Point Arena is the smallest incorporated city in Northern California. It became a city in 1908. The original township of Point Arena extended from the Gualala river in the south to Elk Creek in the north. For information about its lighthouse click here.
Puentas Arenas, as it was originally named, started out slowly. What Point Arena had that other small towns along the Mendocino Coast did not have was a cove that offered some shelter to the limber schooners. It never had a mill. Arena Cove has been used since 1859 to transport supplies into the region from ships and schooners anchored a little farther out from the dangerous rocks. The first picture of the pier was taken in 1997 and it has not changed much from the original shown in the second picture.
The railroads near Point Arena were the subject of pages 1-4 in Issue 514 of the Western Railroader issued in August-September 1984.This magazine is reproduced in full here or by clicking the thumbnail left. A pdf version can be downloaded here
The Early Days of Point Arena by Steve Oliff and Cheri Carlstedt ISBN 0-9776321-0-5 Published in 2005
This excellent book provides a wealth of information about Point Arena and its environs. It culls much of its information from the Point Arena Record. There is a list of the wrecks along the Mendocino Coast, a section on Navarro and another on Elk. The nearby Hot Springs are detailed as well as the major fires in the town in 1893 and 1927. The lighthouse destroyed in the 1906 earthquake and the new lighthouse are also covered.