Rancho de Guadalupe

Historical Society

Historical Society

Since 1993

The Rancho de Guadalupe Historical Society

Formed in 1989 by residents wishing to preserve the rich cultural and economic 150+ year history of the area, gained nonprofit status in 1993. In 2002 a Museum site was obtained in a corner of the Veterans’ Memorial building at 1005 Guadalupe Street/Highway 1, Guadalupe, CA 93434.

Open 1-3 PM Saturdays and Sundays or call for appointment:

1926 Historic Jail open last Sunday of each month 1-3pm,
or by appointment

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    Visitors will find a growing collection of photos of early days, early pioneers and enterprises that formed the now-incorporated City (1946) from a Mexican land grant of 1840. Artifacts from the no longer extant adobes are on display, as well as items representative of the European, Chinese, Filipino, Swiss-Italian, Japanese, Mexican, Portuguese, Spanish cultures arriving as the Native Americans, the Chumash, ebbed.

    A reference (non-circulating) library nearly 200 volumes of area history from old autos to shipwrecks, to Tequila!


    Opens every last Sunday of each month 1-3 PM, 4541 9th Street.

    On October 20, 1925, a deed was signed between Santa Maria Gas Co. and Santa Barbara County for a jail site in Guadalupe at a cost of a $10 gold piece. The County began construction at a total cost of approximately $2,000 later turning the property over to the township.

    From 1926 to 1966, the two-cell jail operated as a legitimate lockup for drunks and thieves. Each cell had a toilet and two beds with no sheets. Fines could be paid by one day in jail equaling $2.50. Prisoners were taken outside each morning where they could exercise before being marched to the local hotels or cafes for meals.

    Historically Speaking…

    Newly refurbished with a new exhibit case. Current features are “old time” items. Exhibits change periodically