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Journals of Sphinx Ranch
mssSphinx ranch  
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This collection chiefly contains ranch journals of the Sphinx Ranch, vineyard, and commercial winery in Altadena, California, purchased by William Allen in 1878, as well as some additional materials related to ranch and the Allen family. The journals primarily document the day-to-day activities of the ranch, from pruning to harvesting and irrigating the vineyards and citrus trees.
William Allen, a native of England, purchased a 502-acre ranch in Altadena, California, in 1878 and brought his family to Southern California the following year. Named the Sphinx Ranch because Allen spent twenty-three years in Egypt as a broker before coming to Southern California, the ranch had a vineyard and small commercial winery at the time Allen purchased it. Allen had additional acres of grapes and citrus trees (mostly oranges) planted on the property. After Allen's death in 1886, his wife and children, including his son Walter I. Allen, continued to operate the ranch. In 1911 a part of the ranch was subdivided, and additional subdivisions followed in subsequent years.
72 items, including 46 volumes
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