Looking around the city of Sunnyvale, in its prime with some of the greatest tech giants burrowing their roots deep into the California soil, it’s difficult to imagine it as anything but a modern epicenter. However, when Martin J. Murphy crossed into California in 1844, a very different sight met his eyes.
Verdant, rolling hills sprawled across the landscape, dotted with more sheep and trees than people. Early Spanish explorers had christened it “Rancho Pastoria de las Borregas,” or “Lamb’s Pasture,” and it would become what is known today as Sunnyvale. As with much of Silicon Valley, Sunnyvale began its life agriculturally. In 1849, Murphy purchased a ranch of 4,800 acres and cultivated it into a vast orchard. Just thirteen years later, Murphy granted permission for the Southern Pacific Railroad to cut through the west side of his property; a decision that rapidly accelerated the settlement, agriculture, and commerce that allowed Sunnyvale to flourish into the incredible place it is today.
As orchards gave way to homes and modern industries, Sunnyvale grew rich with opportunity.
As the second largest city in Silicon Valley, Sunnyvale boasts an array of neighborhoods which showcase a spectrum of homes and offer accessibility to a multitude of lifestyles. Over two dozen neighborhood associations, as well as well-appointed community centers, a plethora of culturally and ethnically diverse local businesses, and 18 award-winning parks have shown just how much Sunnyvale has grown since it first became established.
Though Sunnyvale no longer remains the idyllic “pasture” landscape of yesteryear, history still remains. Major thoroughfares, such as the C.J. Olsen Cherry Stand on El Camino Real or the Corn Palace farm off of Lawrence Expressway harken back to how the city began, granting Sunnyvale its rich, distinctive character.
For a neighborhood-specific analysis or further information, call a DeLeon specialist today!
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