National City Travel Guide

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National City is the second oldest city in San Diego County.    National City's Victorian heritage is one of its more important assets.Incorporated on September 17, 1887, National City was originally part of the 26,000-acre El Rancho de la Nacion, which was purchased in 1868 by Frank Kimball and his brothers Warren and Levi.They cleared lands, built roads, constructed the City's first wharf and brought the railroad to the City.

Granger Music Hall
1615 East 4th Street

Ralph Granger, who struck it rich in the silver mines of Colorado and was making $5,000 a day through the 1890's, located his family on an estate in Paradise Valley (8th Street).His love of violins led to his purchase of a large and expensive string collection, which prompted him to hire San Diego architect Irving Gill to build a private music hall for him near his house.
Brick Row on Heritage Square

909 A Avenue

Designed by San Diego architect R. C. Ball (who designed Folsom Prison), it was constructed by Frank Kimball in 1887 for $30,000.These 10 individual row houses were to be used by the executives of the Santa Fe Railroad.This architectural style is unique to this region and was molded after the row houses of Philadelphia and similar eastern cities.It was hoped that the railroad VIP's would not only feel at home surrounded by familiar architecture, but also be impressed by the cosmopolitan appearance of the young city.All the apartments have a formal dining room with fireplace, a kitchen, a parlor with fireplace, a butler's pantry, and four bedrooms upstairs

Santa Fe Rail Depot

W. 23rd Street

Built in 1882, the Santa Fe Rail Depot is the only original transcontinental railroad terminus in the United States that is still standing. On November 14, 1885, the first train left from National City to Waterman (renamed Barstow in 1886), 78 miles from its transcontinental link in San Bernadino.

St. Matthews Episcopal Church

521 E. 8th Street

In 1872, the Kimball brothers donated a parcel of land for the future building of a church. The Episcopal Society was organized in 1882 and Frank Kimball was elected secretary. St. Matthews Church was built five years later. Designed by Chula Vista architect William Herman, it was patterned after an English Countryside church.

National City Railcar Plaza

840 West 24th Street

Once owned by Natioinal City founder Frank Kimball, the railcar played a significant role in transportation, serving as the region's first commuter-type train dedicated to passengers. Even the legendary Wyatt Earp rode the train!

The Original 1887 No. 1 Car of the old "MOTOR CANNON BALL" excursion train now on display at the National City Railcar Museum.


April 06, 2007 new by mehul

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