The Friendly City
Farmers, merchants and lumbermen in northern Humboldt County established the town of Fortuna around 1875. The Latin word “fortuna” means fortune or luck in English, reflecting how Fortuna's founders felt about their settlement.
Many Eel River Valley settlers had originally been drawn to California by the prospect of gold. Most of them never struck it rich, and soon returned to the farming life they had known in the East, working the rich lands of the valley to raise livestock, grains and a variety of fruits, especially apples. The valley's lush ground yielded large crops of fruits and vegetables, and also provided rich grazing, which led to the dairy industry becoming the area's leading agricultural pursuit.
Its warm weather and friendly atmosphere make Fortuna a particularly good setting for a number of annual events: the Daffodil Show in March, Art and Wine in the Park in June, Fortuna Redwood AutoXpo in July, and Hops in Humboldt in August. The Fortuna Rodeo in July is one of the oldest rodeos in California. See pages 12 to 13 for events and festivals throughout Humboldt County. MORE INFO: Fortuna Chamber of Commerce, 707-725-3959, FortunaChamber.com