An efficient outline of the history of California's bay area begins with a description of the land and the first expedition to come near it, that of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo who failed to find the bay because of the fog covering its opening. Francis Drake was next, though he only stayed a short time and left a gap of some 200 years before the first permanent settlers arrived from Mexico. They came under Anza and established a mission, a presidio and the town of Yerba Buena. For the next decades however, the area remained relatively unimportant because of the previous establishment at Monterey. Finally its acquisition by Mexico from Spain, though troubled by a separation of church and state and the consequent decline of the missions, preceded an increased popularization of the district. Sutter's and Fremont's familiar roles are played out. There is the war that made California part of the states, the gold rush that made the U.S.A. part of California, and the final building of San Francisco that made her one of the world's most colorful cities. Not as inspired as some of the very readable adult books on San Francisco, but good.