Clayton

About Clayton

Clayton’s setting among the foothills of majestic Mt. Diablo is unique with scenic views, moderate temperatures and heritage oak trees protected by the surrounding buffers of Mt. Diablo and Black Diamond Regional Parks.

On the fringe of San Francisco, Clayton enjoys easy access to great entertainment, higher education and employment, yet is far enough from the hustle and bustle that one hears mooing of cows instead of freeways, breathes fresh air and experiences one of the lowest rates of crimes in the world.

Claytonites take great pride in their mining town heritage complete with ranching, farming and horses. From the area’s earliest days of Indians, Spanish explorers, and wandering trappers, the 1850s discovery of coal and copper in surrounding hills caused an influx of miners and settlers. Among them was the town’s founder Joel Clayton from England who, in 1857, plotted the town’s streets, built several of its first buildings, and helped establish what is one of the State’s oldest Post Offices.

Soon Clayton had a bustling downtown, serving the nearby mining communities of Nortonville and Sommersville, and its rolling hills became covered with orchards, vineyards and livestock. In the late 1800s as mines died out, the town began to shrink. Still today, many buildings, found arrowheads and remnants of the mines remind residents of days long ago.

Clayton remained virtually unchanged until rediscovered by the suburban pioneers of the 1950s. In 1964, the town’s citizens incorporated. Gradually, quality residential subdivisions, interesting commercial buildings, and more publicly owned open space have joined the ranches and ranchettes that make Clayton uniquely country, and such a great place to live and raise a family.