Harvey House

Historic Harvey House, 1868 

Salinas City, California

(First Mayor's House) 


Our Mission

Rooted in the deep soil of the Salinas Valley and enriched by generations of immigrants, the Historic Harvey House, 1868 (First Mayor's House of Salinas City), with its collection and grounds, serves as the anchor for educational and cultural programs that engage citizens, teachers, and students in historical exploration and discovery of a shared community.  

Adopted by the Board of Directors on May 5, 2016.  

Addressing a Problem & Having an Impact

Salinas' students have little connection to their community, little awareness of their community's rich immigrant history.  Not surprising, when you consider that community history has not been part of class curriculum for a whole generation of students. 

"How can we get students to feel like valuable members of the community? "

The Historic Harvey House provides professional development in social studies and community history for third and fifth-grade elementary teachers.  Our Institutes target the student through their teacher because the most important factor influencing student success is the teacher.  History and social studies in the context of the First Mayor’s House can provide the academic literacy that English Language Learner’s need: the Collection of the Historic Harvey House in the hands of educators can become a powerful learning tool.


Our Guidelines & Goals

  • Impact education, help schools create a positive learning environment, developing programs that provide ideas and material to make the visit to the FMH a part of Salinas life.
  • Reflect current educational practices in teaching and learning, meeting Common Core State Standards and using the best teaching techniques that engage all kids despite differences in learning skills, learning styles, and culture.
  • Assist teachers to engage their kids, to get their students to interact with history by organizing and implementing Professional Development Institutes to provide background, teaching strategies, and lesson plans.

Our History

The Historic Harvey House, also known as the Isaac. J. Harvey House or First Mayor's House was home to Salinas' First Mayor, Isaac Julian Harvey, his wife, Sarah and their children (Benton, Sophronia, Josephine, and Mabel). Today, it is one of only ten homes that still exist from early Salinas, and it is the only one that operates as a museum and cultural heritage center to interpret early history of Salinas for local schoolchildren.  Moved two times since it was built in 1868, the Historic Harvey House is significant for its connection to the transportation age and the coming of the Southern Pacific Railroad to Salinas, California. In recent years the House, now a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, has served as a grand host for many community events, like Founders' Day.

Contact Ms. Mary Randall to inquire about extracurricular education programs.