Town Square Fountain

The new Town Square Plaza’s most prominent feature is the large mosaic tile fountain in the design of a Luiseno grass-woven basket. Water flows into the fountain from either side, one side representing the Temecula Creek and the other side representing the Murrieta Creek.

The mosaic tile design of the basket is based on a belief depicting the net used to cast the sun into the sky.

In the center of the fountain is a bronze sculpture of acorns. Acorns were a staple food of the Temecula Valley inhabitants. The acorns were hulled and ground into a meal that was put through a leaching process to remove the tannic acid. The end result was called WEEWISH.

Published in: on January 28, 2010 at 10:01 pm  Comments Off on Town Square Fountain  

… and 109 years later.

If you were around in January 1993 you probably remember the devasting amount of rain that fell.  The rain began on January 5th and over a period of 10 days more than 9 inches of rain fell on Temecula.  As Murrieta Creek filled to overflowing another storm hit on the 16th of January dropping over 4 inches of rain in just 24 hours.  As if this wasn’t bad enough, another 4 inches of rain fell over the next 3 days bringing the total during this period to almost 18 inches in one month!

Well the creek did overflow not only due to the enormous amount of rain but also due to Army Corps of Engineers environmental restrictions that prevented Temecula and the County of Riverside from doing weed and tree clearance along the banks of the creek.  As a result the ensuing flood did over $12 million dollars in damage to Temecula and Murrieta.

The flood waters caused 146 people to be evacuated and also caused the death of seven people.  The flood was devastating to Old Town Temecula and took months if not years to recover.  The depth of the water and mud can still be seen today on a cabinet in the lobby of the Palomar Inn Historical Landmark Hotel.

Published in: on January 20, 2010 at 9:19 pm  Leave a Comment  

Speaking of rain . . .

On August 27, 1883 the volcanic island Krakatoa erupted on the other side of the world in Indonesia, killing some 35,000 people.  The enormous amount of volcanic ash and debris blown into the atomosphere affected weather patterns across the world.  Southern California was not spared.  In the winter of 1883 & 1884 over 40 inches of rain fell in the Temecula area.  So much rain fell that stories were told of parts of the track washing out into the Pacific Ocean.  Also at many points the tracks were only 10 feet above the bottom of the canyon where the river was.  As a result the new California Southern Railroad line that ran the 14 miles through Temecula Canyon was washed away.  The tracks were rebuilt through the canyon and the railroad was back in service by January 1885. 

Six years later heavy rains once again flooded the canyon washing away the track.  This time the decision was made not to rebuild in Temecula Canyon.  By this time another line was built along the coast connecting San Diego with Los Angeles.  With this decision the line going to Colton stopped and started in Temecula.  The Temecula depot and line remained in place until 1935 when it was abandoned for the Lake Elsinore depot.

Published in: on January 18, 2010 at 5:35 pm  Comments Off on Speaking of rain . . .  

‘Quite Vigorous’ Storms?

According to the Weather Channel, a series of ‘quite vigorous’ storms is expected to hit the Southland starting Sunday night, Jan. 17th, and continuing off and on thru Sunday, Jan. 24th. As a result no tours will be conducted during this timeframe. Thank God for the rain as we need it desperately in SoCal.

Published in: on January 15, 2010 at 11:57 pm  Comments Off on ‘Quite Vigorous’ Storms?  

The Last Great One!

On January 9, 1857 a magnitutde 8.0 earthquake occurred on the San Andreas Fault in the Fort Tejon area.  The fault ruptured 225 miles, which is located about 45 miles NE of San Luis Obispo, 75 miles NW of Bakersfield.  The quake occurred about 8:20 AM.  Due to the sparse population in the area and of California in general, the reported death toll from this massive quake was only 2 people. 

http://www.data.scec.org/chrono_index/forttejo.html

Published in: on January 13, 2010 at 1:06 am  Comments Off on The Last Great One!  

Martha Culbertson & Julia Childs @ Temecula Valley Historical Society

Attended an excellent presentation at the Temecula Historical Society meeting given by Martha Culbertson on her relationship with Julia Childs.  It was very informative and quite entertaining, history in the first person.  Bought a cookbook of receipes, can’t wait to taste the Boeuf Bourguignon.  Even better was some of the Julia Child quotes –

“People are too afraid of a little butter these days.”

“The only time to eat diet food is when you’re waiting for the steak to cook.”

“I enjoy cooking with wine, sometimes I even put it in the food I’m cooking.”

“Life itself is the proper binge.”

Gotta love Julia!

Published in: on January 11, 2010 at 11:00 pm  Comments (1)  

Temecula Massacre (January 1847)

A little late on this post but January 1, 1847 was an important yet tragic date in Temecula History. This is the date (recently confirmed) of the Temecula Massacre. Californios from Los Angeles and San Luis Rey along with 50 Cahuilla allies killed between 38 and 125 Lusieno Indians just east of Temecula.

Don Jose del Carmen Lugo (Pueblo de Los Angeles) with 22 men, Don Ramon Carrillo (San Luis Rey) with 10 men, and Chief Juan Antonia (Cahuilla Indians) with 50 men ambushed the Lusieno Indians at what is now the intersection of Camino del Vino Road and Los Nogales Road.  This was in retribution for the Pauma Massacre where 11 Californios were killed.  This battle was the largest loss of life in the Mexican-American War in what is now the State of California.

Published in: on January 10, 2010 at 11:34 pm  Comments Off on Temecula Massacre (January 1847)  

Old Town Temecula in 2010

2010 is shaping up to be a great year for Old Town Temecula.  There are several projects slated for completion with the top one on the list being The Old Town Temecula Civic Center.  The new Civic Center will include our City Hall, retail shops, and a 400+ car parking structure.  For more information on the new city hall and the status of its construction:

 http://www.cityoftemecula.org/Temecula/Visitors/OldTown/civiccenter.htm.

Published in: on January 2, 2010 at 10:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

WELCOME TO OLD TOWN TEMECULA WALKING TOURS BLOG

Join your Old West guide on a 90 minute walk.  You will visit the oldest spots in Historic Old Town Temecula while listening to stories of local history blended with tales of legends and hauntings.

Visit our web site at www.oldtowntemeculatours.com for Tour dates and times.  Be sure to check out our Events page for happenings in Old Town Temecula.  Find out why Temecula is so unique by visiting our History page.

Check back often as this blog will be updated with new tour dates & times, Temecula events, and stories of local history.

Happy Trails to You in 2010!

Published in: on January 1, 2010 at 5:21 pm  Comments Off on WELCOME TO OLD TOWN TEMECULA WALKING TOURS BLOG