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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Walnut Creek in Contra Costa County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Meet the Many Faces of Jim Howe

 
 
Meet the Many Faces of Jim Howe Marker image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, June 10, 2020
1. Meet the Many Faces of Jim Howe Marker
Inscription.  When James Pomeroy Howe died in 1970, at the age of 91, he left behind not only his estate and its history, but also a legacy of intriguing stories of his adventures here and abroad.

While growing up in Kansas Jim Howe longingly dreamed of "seeing the world". This dream was transformed to reality when Jim became an Associated Press foreign correspondent. He was stationed in some of the world's most exciting cities - London, Paris, Warsaw, Berlin, Brussels, Moscow, Tokyo, Peking, Shanghai, Bombay, Washington, Honolulu and San Francisto. Besides writing for most of the famous newspapers of his time, Jim Howe interviewed prominent figures of the early 20th century - Gandhi, Lindberg, George Bernard Shaw, King George and Lloyd George to name a few. As a foreign correspondent Jim spent three decades of his life trotting the globe covering World War I, the Russo-Polish war, the Sino-Japanese war, the Chinese Revolution and events such as the San Francisco earthquake. It was during his time as a World War I correspondent that Jim met his future wife, Mia, while passing through Luxembourg. Mia was the daughter of an Austrian

Meet the Many Faces of Jim Howe Marker - wide view image. Click for full size.
By Andrew Ruppenstein, June 10, 2020
2. Meet the Many Faces of Jim Howe Marker - wide view
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aristocrat from Vienna.

Howe Homestead Park was dubbed "Gopher Gulch Ranch” by Jim Howe himself because of the abundance of resident gophers on the premises. Howe purchased the property in 1910 while he was a war correspondent, and retired here in 1935. Jim and his wife, Mia, enjoyed entertaining guests with elaborate parties. Jim was widely known as an expert winemaker having been taught the art by his friend, master vintner Herman Wente. He enjoyed entertaining guests in the dark coolness of his wine cellar.

Another childhood dream was to become a reality for Jim Howe in his retirement years at "Gopher Gulch". As a young farm boy growing up in Kansas, Jim has wanted to raise pigeons, but his father would never agree to it. However, Jim became inspired while on assignment in Peking by the ancient art of Chinese flying pigeon flutes. He began raising his own flock of pigeons and collecting the delicate flutes. Jim would often entertain friends and neighbors with his birds flying overhead, flutes attached to their tail feathers, the haunting sound of flutes filling the air.

Jim Howe, known locally as a country Renaissance gentleman, was also a collector, gourmet cook, grew walnuts and almonds, and created a sanctuary for pheasants, doves, quail and exotic birds on his Walnut Creek estate.

The Howe Homestead is now a "special use park"

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that was acquired by the City of Walnut Creek as part of its 1974 Open Space bond election.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: CommunicationsParks & Recreational Areas. A significant historical year for this entry is 1970.
 
Location. 37° 53.953′ N, 122° 2.916′ W. Marker is in Walnut Creek, California, in Contra Costa County. Marker can be reached from Walnut Boulevard east of Homestead Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2950 Walnut Boulevard, Walnut Creek CA 94596, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Southern Pacific Railroad Depot (approx. 0.6 miles away); Liberty Bell Replica (approx. 0.6 miles away); Women's Club of Walnut Creek Clubhouse (approx. 0.6 miles away); Botelho's Island & Creek Confluence (approx. 0.6 miles away); Botelho Home (approx. 0.6 miles away); Broadway Shopping Center (approx. 0.6 miles away); Harlan's Livery Stable (approx. 0.6 miles away); Downtown Traffic (approx. 0.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Walnut Creek.
 
More about this marker. The marker although not difficult to find, is not where one would ordinarily expect to see it. Rather than the usual by-the-parking-lot-at-the-pedestrian-entry, this marker is sited on the south side of the main house - an area one wouldn't be walking in except by chance.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 24, 2020. It was originally submitted on July 24, 2020, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California. This page has been viewed 52 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on July 24, 2020, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Sacramento, California.
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Mar. 8, 2021