Frankly, I'm not an expert on the subject. But when November rolls around, what else can an Orange County history blogger fall back on? It's too late for Halloween hijinks in 1920s Anaheim and too early for 1930s Christmas shopping at Rankin's. So it's back to the vintage papers for more old news about dead birds.
|The species Meleagris orangecountius in its natural environment.|
In truth, back when Orange County was primarily agricultural, we had plenty of poultry ranches -- mostly chicken, but also enough turkey that we didn't run out of Thanksgiving drumsticks. Yet somehow, they never got the kind of press that citrus or even celery managed.
So what do we know about the aforementioned Young's Turkey Ranch?
|A quisling turkey (now hiding in Argentina) advertises Young's in a 1954 L.A. Times ad.|
"Yes," I can hear you tryptophan junkies say, "but what were their turkeys like?"
The L.A. Times' "Shopping with Vicky" feature gave an effusive review to Young's turkeys. To be fair, "Vicky" was an "expert" fabricated by the Times, who would lavish your service and/or product with effusive love and affection (in print) for a fee. (We've heard about women like that!) Accordingly, Vicky was astonishingly diverse in her tastes and interests, from discount lumber to little neck clams.
Clearly, Vicky never met and adjective she didn't like. And when words failed her, repetition filled the critical gaps. (Did we mention that Young's turkeys are broad breasted and oven ready?) You knew Vicky was sincere because she couldn't write her way out of a paper bag.
As with the rest of Orange County, development caught up with the Youngs. Property values and taxes rose, and in 1959 they turned seven of the farm’s 10 acres into the Quiet Village Mobile Home Park. (Can’t you just hear Martin Denny’s hit version of “Quiet Village” with all the tropical birdcalls replaced by turkey gobbling?) Some of the ranch operations moved out to land near Temecula for a while. But in 1971 the Youngs closed their ranch entirely and opened a body shop and riding stables on the property.
|Quiet Village Mobile Home Park in 2003, when its great sign and a bit of its semi-Polynesian theme were still intact.|
Somehow, coming home with pigeons you caught at the mobile home park wouldn't be quite the same.