Friday, May 16, 2014

Branding iron mystery

Someone walked into the Orange County Archives today with three branding irons he'd acquired from a descendant of Vincente Yorba, Jr. I traced the brands and posted the tracings above. The center one looks like a variation on Bernardo Yorba's original brand from the 1830s/1840s, but it's not exact. Do any of you sharp-eyed readers know the "who" or the "when" of these brands?

I can tell you some places these brands do not appear: They aren't in the "Historic Brands of Orange County" guide in Jim Sleeper's 2nd Orange County Almanac of Historical Oddities. They don't appear in the 1919 California Brand Book (the only edition I have at hand). They also don't appear in the little chart of rancho brands at First American Corp., which is also reproduced in Cindy Tino-Sandoval's Images of America: Yorba Linda. They are also absent from the county's old Brand Book and the other filed brands at the Orange County Archives.

So now the ball is in your court. Please leave your comments in the comments section below. Thanks in advance for any light you can shed.

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

The House of Bernardo Yorba

The historic Bernardo Yorba adobe, when it was still standing - Circa 1900.
The exploration and documentation of the ruins of Bernardo Yorba’s home by Don Meadows in 1919 will be the topic of the next Orange County Historical Society meeting. Historian Phil Brigandi, a longtime friend of Meadows, will tell us about this early adventure in local archaeology. This program will be held Thursday, May 8, 2014, 7:30 p.m., at Trinity Episcopal Church, 2400 N. Canal St., in Orange.

(The previously announced speaker is unable to attend. We knew it was just a matter of time before the dumb guy who schedules OCHS' programs screwed up.)

OCHS also has a small book on this subject, The House of Bernardo Yorba by Don Meadows, available for sale. They should have copies available at the meeting and also sell them through their website.