By Susanne Martinez
Calderon Avenue – where did it get its name?
Calderon Avenue runs through the heart of Old Mountain View between El Camino and Evelyn Street, parallel to Castro Street. The 1876 map of Old Mountain View shows large tracts of land owned by “Castro & Calderon.” The Castro family is, of course, well known in Mountain View, but who was Calderon?
Andres Calderon was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1828. He arrived in California around 1849, and like many early settlers, sought his fortune in the gold fields. He soon moved to Santa Clara County and settled in the Mountain View area. In 1856, after what was described in one newspaper as an “ardent courtship”, he married Mercedes Castro, one of the daughters of Mariano Castro, for whom Mountain View’s Castro School is named. In 1869, Andres became a naturalized American citizen. The 1870 census shows the Calderon and Castro families next to each other. He died at the age of 70 in 1892, leaving a large estate.
His widow, Mercedes Castro de Calderon, died at the age of 86 in 1898. Her obituary in the San Jose Mercury noted that she lived all of her life in Santa Clara Valley and had lived under the Spanish, Mexican, and finally the American flag. Calderon Avenue today commemorates these early Mountain View residents.