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Phase Two: Building an Early Identity

Focusing on San Diego’s first inhabitants, a kaleidoscope of Kumeyaay, Spanish, Mexican and early American settlers up to 1885, this gallery examines the significant impact these pioneering cultures had in shaping the city’s cultural identity and physical development.

Numerous artifacts from San Diego History Center’s vast collections, many never before seen on public display, are educational tools in the multi-dimensional exhibition. Examples are a 19th century ore cart similar to what was used in mining operations in the mountain community of Julian, and an 1850 hand-appliquéd, red and white cotton quilt that was honored by the California Heritage Quilt Project.