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Cloverdale, California

City of Cloverdale
General law city[1]
A historic house in Cloverdale.
A historic house in Cloverdale.
Location in Sonoma County and the State of California
Location in Sonoma County and the State of California
City of Cloverdale is located in USA
City of Cloverdale
Location in the United States
Coordinates: [2]
Country  United States
State  California
County Sonoma
Incorporated February 28, 1872[3]
 • Type Council-manager
 • Total 2.648 sq mi (6.857 km2)
 • Land 2.648 sq mi (6.857 km2)
 • Water 0 sq mi (0 km2)  0%
Elevation[5] 335 ft (102 m)
Population (April 1, 2010)[6]
 • Total 8,618
 • Estimate (2013)[6] 8,738
 • Density 3,300/sq mi (1,300/km2)
Demonym(s) Cloverdalian
Time zone PST (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST) PDT (UTC-7)
ZIP code 95425
Area code 707
FIPS code 06-14190
GNIS feature IDs 277489, 2409487
Website .net.cloverdalewww

Cloverdale is a city in Sonoma County, California, United States. The San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad reached Cloverdale in 1872. The Cloverdale Rancheria of Pomo Indians of California is headquartered here. The population was 8,618 at the 2010 census.


  • Geography 1
    • Climate 1.1
  • History 2
  • Cloverdale Rancheria of Pomo Indians 3
  • Demographics 4
    • 2010 4.1
    • 2000 4.2
  • Government 5
  • Transportation 6
  • Notable residents 7
  • Interesting facts 8
  • See also 9
  • References 10
  • External links 11


Cloverdale is located in the northern portion of Sonoma County, about 85 miles (135 km) north of San Francisco. U.S. 101 passes through city.

The city has a total area of 2.6 square miles (6.7 km2), all of it land.

Cloverdale is located in the Wine Country, being part of the Alexander Valley AVA.


This region experiences warm (but not hot) and dry summers, with no average monthly temperatures above 71.6 °F. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Cloverdale has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate, abbreviated "Csb" on climate maps.[7]

Cloverdale gets to over 100 degrees - and is known for having hot dry summers relative to the rest of Sonoma county. The area is in a drought--possibly exacerbated by unregulated growth of vineyards.[8]


Cloverdale began as an early stage stop, known as Markleville, on the Rancho Rincon de Musalacon Mexican grant. In 1856 R. B. Markle and W. J. Miller bought 759 acres (3.1 km2), which included the present site of the town from Johnson Horrell. In 1859, James Abram Kleiser bought Markle's interest, and the town was laid out. The town was incorporated when the San Francisco and North Pacific Railroad arrived in 1872. By 1878, the railroad service provided three trains a day between Cloverdale and Ferries of San Francisco Bay.[9]

In 1881 a colony based on the French Utopian movement, the Icarians, named "Icaria Speranza" was established by Jules Leroux and Armand Dehay, south of Cloverdale. The settlement ended in 1886 and today south of town there is a marker where the schoolhouse was located.

Cloverdale suffered severe economic impact losing 500 to 600 manufacturing jobs between 1988 and 1994 with the closing of a fire equipment factory and the shrinking of the logging industry.[10] 300 jobs were eliminated alone when Louisiana-Pacific closed its lumber mill in 1993. In 1994 Highway 101, which formerly bisected the town, was routed around town with a by-pass. Many natives felt that the bypass radically changed the character of the town, with some businesses closing down. Since the bypass signs of civic revival have occurred with the development of pedestrian friendly sidewalks, a performing arts center, a brewpub, and a downtown plaza hosting live concerts and a farmer's market.[11] In 1997 Clover Springs, a development with 362 houses, was opened on the south end of town.

In 2011 the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District transferred 250 acres of former ranchland to the City of Cloverdale for use as a park and open space preserve.[12]

Cloverdale Rancheria of Pomo Indians

The Cloverdale Rancheria of Pomo Indians is a landless federally recognized tribe with a membership of almost 500. In 2008 the Tribe acquired 80 acres at the southern end of town. The Rancheria is a community of Pomo Indians who are indigenous to Sonoma County and speak the Southern Pomo language. Pomo people are renowned for their basket weaving, done by both men and women. Elsie Allen, considered to be one of the best California basketweavers of her generation, was a member of the Rancheria and spent part of her childhood there.

According to Tribal history, the Pomo people lived peacefully in the area since ancient times. The Rancheria was created by the federal government in 1921 when the Tribe became federally recognized and deeded 27.5 acres on the southern edge of town. In 1958 the Rancheria was terminated, along with 43 other rancherias in California. This process transferred tribal community land into private ownership. In 1979 Tillie Hardwick, a Pomo woman, filed a class action suit on behalf of 16 of the illegally terminated rancherias. In 1983 the Courts reinstated the federal recognition of the illegally terminated tribes, including the Cloverdale Rancheria. In 1994 the Highway 101 bypass cut through the Rancheria land and tribal landowners were forced to sell their land for the freeway. In 2006 the Tribe began efforts to revive and restore their traditional culture. The Tribe is also interested in opening up a casino.



