About Martinez, CA

Martinez ( /mɑrtiːnɨs/ mar-tee-niss or /mɑrtiːnɛz/ mar-tee-nezz; Spanish: Martínez, meaning: Martinson) is a city and the county seat of Contra Costa County, California, United States. The population was 35,824 at the 2010 census. The downtown is notable for its large number of preserved old buildings. Martinez is located on the south side of the Carquinez Strait in the San Francisco Bay Area, directly facing the city of Benicia.

In 1824 the Alhambra Valley was included in the Rancho El Pinole Mexican land grant to Ygnacio Martínez. In 1847, Dr. Robert Semple contracted to provide ferry service from Martinez to Benicia, which for many years was the only crossing on the Carquinez Strait. By 1849, Martínez served as a weigh station for the California Gold Rush. The town was laid out in 1849 by Col. William M. Smith and named for Martinez. It became the county seat in 1850, but could not… Excerpted from Wikipedia

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