|Birth: ||Aug. 11, 1865|
|Death: ||Aug. 23, 1954|
Los Angeles County
PASADENA COMMUNITY BOOK
ETHELWYN BROWN Remembers:
... Early-Day Horseback Rides
My father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Charles C. Brown, and I, a very small child, came to Southern California by a small steamer from San Francisco in November, 1879, just five years after Pasadena was founded. On board the steamer was our furniture, four horses, chickens, a dog, a lot of farm implements, a phaeton and a farm wagon . We landed at San Pedro. As the steamer could not get near the shore, a long flat boat, called a "lighter," came out and took us and all of our possessions to the shore. I can still remember what a scene that was. I was especially interested in watching the horses. They were put in box stalls and lifted over the side of the boat, first onto the, "lighter" and then onto the shore. As each horse arrived father stood by the horse's head petting and talking to him to keep him quiet.
Father took mother and me to a train going to San Gabriel. It was the only train, as no transportation of any kind went to Pasadena then, and San Gabriel was the end of the line. Father had to stay in San Pedro to look after the horses and other things. When mother and I got to San Gabriel there was no one in sight but a few Mexicans. Mother asked the conductor to direct us to the town. We had to carry our suitcase and walk in the dusty road about a half mile to reach the town.
Halfway there, we met the town doctor and asked him where the hotel was located. He said there was only one and it was so full that people were sleeping on the floor, but he took us to the storekeeper's house in back of the store. Fortunately, he had a room for us. Next morning father drove up in the phaeton and took us to Pasadena by way of Lake Avenue and along Colorado Street to Barney Williams' general store. There we met Sherman Washburn and he took us to a house he had rented for us. Mr. Hopkins, for whom my father had formerly worked at Fruitvale, Calif., managing his cherry orchard, had written to Mr. Washburn and asked him to find a house for us until the house on the ranch was finished. (Father had come to Pasadena to manage a 200 acre orange ranch for a company of which Mr. Hopkins was president.)
On our second night in Pasadena there was a heavy rain, almost a cloudburst. We had put a packing case in the cellar, and the next morning we found that the things in the packing case - books and pictures - were ruined. Blankets and other bedding stored in the cellar were also damaged and stained. We were rather discouraged. However, we soon moved into the ranch house at Lake Avenue and Walnut Street and lived there until 1887.
We soon got settled and planted fruit trees and vegetables. We finally had quite a garden on our ranch of oranges, lemons, apples, figs, olives, peaches, persimmons, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries. Father bought a cow and some chickens. Mother made butter, and we had all the butter and eggs we needed for ourselves and the neighbors. Eggs were ten cents a dozen and
berries were five and ten cents a quart.
Later, we bought a home of our own on the corner of Locust and Elm Streets (Elm Street is now North Hudson). We lived there for 28 years. Father planted the English oak tree on that place and it is still alive and beautiful today. Father belonged to the Valley Hunt Club. He had three beautiful greyhounds. In those days the members of the Valley Hunt Club hunted wild jackrabbits.
I remember the first library which was located on the lot back of the school house on the corner of Fair Oaks and Colorado Street. The day the library opened everyone took out a book. Speaking of school, I rode my pony to school every day. Father had a shed built for him back of Barney Williams' store, across the street from the school building. I have always remembered Jimmie Mosher for his kindness then. He would take the saddle off Billie (my pony) in the morning and then saddle him again at the end of the day and help me to mount. I remember one day when six of us -Whit and Agnes Elliott, Fred and George Stamm, Charlie Hastings and myself - all of us on horseback, met at Colorado Street and Lake Avenue and raced to the school house.
Our entertainments were mostly picnics in the canyons where we went on hay racks. We also rode horseback, and I have been up to the top of Mt. Wilson on horseback. At times we rode over town on the hay racks, singing and having lots of fun. I rode up Mount Lowe on the Pacific Electric and the incline railroad many times. My cousin, James McNeil, was dispatcher of trains at Echo Mountain for many years when the cable incline was running.
My father was an officer in the Pasadena Water and Land Company, the first of many such companies which have served Pasadena and Altadena through the years. In the 1900's he became Superintendent of Streets in Pasadena. Later, he was in the real estate business for a time. Both father and mother were active in the formation of the first Episcopal Church organized in 1882. In fact the first meetings of the church were held in our home before they began meeting in a downtown store building.
When father and mother had their silver wedding anniversary, most of the town was there. Mr. and Mrs. Hopkins came down from San Francisco and brought a china tea set. Other friends in Pasadena broucht a dinner set of china. It was a very rainy night (had been raining for two or three days) but many people came. Father had a large barn on the place and it happened to be empty of hay so the horses and buggies were put in the barn. Twenty people stayed all night. They told stories and sang to keep awake. The women went upstairs and took turns in resting on the beds. In the morning it was bright and sunny, but a few people stayed for breakfast. They all declared that they had had a wonderful time. Those were the good times when the town was small and we were all neighbors.
Charles Cowan Brown (1844 - 1920)
Augusta Cleaver Brown (1832 - 1913)
Mountain View Cemetery and Mausoleum
Los Angeles County
Created by: Janice Buchanan
Record added: Aug 05, 2000
Find A Grave Memorial# 5031727