Valley Of The Moon Oakmont Real Estate
Sonoma Valley is the birthplace of the California wine industry and often called The Valley of the Moon. Sonoma Valley is home to some of the earliest vineyards and wineries in the state, some of which survived the phylloxera epidemic of the 1870s and the impact of Prohibition. Its wineries are generally well prepared for receiving tourists, and Sonoma Valley offers a wide range of year round festivals and events, including the prestigious Sonoma Valley Film Festival.

The valley is located in southeastern Sonoma County between the Mayacamas Mountains and Sonoma Mountains. It stretches from San Pablo Bay in the south to the city of Santa Rosa in the north. Sonoma Creek flows down the valley to the bay. It includes the incorporated city of Sonoma and part of the City of Santa Rosa, as well as numerous unincorporated communities, including Kenwood and Glen Ellen near Santa Rosa and, near Sonoma, El Verano, Boyes Hot Springs, Fetters Hot Springs, and Agua Caliente.

Once a valley of the coastal Miwok, Pomo and Wintun peoples, called the Valley of the Moon in their legends, the valley was selected by the Franciscan order of Spain as the site to build the Mission San Francisco Solano, the northernmost mission in their chain of twenty-one missions built in Alta California. Established in 1823 and named to honor St. Francisco Solano, Mission Solano was the sole California mission established under the rule of a newly-independent Mexico. Within two generations of the Spaniards' arrival, however, the indigenous societies of the region were dispossessed of their land and decimated by diseases to which Europeans were resistant. Soon after the Sonoma mission was built, it was secularized by the Mexican government, and, under the orders of Lieutenant, later General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, el Pueblo de Sonoma (the town of Sonoma) was laid out in the standard form of a Mexican town, centered around the historic plaza, which is still the town's focal point. The raising of the first California Bear Flag and Vallejo's arrest in 1846 by a band of Americans claiming to act on the orders of Col. John C. Fremont was the initial act that founded the Bear Flag Republic. Vallejo later transferred his allegiance with US statehood (1850), and with his amassed land holdings guided the development of the town and dispensed large ranches throughout the valley. California's first wineries were established here, including Buena Vista Winery (1857) and Gundlach Bundschu (1858).

The other communities in the valley, such as Kenwood, Glen Ellen, Schellville and Boyes Hot Springs, were founded later in the 19th century, some as resorts centered on the geothermic hot springs that still well up from deep within the earth. Boyes Hot Springs and Agua Caliente were popular health retreats for tourists from San Francisco and points beyond until the middle of the 20th century. Today the Sonoma Mission Inn in Boyes Hot Springs remains as a main destination resort, and the wineries, the historic sites, and the area's natural beauty are the main tourist attractions.

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