From the Classroom

John A. McNear

  • "The following is a student created blog regarding the history of the Petaluma Watershed. This blog is part of a series from students at Casa Grande participating in the Watershed Classroom with educators Paula Biancalana and Jolene Thinnes."

John A. McNear was one of the first founders of Petaluma in 1856. He was a major figure in the development of Petaluma because he was involved in many large companies and the development of many buildings that are still important to Petaluma’s historic background. John McNear purchased the Washington Livery Stable and Hay Yard on Main Street in 1856. Within three years of buying the property, he was shipping grain down-Petaluma Creek with a scow schooner. He established a brick manufacturing plant in 1907 because the clay in Petaluma is the most valuable in the state. This company is still running successfully today as McNear Brick and Block in San Rafael. John A. McNear developed many buildings that have been revitalized to fit the needs of today’s businesses.  His buildings have been restored to their original grandeur today. His role in the development of businesses on and near the Petaluma River helped the population of Petaluma grow.

By Katelin Lucine