From the Classroom

Lakeville Donahue Landing

  • "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."

Lakeville Donahue landing is a unique place that not too many people know about. Both landings, however, served as an important part of Petaluma History. Peter Donahue built his landing in the late 1800s and with it accompanied a dance hall, saloon, hotel, school house, and other small stores and necessities. Peter Donahue had big plans for expanding upon his small town and was brutally rejected. He originally wanted to make Petaluma the main terminus for the San Francisco and Northern Pacific Railroads. As a result, he dismantled his town, along with the turntable and all, and moved it to Tiburon. Once Donahue was no longer around, Lakeville thrived in its place as a small town with those little stores and multiple family dwellings. It became an unincorporated community of Petaluma. William Bihler, the man who started Lakeville, bought the land and dynamited Tolay Lake in order to plant crops. It soon became the place that visitors from San Francisco would deboard their boats and ride a stagecoach into Sonoma or Santa Rosa.

By Elena O’Rourk