Scope and Content of Collection
Title: Fort Tejon State Historic Park Collection
Date (inclusive): 1845-2009
Date (bulk): (bulk 1980-1991)
Collection number: CSPA-351
Fort Tejon State Historic Park
7 linear feet, including 1 map folder
California State Parks
McClellan, California 95652
Abstract: Fort Tejon State Historic Park is located in the San Emigdio Mountains near the top of the Grapevine Canyon, on the west side
of Hwy 5 near the city of Lebec, California. The park was established in 1940 and contains 647 acres of oak-wooded hillsides,
grassland, wetlands, riparian vegetation, restored and reconstructed buildings, and the ruins of Fort Tejon. The Fort Tejon
State Historic Park Collection is arranged in fifteen series: 1. Correspondence, 2. Histories, 3. Ranger Logs, 4. Interpretation,
5. Subject Files, 6. Legal Documents, 7. Financial Documents, 8. Facilities Documents, 9. Maintenance Records, 10. Publications,
11. Ephemera, 12. Cartographic Material, 13. Photographic Material, 14. Media, and 15. Reports. Items span the years 1845-2009
with the bulk of the material falling between 1980-1991.
Physical Location: California State Parks Archives
Languages: Languages represented in this collection:
The collection is open for research. Cultural and archaeological site maps are restricted. Reports with sensitive data may
be restricted. Consult repository for details.
For permission to reproduce or publish, please consult the California State Parks Archives archivist. Permission for reproduction
or publication is given on behalf of the California State Parks Archives, McClellan as the owner of the physical items. The
researcher assumes all responsibility for possible infringement that may arise from reproduction or publication of materials
from the California State Parks Archives.
[Identification of item], Fort Tejon State Historic Park Collection, CSPA-351: [box: folder number], California State Parks
Archives, McClellan, California.
Fort Tejon SHP donated the majority of the material in this collection in 2001. Additional correspondence and maps were added
from Central Records in 2015.
Ethan Tratner processed part of this collection in 2013. Margo Lentz-Meyer finished processing and created and encoded its
finding aid in 2015.
Fort Tejon State Historic Park is located in the San Emigdio Mountains near the top of the Grapevine Canyon, near the city
of Lebec, California. Established in 1940, the park contains 647 acres of oak-wooded hillsides, grassland, wetlands, riparian
vegetation, and the ruins of Fort Tejon.
The U.S. Army established Fort Tejon in 1854 to replace Fort Miller, control the Indians living on the Sebastian Indian Reservation,
and to protect both the Indians and white settlers from raids by regional Indian groups. From 1854-1864 various regiments
manned the Fort, including the 1st U.S. Dragoons. On September 11, 1864 the Federal government abandoned the Fort; the property
became privately owned ranchland.
During the Fort's ten years of operation the Dragoons campaigned against the Indians, maintained civil order, and transported
goods and people throughout the area. An interesting feature of the Fort was the U.S. Camel Corps. In the 1850s the U.S. Army
experimented with the use of camels for transport across the arid south west. The project was quickly scrapped after the first
official test in 1860 between Los Angeles and Fort Mojave. Prior to the Army's purchase, the camels were used to haul supplies
for Edward F. Beale, former California Superintendent of Indian Affairs, and Samuel Bishop, Tejon Ranch owner.
The site of the fort is also well known for the grave marker of Peter LeBec, an early frontiersmen and fur trapper, mauled
by a bear. Little further evidence of LaBec has surfaced but many fantastical stories have circulated creating a mysterious
and exciting past for the man buried under LeBec Tree.
In 1936 Fort Tejon was listed as California Historic Landmark #129 (not dedicated until 1954). In 1940 Tejon Ranch donated
seven acres of land to the state for the establishment of the park. Between 1940 and 1955 Tejon Ranch donated an additional
199 acres. The Department of Parks and Recreation owns the majority of the area associated with the garrison portion of the
Fort Tejon complex. Portions of the site � including the quartermaster facilities and storehouses � are not state owned property.
In June 1962 the park was officially classified and renamed Fort Tejon State Historic Park. Since then small portions of the
original fort complex have been reconstructed or preserved. The buildings at the park feature a number of interpretive displays
where re-enactors teach park guests about the daily lives of the soldiers stationed at the fort. Other museum exhibits cover
topics of army life and local history. The park features a campground, picnic area, hiking trails, and civil war re-enactments.
The fort was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971. In the mid-2000s a second donation of property from
a private landowner added an additional 442 acres to the park.
Scope and Content of Collection
The Fort Tejon State Historic Park Collection is arranged in sixteen series: 1. Correspondence, 2. Histories, 3. Ranger Logs,
4. Interpretation, 5. Subject Files, 6. Legal Documents, 7. Financial Documents, 8. Facilities Documents, 9. Maintenance Records,
10. Publications, 11. Ephemera, 12. Cartographic Material, 13. Photographic Material, 14. Media, 15. Reports, and 16. Restricted
Material. Items span the years 1845-2009 with the bulk of the material falling between 1980-1991.
Series one, Correspondence, is divided into three categories: General Correspondence, Civil War Association of America Correspondence
and Legal Correspondence. Series two, Histories, contains bibliographic material, general research, and histories on the park
and local area.
Series three, Ranger Logs, contains copies of Ranger Logs � from the years 1948-1951 � recording daily conditions and operations
at the park. Series four, Interpretation, includes interpretive plans, programs, collections documentation, and exhibition
materials. Series five, Subject Files, is divided into two subseries: General Plan and Archaeology.
Series six, Legal Documents, includes agreements, deeds, contracts, and rules and regulations documents. Series seven, Financial
Documents, contains contracts, budgets and project proposals. Series eight, Facilities Documents, consists of building descriptions.
Series nine, Maintenance Records, includes maintenance project proposals, schedules, and plans.
Series ten, Publications, encompasses articles, newspaper and magazine clippings, workshop materials, and guides not published
by parks. Series eleven, Ephemera, contains post cards, event flyers, stationary, and pamphlets from Fort Tejon State Historic
Park and Tejon Ranch. Series twelve, Cartographic Material, includes blue-prints, architectural drawings, and maps. Series
thirteen, Photographic Material, consists of slides, negatives, and prints. Series fourteen, Media, consists of microfiche,
audio cassettes, and CDs.
Series fifteen, Reports, includes reports produced by State of California Department of Parks and Recreation and cultural
resource management contractors. Series sixteen, Restricted Material, consists of cultural and archaeological records and
reports containing sensitive information.
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
California. Department of Parks and Recreation
Fort Tejon (Calif.)
Sebastian Indian Reservation
United States. Army. Camel Corps