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Welcome to beautiful Sonoma County. Situated in Northern California, just north of Marin County and offering landscape covered with grapevines and redwoods.

This Sonoma County Real Estate page is designed for quick access to the current homes for sale in Sonoma County. Listed by city. Click on a town to be taken directly to the current listings. All listing updated directly from MLS in real time!

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More About Sonoma County

Partially taken from Wikipedia:
Sonoma County is located in the northernmost county in the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area region. As of the 2010 United States Census, its population was 483,878 and it is known world wide as a premier Wine County destination.

Sonoma is home to 18 wine regions planted with 60+ wine varieties. In 2012, it ranked as the 22nd county in the United States in agricultural production. As early as 1920, Sonoma County was ranked as the eighth most agriculturally productive US county. A leading producer of hops, grapes, prunes, apples, and dairy and poultry products. This was largely due to the extent of available, fertile agricultural land in addition to the abundance of high quality irrigation water.

In addition to it’s Wine County, Sonoma County is also known for it’s amazing diverse landscape. Parts of the county are gentle rolling hills covered in oak trees. Other parts are covered in large redwood forests giving way to peaceful valley floors. And for the water enthusiasts, Sonoma County also has many rivers, lakes and a majestic rugged coastline along the Pacific Ocean.

It also has many great points of interest. Some include, the 19th-century Mission San Francisco Solano. Jack London State Historic Park which contains the gravesite and cottage of the American author, plus many hiking trails. Armstrong Woods, Bodega Bay, and many historical sites. It is also home to Sonoma State University.

A Little History

In The Beginning

The Pomo, Coast Miwok and Wappo peoples were the earliest human settlers of Sonoma County, between 8000 and 5000 BC, effectively living within the natural carrying capacity of the land. Archaeological evidence of these First people includes a number of occurrences of rock carvings, especially in southern Sonoma County. These carvings often take the form of pecked curvilinear nucleated design. Spaniards, Russians, and other Europeans claimed and settled in the county from the late 16th to mid-19th century, seeking timber, fur, and farmland.


Fort Ross - Est. 1812
Fort Ross – Est. 1812

The Russians were the first newcomers to establish a permanent foothold in Sonoma County. The Russian-American Company established Fort Ross on the Sonoma Coast in 1812. This settlement, and its outlying Russian settlements, came to include a population of several hundred Russian and Aleut settlers and a stockade fort with artillery. However, the Russians abandoned it in 1841 and sold the fort to John Sutter, settler and Mexican land grantee of Sacramento.

The Spanish

Mission San Francisco Solano was founded in 1823 as the last and northernmost of 21 California missions. It is in the present City of Sonoma, at the northern end of El Camino Real. El Presidio de Sonoma, or Sonoma Barracks (part of Spain’s Fourth Military District), was established in 1836 by Comandante General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo. His duties included keeping an eye on the Russian traders at Fort Ross, secularizing the Mission, maintaining cooperation with the Native Americans of the entire region, and doling out the lands for large estates and ranches. The City of Sonoma was the site of the Bear Flag Revolt in 1846.

Sonoma County – One Of The Original Counties

Sonoma was one of the original counties formed when California became a state in 1850 with its county seat originally the town of Sonoma. However, by the early 1850s, Sonoma had declined in importance in both commerce and population. Its county buildings were crumbling and it was relatively remote.

As a result, elements in the newer, rapidly growing towns of Petaluma, Santa Rosa, and Healdsburg began vying to move the county seat to their towns. The dispute ultimately was between the bigger, richer commercial town of Petaluma and the more centrally located, growing agricultural center of Santa Rosa. Fate was decided following an election for the state legislature in which James Bennett of Santa Rosa defeated Joseph Hooker of Sonoma and introduced a bill that resulted in Santa Rosa being confirmed as county seat in 1854. Allegedly, several Santa Rosans, not caring to wait, decided to take action and, one night, rode down the Sonoma Valley to Sonoma, took the county seals and records, and brought them to Santa Rosa. Some of the county’s land was annexed from Mendocino County between 1850 and 1860.

Changes With Growth

Early post-1847 settlement and development focused primarily on the city of Sonoma. The region’s sole town and a common transit and resting point in overland travel between the region and Sacramento. As well as the gold fields to the east.

However, after 1850, a settlement that soon became the city of Petaluma began to grow naturally. It was near the farthest navigable point inland up the Petaluma River. Originally a hunting camp, it used to obtain game to sell in other markets. But by 1854, Petaluma had grown into a bustling center of trade, taking advantage of its position in the river near a region of highly productive agricultural land that was being settled.

Soon, other inland towns, notably Santa Rosa and Healdsburg, began to develop similarly due to their locations along riparian areas in prime agricultural flatland. However, their development initially lagged behind Petaluma which, until the arrival of railroads in the 1860s, remained the primary commercial, transit, and break-of-bulk point for people and goods in the region. After the arrival of the San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad in 1870, Santa Rosa began to boom, soon equaling and then surpassing Petaluma as the region’s population and commercial center. The railroad bypassed Petaluma for southern connections to ferries of San Francisco Bay.

Click here for a collection of links on Sonoma County’s Housing Page that contain useful information about some of the cities in Sonoma County.

Considering a move to Sonoma County? Contact Amanda & Jerry Arend, the Sonoma County Real Estate specialists.