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Californians have always come together to celebrate and commemorate. Native peoples gather for religious ceremonies and to mark important events. Under Spain and Mexico, Californios reveled at fiestas, wedding parties, bullfights and horse races.

In 1854, San Francisco hosted the first State Fair. The fair moved among California's principal towns before locating permanently in Sacramento. In 1859, Sacramentans constructed the Agricultural Hall at 6th and M (now Capitol) Streets. The fair was held at that location until 1883, when it moved to a spacious pavilion at the east end of Capitol Park. That structure remained the home of the State Fair until after the turn of the century. During these early years, the State Fair focused on agriculture, the mechanical arts, and horse racing.


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California State Agricultural Society 1859, Title Page

Agricultural Hall, Sacramento

California State Agricultural Society 1859, Agricultural Hall, Sacramento.

"California State Agricultural Society," 1859
California State Archives
Sacramento, California


Mowing & Reaping Machine Co., Exhibitor at the State Fair

Mowing & Reaping Machine Co., Exhibitor at the State

"Mowing & Reaping Machine Co.," 1873
F 3722:24 (1)
California State Archives
Sacramento, California


California State Agricultural Society, 13th Annual Fair 1883

California State Agricultural Society 1883

"California State Agricultural Society," 1883
MC 2:11-15
California State Archives
Sacramento, California


California State Agricultural Society 1859, Title Page

State Agricultural and Industrial Exposition uilding.

California State Agricultural Society 1885, State Agricultural and Industrial Exposition Building.

"California State Agricultural Society," 1885
California State Archives
Sacramento, California




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