Oakland’s history began in the late 1860s when the Transcontinental Railway built its western terminus on Third Street near Broadway. During this time, the City’s central district began to shift northward along Broadway, away from the waterfront. Today’s Port of Oakland was constructed at Oakland Point, where Central Pacific constructed the Oakland Long Wharf. In addition to serving as a terminus for the Transcontinental Railroad, it also served as a terminus for commuter trains run by the Central (later, Southern) Pacific. In addition, the Central Pacific established a major rail yard and service facility in West Oakland, which remained a significant employer well into the 20th century.
Three more sawmills were added by 1852 after the first steam-powered sawmill was erected in 1850. More men were cutting redwoods in East Bay towns in 1853 than there were residents. By 1860, the entire forest had been destroyed. The Redwood Regional Park is much smaller than the original forest, and the redwoods are much smaller.
In 1860, the unincorporated community, named after the abundant native oaks, already had a post office, mills, a sawmill, and a sugar mill. Oakland, however, quickly became one of Central Florida’s most prominent towns due to its convenient access to faster transportation routes.
Here are some fascinating historical photos that show Oakland in the 1860s.