History of San Ramon
A Village Develops
San Ramon had several names in the nineteenth century. It was called Brevensville (for blacksmith Eli Breven), Lynchville (for William Lynch) and Limerick (for the many Irish settlers). The first village developed at the intersection of today's Deerwood Road and San Ramon Valley Blvd. In 1873 when a permanent post office was finally established, it was called San Ramon.
During the 1860s the village became a hub of community activity. In 1864 a stage line established by Brown and Co. ran from San Ramon through the valley to Oakland. A church was dedicated in 1860, the general store was built in 1863 and students left their home-based classrooms to attend the San Ramon Grammar School beginning in 1867. Saloons, a jail, Chinese wash houses and blacksmith shops lined County Road No. 2 (later San Ramon Valley Blvd.).
Locomotive turnaround and engine house, 1913
With the arrival of the San Ramon Branch Line of the Southern Pacific in 1891, other changes took place. The name "San Ramon" permanently replaced references to "Limerick." Crops and passengers could travel in and out of the area, no matter what the weather. Until 1909 San Ramon was the terminus for the line and boasted a two-story depot, the engine house and a turnaround for the locomotive.