Beaumont formerly San Gorgonio, is an attractive little town at the head of the San Gorgonio Canon. It is sometimes designated as ” the summit,” being located on the divide,” 2,500 feet above the sea level. It is on the Yuma division of the S. P. Railroad, twenty miles east of Colton, and twenty-five miles from San Bernardino. It has a post office, telegraph, telephone and express offices and stage connection with San Jacinto. It has a weekly newspaper, the Sentinel, a public schoolhouse which cost $3,500, with an average attendance of 100; a Presbyterian church; three hotels, one of which cost $25,000, and several stores of general merchandise. The population is about 400.
Calico the old and famous mining town, is about seven miles from Daggett on the south, with which point it has stage connections, as well as with Barstow. It has an elevation of 2,600 feet. The name is derived from the variegated colors of the mountains to the northward. The town lies on the south side of the mountain, and thus has no need of a system of sewerage. Good water is to be had from a water company supplying the town. There are here a post office, a telegraph and an express office, also a schoolhouse, a hotel, and several general stores. There are several quartz-mills in operation, and the yield is good and constant. The statistics of these mines are given elsewhere. In addition to the gold and silver mines, there are extensive borax mines which pay well, worked by capitalists of San Francisco.
The Calico Print, devoted to the mining interests of the region, was started here in 1882, but it has suspended publication lately. The climate of Calico is dry and healthful. The population is about 800.
The Town Of Chino is eligibly and centrally located on the tract. The lots are large, with broad streets and alleys to all. Suitable blocks are reserved for spacious parks. Pure, soft water is abundantly obtained on all parts of the tract and town site, at from fifteen to thirty-five feet, and artesian water has been piped from lands northeast of Pomona, to a reservoir located north of the town site, and thence distributed through the town under pressure which is sufficient for all desired purposes.
Richard Gird is the well-known owner of the Chino Ranch, San Bernardino County.
Cucamonga Vineyard consists of about 160 acres of vines that for some years have been in full bearing. It contained in 1871 some 150,000 vines. A large by the old vineyard company, and by new settlers, many of whom are planting the raisin grape. The soil is quite free from alkali. The vineyard, with the buildings and apparatus appertaining thereto, is owned by Los Angeles capitalists. Within a few months, in 1883, applications were made to cover all the public lands in the vicinity-some 4,000 acres. The ” center ” of the settlement, named Cucamonga, is about two miles north of North Cucamonga, which is on the line of the Santa Fe Railway.
Here, beside the old winery, are two stores, a post office with daily mail, a church, a school house costing 84,000, blacksmith shop, hotel, express office, etc. The legal name of the post office and the colony is simply ” Cucamonga,” in contradistinction from that of the settlement with which it is often confounded, North Cucamonga, founded in 1887, on the California Central Railway, seventeen miles west of San Bernardino. In December 1887, a violent wind – storm came near destroying this newborn town, but it pluckily rallied from that injury. From the trains at this point are taken the mails for Cucamonga (old office), Etiwanda and Grapelands. Here are post, express and telegraph offices, a fine railway depot, a general store, and a fine block containing the offices Cucamonga Water Company (which pipes to the town from the base of the mountain a good and abundant supply of spring water, under 100 feet pressure) a hotel, livery stable, etc. The company owned some 12,000 acres of arable land, suitable for citrus and deciduous fruits, and grain, part of the tract having been sold.
North Ontario is a new settlement on the California Central Railway, twenty miles from San Bernardino, and forty miles from Los Angeles. Its elevation is 1,200 feet, and it lies five miles from the base of the mountains. This settlement was laid out in April, 1887, on a tract of 200 acres bordering the east side of Euclid Avenue, which was sub-divided into town lots. A street railway ex-tends hence along the famous Euclid Avenue to Ontario, two miles to the southward. North Ontario has a post office, telegraph and express offices, church, school, hotel, freight and passenger depot, lumber yard, etc. It has abundant pure water, and its climate, free from fog and dampness, is said to be very beneficial to people with pulmonary troubles.
Daggett a town of considerable importance, is on the Atlantic & Pacific Railway, about twelve miles east of Barstow, and ninety-three miles from San Bernardino, at an elevation of 2,000 feet. It has a fine passenger and freight depot, and post office, telegraph, telephone, and express office (doing the express business of Calico), a large railroad eating- house, reduction works, two quartz mills aggregating twenty-five stamps, schools, churches, and several stores of general merchandise, being a supply depot for mining implements and equipments. Daggett has about 500 population, and it is growing in inhabitants and importance. The town is well supplied with excellent water, piped throughout.
Oro Grande the legal post office name of which is Halleck, is forty-five miles northeast of San Bernardino on the California Southern Railway. The town contains a post office with two daily mails, telegraph, telephone, and express offices, a weekly newspaper and several stores. The water is pure, good, and plentiful. The mining operations at Oro Grande are probably second in importance only to Colton. The character of the ore brought to light here seems to justify the eagerness with which capitalists, speculators, and miners are pouring in from all directions. There are extensive lime and marble quarries in the vicinity, but the all-absorbing interest at present is the recent rich ” strikes” in gold and silver. In the surrounding country are many stock ranchos, producing the finest meat that reaches the city market.
Rincon is the name applied to a tract lying on either side of the Santa Ana river, from ten to twenty miles below Riverside. This is one of the best-watered and richest farming sections of Southern California. For miles in extent the valley low-land raises yearly immense crops of corn without irrigation, and the semi-moist lands that lie a little higher, extending at the north through the Chino Rancho nearly to Pomona, produce good crops of small grains, as wheat and barley, much of this land also yielding good corn and other crops. In one place a spring supplies some 250 inches of water, which is used to run the Chino valley gristmill, being afterward turned to purposes of irrigation. This stream remains the same summer and winter, the lay of the, land” being such that the rains affect it very little, while the summer droughts do not diminish the water supply. The station and post office of Rincon is on the Santa Ana division of the California Central (Santa Fe) Railway, about twelve miles south of Riverside, and four miles from the Los Angeles County line. There are two daily mails here, a telegraph and express office, hotel, two general stores, etc.
Rialto, a settlement and town about two years old, is four miles west of San Bernardino, on the California Central Railway. It is at an elevation of 1,200 feet, on a gradual slope from the mountains eight miles to the northward. Rialto has quite a number of business houses, a new hotel of forty-five rooms, telegraph, ex-press and post office, school-houses and churches under construction, and a weekly newspaper, the Orange Grower. The plans have been approved for a branch school building of the University of Southern California, to be erected here. The water supply is excellent, being taken from the headwaters of Lytle creek, a mountain stream of perpetual flow. The Semi-Tropic Land and Water Company has here about 30,000 acres of land, suitable for almost every variety of fruit culture.
Source: An Illustrated History of Southern California: embracing the counties of San Diego, San Bernardino, Los Angeles and Orange, and the peninsula of lower California.