This site is a great resource for local Jamul History.
This site is a great resource for local Jamul History.
For several years in the early 1900s, Jamul Haven served as a stage coach stop for a weekly stage delivering supplies and passengers from San Diego to Jamul. The circular drive around the house was used as a convenient method of changing horses prior to the long uphill climb through Mexican Canyon to downtown Jamul.
by William Roetzheim, Jamul Haven Bed & Breakfast
I’ll be repeating some of my earlier history articles from years ago, as many have not read them yet.
The age of the olive groves in the Jamacha, Jamul, and Dehesa areas probably dates to just after the 1872 newspaper article. In his February 17, 1973 oral history with the San Diego Historical Society, Edward C. Hall reported:
“The golf club out at Dehesa, you know the one I mean, Sunnyside or whatever it is, that property was a solid olive grove 40 or 50 years ago and was planted back in the 1870s sometime (Hall February 17, 1973).
Remnants of olive groves survive at Singing Hills Golf Course and off Jefferson enroute to Simpson’s Nursery. Several olive trees survive on the Gifford property (now Jamul Haven), as shown in the photo where they stand surrounding the chicken coop.
A 1906 biography of Charles M. Gifford illustrates his importance to helping develop the infrastructure of the olive industry in that early year:
“Conspicuous among the industries contributing to the material development of San Diego may be mentioned the olive factory and pickling and canning factory established by Mr. Gifford in this city upon a very small scale in 1900, the original plant being limited to a small scale in 1900, the original plant being limited to an equipment for the pickling of olives. In 1903 an olive canning plant was added for the canning of the largest olives grown in this state, known as Gifford’s Best. At the present writing 1906 a factory is under process of construction providing a larger capacity than was previously possible. The new brick structure is 100 x 100 feet in dimensions and two stories in height, provided with engines of suitable power and with all the equipment necessary for the proper management of the business upon the extensive scale now established. Competent judges claim the factory, when completed, will be finest in the state for the purposes desired, and already the reputation of the plant has become so widely known that shipments are made from points as far as Stockton and the San Joaquin Valley …” (Guinn, History of California: page 1321)
Jamul (which is pronounced “ha-MOOL”) is a census-designated place (CDP) in San Diego County, California, located about 20 minutes from downtown San Diego in the foothills of the Laguna mountains. Jamul is originally part of a Mexican land grant granted in 1831 by Governor Manuel Victoria to Pío Pico, the last Mexican Governor of California. The grant extended from present day Jamul southeast to Dulzura.
In 1837 the rancho was attacked by Diegueno Indians over a land dispute resulting in the death of four defenders as well as the kidnapping of two young women who were never heard from again. Following that episode, the rancho was largely abandoned, attracting a series of squatters until 1852, when another episode of violence resulted in the squatters being driven off the ranch.
By 1854, the rancho was being homesteaded by Captain Henry Stanton Burton while he served as commander of the Post at Mission San Diego de Alcalá. However, it is not clear that the land was ever transferred properly originally.
According to an affidavit made by María Burton and filed in the United States district court in 1880, Burton purchased the interests of Lopez and Crosthwaite in 1853; and the interests of Richard and William E. Rust in 1854.In 1867, nearly twelve years after the claim had been rejected, an appearance was entered in the United States district court on behalf of General Burton. In 1870, María Burton arranged for Pío Pico to declare that he had sold all his interest to Burton. In 1875, Nellie Burton, a daughter of Henry Stanton Burton and María Burton, married Miguél de Pedrorena (1844–1882). In 1876, the grant for Rancho Jamul was patented to the heirs of Henry S. Burton (María A. Burton, and her son, Henry H. Burton and daughter, Nellie Burton Pedrorena).
The rancho was used as collateral for mortgages, and numerous claims were filed against the estate and the litigation continued for years. The estate of Henry S. Burton was not settled until 1891.
The title changed hands repeatedly, until in 1915, John D. Spreckels sold to Rancho Jamul to Louis J. Wilde.
Long before Juan Cabrillo, the first European to explore California, landed in San Diego Bay, the future community of Jamul was home to the Kumeyaay (Iipai-Tipai-Diegueño) people for most of 12,000 years. With the arrival of Spanish missionaries and settlers to what is now San Diego County, many of them laid claim to land parcels for missions, mining, ranching and agriculture uses.
Rancho Jamul was one of those parcels. Granted to Pío Pico by the Spanish governor of California in 1833 (before it became a territory of the U.S.), the 562,622 acres of Rancho Jamul would eventually be acquired by Henry Stanton Burton in 1854 after marrying María Amparo Ruiz, a daughter of one of the most noted families of Baja, California. María was beautiful and remarkably forthright, making her a voice and force within the community. However, like many early Spanish colonial land grants, Rancho Jamul’s title was constantly in dispute and claimed by various parties. Just prior to her death in 1895, María Amparo Ruiz Burton saw the Rancho partitioned for the many claimants and squatters that simply took possession of a few acres.
Today, Jamul, California is a small rural community that is part of the Jamul/Dulzura Subregion of San Diego County. The Jamul/Dulzura Subregion is approximately 168 square miles and described as being south of Loveland Reservoir and the Sweetwater River, adjacent to and north of the Mexican border and east of the Rancho San Diego land development. Jamul is the largest city in the subregion, which also includes Steel Canyon, Dulzura and Barrett Junction. The population of the subregion is estimated to be approximately 5,000 residents, which includes residents of Jamul Indian Village, home to the Tipai Band of the Kumeyaay tribe.
Despite its quiet rural setting, Jamul is less than 20 minutes from San Diego and all its many attractions and events. Jamul has a number of local attractions as well, including the Hollenbeck Canyon Wildlife Area. Jamul Creek runs through a landscape of tall, shady oaks, creating an excellent backcountry hike for birders and nature photographers. The McGinty Mountain area is also a hiking and natural paradise, and home to a number of rare and endangered plant species, such as California’s Dehesa beargrass.
As the population and development of the eastern suburbs of San Diego continue to increase, Jamul is poised to become one of the city’s new 21st century suburban communities. The citizens of Jamul and the surrounding area are working to manage the inevitable growth of their community so they can maintain their independence and rural character as well as benefit from increased services, commercial opportunities and more jobs.