Posted in History, Montclair

Sunalta or Montclair?

The Sunalta District – was almost the name given to Montclair.

Back in 1919, the Oakland Real Estate Board advertised in Oakland Tribune, “$50 cash Prize” to come with a name for the area now called Montclair.

Oakland Tribune 1919

The deadline was Jan 1, 1920.

On Jan 11, 1920, the Tribune reported that the received about 2000 suggestions and decided on Sunalta.

Sunalta Wins

Oakland Tribune 1920

Sunalta was proposed by C.S. Rice of Oakland.

But for some reason they felt there was yet a better name.

They extended the contest until Feb 15, 1920.

I have yet to find out the winner of that contest. I assume someone came up with Montclair. Thank you!

I do wonder what other names people came up it. With 2000 entires there had to be something better than Sunalta.

The End

Author:

I have been an Oakland history buff since going on an Oakland Heritage Alliance Tour of the Fernwood Neighborhood in the Montclair District of Oakland, in the mid-80's. On that tour, I learned that there use to be a train (Sacramento Northern) that ran through Montclair, in the early 1900's and that people lived the area as early as 1860's. I have been hooked ever since. Since then I have spent a lot of time looking into the history of Montclair and I have learned a lot. I feel this will be the best way to get it out of my head and onto paper.

2 thoughts on “Sunalta or Montclair?

  1. What did they observe to name it Montclair? I remember the train used to run behind Montclair school as a kid, then went across Moutain Blvd where tennis courts now sit on a trestle, then behind village on west uphill side, crossed Snake Road with a bridge and then ran through Shepard Canyon where it went through tunnel out to Moraga and through Lafayette.

    Liked by 1 person

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