Yorba Linda History

Historic Documents

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close this bookRancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden Collection
View the documentBotanic Garden and Herbarium Being Created in Santa Ana Canyon
Yorba Linda Star April 5 1929 page 1
View the documentMrs. Bryant Again Entertains Lemon Men's Club at Field Day Meeting
The California Citrograph June 1933
View the documentLocal Ranch is Sanctuary for Flora of State
Yorba Linda Star April 20 1934 page 1
View the documentPasture Fire on Bryant Ranch Burns 9 Hours, 160 Acres
Yorba Linda Star June 17 1938 page 1
View the documentRancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden Developing into Institution for Serious Scientific Research
Yorba Linda Star April 28 1939 page 5
View the documentCounty Home Makers Today Make Tour of Botanic Gardens
Yorba Linda Star May 5 1939 page 1
View the documentBig Grass Fire Covers 400 Acres of Bryant Ranch
Yorba Linda Star September 20 1940 page 1
View the documentFire Sweeps S.A. Canyon and Hills; North Edge Y.L. Singed
Yorba Linda Star November 12 1943
View the documentA Short History of the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden
by Philip A. Munz,
Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden of the Native Plants of California May 1947
View the documentRancho Santa Ana Botanic Gardens to be Open to Public
Yorba Linda Star March 26 1948 page 1
View the documentBotanical Garden Opens to Public
Yorba Linda Star March 25 1949 page 1
View the documentBotanic Garden to Open to Visitors
Yorba Linda Star March 17 1950 page 1
View the documentBryant Ranch Tentative Tract Map Approved Following Council Discussion on Area Roads
Yorba Linda Star October 7 1978 page 1
View the documentControversial Bryant Ranch as Yet Remains Untouched
Yorba Linda Star March 23 1979 page 3
View the documentHistoric Home Subject of City Excursion
Yorba Linda Star February 29 1984 page 1
View the documentBryant Ranch Property: A Look at Its Past
Yorba Linda Star March 7 1984 page 3
View the documentSusanna Bryant Leaves Botanic Legacy
Yorba Linda Star March 14 1984 page 6
View the documentBryant Ranch Project Enters First Phase
Yorba Linda Star January 30 1985 page 5
View the documentBryant Ranch Slated to be Museum
Yorba Linda Star January 7 1987 page 1
View the documentYorba Ranch Building to be Salvaged
Yorba Linda Star February 4 1987 page 1
View the documentBryant Ranch House Museum Opens
Yorba Linda Star February 26 1988 page 3
View the documentRanch House has a History
Yorba Linda Star December 14 1995 page 8
View the documentBryant Ranch House to Vie for National Registry
Yorba Linda Star October 17 1996 page 1

Ranch House has a History

Yorba Linda Star December 14 1995 page 8   Open this page in a new window

Bryant Ranch isn't another set of tract homes in a master-designed neighborhood.

The dwelling is one of Yorba Linda's most important historical landmarks, city officials and residents say, with a story dating back to the 1800s.

The land the home stands on once belonged to the city's namesake—Bernardo Yorba. In the 1870s Yorba's widow sold the land to a man named John Bixby, who built a ranching operation on it. Bixby used the ranch to raise cattle and grow wheat, hay and citrus trees, said Mary Ruth Erickson, president of the city's historical society.

According to the city records, the rest of the story goes like this:

Bixby died in 1891 and left a portion of the property to his daughter, Susanna Bixby-Bryant. She later acquired the remainder of the land and built what is now the Bryant Ranch House.

Actively involved in the operation of the ranch, Susanna Bixby-Bryant lived in the house periodically and later used it as the ranch headquarters. More buildings were built in the 1920s.

As the years went on, Susanna Bixby-Bryant founded a 200-acre botanic garden on the property for the study of native California plants. The garden received national recognition, with mention in such publications as Sunset Magazine and the Christian Science Monitor.

When Susanna Bixby-Bryant died in 1952, the botanic garden was shut down and moved to Claremont, where it still exists.

Susanna Bixby-Bryant's nephew, Ernest Bryant III operated the ranch until 1978 when it sold. Since then, the Bryant Ranch House has remained vacant. Some of the other buildings on the property were destroyed by a fire in the 1980s, while others were demolished.

The Bryant Ranch is still considered an important historical element in the city because it is one of the last remaining examples of early California ranch houses, Erickson said.

“This is the last house standing from the ranch,” she said. “And it's one of the oldest buildings in the area.”

If the proposed development plan is approved, the society is going to apply for inclusion in the National Register of Historical Places.

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