March 28, 2015, State Officers gathered in Morgan Hill to dedicate a monument to the Juan Bautista de Anza Expedition of 1775-1776. The monument, created from Mt. Rushmore granite, commemorates a campsite occupied by the Anza Expedition, March 24, 1776. Anza’s expedition is important because it brought Mexican families into Alta California. Those families stayed and prospered, creating an era of plenty that was California’s Spanish Colonial period.
State Historian Sally Holcombe conducted the ceremony. State Regent Jackson, Corresponding Secretary General Karon Jarrard, the Honorable Paul Bernal (Anza descendant, California Superior Court Justice, Official Historian for the City of San Jose), the Honorable Marilyn Librers (Mayor Pro Tempore, City of Morgan Hill) and Kathy Sullivan (President, Morgan Hill Historical Society) brought greetings. Presentations were given by Greg Bernal-Mendoza Smestad, Ph.D. (Anza descendant, author of A Guide to the Juan Bautista de Anza National Trail), and Martha Vallejo-McGettigan (member, Presidio Chapter, NSDAR; Anza descendant, and a 2015 recipient of the DAR History Award Medal).
The dedication was performed by State Regent Jackson and State Chaplain Dallas Love. Mayor Pro Tempore Marilyn Librers accepted the monument on behalf of the City of Morgan Hill.
Assisting with preparations were Gabilan Chapter (Gilroy), Marilyn Slater, Regent, Donna Kirchner, Vice Regent; the Morgan Hill Historical Society; and the City of Morgan Hill. The wonderful reception that followed was provided by Presidio Chapter (San Francisco), and was held at Villa Mira Monte, former home of Hiram Morgan Hill and headquarters of the Morgan Hill Historical Society.