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January 7, 2017 - Today we drove south to the city of San Jacinto to see the Francisco Estudillo Mansion.  The 1885 mansion dates from the Spanish ruled Mission Era, to the Mexican California Era, through the settlement of the San Jacinto Valley by American and European settlers.  Francisco Estudillo was San Jacinto's first postmaster and was also appointed Mission Indian Agent for the Federal Government, responsible for 32 reservations in southern and central California.  Many of the Estudillo family married into other early famous California families such as the Pico family.

Photography wasn't allowed inside the mansion, but it didn't really matter since none of the original furnishings survive.  The downstairs rooms, with 13 foot high ceilings, all had the original friezes intact that were painted when the house was first built.  The rooms were finished with period furniture.  The second story veranda wraps around the house on three sides.  The ceiling height on the second floor is nine feet.

Next to the mansion is the San Jacinto Museum that was founded in 1939.  We were lucky because today the curator of the museum, Betty Jo Dunham, gave us the tour.  Betty Jo is 90 years old and had lived in the mansion in her youth.

One of the larger exhibits in the museum displays a model of a Russian ANT-25 airplane that landed in San Jacinto in 1937.  The crew flew this ANT-25 single engine aircraft non-stop from Moscow in 62 hours.  All the cities along the California coast were fogged in and the plane was low on fuel.  They didn't make it to their intended San Diego destination and landed in San Jacinto instead.

The Italian juniper trees in front of the mansion were planted in 1885 and soar above the house.

Here's Judy with Betty Jo Dunham, the curator of the museum.

On the way to the mansion, we stopped for breakfast at Corky's Kitchen and Bakery in Yucaipa.  The food is very good and the portions are huge, although we stuck with just the traditional bacon and eggs.  However, their omelets are made with five eggs and the servings looked enormous.

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Last modified: September 27, 2017