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Looking Back: Paso Robles agricultural products compilation, 1911 

Looking Back Paso Robles

Click here to see the full front page of the May 31, 1911 Paso Robles Leader

Excerpts from the May 31, 1911 issue of the Paso Robles Leader

Compilation of Products

The county is now in the process of development, which has for several years been changing the character of its exports. Great ranches, which formerly were devoted almost entirely to grazing or the raising of grains, are now being gradually cut up and utilized for dairy purposes.

The grain production has fallen off during the last few years, while dairy products have proportionally increased, as shown in the following report:

Wheat – One million sacks on an assessment of 250,000 acres sown; proper sowing under summer fallow yields 12 ½ sacks per acre.

Barley – Two hundred and eighty thousand sacks on an assessment of 100,000 acres sown.

Beans – Quarter of a million sacks on assessment of 20,000 acres sown.

Cattle – Over million and quarter dollars paid annually for cattle exported.

Butter – Four million pounds on assessment of 25,000 cows.

Eggs – 180,000 cases yearly; a new industry, not yet fully nor well developed.

Poultry – Over 100,000 pounds annually, principally to exclusive markets of San Francisco; business hardly in its infancy.

Apples – A new industry on land which is now 1-8 the cost of that near larger cities; superb climate; no irrigation; fine, firm, juicy, well-keeping fruit; no scale nor blight; took 8 out of 10 prizes entered for at annual apple fair at Watsonville in 1910. Imperfect pack only lost the other two prizes; took world’s medal at St. Louis Exposition. About 750 acres now planted; average 200 pounds per tree at 2 cents per pound net.

Pears – Also new industry; the excellence just being proven; buyers pay $45 a ton f.o.b. and supply packing boxes.

Almonds – Also as yet undeveloped, but wonderful value and future possibilities; about 300 acres on $30 to $35 per acre land. One orchard of 21 acres produced 15 tons, selling at $190 acre net. 180 additional acres yielded 18 tons almond meat sold at 29 cents lb. and 17 tons almonds at $280 per ton.

More news of the day

  • Paso Robles had a surprise visit by Governor Johnson, accompanied by his wife, and son and wife who came to Paso Robles in their auto and put up at the Hot Springs Hotel.
  • Friends and family mourned the untimely and unexpected death of 22 year old Miss Mary Wiebe, apparently from ptomaine poisoning.
  • Several local youth attending first through eighth grades, got their names in the paper for being on the honor roll.
  • August Zimmerman announced that he installed a new machine for making and repairing boots and shoes. He intended to run the machine in his shop on Park Street on Wednesdays and Fridays.

Creston News

Two Creston farmers, Mr. W.B. Bayles and Mr. George Sturgeon put in pumping plants to irrigate their crops. Mr. Bayles intended to irrigate alfalfa. Mr. Sturgeon intended to irrigate strawberries, raspberries and blackberries.

Making Good

Gus Herman a young and sturdy German who came here some three years ago. Was sent by a friend to care for a place he owned near Creston. Gus had but $65 when he reached Creston, but he went to work and soon he was making good at a financier as well as a good farmer.

This year he has put in large acreage to potatoes, that bids fare to produce 75 sacks to the acre. He was told that he could not grow spuds there but the man thought different.

He further says that one more crop and he will away to Germany for a wife.


Read previous Looking Back articles


This “Looking Back” view at Paso Robles history comes from one of the hundreds of local newspapers in the Paso Robles Area Historical Society collection. Several local newspapers, dating from the 1800s, have reported on local, national, and world events, providing priceless historical views of our community that are not available from any other source. The Historical Society is seeking community support for the multi-phased Newspaper Preservation Project to help fund the transfer of these aged and fragile pages to microfilm and digital images.

Photography of the old newspapers is by Gigi Greene. News for this column is selected with the assistance of the society’s Vice President Nancy Tweedie and Research Director Jan Cannon.

The Paso Robles Historical Society is located in the Paso Robles History Museum at 800 12th Street in Downtown City Park. Visit the Paso Robles Historical Society website for more information about exhibits, research, becoming a member, volunteering, or donating.

The Paso Robles Daily News is pleased to support this important project. Watch this space for future “Looking Back” articles.

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About the author: Reporter Jackie Iddings

Jackie Iddings is a contributing reporter and photographer for the Paso Robles Daily News.