ABOUT THE BOOK: A trade crossroads dating back to Native American times, Santa Clarita may be relatively new in the story of Los Angeles County’s suburban sprawl, but old-timers also recall it as the Navel of the Universe. A Chinese general once declared the Santa Clarita Valley one of the top 10 military targets on Earth. Located east of the Ventura County line where the valley creates a break in the Angeles National Forest, Santa Clarita has been home to cowboys, movie stars, farmers, and pistol fighters. With a diverse population of 250,000 today, the Santa Clarita Valley still boasts an eclectic heritage. The West’s first major oil refinery is located here. The ground was bloodied by at least 21 deaths in one of America’s last and greatest range wars. And local lore has maintained that the world’s largest grizzly bear, weighing more than a ton, was shot here.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Author John Boston’s 100-plus writing awards include the 2006 Will Rogers Humanitarian Achievement Award. A former ranch hand, television news director, talent manager, editor, and columnist, Boston has lived in the Santa Clarita Valley for half a century, today on Scared o’ Bears Ranch with Walt, his father, and Indiana, his daughter. The Santa Clarita Valley Historical Society provided this book’s evocative images.