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Oldest Davis Area Organizations

A list of the oldest continuously operated organizations and entities in the Davis, California area.

Oldest Davis Area Organizations

John Lofland (

This is a list of the oldest, continuously operated organizations or entities in the Davis, California area. The oldest is listed first.

The month and day of inception within a year is not always known. Such cases are shown as ties within a year.

  • Oldest: The Tremont Mite Society, founded circa 1864, celebrated its Centennial in 1964. Contact: Ruth ("Binky") Eason, 707-678-1249. The original purpose of the organization was to raise money to build a church at Tremont, a few miles south of Davis. Since that achievement in 1871, it has raised money and volunteer labor for church upkeep. The church is still there and the task is on-going (Larkey, Davisville ’68, p. 105).

  • Second oldest: The United States Postal Service, local office in 1867. The famous William (“Solano Bill”) Dresbach, got his start as a local postmaster operating out of Solano House on the south bank of Putah Creek across from the bend of the Putah Creek Lodge Road. When he got wind a railroad was to come his way and create a grain-shipping village, he illegally moved his post office from Solano to Yolo County in early 1868. The Jerome Davis farm had long-since gone bankrupt and its farm house was empty. Dresbach installed the post office in that building (which stood near the middle of the parking lot at A and First streets) and named it Yolo House (Lofland, Davisville 1868, Part I).

  • Third/Fourth Oldest: The Davis Public Schools began September, 1868 when a group of citizens petitioned the Board of Supervisors to authorize a school, which it did (Vaught, After the Gold Rush, p. 137). It was called Yolo School and joined six other already-existing public schools “organized in rural districts in the 1860s” (Larkey, p. 83). (Some of these other six schools might also be counted as still-existing and be added to this list of oldest organizations.)

  • Third/Fourth Oldest: The Davis Democratic Club was active in 1868 as the Democratic Club of Putah Township (Vaught, p. 135, Lofland, placard 6-17-68).

  • Fifth/Sixth Oldest: The Davis Community Church “was authorized on May 8, 1869,” as The Davisville Presbyterian Church (Larkey, p. 105).

  • Fifth/Sixth Oldest: A Catholic Church group assembled in 1869 (Larkey, p. 107).

  • Seventh Oldest: Yolo Lodge, No. 169, The Independent Order of Odd Fellows was founded in ceremonies at Yolo House on April 12, 1870  (Vaught, p. 137).

As is true of all historical reporting, everything above is subject to revision, qualification, and elaboration in the light of new and better information.

This site provided with the assistance of the Davis Community Network.