indian trails. The pr... [click for more]

Gordon’s Ferry On The Kern River
Gordon's Ferry was an overhead cable-type of ferry operated during the 1850s by Major Gordon. An adobe station house was located on the south bank of ... [click for more]

Gold deposits at Havilah were discovered in 1864. Havilah was the county seat between 1866, when Kern County was organized, and 1872, when the governm... [click for more]

Indian Wells
After five days' travel from the Argus Range, the Manly-Jayhawker parties of 1849 found their first water at this Indian waterhole on the Joseph R. Wa... [click for more]

Kern River Slough Station
Just south of this point stood the Kern River Slough Station on the Butterfield Overland Stage route. Operating through present Kern County during 185... [click for more]

Called Whiskey Flat until 1864, Kernville was founded in 1860 when whiskey dealer Adam Hamilton moved shop here from more temperate Quartzburg, founde... [click for more]

From 1853 until 1870, Keysville was a center of both placer and quartz gold mining. On the knoll just below the townsite may still be seen the outline... [click for more]

Lakeview Gusher 1
America's most spectacular gusher 'blew in' here on March 14, 1910. Initial flow was 18,000 barrels per day, and later reached an uncontrolled peak of... [click for more]

Lavers Crossing
In 1854, John C. Reid filed a squatter's claim on this spot - the same year Kern County's first school class was held here. In 1859, David Lavers, wit... [click for more]

Mckittrick Brea Pit
Located one-eighth mile west of here is an ancient asphaltum seepage in which hundreds of Pleistocene Age (15,000-50,000 years ago) birds and animals ... [click for more]

Oak Creek Pass
In 1776, Father Francisco Garcés used the Oak Creek Pass to return to the Mojave after exploring the San Joaquin Valley, as did Frémont ... [click for more]

Old Town (Tehachapi)
The oldest settlement in Tehachapi Valley, known as 'Old Town,' was established here during the 1860s. Long an important station on the road between S... [click for more]

Outermost Point in the South San Joaquin Valley (visited by Padre Garcés in 1776)
Padre Garcés, first recorded non-Indian to visit this locality, came in April of 1776, seeking a new route from Mexico to California. His epic ... [click for more]

Place Where Francisco Garcés Crossed The Kern River
On May 1, 1776, Franciscan friar Francisco Garcés crossed the Kern River one mile north of here. Searching for a shorter route from Sonora, Mex... [click for more]

Point On The Jedediah Smith Trail
About February 1, 1827, Jedediah Strong Smith, first American to reach Mexican California overland, passed near this spot with his party of fur trappe... [click for more]

Posey Station of Butterfield Overland Mail Lines
Two and one-half miles east of this point stood the Posey Station on the Butterfield Overland Stage route that ran from St. Louis, Missouri through pr... [click for more]

Rand Mining District
The Yellow Aster, or Rand, mine was discovered in April 1895 by Singleton, Burcham, and Mooers. The town of Randsburg quickly developed, followed by t... [click for more]

Rose Station
From 1853 to 1875 this site, originally a vaquero camp of the Sebastian Indian Reservation, was known as Rancho Canoa (trough). In 1875, Wm. B. Rose b... [click for more]

Sebastian Indian Reservation
The Sebastian or Tejón Indian Reservation (headquarters ten miles east of here) was established in 1853 by General Edward Fitzgerald Beale as one of s... [click for more]

Shafter Cotton Research Station
The Shafter Cotton Research Station, established here in 1922 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, developed the Acala varieties which were exceptio... [click for more]

Sinks of the Tejón, also Known As Alamo, Station of Butterfield Overland Mail Lines
Six miles east of this point was the site of the Butterfield Stage Line station Sinks of Tejón. Operating through present Kern County during 1858-61, ... [click for more]

Tehachapi Loop
From this spot may be seen a portion of the world-renowned Loop completed in 1876 under the direction of William Hood, Southern Pacific railroad engin... [click for more]

Top of Grapevine Pass, Where Don Pedro Fages Passed in 1772
In 1772, Don Pedro Fages passed this site, traveling from San Diego to San Luis Obispo via Cajón Pass, Mojave Desert, Hughes Lake, Antelope Valley, Te... [click for more]

Town of Garlock
In 1896, Eugene Garlock constructed a stamp mill near this spot to crush gold ore from the Yellow Aster Mine on Rand Mountain. Known originally as Cow... [click for more]

Tulamniu Indian Site
The old Yokuts village of Tulamniu was named Buena Vista by Spanish Commander Fages in 1772. Fr. Zalvidea again recorded the site in 1806. This villag... [click for more]

Walker’s Pass
Discovered by Joseph R. Walker, American trailblazer, who left the San Joaquin Valley through this pass in 1834. This area was traversed by topographe... [click for more]

Well, 2-6
Near an area of small 40- and 50-barrel wells, it blew in over the derrick top November 27, 1909, with a production of 2,000 barrels a day and started... [click for more]

Willow Springs
Willow Springs was visited by Padre Garcés in 1776 while following the old Horse Thief Trail (later known as Joe Walker Trail) - Frémont... [click for more]

This page last updated: 11/11/2009