Fremont is a city in Alameda County, California, located in the East Bay region of the Bay Area. Take a look below for 20 amazing and interesting facts about Fremont, California, United States.
1. Fremont has a population of 230,504 as of 2020, making it the fourth most populous city in the Bay Area, behind San Jose, San Francisco, and Oakland.
2. It is the closest East Bay city to the high-tech Silicon Valley network of businesses, and has a strong tech industry presence.
3. The city’s origins lie in the community that arose around Mission San José, founded in 1797 by the Spanish under Padre Fermín Lasuén.
4. Fremont was incorporated on January 23, 1956, when the former towns of Mission San José, Centerville, Niles, Irvington, and Warm Springs unified into one city.
5. Fremont is named after John C. Frémont, a general who helped lead the American Conquest of California from Mexico and later served as Military Governor of California and then U.S. Senator.
6. The recorded history of the Fremont area began on June 6, 1797, when Mission San José was founded by the Spaniard Father Fermín de Lasuén.
7. The Mission was established at the site of the Ohlone village of Oroysom. On their second day in the area, the Mission party killed a grizzly bear in Niles Canyon. The first English-speaking visitor to Fremont was the renowned trapper and explorer Jedediah Smith in 1827.
8. The Mission prospered, eventually reaching a population of 1,887 inhabitants in 1831. The influence of the missionaries declined after 1834, when the Mexican government enacted secularization.
9. José de Jesus Vallejo, brother of Mariano Vallejo, was the grantee of the Rancho Arroyo de la Alameda Mexican land grant. His family was influential in the Fremont area in the late colonial era and owned and built a flour mill at the mouth of Niles Canyon.
10. In 1846 the town’s namesake John C. Frémont led a military expedition to map a trail through Mission Pass for reaching the Pacific coast and to take possession of California from Mexico for the United States.
11. The Fremont area grew rapidly at the time of the California Gold Rush. A town called Mission San José grew up around the old mission, with its own post office from 1850.
12. Agriculture dominated the economy with grapes, nursery plants and olives as leading crops. In 1868 the 6.8-magnitude Hayward earthquake on the Hayward Fault collapsed buildings throughout the Fremont area, ruining Mission San José and its outbuildings. Until the 1906 San Francisco earthquake caused its destruction, the Fremont area’s Palmdale Winery was the largest in California.
13. The ruins of the Palmdale Winery are still visible near the Five Corners in Irvington.
14. From 1912 to 1915, the Niles section of the Fremont area was the earliest home of California’s motion picture industry. Charlie Chaplin filmed several movies in the Fremont area, most notably The Tramp.
15. Fremont was incorporated in 1956 under the leadership of Wally Pond, chair of the incorporation committee, when five towns in the area, Irvington, Centerville, Mission San José, Niles, and Warm Springs, came together to form a city.
16. Glenmoor Gardens, the largest subdivision in Fremont, was under construction in the area, by developers Ralph E. Cotter, Jr., James R. Meyer, civil engineer Fred T. Duvall, and contractors James L. Reeder, and Robert H. Reeder. When the Glenmoor Gardens Homeowners Association (GGHA) was incorporated, in March 1953, there were no more than 75 houses in the subdivision.
17. It was probably the first such organization in the Fremont area; in its scope and structure. The five-member board of directors (which included James Meyer and James Reeder) was set up to oversee a full range of services, from police and fire protection to street maintenance (which later became the purview of the city government).
18. Fremont became more industrialized between 1953 and 1962. A boom in high-tech employment in the 1980s to the late 1990s, especially in the Warm Springs District, caused rapid development in the city and linked the city with the Silicon Valley. The Apple factory where the first Mac computer was manufactured was located in Fremont; production ceased in 1993.
19. Other semiconductor and telecommunications firms soon opened in the city, including Cirrus Logic, Asyst Technologies, Mattson Technology, Lam Research, Premisys Communications, and Nextlink California. Approximately 750 high tech companies had offices, headquarters or production facilities in Fremont by 1999. These firms included fifteen of the top one hundred fastest-growing public companies in the San Francisco Bay Area and eighteen of the top fifty companies in the East Bay. The high-tech growth in Fremont continues today and is a major industry for the city.
20. The General Motors automotive assembly plant in South Fremont was the town’s largest employer, and Fremont was known for its drag strip. In the 1980s, the plant became a joint venture automotive assembly plant of Toyota and General Motors, and was renamed NUMMI. Toyota and NUMMI shut down its operations in early 2010. Part of the plant was acquired in June 2010 by Tesla Motors as its primary production plant, known as the Tesla Factory.