With a population of *30,091 Santa Paula is a city in Ventura County, CA, situated amidst the orchards of the fertile Santa Clara River Valley, the city advertises itself to tourists as the “Citrus Capital of the World. Santa Paula was one of the early centers of California’s Petroleum industry.  The Union Company Building, the founding headquarters of the Union Oil Company of California in 1890, now houses the California Oil Museum.  The population was 29,321 at the 2010 census, up from 25,598 at the 2000 census.

The area of what today is Santa Paula, like Ventura and Port Hueneme was originally inhabited by the Chumash. In 1769, the Spanish Portola expedition, first Europeans to see inland areas of California, came down the Santa Clara River Valley from the previous night’s encampment near Fillmore and camped in the vicinity of Santa Paula, near one of the creeks coming into the valley from the north.

Fray Juan Crespi, a Franciscan missionary travelling with the expedition, had previously named the valley Cañada de Santa Clara.  He noted that the party traveled about 9 to 10 miles (14 to 16 km) that day and camped near a large native village, which he named San Pedro Amoliano.  The arrival of the expedition has been designated a California Historical Landmark.

*Population figures are 2013 estimates provided by the U.S Census Bureau. Median home prices are as of Jan,18 2016. *The current median home sale price in Santa Paula is 384,300.