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Looking Back to 1931: The adventures of Mrs. Harriet E. Exline, lost in the wild 

Looking Back Paso Robles

This look back at Paso Robles history comes from local newspapers in the Paso Robles Area Historical Society collection. News for this column is selected with the assistance of the society’s Vice President Nancy Tweedie and Research Director Jan Cannon.

Excerpts from the Wednesday, September 2, 1931, Paso Robles Advertiser:

P.R. Pioneer in Exciting Experience

–The large city dailies have devoted a good deal of space to tell of the adventures of Mrs. Harriet E. Exline, a resident of Paso Robles until two months ago, after being lost in the wilds of the American River a week ago last Sunday.

Mrs. Exline was out picnicking with a group of friends living near her present home in the Auburn district, about forty miles north of Sacramento, when she wandered away from camp and lost herself in the little traveled country, at eleven in the morning that Sunday.

Looking Back Paso Robles

Click here to read the full front page of the September 2, 1931 issue of the Paso Robles Advertiser

Realizing that a lost person travels in circles and probably travels away, rather than toward camp, and fearing the rattlers that abound in that section, Mrs. Exline, despite her 70 years, waded the American river and climbed atop a rock in its center, waiting until 4 the next day, until rescued by a member of the posse sent out to search for her. One of the posse stepped on a six-foot rattler with 14 buttons while searching for her.

Relatives telephoning to learn of Mrs. Exline’s health, fund she was resting with a daughter, Mrs. Paul W. Riley, in Sacramento, suffering only with exposure.

Mrs. Exline will be remembered as being an old pioneer and landowner in Paso Robles and mother of Bill Exline of the Central Meat Market. Mrs. Exline has been commended editorially and favorably mentioned in the newspapers for her clear thinking in stationing herself as she did.

Water level not receding in reservoir

Contrary to the gossip that has been going on about, the reservoir supplying Paso Robles with water is practically full. During the protracted heat wave last week, and while forest fires were burning all about Paso Robles, the water level did go down a foot or two, but has since risen.

If the new well had not been sunk, Paso Robles might have been in crying need of water, but the new five foot well more than supplies the needs of Paso Roblans.

Pair arrested for looting fighter’s car

M.B. “Spike” Hinman, 27, of Atascadero, is being held in the county jail in San Luis Obispo, and his pal, Albert Dellagano, is out on bail, jointly charged with stealing two tires, tubes and rims, with a box of tools from the Ford car of A.G. Durrant, Sunday night, while it was parked on the road near Old Creek between Templeton and Cayucos.

Durrant had been out fighting fire, and as he and W.W. Wimmer, fire warden, approached the car, a machine driven by Hinman hurriedly passed them. Dellagano was left behind in the brush with part of the booty. Hinman was apprehended and arrested by Constable Roy Porter, of Atascadero, Monday afternoon and lodged in jail charged with petty theft. He made a complete confession to District Attorney Brazil.

Dellagano was arrested Tuesday evening at his ranch on Lone Creek by Constable Carl Peterson of Templeton. He pleaded not guilty before the judge of Templeton, and is out on bail at present.


Read previous Looking Back articles


Thank you to sponsors of Looking Back

Paso Robles Pioneer Museum – Come take a real look back into local Paso Robles history. Open Thursday through Sunday from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. 2010 Riverside Ave., Paso Robles, CA 93446, www.pasoroblespioneermuseum.org (805) 239-4556.

Estrella Warbird Museum is an aviation museum dedicated to the restoration and preservation of military aircraft, vehicles, and memorabilia. Woodland Auto Display is also open. Hours: Thursday through Sunday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.. 4251 Dry Creek Road, Paso Robles, CA 93446, ewarbirds.org, (805) 227-0440.

Creative Concrete & Design delivers the highest level of professional concrete work. Operating in San Luis Obispo County since 2002, Karl Rush brings 35 years of concrete experience to every job and will ensure that you receive the very best quality work. Over the years they have completed a great many works on residential homes. They are very creative and willing to explore options for your next project. Concrete projects have many factors to consider to bring your vision to life. creativeconcreteanddesign.com, (805) 896-1384.

Golden Anchor Financial Services is committed to helping you find the right mortgage product for your needs. They understand that every borrower is different, and offer a variety of products to meet individual requirements. They make the process of securing a mortgage simple and straightforward by offering you the latest in financial tools that enable you to make sound financial choices. Call them at (805) 473-7733 on the Central Coast or (559) 473-7733 in the Central Valley.

1800 El Pomar is the site of a historic Templeton ranch located just three miles east of town. The property features an iconic, aged redwood barn, 3 story tank house, original farmhouse with an outdoor garden, original water tank structures, and many other original ranch buildings. Set on 20+ acres of vineyards, the 360-degree views of rolling oak-studded hills and surrounding vines are a photographer’s dream. A prime ceremony location exists in the vineyards behind the barn between two beautiful oaks. The northwest-facing location creates plenty of shade for your guests in an early to late afternoon setting. A perfect venue with plenty of open space to customize your wedding or event. www.1800elpomar.com

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About the author: Reporter Jackie Iddings

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