The Port of Stockton is a major inland deepwater port in Stockton, California located on the San Joaquin River before it joins the Sacramento River to empty into Suisun Bay, eighty miles inland. The port sits on about 1,440 acres (5.8 km2), and occupies an island in the San Joaquin Delta, and a portion of a neighborhood known as Boggs Tract. It is governed by a commission appointed by the City of Stockton and San Joaquin County.
In 1846, the first cargo boat ascended the San Joaquin River. In 1848, John Doak established the first ferry service on the river, and the first freight vessel, the sloop "Maria," visited Stockton. In 1849, Doak brought lumber from San Francisco to Stockton and began a lumber business. By the 1850s, the Port had become a center of commodity shipping and the supply center for the goldfields. By the 1860s, the region saw a decline in gold production and an increase in agriculture.
The only natural outlet for the waters of the Central Valley to pass into the sea is through the narrow Carquinez Strait, at the inland eastern extreme of San Pablo Bay. Further inland are Suisun and Grizzly Bays, arms of the Pacific Ocean deep in the Californian interior. Further inland again from these last bays is the broad California Delta, formed where the San Joaquin and Sacramento Rivers meet and cross together. This verdant triangle of land with deep black soils is at the heart of the Central Valley and stretches some fifty miles from Susuin Bay on the west to the cities of Stockton and Sacramento on the east.