The Larkin House Collection consists of
material connected with the Larkin House State Historic Monument in
Monterey, California. In this historic adobe, decisions were made and actions
taken that shaped the early history of the State of California. The
collection, while not possessing a large group of Thomas O. Larkin
manuscript documents like that held by the Bancroft Library, still contains
good examples of documents and photographs associated with Larkin and his
The Larkin House is a reminder of the influence Thomas Oliver Larkin
exerted not only on California's political history but also its secular
architecture during the first half of the 19th century. In 1834, Larkin
constructed one of the first two-story houses to be built in Monterey
and one of the earliest examples of Monterey colonial architecture. It
became known as the Larkin House adobe. Larkin adapted eastern form to
available materials: adobe and redwood. The Larkin House adobe is
distinctive for its broad roof overhang above the second floor windows and
its surrounding balcony. The roof, designed to shelter the adobe from the
corroding effects of rain and wind, was stylish as well as practical
and became the predominant design for adobe buildings of the period. As
Larkin's home and business place, for over five important years the
adobe served as headquarters and the center of social life of the Capital.
Here historic decisions regarding California's future were made.
17.98 cubic ft.
Property rights reside with the California Department of Parks and
Recreation. Literary rights are retained by the creators of the records
and their heirs. For permission to reproduce or to publish, please
contact the California Department of Parks and Recreation, Monterey State
The collections are open for research by appointment only.
Appointments may be made by calling 831-649-7110.