Notes From Your City Historian: Summer 1999

by Julie Lugo Cerra

As the Honorary City Historian, I have a voicemail for historic inquiries. Please refer all inquiries to 310.253.6059. I will be checking it often.

In the spirit of sharing information:

• Did you know there was a tile manufacturer called the Valencia Spanish Tile Corp. on Elenda Street, just below Washington Boulevard in the 1930s? That teaser may become a future newsletter article by a tile historian who just purchased one of their tiles over the internet – especially if we uncover more information to help him with his research.

• Do you remember a winery at Braddock and Elenda? It was called De Bartolo Winery. Must be the land – Agustin Machado, the founder of Rancho La Ballona, was well-known for his white wine made from grapes in his vineyards.

• During the first week of September in 1781, 44 persons in 11 families with four soldiers proceeded nine miles down what became the Los Angeles River from the San Gabriel Mission to establish the “Pueblo of Los Angeles.” Descendants of those founders formed the “Los Pobladores 200” for the 200th birthday of the pueblo, and they make an annual trek to commemorate this walk by the early settlers. This year’s event will take place on Saturday, September 4th, the city’s actual founding date. The “pueblo” will mark its 218th birthday and the mission will turn 228!

• The Machado Reunion will be held on October 9 this year. If you are a descendant, you would really enjoy this event which is an incredible resource and social gathering. The descendants of Agustin and Ygnacio Machado and their families bring the total beyond 300. In the spirit of the early settlers, there is traditional live music, dancing, and of course food and activities for the entire family.

• Fred Machado arranged for an original linen partition map, which defined land of Agustin Machado’s descendants, to be donated to Loyola Marymount University. Although it is available for research there, Fred has made reproductions, with a written narrative about Rancho La Ballona. The map proceeds will go toward a marker for Agustin Machado’s grave. The remains of Machado, his wife, Ramona and two of his sons, were moved from the little cemetery in Downton Los Angeles to Calvary Cemetery in Whittier. The unmarked grave is now located at the Bernard family plot.

It is nice to see new faces at the Historical Society meetings, including Jim Lamm and Jonathan Weiss. Jim is heading the La Ballona Renaissance Program which offered an informative display at the Fiesta. For the internet alert, take a look at the Jonathan’s work on the Cheviot Hills website (<http:///cheviothills.org>).

For those of you who do not have a copy of W. W. Robinson’s 1939 work, which includes stories of Ranchos La Ballona and Rincon de los Bueyes, as well as Palms and Culver City, you can download it from the website. A new addition includes work by one of our founding members, Richard Worsfold, who passed away recently. It was nice to see Mrs. Worsfold at the June “Wizard of Oz” fundraiser.

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