Near Ventura in Ventura County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
Scorpion Was Once A Busy Sheep Ranch
The view from here was very different in 1915.
You would be looking at a lively, well-organized ranch complex, echoing with ringing hammers, shouts of French and Italian workers, bleating sheep, and crowing roosters. You might even smell fresh bread - or mutton stew.
Santa Cruz's isolation from the mainland - which attracts visitors today - also made it appealing to ranchers. The sea was a big fence, protecting livestock from predators, disease, and poachers. Isolation brought challenges too, especially with transportation. The ranch had to be as self-sufficient as today's campers. Scorpion's residents adapted, making the most of island resources: island clay was turned into bricks and caves became makeshift "fridges."
What's old is new again
Some of Scorpion's buildings, including this one, have been preserved by the National Park Service. This shed, one of the oldest left at Scorpion Ranch, was stabilized and given a new roof. The exact location of Scorpion's original blacksmith shop is unknown. Evidence shows it was part of a long row of utility sheds and shops on this
Where can I see ranch history?
The Scorpion ranch buildings that remain are all right in this area. Many have disappeared, and you will only see them in the photographs on this panel. If you look around the valley, you'll see other signs of Scorpion's ranching past — fences, stone retaining walls, and eucalyptus and cypress groves — all built or planted more than 100 years ago.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Agriculture. A significant historical year for this entry is 1915.
Location. 34° 2.938′ N, 119° 33.492′ W. Marker is near Ventura, California, in Ventura County. Marker is on Scorpion Ranch road. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Ventura CA 93001, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 2 other markers are within 12 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Flood of 1997 (here, next to this marker); Anacapa Island (approx. 11.4 miles away).
More about this marker. The marker is located at the site of the former Scorpion Ranch on Santa Cruz Island in Channel Islands National Park.
Also see . . . Scorpion Ranch, Santa Cruz Island (Islapedia). (Submitted on October 8, 2020.)
Credits. This page was last revised on August 20, 2023. It was originally submitted on October 8, 2020, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Lamorinda, California. This page has been viewed 99 times since then and 15 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on October 8, 2020, by Andrew Ruppenstein of Lamorinda, California.