Pitzer Ranch, Barn, 100 feet West of Padua Avenue on Base Line Road, Claremont, Los Angeles County, CA
100 feet West of Padua Avenue on Base Line Road, Claremont, CA
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Documentation compiled after 1933.
Survey number HABS CA-2267-I
Building/structure dates: 1900 initial construction
Significance: The Pitzer Barn is part of the Pitzer Ranch Complex consisting of the main house, pumphouse, shed, water tower, concrete reservoir, and secondary house on Padua Avenue and the Pitzer House, stone garage, and stone wall on Towne Avenue. The original owner of the land and structures was James Becket. Becket owned most of the water rights in the area (The Consolidated Water Company) and orchards throughout the area. Lee Pitzer married James Becket's daughter on January 1, 1901 and subsequently took ownership of the property and structures of the Pitzer Ranch Complex on Padua Avenue in approximately 1910. Lee Pitzer expanded the development of citrus orchards in the area. Pitzer was the first to grow lemons along Base Line Road. Lee Pitzer was the brother of Russell Pitzer, founder of Pitzer College in Claremont, California. The probably historic use of the barn was for the storage of citrus, farm implements, and equipment. The four walls of the primary barn structure are of uncut native fieldstone, a common building material in the area. Fieldstone was an available building material as it often washed down into the lower elevations from the surrounding mountainous region. It was necessary to clear the fields of fieldstone in order to cultivate crops. Construction of structures with fieldstone required more and higher skilled laborers. The fieldstone barn is significant due to its historical ties to the Pitzer and Becket families, its use in the establishment and growth of the citrus industry, and its architectural simplicity and beauty.
Historic American Buildings Survey (Library of Congress)
1. North front and east side; Reservoir to right.
2. North front; Shed in foreground.
3. West side; Reservoir in background.
4. West side and south back.
5. East side.
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