Lafayette Square is one of Oakland’s seven original squares, laid out on an 1853 map. Today, only five of the seven still exist.
Oakland was shaped by seven green squares
Downtown’s living rooms, now, only five
‘Parks bring out the goodness of good people’
Beginning in 1883, the square was home to the first Chabot Observatory. The building and telescope were donated by water maven Anthony Chabot. Because of increasing light pollution, the observatory moved to the Oakland hills in 1915.