14 ological resources in the United States in- cluding the Kumeyaay village of Kosoy, the first Mission and Presidio established in Alta California, the El Camino Real (or King’s Highway), San Diego’s first residence outside the presidio walls, the La Plaza del Pueblo de San Diego which today is Old Town State Historic Park. The original Mission de Alcala complex is the first to have been constructed by in- digenous labor, many of whom originated from the village of Kosoy, once located at the base of Presidio Hill. The Kumeyaay are the indigenous people of present-day Southern California, and it is their land that was claimed by the Spanish govern- ment. As part of this expedition, many of the natives were converted to Christianity and forced into labor to construct the mis- sions, presidios and outbuildings. The Serra Cross, erected in 1913 and composed of adobe brick from the Pre- sidio, commemorates the location of the original mission atop this hill. In 1929 philanthropist and historic preservationist 1769-2019 J SanDiego Celebrates 250Yearsof History! July 16, 1769 is a significant moment in the history of the United States. This marks when Junípero Serra's “Sacred Expedition” founded the first mission in Alta California - the San Diego Mission de Alcala - for the Spanish government as well as the Presidio the Port, and the town or pueblo of San Diego. As the first European settlement on the Pacific coast, San Diego holds a special place in United States history, known as the Plymouth Rock of the West Coast, and in 2019, San Diego will celebrate its 250th birthday! When the founding fathers met in Philadelphia to sign the Declaration of Independence in 1776, the Mission de Alcala had already been constructed within the walls of the Presidio. By the 1820s, settlement would spill beyond the adobe walls of the presidio and down the hill into what is Old Town Today. Old Town is home to several of the most significant historical and archae- 2 0 1 9 2 0 1 9 1 7 6 9 1 7 6 9 C O M M E R A T I O N C O M M E R A T I O N 2 0 1 9 2 0 1 9 1 7 6 9 1 7 6 9 C O M M E R A T I O N C O M M E R A T I O N By Amie Hayes