Abbey, The Joaquin Miller House

Also known as: Joaquin Miller Home
Joaquin Miller Rd. and Sanborn Dr., Oakland, California


Street View 


In 1886, Joaquin Miller (1837-1913), the first major poet of the far western frontier, moved to this property near Oakland and built a small, three-room house which he dubbed the "Abbey". Known as the "Poet of the Sierras", Miller's writings deal largely with the exploits of pioneers, outlaws, and Indians of the Wild West. On this property, Miller also built stone monuments to Robert Browning, John C. Fremont, and Moses, as well as a funeral pyre for himself. The pyre was never used. -- National Historic Landmark statement of significance, December 29, 1962

"Joaquin Miller, 'Poet of the Sierras,' resided on these acres, which he called 'The Hights,' from 1886 to 1913. In this building, The Abby, he wrote Columbus and other poems. He planted the surrounding trees and he personally built, on the eminence to the north, the funeral pyre and the monuments dedicated to Moses, General John C. Frémont, and Robert Browning. 'The Hights' was purchased by the City of Oakland in 1919." - California Historic Landmark No.107

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966
Reference number
NR name
Abbey, The--Joaquin Miller House
Area of significance
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
B - Person
Property type
Historic functions
Work of art (sculpture, carving, rock art); Single dwelling
Current functions
Museum; Work of art (sculpture, carving, rock art); Park
Periods of significance
1900-1924; 1875-1899
Significant years
1886; 1913
Number of properties
Contributing buildings: 1
Contributing objects: 3

Update Log 

  • March 26, 2019: Updated by Richard Doody: Added historical info
  • January 3, 2017: New Street View added by Bill Eichelberger