[graphic] Ranchos Camulos

[photo] Ranchos Camulos
Photograph courtesy of San Buenaventura Research Associates
A National Historic Landmark, the 40-acre Rancho Camulos complex, completed between 1853 and 1935, contains buildings and structures representing the broad range of building types and architectural forms that defined the historic evolution of agricultural development in southern California during the second half of the 19th century and the early decades of the 20th century. The rancho complex established at Camulos by Ygnacio del Valle in the mid-1850s was a significant expression of the early era of settlement and agricultural development of the former Spanish/Mexican estate lands in the greater Los Angeles area. The main ranch house, the Ygnacio del Valle adobe (1853-1880), is a significant illustration of California-era vernacular architecture; a rare extant example of California's early domestic adobe construction (pictured above and below). In addition to the main house, the complex contains an equally rare colllection of historic outbuildings and support structures from the early rancho period that help illustrate the development of 19th-century vernacular architecture in southern California.

[Historic photo] Ranchos Camulos, c1890
Photograph courtesy of San Buenaventura Research Associates

The Camulos property is also significant for its association with the unique circumstances surrounding the publication and promotion of Helen Hunt Jackson's 1880 novel, Ramona. Serving as real-life inspiration for the fictional locations described in the novel, Rancho Camulos became inseparably linked to the enduring romanticized image of southern California life during the mission era.

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