Here’s a sampling of goings-on in a few San Diego County communities according to the Poway Progress newspaper’s edition for the week of August 24, 1895.
Over in Dehesa, “It was very hot last week and somewhat uncomfortable, but is considered good for grapes.”
Farmers raising other crops in the area were doing well too, apparently. For example, “E. E. Davis is hauling his peach crop to San Diego…[and] reports good prices.”
Likewise, “J. S. Harbison is hauling his honey to San Diego. A good crop is reported.”
In the El Cajon valley, “Mr. Fisher of the Chase ranch has been shipping very nice pears, peaches, apples and grapes to [produce and commission merchants] Nason, San Diego.”
Even back then, the market for county produce wasn’t just limited to San Diego or even California or the the southwestern United States. The paper’s “La Mesa Lines” column reported that “The La Mesa Lemon Co. are packing a car load of lemons for shipment to an eastern market.”
But while agriculture was becoming big business, the local farming community was still a relatively tight-knit community where people knew each other by family names rather than geographic location. That’s evident in this entry in the “Poway Points” column: “The road from the creek crossing along in front of Mrs. Higby’s place and to the corner north of it is undergoing a much needed overhauling.”
I guess most of the paper’s readers knew where “Mrs. Higby’s place” was then!
That same column also provided some foreshadowing of the area’s potential as both a tourist and retirement destination. Reporting on the visit of a couple and their young son to the Poway valley, the item noted that “They are recently from the east and were much pleased with their stay here, so much so that it is within the range of possibilities that they may make their home here. They were for 12 years teachers in Wellesley College, and are now seeking rest.”
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