The 2010 United States Census[15] reported that Cloverdale had a population of 8,618. The population density was 3,255.1 people per square mile (1,256.8/km²). The racial makeup of Cloverdale was 6,458 (74.9%) White, 48 (0.6%) African American, 156 (1.8%) Native American, 98 (1.1%) Asian, 7 (0.1%) Pacific Islander, 1,530 (17.8%) from other races, and 321 (3.7%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2,824 persons (32.8%).

The Census reported that 8,530 people (99.0% of the population) lived in households, 22 (0.3%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 66 (0.8%) were institutionalized.

There were 3,182 households, out of which 1,087 (34.2%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 1,769 (55.6%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 294 (9.2%) had a female householder with no husband present, 159 (5.0%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 232 (7.3%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 32 (1.0%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 747 households (23.5%) were made up of individuals and 373 (11.7%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.68. There were 2,222 families (69.8% of all households); the average family size was 3.16.

The population was spread out with 2,054 people (23.8%) under the age of 18, 699 people (8.1%) aged 18 to 24, 2,154 people (25.0%) aged 25 to 44, 2,329 people (27.0%) aged 45 to 64, and 1,382 people (16.0%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39.7 years. For every 100 females there were 99.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.1 males.

There were 3,427 housing units at an average density of 1,294.4 per square mile (499.8/km²), of which 2,102 (66.1%) were owner-occupied, and 1,080 (33.9%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 4.1%; the rental vacancy rate was 4.9%. 5,522 people (64.1% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 3,008 people (34.9%) lived in rental housing units.


As of the census[16] of 2000, there were 6,831 people, 2,495 households, and 1,741 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,708.3 people per square mile (1,046.6/km²). There were 2,619 housing units at an average density of 1,038.3 per square mile (401.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 68.7% White, 0.18% African American, 3.0% Native American, 1.04% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 2.30% from other races, and 15.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 26.7% of the population.

There were 2,495 households out of which 36.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.3% were married couples living together, 9.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.2% were non-families. 24.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.71 and the average family size was 3.24.

In the city the population was spread out with 27.3% under the age of 18, 8.5% from 18 to 24, 28.3% from 25 to 44, 21.7% from 45 to 64, and 14.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 99.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $42,309, and the median income for a family was $50,000. Males had a median income of $40,036 versus $26,610 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,750. About 7.2% of families and 10.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.6% of those under age 18 and 9.5% of those age 65 or over.


In the California State Legislature, Cloverdale is in the 2nd Senate District, represented by Democrat Mike McGuire, and in the 2nd Assembly District, represented by Democrat Jim Wood.[17]

In the United States House of Representatives, Cloverdale is in California's 2nd congressional district, represented by Democrat Jared Huffman.[18]


Cloverdale is at the junction of U.S. 101 and State Route 128. The city operates Cloverdale Transit and Cloverdale Municipal Airport. Inter-city transit is provided by Sonoma County Transit. Planning is in progress for Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART), a commuter rail service in Sonoma and Marin Counties from Cloverdale to a bay ferry terminal in Larkspur.

Notable residents

  • David Del Tredici - 1937–present Pulitzer Prize winning 20th and 21st century classical music composer was born and spent the first four years of his life in Cloverdale
  • Lana Clarkson - 1962-2003 - actress murdered by music producer Phil Spector; she grew up in Cloverdale
  • Elsie Allen - 1899-1990 - Pomo basket maker and teacher regarded as one of the three best California basket makers of her generation

Interesting facts

  • The body of kidnap victim Polly Klaas (1981-1993) was found south of Cloverdale. She had been murdered by Richard Allen Davis. The outrage around her murder built support for the passage of California's Three Strikes Law. Polly's father, Marc Klaas, became a child advocate and founded the Klaas Kids Foundation.
  • In 2010 Cloverdale was named the Coolest Small Town in the West by Budget Travel Magazine.[19]
  • In 2008 the Bay Area Reporter, a San Francisco area newspaper for the LGBTQ community, wrote an article about the growing number of lesbians choosing to buy a second home or to retire in Cloverdale.[20]

See also


  1. ^ "Government". Cloverdale, CA. Retrieved February 19, 2015. 
  2. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".  
  3. ^ "California Cities by Incorporation Date" (Word). California Association of  
  4. ^ "2010 Census U.S. Gazetteer Files – Places – California".  
  5. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Cloverdale
  6. ^ a b "Cloverdale (city) QuickFacts".  
  7. ^ Climate Summary for Cloverdale, California
  8. ^ Citation needed
  9. ^ City of Cloverdale General Plan
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  14. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  15. ^ "2010 Census Interactive Population Search: CA - Cloverdale city". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2014. 
  16. ^ "American FactFinder".  
  17. ^ "Statewide Database". UC Regents. Retrieved December 5, 2014. 
  18. ^ "California's 2nd Congressional District - Representatives & District Map". Civic Impulse, LLC. Retrieved March 1, 2013. 
  19. ^
  20. ^

External links

  • Official website
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