Loleta, California Photos, Information, Hotels and Map

HON. FRANK RIGGS in the House of Representatives on Wednesday, July 9, 1997
Mr. RIGGS. Mr. Speaker, I rise to celebrate the centennial of the beautiful community of Loleta in Humboldt County, CA, which I am privileged to represent. I visited Loleta, which overlooks the picturesque Eel River Valley, just 2 weeks ago. The origin of its name is credited to the Wiyot Indians of the valley as a name for a pleasant landmark. In this case, we are told, a quiet slough.

A.J. Doolittle made a map of Humboldt County in 1860, and it was adopted by the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors. There was no Loleta then, nor much of anything else. But from the gentle slope of the last of the foothills now occupied by today's Loleta, the map shows a nearby road from Dungan's Ferry, past W.J. Wing's, W. Ellery's, T.H. Foss', to L.H. Hawk's, en route to J.A. Sawyer's on Table Bluff.

An old Humboldt County Great Register for 1888 indicates Samuel Swauger, a 59-year-old native of Pennsylvania, ranched on what is now Loleta and registered to vote the previous year.

The late historian M.A. Parry, who wrote his masters thesis at Humboldt State University on Loleta, said Eel River & Eureka Railroad built Swauger's Station, now Loleta, in 1886. `From 1884 to 1886 the station amounted to no more than an uncovered loading platform standing beside a short length of track,' he wrote. In 1898, as traffic increased, a new and larger depot was constructed. Swauger Station had been on the old structure, while `Loleta' appeared on the new.

Parry had this to say about the name of Swauger and Loleta: `In 1897, a faction of the community not satisfied with the name of the town, settled on `Loleta' as what they wanted in place of `Swauger's Station.' The word was of Indian origin and was said to mean `pleasant place.' Actually it was three Indian words, `Lo-le-tah,' meaning, `pleasant place at the end of the water.' Loleta was just that; a pleasant place at the end of Hawk's Slough which no longer extends so far inland.'

By adopting Loleta as the town name, the community did no more than adopt the name the community's Indians had used for years. The name became official in February 1897 when Will Perrott filed a map with the county recorder entitled `Loleta--Amended Map of Swauger's.' The railroad company and the post office followed suit the following year.

And now, beautiful Loleta, famous for its fine dairy farms and livestock ranches, prepares for the centennial celebration. I congratulate Robert Laffranchi, president of the Loleta Chamber of Commerce, and all the people of Loleta for what I'm sure will be a wonderful day of festivities.

Loleta Cheese awards
If you've tasted it, you already know: Loleta Cheese Factory Organic Sharp Cheddar is first class. That fact has now been confirmed by the judges at the California State Fair commercial cheese competition, where three Loleta organic cheeses won gold medals.

The Loleta Cheese Factory manufactures organic cheeses using Strauss Family Creamery organic milk. That cheese is then sold under both the Loleta Cheese Factory and Strauss Family labels (see Journal cover story, "It's the organic cheese," Feb. 1).

Loleta Cheese Factory
252 Loleta Dr.
Loleta, CA 95551
or call: (707) 733-5470
toll free (800) 995-0453

According to Vivien Strauss, who runs the creamery in Petaluma with her brother, the secret to the cheese's success is simple: Loleta Cheese owners Bob and Carol Laffranchi make cheese "in small batches with really high quality milk."
With more than 50 cheese makers turning out some 130 types of cheese, California produces more cheese than any state but Wisconsin. In addition to its optimal climate, California owes its leading position to its chefs, home cooks, and food-appreciative population. As wine's natural partner, cheese has become increasingly popular in the land of the grape.

A century-old factory building in the dairy town of Loleta is the setting for Carol and Robert Laffranchi's 16-year-old business. The cheese room makes for dramatic viewing for visitors, who can sample the 14 types of cheese being formed before their eyes. Cheddar and jack are the Laffranchis' main claims to fame, especially those flavored with smoked salmon, salami, or jalapeƱos. Queso fresco, a fresh cheese with a crumbly texture and ricotta taste, is a favorite, along with Havarti, fontina, and the limited-production organic white cheddar.

