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Fisherman's Camp History

We are lucky enough to have found great historic photos of this place that give context to some of the written history we’ve uncovered.  We’ve also learned a lot from our neighbors whose families have lived here in this spot for several generations. The fishing boats moored just past the docks are still working and date back to the time when commercial fishing on the bay was a  way to make a living. 

Fisherman’s Camp is located on the shore of Tomales Bay and was once part of a former small fishing village called Fisherman's,  just east of the village of Marshall on what is now known as Marconi Cove. The roots of the village go back to the Miwok people who inhabited the coast and found shelter here  as Mexico and the new State of California expanded ownership of land throughout the region -  it was once the largest Miwok community on Tomales bay. Immigrants from Italy and Croatia, among others, later settled here alongside to fish. The Tomales Bay ecosystem has long supported the livelihoods of people—from the once thriving fishery out of which came this village, to the farming communities of today that produce a range of edible goods from oysters to cheese. 

The modern world came to this area in 1871 in the form of a narrow gauge railroad that ran just behind the property, stopping here to pick up fish and clams collected by the residents of the village. In a quirkier example of modernity coming to Tomales bay, in 191, the Marconi Wireless Company bought this site to establish a transpacific wireless telegraph station. Remnants of both can still be found. 

The cottage in Fisherman’s Camp dates to these earlier times of settlement as do the other neighboring structures. The story goes that the house was created by pushing 3 shacks together and covering all with a single roof - 1931 is the date on the deed, but what this refers to is unknown as buildings existed here before the concept of property ownership. Our driveway which runs through the property used to be the pass through road for the village. Today you will find that Tomales Bay has maintained its pristine waters, rural charms, and connections to its rich history. 

Fisherman's Village, with Marconi Wireless Station in the background.

History of our Fisherman's cottage

The cottage has an interesting origin story. The current structure was likely constructed in the 1920s and was created by moving and connecting three small older structures that were in the village, they were moved and connected with a hip roof. The ceiling heights of the the older structures were not consistent and the wooden ceiling were covered by drywall, likely in the mid-century. In the current renovation the original ceilings have been uncovered and are an important part of the current design. A consistent color and fixture story will highlight the original smaller houses that were stitched together, showing the history of the house.