Showing posts with label Santa Susana Pass. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Santa Susana Pass. Show all posts

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Map Quest - Iverson Ranch

Apparently, at one time the Iverson Movie Ranch was over 600 acres, they filmed 2,000 or more movies or serials there, and it sat right across Santa Susana Pass road from Spahn Ranch.
This is part on an aerial photo/map from 1952, it should be "expandable".  Notice the hairpin curve in Santa Susana Pass road in the bottom right corner marked "railroad tunnel".  Also, notice the rocky hill that's labeled near the bottom left corner as "Garden of the Gods". 


This is a larger version of the same 1952 aerial photo of Iverson.  Just about in the center of the photo is probably the rocky hill with trees, the Garden of the Gods section of lower Iverson.  At it's base, is probably Santa Susana Pass Rd.  If you follow the road to the right, the hairpin curve with the rail line/tunnel is visible.  If you follow the road to the left, what is probably the oval shaped horse corral and "western town" that would become "Spahn Ranch" in 1953 is visible.

The following link is to a modern "Google Map". The map can be manipulated, zoomed, and toggled between "map" and "satellite" view. The orange "A" on the map is on the grounds of "The Church at Rocky Peak".  That church is apparently just across the road from where the western town at Spahn Ranch once stood.  If you zoom, manipulate, and toggle the map other features are labeled or visible, including the Garden of the Gods, the hairpin curve, Spahn Ranch, and the rail line tunnel/s.  Click here--->  Google Map

The land that would later become Spahn Ranch was apparently owned at one time by William S. Hart, a silent film actor.  Hart was born in 1864, in 1925 he starred in his last film, "Tumbleweeds".  That film can be seen on YouTube, it's not very good, so I won't post a link.  I ran across an obscure PDF file that MIGHT  have some info about Spahn Ranch, it was uploaded in 2008, I sent an e-mail to the uploader but received no reply.  That file says "In 1928 Dr. Sharon M. Atkins purchased the property." A Bob Turner says "I became intimately acquainted with this property not long after Atkins, a prominent Hollywood Physician, bought the place about 1928.”
 
In 1947, Lee and Ruth McReynolds purchased 55 acres of property from Dr. Atkins. Lee built some movie sets (a western town) next to his Trading Post on this property to catch some overflow from the very successful Iverson Movie Ranch. In 1953 the 55 acres was sold to George Spahn and became known as the Spahn Ranch. George Spahn added more sets and rental horses and it became a popular location for horseback riding among locals."

Finally, I ran across a website that has MANY early historical photos of the San Fernando Valley, when the Hollywoodland housing development wasn't much more than a stage coach trail. To see these photos 
click--->HERE .