Loleta Cheese
(707) 733-5470 TABLE BLUFF RANCHERIA, Loleta

Year History
1850 Influx of settlers brought by the gold rush, conflicts followed
1851 Gold rush in Wiyot territory from minor discovery at Gold Bluffs
1860 80 to 100 women and children massacred by a Eureka gang of militia supported by merchants on Indian Island; several earlier massacres by Whites all but destroyed tribe; survivors interred at Fort Humboldt and then removed to distant reservations, many returned to aboriginal territory
1908 Table Bluff Rancheria established, 20 acres gifted by a local church
1953 Tribes terminated via Public Law 280
1981 Rancheria recognized;102 acres purchased nearby by federal government as part of a lawsuit settlement
1982 Established tribal constitution

1651 J Street (The Sorenson House)

Constructed: 1902
Henry Sorenson was the original owner. A Denmark native, Mr. Sorenson came to Humboldt County as a boy and grew up near Blocksburg. He graduated from Eureka Business College and worked in the Dixon's Store in Loleta until 1902. That year he moved to Arcata and opened a "Satisfactory Store" known as Sorenson and Matzen. The house was built for him by his father-in-law, Jasper Reed, and his brother, Ben Sorenson. It has been called the "house of triangles", referring to its triangle pediments, dormer and windows.

The Wiyot territory is in the Humbolt county area, which starts at Little River and continues down the coast to Bear River, then inland to the first set of mountains. Towns that are within the traditional Wiyot territory are McKinleyville, Blue Lake, Arcata, Eureka, Kneeland, Loleta, Fortuna, Ferndale, and Rohnerville. Rivers within the territory are Mad River (Batwat), Elk River, Eel River and the Van Duzen River. able Bluff Reservation - Wiyot Tribe P.O. Box 206 Tribal Historic Preservation Office Death Valley, CA 923280206 1000 Wiyot Drive (760) 786-2374 Loleta, CA 95551 (707) 733-5055

With the establishment of dairying operations in the latter part of the 19th century, Swiss-Italian immigrants came to work for others on the bottom lands of Mad and Eel rivers, in the Orick valley, and on the coastal plains around the lagoons. But it didn't take long before industry and ingenuity made these dairyman owners of both land and cows. Many residents of the Ferndale and Loleta area trace their ancestry to these immigrants of a century ago. The Portuguese, who came to Humboldt County from the Azores, also found work on dairy ranches, but the timber industry provided employment for many.
Ruby Winzler*

Ruby Winzler made a lifetime profession out of her love for children. Ruby was born in 1899 at Cannibal Island near the mouth of the Eel River. She drove a horse and buggy to Loleta Elementary school each day, transporting herself and other children. When she was of high school age, she caught the train at Fernbridge for Fortuna High school. She graduated from UC Berkeley in 1922 with a degree in math and chemistry. She obtained a teaching credential.

Because so many mothers had to work at the onset of the war, Ruby saw a need to develop a children's center. She obtained government funds to build a temporary center. Her goal was to create a center that provided guidance to the families and care to the children in a family like setting--a home away from home. The Winzler Day Care Center became a permanent day care center for children in 1963.

Loleta has one of the most scenic vistas of the lower Eel River Valley. You can view dairy farms, the Pacific Ocean. and a historic bank building. Bank of Loleta (added 1985 - Building - #85000354)
358 Main St., Loleta
Historic Significance: Event, Architecture/Engineering
Architect, builder, or engineer: Georgeson,Franklin T.
Architectural Style: Classical Revival
Area of Significance: Commerce, Architecture
Period of Significance: 1900-1924
Owner: Private
Historic Function: Commerce/Trade
Historic Sub-function: Financial Institution
Current Function: Commerce/Trade
Current Sub-function: Financial Institution

Title of Event: D'Arcy Fallon presents So Late, So Soon: A Memoir
When: Monday, August 9, 2004 7:30 PM
Location: Annie Bloom's Books
Description: D'Arcy Fallon offers an irreverent, fly-on-the-wall view of the Lighthouse Ranch, a Christian commune she called home for three years in the mid-1970s. At 18 years old, when life's questions overwhelmed her and reconciling her family past with her future seemed impossible, she accidentally came upon the Ranch during a hitchhike gone awry. Perched on a windswept bluff in Loleta, a dozen miles from anywhere in Northern California, this community of lost and found twenty-somethings lured her in with promises of abounding love, spiritual serenity, and a hardy, pioneer existence. What she didn't count on was the fog.

Hermetic Science played a surprising number of live shows in northern California between April 1996 and May 1998, after which they withdrew from the arena of live performance in order to devote themselves single-mindedly to recording their second CD. Working with engineer Tim Gray at Big Bang Studios near Loleta, California, the band recorded much of the album in late September and October 1998, the remainder in May 1999. With the release of their second CD, Prophesies, in September 1999, once again under the auspices of the Magnetic Oblivion label, Hermetic Science definitively emerged as one of the most original and accomplished progressive bands of the second half of the 1990s.

