Alameda is a city in Alameda County, California, United States. It is located on Alameda Island and Bay Farm Island, and is adjacent to Oakland in the San Francisco Bay. The Bay Farm Island (also known as Harbor Bay) portion of the city is adjacent to the Oakland International Airport. At the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 73,812. Alameda is a charter city, rather than a general law city, meaning that the city can provide for any form of government. Alameda became a charter city and adopted a council-manager government in 1916, which it retains to the present.
The island that Alameda occupies was originally a peninsula connected to Oakland. Much of the peninsula was low-lying and marshy, but on higher ground the peninsula and adjacent parts of what is now downtown Oakland were home to one of the largest coastal oak forests in the world. The area was therefore called Encinal, Spanish for "oak grove". Alameda is Spanish for "grove of poplar trees" or "tree-lined avenue", and was chosen in 1853 by popular vote.
The inhabitants at the time of the arrival of the Spanish in the late 18th Century were a local band of the Ohlone tribe. The peninsula became part of the vast Rancho San Antonio granted to Luis Peralta by the Spanish king who claimed California. The grant was later confirmed by the new Republic of Mexico upon its independence from Spain.