Berkeley bûrˈklē [key], city (2020 pop. 124,321), Alameda co., W Calif., on the E shore of San Francisco Bay just N of Oakland; inc. 1878. Originally (1820) part of a Spanish rancho, the site was purchased by Americans in 1853. The city's population increased significantly after it was unaffected by the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. The main campus (1873) of the Univ. of California and several divinity schools are there. The campus was a focus of student unrest and the “counterculture” in the 1960s and early 1970s, and home to the 1964 “Free Speech” movement and continual conflict over control and use of “People's Park.” There is diverse manufacturing, including lab and medical instruments, fabricated metal products, construction materials, machinery, and chemicals. The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, a scientific research center, is nearby. Berkeley experienced severe fires in 1923 and 1991.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2024, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: U.S. Political Geography