Archive for January, 2010

Dr. John Roberts

Friday, January 22nd, 2010

Although Dr. John L. D. Roberts never lived in the Cambria area, he was very important to its history. It was he who first conceived the idea for a year-round scenic highway from Carmel to San Simeon.

Born in Osceola, New York on January 16, 1861, Roberts attended Hamilton College in Clinton, New York and Union College in Schenectady and then earned a medical degree from the University of the City of New York. In 1887 he moved to California at the suggestion of his uncle, David Houghton, who owned a 160 acre ranch where Seaside and Sand City are currently located. Once he had established a practice, he sent for his fiancé, Edith Maltby, and they were married on October 25, 1887. Dr. Roberts eventually bought the ranch from his uncle for $5,000 and planned a town on the site which became the city of Seaside. He founded the Seaside post office in 1890 where he and his wife served as postmasters until 1932. In 1892 he was elected to the Monterey School Board where he served for 36 years and in 1908 he became a county supervisor, an office he held for 20 years including four years as chairman. (more…)

Opening of Highway One

Friday, January 8th, 2010

The idea of constructing a highway from Carmel to San Simeon originated with Dr. John Roberts shortly before 1900 but funding for what would later be called Highway One was not approved until 1919. The construction was fraught with difficulties and the project took 18 years to come to fruition. At last, on June 27, 1937, the oiled and graveled highway was completed, at a cost of approximately $9,000,000. (more…)

Where The Highway Ends

Tuesday, January 5th, 2010

Where The Highway Ends, written by Geneva Hamilton in 1974 is, without a doubt, the best single volume ever written about the history of Cambria and the surrounding area. It is described on the cover as being, “The colorful history of Spanish explorers, Indians, Whaling, Life on the Ranchos, Chinese, Quicksilver mines, Fires, Floods, Swiss dairies, Hearst ranches, and Early California pioneers.” If you read the entire 200-plus page book from cover to cover you will come away with an accurate impression of how Cambria got started and how it came to be the way it is today. This book also contains nearly a hundred historic photographs each with an informative caption, some of which appear nowhere else. (more…)