[Fosc] Indian Gulch Creek?

Timothy Chapman timothymchapman at gmail.com
Sat Aug 18 14:59:41 PDT 2012

I asked about Indian Gulch Creek because it was
the western border of the Brooklyn Township.
The eastern border was San Leandro Creek.

I found confirmation at the Oakland History Room that
the town of Brooklyn was part of the Brooklyn Township.
See the following email sent to the Dimond list

I put what I found at the HR on a webpage

When took the 11 bus to the history room at the main library
the bus took me through Clinton and San Antonio which is
where the Town of Brooklyn was located. I will check next
year to see if the Oakland Heritage Alliance has a
walking tour in this area -- interesting part of Oakland.


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Timothy Chapman <timothymchapman at gmail.com>
Date: Wed, Aug 15, 2012 at 8:06 PM
Subject: To all Dimond and Glenview history detectives
To: dimond at lists.lmi.net, glenfriends at yahoogroups.com

Dear Dimond and Glenview history detectives,

On page 120 of her book, Beth Bagwell wrote that
the town of  Brooklyn merged with Oakland in 1872.

San Francisco Call
December 19, 1909
"Charles Tepper, proprietor of Tepper's gardens, in upper Fruitvale, was
victorious today in his appeal from the sentence of six months in the
county jail imposed on him by Justice of the Peace Johnson of Alameda, for
selling liquor without a license. Judge Brown, who heard the appeal, ruled
that Johnson had no jurisdiction in the case, and that Tepper should not
have been tried in Alameda, but in Brooklyn township where he lived and
where the offense was committed" -- that means Dimond.

I have been told that the town of Brooklyn, incorporated in 1870, and the
Brooklyn Township were the same area, but if the town of Brooklyn was no
longer a legal entity after 1872, how did it have jurisdiction in 1909?

I have researched on Google and I think that the Brooklyn Township was a
judicial township that would have served primarily as an election district
for justices of the peace and constables. Judicial townships were phased
out in California throughout the mid-20th century -- see below. This would
explain why a justice of the peace of the Brooklyn Township would have
jurisdiction in 1909.

So, is there a local history detective out there that
knows that I am going in the right direction here?
If not, I'll tell you what I find tomorrow in the History Room.

Campbell Gibson
Alexandria, Virginia
January 2007

Article XI, Section 4, of the 1850 Constitution of California makes general
reference to governmental units below the county level; however, detailed
legislation regarding the organization and regulation of townships was not
enacted until 1862 (Sutton, 1914, Legislative Council (California), 1921).
The townships in California were judicial townships that served primarily
as election districts for justices of the peace and constables. These
judicial townships, the boundaries of which were defined by the county, did
not own property or collect tax and thus had limited governmental functions
in comparison with civil townships found in many other states. In the 1880
census, which was the first to list in detail the types of minor civil
divisions of counties for which population data were published, California
was the only state for which judicial townships were used to show data for
minor civil divisions.

Judicial townships were phased out in California throughout the mid-20th
century with the development of the Municipal Court system, which replaced
township Justice Courts (Berg- Anderson, no date). At the same time, the
Census Bureau was switching away from the use of minor civil divisions in
those states in which minor civil divisions had limited governmental
functions, had lost some or all of their local governmental functions, had
frequent boundary changes, or were not well known locally. For the 1960
census, the Census Bureau defined census county divisions (CCDs) in 18
Southern and Western states, including California. CCDs are defined for
statistical purposes and are not widely known locally since they have no
governmental functions, and they have not always had stable boundaries over
time. In any case, population data for judicial townships in California
were last shown in census reports for the 1950 census.

The Municipal Court of Oakland was established January 2, 1950 by combining
the Justice Court of the City of Oakland, the Justice Court of Oakland
Township and the Justice Court of Brooklyn Township. The Municipal Court
for the Oakland-Piedmont-Emeryville Judicial District was established by
constitutional amendment, effective January 2, 1952. Emeryville was added
to the name of the courthouse effective January 2, 1982.

The Municipal Court for the San Leandro-Hayward Judicial District was
formed effective January 2, 1952 by consolidating the one-judge Hayward
Justice Court with the one-judge San Leandro Justice Court.

The Superior Court was established by constitutional provisions adopted in
1879. On January 5, 1880, a Superior Court was created in each CA county to
hear matters previously handled by the District, County and Probate Courts.
The court had and continues to have jurisdiction to handle criminal, civil
and probate matters. On July 31, 1998, The Superior Court and the six
municipal courts in Alameda County unified as a single Superior Court as
authorized by a recently approved amendment to the Constitution of CA (SCA
4/Proposition 220 - approved by the voters on June 2, 1998.)
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