General History (for detailed chronology, see Historical Timeline below)
Primarily acorn-gatherers and hunters, the Ohlone lived in small villages of about 200 people around the Bay. Colonized by the Spanish Franciscans starting in 1776 with the arrival of the Anza Expedition, many lost their lives due to disease. Those surviving built the missions — the buildings, the fields, the stables. When the Spanish land grants were established starting around 1820, many became vaqueros and worked the ranchos.