On The Map: Mariposa

On The Map: Originals

Today we go to gold country, but it was something other than gold that fluttered by and wound up with its name on the map.

Gabriel Moraga was a Spanish officer who was charged with exploring the vast area known at the time as “Alta California”.

In 1806 he went on an expedition and Fray Pedro Muñoz accompanied him and wrote the following in his journal:

“This place is the place of the butterflies because of their great multitude especially at night and morning.”

He goes on to write:

“One of the corporals got one in his ear, causing him considerable annoyance and no little discomfort at its extraction.”

The town sprang up in 1849 after the discovery of gold.

The creek, the town, and yes the county are all named after those annoying butterflies, or in Spanish, mariposas.

And so, Mariposa is on the map of Mariposa County.

With Josh Dean behind the camera, I’m A.J. Fox.

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