My wise old grandmother told me that if I didn’t study history, I’d be doomed to repeat it. That seems to imply that all history is bad which, of course, it’s not. But since she was born during World War II, got married during the Great Depression, lived through World War II, had her oldest son serve in the Air Force during the Korean War, had her youngest son serve in the Army during the Vietnam War, I think I know what she was getting at.
I do love history, especially war history. It just boggles my mind how easily people on one side of an imaginary line are only too happy to kill people on the other side of an imaginary line.
My other favorite history specialty is ruins. For some reason I love old ruins. Makes me wonder what happened that caused something that was built to fall into neglect.
The mountains and desert of East San Diego County are full of ruins. Many of the old homesteads, resorts, and service buildings fell out of favor when they were bypassed by modern roads and highways.
On my January 2017 foray into East San Diego County, I found the ruins of Buckman Springs, known as Indian Springs during the 1870s and Emery Soda Springs during the 1880s. It was a small settlement on the road east from San Diego to Yuma AZ, and the mineral springs were well known throughout Southern California and were a common stop for mountain travelers.
From the 1870s to the late 1910s, it was home to the Buckman Springs Lithia Water bottling plant. Lithia Water was marketed as a table soda but was never successful because the water was discolored. I mean, who wants to drink brown water?
Ruins found in January 2017:
The Buckman House
The 1880s bottling plant
Spring-fed water tank
The 1912 bottling plant
Best graffiti on the 1912 building
“Drinking brew and having fun
Cause we’re the Class of ’81”
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