In May, 2021, the CRITCA board voted to support the restoration of deteriorating exterior walls at the Casa de Machado y Silvas, which is located on the plaza in Old Town San Diego. The board gave a grant of $2,000 to the Boosters of Old Town San Diego State Historic Park (BOOT). BOOT donated $3,750 and a private donor contributed $1,750 for a total project cost of $7,500. The contractor will patch and repair cracks and holes in the historic building. The restoration project will make repairs and replaster the wall to retain structural integrity of the building. This project will be completed during the summer of 2021.
The building, also known as the Commercial Restaurant, was built in the early 1840s for Maria Antonia Machado. There may have been an adobe structure on the site that was expanded and repaired at that time. Maria Antonia and her family lived in the back rooms of the adobe home after she turned the front rooms into a restaurant in the early 1850s. The restaurant served whatever Maria Antonia was cooking that day; sailors and traders purchased a ticket for a meal and ate what was served. The restaurant had a bar and offered gambling. The home was also called Casa de la Bandera because of the family story that Maria Antonia rushed out of the house and pulled the Mexican flag off the flagpole to save it as the Americans were coming into Old Town after the Battle of the Beach Road (October 1846).