Please enable JavaScript to best view this website.
Skip to Main Content
Skip to Content Menu
California

Sutter County History

 
In the early 1800's, the area now known as Sutter County was inhabited by the native Maidu Indians. Members of various Spanish expeditions in search of mission sites, and fur trappers lured by the abundant wildlife, traveled through in 1841. The bulk of the territory was deeded by the Mexican Government to the County's namesake, John Sutter. Established in 1842, John Sutter's Hock Farm was the first large-scale agricultural settlement in Northern California, composed of grain, cattle, orchards and vineyards.

Steamship on the Feather River near Yuba City Sutter County was incorporated by the California State Legislature on February 18, 1850, as one of the state's original 27 counties.

At that time it included the southwest portion of what is now Placer County and a piece of what now belongs to Colusa County. Boundaries were fixed in their present locations around 1856.

The first County Seat was proclaimed by Senator Thomas J. Green to be "a noble city of broad streets, imposing buildings, and splendid public squares." He convinced the state to declare the land he had bought from John Sutter, which he called "Oro," as the County Seat. However, Senator Green neglected to mention that the grand town of Oro existed paper and, in fact, only consisted of one 20 x 20 foot zinc building. Wanting more substantive County Seat, the town of Nicolaus, a bustling trading post and ferry crossing, was selected. After several short-term changes in location, in 1856 the people of Sutter County voted to proclaim Yuba City as the permanent County Seat.

Because of its rich history in the early days of California, the bi-county Yuba-Sutter area has a number of museums, historic landmarks, and historic districts to visit.