Seaside began as the Hotel Del Monte began, as a part of the City of Monterey. Because the subdivision of Seaside was located just a mile to the northwest of the hotel, the subdivision of Seaside was initially conceived as an outgrowth of the resort community and identified as a tourist destination.
Founder Dr. John Roberts
Like so many other ambitious pioneers in the late nineteenth century, Seaside’s founder, Dr. John Roberts left New York in 1887 for California and settled near relatives in Pacific Grove. He and his uncle bought 160 acres from the David Jacks Corporation, which he divided into 1,000 lots for sale as vacation property. He also made his home in the new residential area that bordered Monterey and the Hotel.
In 1910, as Monterey County Supervisor, Roberts successfully lobbied President Theodore Roosevelt to locate the U.S. Army Base Fort Ord in Seaside. This base housed over 20,000 infantry members and civilian workers. Fort Ord was considered one of the most attractive locations of any U.S. Army post, because of its proximity to the beach and California weather. Due to Base Realignment and Allocation Closures, Fort Ord was closed in 1994. Since that time, the land has been conveyed to different government and non profit organizations for development and preservation of open space. Seaside thrived as a center of diversity derived from its multicultural character as a military town throughout the decades of the twentieth century, and became known as a forward thinking model of political inclusion during the civil rights era.
Seaside continues to grow, bustling with projects ranging from golf courses, 5 star resorts, conference facilities, new residential and commercial development, and plans for a mixed use, transit oriented, urban village that would transform the downtown. Under the leadership of City Manager Craig Malin, Seaside is growing, thriving and remains a vibrant, diverse community appreciative of its past and looking toward the future.