About This Place
Daly City is the largest city in San Mateo County, California, United States, with a 2010 population of 101,123. Located immediately south of San Francisco, it is named in honor of businessman and landowner John Daly.
Archaeological evidence suggests the San Francisco Bay Area has been inhabited as early as 2700 BC People of the Ohlone language group occupied Northern California from at least the 6th century.[verification needed] Though their territory had been claimed by Spain since the early 16th century, they would have relatively little contact with Europeans until 1769, when, as part of an effort to colonize Alta California, an exploration party led by Don Gaspar de Portola learned of the existence of San Francisco Bay. Seven years later, in 1776, an expedition led by Juan Bautista de Anza selected the site for the Presidio of San Francisco, which Jose Joaquin Moraga would soon establish. Later the same year, the Franciscan missionary Francisco Palóu founded the Mission San Francisco de Asís (Mission Dolores).[verification needed] As part of the founding the priests claimed the land south of the mission for sixteen miles for raising crops and for fodder for cattle and sheep. In 1778, the priests and soldiers marked out a trail to connect San Francisco to the rest of California. At the top of Mission Hill, the priests named the gap between San Bruno Mountain and the hills on the coast La Portezuela("The Little Door"). La Portezuela was later referred to as Daly's Hill, the Center of Daly City, and is now called Top of the Hill.
During Spanish rule, the area between San Bruno Mountain and the Pacific remained uninhabited. Upon independence from Spain, Mexican nobles were granted land parcels to establish large ranches, three of which covered areas now in Daly City and Colma. Rancho Buri Buri was granted to Jose Sanchez in 1835 and covered 14,639 acres (59.24 km2) including parts of modern day Colma, Burlingame, San Bruno, South San Francisco, and Millbrae. Rancho Laguna de la Merced was 2,219 acres (8.98 km2) acres and covered the area around a lake of the same name. The third ranch covering parts of the Daly City-Colma area was named Rancho Canada de Guadalupe la Visitacion y Rodeo Viejo and stretched from the Visitacion Valley area in San Francisco, to the city of South San Francisco covering 5,473 acres (22.15 km2).