The Town of Bernardo


After the division of Rancho San Bernardo around 1870, a small village developed, known as the town of Bernardo. It stood directly to your left . In addition to several homes, there was a store, post office, blacksmith shop, grange hall, and a public school. By 1887, the population in the surrounding farm area was approximately 400 people who visited Bernardo for groceries and other supplies. Bernardo also became a popular stopping-off place for people traveling from Ramona and Escondido to San Diego. For a brief period, Bernardo was a stop for the stage coaches between San Diego and Yuma.

Bernardo continued as a community until the construction of Lake Hodges Dam in 1918. By the time the Capital of Escondido, which in corporate in 1888, had become the dominant market town in northern San Diego County. The store, post office, and other remaining buildings were purchased as part of the Lake Hodges Reservoir Project. As the lake filled, water backed up into the valley for several miles, eventually inundating the former town of Bernardo.