Pioneer head of Crystal dies at 88
By Clint Swett
Bee Staff Writer
Kenneth Hansen, who with his two brothers took over the Crystal Cream and Butter Co. from his father, died Wednesday morning while being treated for a stroke.
He was 88.
Hansen was the last surviving brother of the three who helped build Crystal into a dairy food power in the Central Valley.
Kenneth Hansen and his brothers, Vernon and Gerald also founded KCRA Television and Radio and owned the stations until 1962.
Kenneth Hansen was born April 7, 1909, above the dairy his father Carl operated in the small Humboldt County town of Loleta.

By 1889 gillnetters were making more money than seiners. By 1913, when seining was outlawed, more than half the season's catch was taken by the hundred or more gillnetters working the Eel River--and the number of gillnetters soon soared to perhaps 150 after the demise of the seiners. Complete sets of nets, floats, line, and mending shuttles and twine were sold at Van Duzer's general store in Loleta.

Humboldt Bay Wildlife Refuge: More than 200 bird species, including 80 kinds of waterbirds and four endangered species regularly visit the bay. The refuge is 2,200 acres of seasonal wetlands, salt marshes, grassland, open bay and mud flats. Peak viewing season is September through March when the Bay is the winter home for thousands of migratory ducks, geese, swans, and shorebirds. Summer visitors will see many gulls, terns, cormorants, pelicans, egrets and herons. There are two interpreted trails of less than 2 miles in length; access is through Loleta.
Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge-US Fish and Wildlife Service: 707-733-5406
For information about the Lanphere Dunes Unit, as well as access information on the main part of the refuge in Loleta.

We are not farm raised but WE LOVE ALPACAS! And we have enjoyed raising these wonderful creatures since 1985 - camelids since 1980. Aside from having a dog, cat and the odd bird we had no livestock experience.

We were married in 1955 and have 3 very successful children - an astrophysicist, a geophysicist and a physician and 5 terrific grandchildren. Our physician son has his own alpaca ranch in Texas, "Texoma Alpacas" that is a joint venture.

Jack has owned and operated timber businesses, ad agencies; ran trap lines in the Yukon; raised, collected and hybridized orchids (and still does); traveled extensively for pleasure and collecting orchids; amateur gardener extraordinaire; Rotarian, etc.

Joan taught our children for the first eight years of their schooling, has a commercial degree, a BSc Biochemistry, MSc Molecular Biology, PhD Medical Sciences and an MD specializing in Internal Medicine and Emergency Medicine-, Past President of the Medical Society; Past Chief of Staff Eureka General Hospital; on-going representative CMA House of Delegates, Rotarian, etc.; consults for local medical practices, traveled extensively for any conceivable reason,

Both born in Canada but became dual citizens USA-Canada many years ago, Moved numerous times starting from the Yukon but arrived at our present location in Eureka, California, over 20 years ago and plan on staying.

As to how we got into alpacas? We were newly settled in northern California and started looking for a tax break to cover our property. At that time llamas were the best financial and animal husbandry option available to us neophytes. We raised llamas until 1985 and then while at an llama auction in Grant's Pass came across two alpacas from the recent Chilean import. We bid $10,000 each and headed home with our two pregnant Huacaya female alpacas who then produced two more females. We now had 4 females and there were no male alpacas on the West coast. We managed to finally bring one in from Ohio and our alpaca venture was up and running. Since then we have added Bolivian, Peruvian, English and more Chilean lines as well as one female we purchased from the LA Zoo (one of their pre-1984 lines) who has produced five magnificent girls. In 1999 we added Suris.

We now average over 100 alpacas of all colors; full Peruvian, Chilean and Bolivian as well as combinations.
Welcome to
Davies Alpacas
of Humboldt

Committed to the Alpaca Industry since 1985, with one of the largest and most colorful herds in the Western USA.

1289 Hookton Road
Loleta, CA 95551

FAX 707-733-5154

The state-of-the-art recording facility is housed in a graciously appointed 3-bedroom home with full kitchen, a redwood deck, and outdoor jacuzzi. The rooms of the house can double as additional live rooms, giving artists the flexibility to record where they want. The spacious, wood-panelled live room and main studio has large picture windows.

Big Bang Productions Recording Studio is a combination of home and studio, where artists can create superior recordings in an idyllic setting. The living quarters are comfortably furnished and fully wired for recording.

Our magical live room is a place to capture your best sound. Spacious, attractive, and comfortable for all kinds of set-ups. Rotating hand-painted baffles and acoustical shades provide excellent sound flexibility. Eureka! You've found it!

Businesses include Gilded Rose, Blue Coach Antiques, Loleta Grocery, Humboldt Creamery Association Cooperative Building



Eureka< Loleta > Fortuna

loleta buildings
loleta buildings

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