Garberville is an unincorporated community in Humboldt County, California. It is located on the South Fork of the Eel River 52 miles (84 km) south-southeast of Eureka, at an elevation of 535 feet (163 m). The population was 2,403 at the 2000 census. It is approximately 200 miles (320 km) north of San Francisco, California, and within a fifteen-minute drive to Humboldt Redwoods State Park and a sixty-minute drive to Eureka, the county seat. The ZIP Code is 95542.
The first settlers arrived in 1853 to what was then named "Dogtown." The town was later self-named by its postmaster at the time, Jacob C. Garber. J.E. Wood laid out the town in 1862. The first post office in Garberville opened in 1874.
Due to the distance of Garberville and other regional communities from their respective county seats of Eureka and Ukiah, there is a notable lack of mass transportation and other public services. A group of local residents once attempted to qualify a "Sequoia County" initiative to secede from both Humboldt and Mendocino with Garberville as the new county seat, although the campaign ended after they failed to gather enough signatures. Bioregional efforts continue with the recent formation of the Sequoia County Greens as a local Green Party chapter, which meets regularly in Garberville.
There was also once an attempt to incorporate Garberville as a city, which was thwarted when county supervisors declined to take the first step with the formation of a Municipal Advisory Committee due to concerns over the associated costs.
Garberville is home to both weekly newspapers in the Mateel Region, locally-owned The Independent and Redwood Times, run by Media News Group as a sister publication of the daily Times-Standard. The town also boasts the only movie house in the area, the Art-Deco-style single-screen Garberville Theatre. Garberville's town square hosts a Farmers' Market every Friday in summer and early fall. The Garberville Branch of the Humboldt County Public Library provides the only such service in the Mateel Region.
In the state legislature Garberville is located in the 2nd Senate District, represented by Democrat Pat Wiggins, and in the 1st Assembly District, represented by Democrat Patty Berg. Federally, Garberville is located in California's 1st congressional district.
Garberville is located at U.S. Route 101, at an elevation of 535 feet (163 m), although the nearby King's Peak rises to 4,087 feet (1,246 m). The ZIP Code is 95542. The community is inside area code 707.. Its climate is characterized by cold, rainy winters and hot, dry summers. The town is stretched out in a small forested valley along