Chaucer’s Books will host local author Jarrell C. Jackman talking about his book “Santa Barbara’s Royal Presidio — The Rise, Fall and Rebirth of Spain’s Last Adobe Fortress.”
Jackman’s talk and book signing will be at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 28 at Chaucer’s, 3321 State St., Santa Barbara.
Unique in California history, the city of Santa Barbara has three major historical properties: the Santa Barbara Mission, the Santa Barbara County Courthouse, and the Presidio.
Least known is the Presidio, but Jackman’s book tells the fort’s story, beginning with its adobe construction between 1784 and 1790.
The building of the Santa Barbara Presidio was preceded by the construction of three other Spanish forts: Monterey (1770), San Diego (1773), and San Francisco (1776). All four presidios helped secure the Spanish settlement of Alta or Upper California, as the mixed-racial soldiers and their families became the first Spanish settlers of the region.
The Santa Barbara Presidio was the last Spanish fort founded and built not only in California, but in all of Spanish North America, an area that, in its day, covered much of the southern portion of the modern United States from Florida to California.
Jackman’s book celebrates the Santa Barbara Presidio’s place in not only American history but also that of Spain, and honors the community that came together to ensure its preservation and faithful reconstruction.
For his work on the Santa Barbara Presidio, Jackman was knighted a commander in the Royal Order of Isabel la Catolica by King Felipe VI of Spain.
Jackman holds a Ph.D. in American cultural history from UCSB. He worked at the Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation for 35 years, where he served as project administrator, then CEO.
His has been recognized by California State Parks, California State Parks Rangers Association, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
For his work on the Santa Barbara Presidio, he was knighted a commander in the Royal Order of Isabel la Catolica by King Felipe VI of Spain.