Historical Marker: Labor Temple
This marker indicates the location of a building called the Labor Temple, which, from the early 1900s to 1948, was once the heart of San Jose's labor movement. Sometime between 1901-1903, Harry Ryan, the local labor leader, and author Jack London, founded the Labor Temple. It was an informal organization at first but it became official in 1911. London finished his novel the "Call of the Wild" and wrote parts of another book, "Sea Horse," here (in Harry's office). The building was demolished in the 1950s.
Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph
Listed on both the National Register of Historic Places and as a California Historic Landmark, the Cathedral Basilica of St. Joseph began as a humble Franciscan adobe church in a Spanish civilian settlement, Pueblo de San Jose de Guadalupe. Due to earthquakes and fires, a total of four St. Joseph's buildings have stood on the site, including the present cathedral, which dates to 1875 [1; 2; 3].
San Jose Museum of Art
Housed in San Jose's first federal building, a U.S. Post Office built of local sandstone in 1892, the San Jose Museum of Art fuses a National Register of Historic Places site with award-winning modern and contemporary art exhibits [1; 2]. With over 2,500 works in its permanent collection and nine to twelve temporary exhibits annually, the museum also offers arts education to over 40,000 school children annually in the Santa Clara Valley .
Plaza de César E. Chávez
The city of San Jose was established in 1777 as El Pueblo de San Jose de Guadalupe, the first civil settlement chartered in California by the King of Spain [1; 4]. When the town moved to higher ground due to flooding in 1797, the Pueblo de San José centered around the plaza which, in 1993, was renamed in honor of civil rights, Latino, and farm labor leader Cesar E. Chavez, who also championed environmental conservation and consumer rights [3; 5]. The Plaza was also the site of San Jose's City Hall from 1887-1958 and a U.S.O. Hospitality House during the Second World War .
First State Capitol Building of California
From 1849-1851, San Jose was California's first state capital. The first Assembly met in an unassuming two-story adobe house which was unfinished in December of 1849, requiring the Senate to meet elsewhere, at Isaac Branham's house at the corner of the modern-day Plaza de Cesar E. Chavez [1; 2; 3]. Two historical markers, one in the Plaza and one across Market Street from the Plaza, are dedicated to the site of the capitol building [2; 3]. The adobe statehouse itself was located between the present-day San Jose Museum of Art and the Fairmont Hotel .