Farmers, merchants and lumbermen from northern Humboldt County established the town of Fortuna around 1875. The town was named Fortuna because the town’s citizens felt fortunate to live there.
It was not just loggers and lumber barons who first settled in the area; many Eel River Valley settlers were originally drawn to California by the prospects of gold. They soon returned to the farming life they had known in the East, settling 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 the dairy industry became the area’s premier farming occupation.
Things to Do
The 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 September. The Fortuna Rodeo in July is the oldest rodeo in California, and will celebrate it’s 100th birthday in 2021.