San Carlos is a city in San Mateo County, California, USA on the San Francisco Peninsula, about halfway between San Francisco and San Jose. It is an affluent small residential suburb located between Belmont to the north and Redwood City to the south. San Carlos’ ZIP code is 94070, and it is within the 650 area code. The population was 28,406 at the 2010 census.
Prior to the Spanish arrival in 1769, the land of San Carlos was occupied by a group of Native Americans who called themselves the Lamchins. While they considered themselves to have a separate identity from other local tribes, modern scholars consider them to be a part of the Ohlone or Costanoan tribes that inhabited the Bay Area.
The Lamchins referred to the area of their primary residence – probably on the north bank of Pulgas creek – as “Cachanihtac”, which included their word for vermin. When the Spanish arrived, they translated this as “the fleas”, or “las Pulgas”, giving many places and roads their modern names.
The Native American life was one of traditional hunting and gathering. There was plentiful game and fowl available, and fish could be caught in the San Francisco Bay. There were also grasses, plants and oak trees (for acorns), and archaeological finds of mortars and pestles indicates that these source were processed for food. No doubt they also participated in the regional trading networks for goods that could not be gathered or grown locally.
The Lamchin permanent village is thought to have been between the modern streets of Alameda de las Pulgas and Cordilleras Avenue, near San Carlos Avenue.
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