The history of Oceanside (the third-largest city in San Diego County ). The area was originally the home of many native peoples that roamed the California coastline for centuries before settled by European explorers. The first was the Spanish Father Junipero Serra who founded the Mission San Luis Rey de Francia on a site of a former Luiseno village along the San Luis Rey River. The area was under Spanish rule until 1821 when it became part of the Republic of Mexico until 1848 when the United States of America formally took possession of the area.
The founder of the town of modern Oceanside was Andrew Jackson Myers, who was born in LaSalle County Illinois but lived in San Joaquin County in the late 1850s. He returned to California in the 1880s and lived in San Luis Rey Township and moved onto land that would be the future townsite. During that time San Luis Rey Township had a post office, some shops, a hotel, and a newspaper. Mr. Myers was issued a land patent of 160 acres by the US government in 1883 and he incorporated the city of Oceanside in 1888. Mr. Myers’s former homestead is in the location of the current City Hall.
Two other members of the founding of Oceanside worked with Mr. Myers to help lay the town out and start its growth. Cave J. Couts, Jr worked to survey the site of the town and another founder J. Chaucey Hayes sold the lots of the town to prospective buyers. Mr. Hayes had a couple extra jobs that influenced the founding of the town. Mr. Hayes edited his own newspaper called The South Oceanside Diamond and drew the first post office petition for the new town. They originally wanted to call it “Ocean Side” but the name was already taken so they called it “Oceanside”.
The first families who bought a property in Oceanside arrived at a simple wooden rail platform and brought the mail and goods to the town. Since the beginning, it tried to advertise itself as a seaside resort that wanted to lure people to vacation and use the town’s magnificent beach access and Mr. Myers bathhouse which was located near the Beach Community Center. The first school was opened in 1885 and boasted 19 children attending in its first year. For businesses, it was all about saloons and people getting off the train until the 1890s when the Chamber of Commerce was started to help improve the business prospects of the town.
During World War Two the town erupted in size and grew along with the rest of San Diego County. Camp Pendleton Marine Base was opened in 1942 and was major shipping out and returning point for military personnel and housing of munitions. Between that and the Post-War construction of Interstate 5, the town became a major stop along the Interstate that is sought out for its beaches, temperate climate, and location between San Diego and the Los Angeles metro areas.