#218 Captain Orris Fales

Orris Fales was called “Captain” because he spent 24 years at sea before he settled in Walnut Creek in 1851 and purchased farm land at the southern end of town. In a few years, he owned about 300 acres of land that were eventually sold to Antonio Botelho and, ultimately, became the sites of today’s Broadway Plaza, Plaza Escuela, and Kaiser Medical Center.

Fales was among the community leaders who pursued bringing rail service to Walnut Creek. He was a founding member of Walnut Creek Methodist Church, the town’s first house of workshop. Most significantly, in 1860, Fales was appointed marshal of the town’s newly formed school district, the Central District. In 1863, he was elected as one of the first trustees of the district.