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EARLY DAYS on OAK PASS Rd. (1937-1945)
and HOW the ROAD GOT ITS NAME
When my parents first purchased the 7-acre ridge-top parcel at 9601 (in 1937), the primitive and rutted fire-road was named after (sputter/gasp!!) a Los Angeles “realtor/developer”, Leland P. Reeder, and was known as “Reeder Road”....His yellow signs, and those of Frank Salisbury (another locally active realtor), defaced many of the then newly-available parcels of land along Reeder Road. My parents' original purchase (at 9601) was, I believe, through Mr. Salisbury. With this land we inherited an old, rusty and constantly-leaking pipe, which brought water up to our property from far below (in upper Yoakum Dr.). This very long and crumbling pipeline provided my father with unending weekend employment, in the early years, trying to keep water coming to the house (he was not amused)!!....
Just east of what later became known as Hutton Dr., the lower reaches of Reeder Road (before it began to climb up into the hills), passed through a superb, over-arching grove of large coast live oaks (then dark green in color and dense with healthy foliage, as was always the case in the pristine years Before Smog) a tunnel, in fact. My mother informed me that it was this “tunnel” through the big oak grove that provided their original inspiration for the name “OAK PASS”. In 1938, my father took an (unbelievably simple!) step to petition the city authorities in Beverly Hills for a more suitable name one that would reflect the beauty of this location, by making some kind of a real connection with the hillsides and ravines surrounding our “homestead”. [Click here for documentation of his original request (the letter dated “3-2-38”), and its amazing (unbelievably hassle-free) outcome the letter dated April 20, 1938).] Such a request today could be guaranteed to generate months (probably years) of groveling negotiations, and mountains of tedious paperwork ('bizzy-work'). In fact, there would be no point in even trying!....(Just one of the little joys of overpopulation, and the inevitable rampant bureaucratic replication and far-reaching control that always accompanies it).... “Progress”???
The name Oak Pass still “fits” (even now, long after the arrival of “development”, and decades of oak-killing smog), because the standard procedure, which nearly everyone in America understands (at least subconsciously) has been followed: After “development” has metastasized in a locality, if one wishes to learn which plants/animals/birds formerly lived there, one has only to look for their names (obituaries, in fact) on the street signs not that any of them will actually be encountered alive and breathing, amidst the homogenized maze of wall-to-wall man-made structures that now clog the “improved” habitat.... Look for such names as “Quail Court”, “Lupine Lane”, Deer Meadow”, “Road-runner Circle”, “Bluebell Blvd.”, “Rhododendron Ridge”, “Eagle Crest Dr.”, “Tiger Lily Trail”, etc., etc., etc.. But don't bother to look for the named plants (or animals) themselves, as you will be bitterly disappointed! .... “Progress”???
If you happen to be on or near former Indian lands, then just look for the names of famous chiefs, or of their displaced tribes, to be announcing the stifling array of look-alike look-alike streets (Sitting Bull Circle, Navajo Rd., Kiowa Court, Cherokee St., Mandan Ave., etc., etc.)....Subdivision “developers” have a real knack for this: one could almost predict the street names in advance!! And, through a convoluted process of wishful double-think, one might even be persuaded to conclude that the “developers” must really know (even “care” about) the local environment that they have trashed, based upon their clever choices for street names....Wow, now THAT'S really “Progress”!! For another (more serious) take, on the studiously ignored (but constantly encouraged) forces, that underlie and drive this dead-end paradigm, see IVEY (1995: pp 57-60). And see also the HOVORE essays.
Growing Up Wild in Beverly Hills!
EARLY DAYS on OAK PASS Rd. (1937-1945) and HOW the ROAD GOT ITS NAME
- (A) Botanical Highlights
-- Historical Remarks on Oaks
-- EARLY EVOLUTIONARY STAGES of the "SMOG-DENIAL SYNDROME"!
-- OAK PASS NATIVE PLANTS TODAY (??)
-- Echos From the Past!
-- A Bit of SUMMERTIME FOGBANK-BOTANY
- (B) LOCAL BUTTERFLY HIGHLIGHTS
- (C) LOCAL BIRDS REMEMBERED
- (D) LOCAL MAMMALS REMEMBERED
- (E) REPTILES & AMPHIBIANS REMEMBERED
DESSERT (Purely for Amusement!)
THE HONEY-SNOB'S CORNER
A five-year study (1953-1957) documenting the occurrence of 283 macro-moth species on one acre of woodland habitat at 9601 Oak Pass Rd., 5 road-miles north of Sunset Blvd., Beverly Hills (a mixture of undisturbed Southern Oak Woodland / Chaparral / Coastal Sage Scrub habitat, at 1100 ft. elevation).
WHAT TO EXPECT AT THIS CALIFORNIA SITE
ABOUT THE BACKYARD CONCEPT
BACKGROUND & INTRODUCTION
About the Moth Studies at 9601 Oak Pass Road
BEATING or SWEEPING for LARVAE - A MOST PRODUCTIVE COLLECTING TECHNIQUE
The OLD BEVERLY HILLS (OAK PASS ROAD) MOTH STUDY COMPARED WITH THREE OTHER (MORE RECENT) SURVEYS IN COASTAL SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA
OBSERVED DIFFERENCES IN THE MACRO-MOTH FAUNAS OF THE ABOVE THREE OTHER SURVEYED COASTAL CALIFORNIAN LOCALITIES
HISTORICAL PHOTOS and A PLEA for FUTURE STUDIES in the SAME REGION
FRANK SALA'S CORNER
FRANK HOVORE'S CORNER
1C - HABITAT PHOTOS (1957-1964)
Copyright ©2005-2011 Noel McFarland. All Rights Reserved.