John Vonderlin: 1906: More about the Big Power House at Balboa on Half Moon Bay

Story from John Vonderlin

Email John (benloudman@sbcglobal.net)

Hi June,
  This is a Balboa-related article from the January 28th, 1906 issue of the “Call.” Enjoy. John 
 
WORK IS COMMENCED ON BIG POWER-HOUSE
Ocean Shore Railway Begins
Construction of Its Mammoth Plant.
 
 HALFMOON BAY, Jan. 27.— Work is at last completely under way on the gigantic power-house of the Ocean Shore Railroad. The immense structure is located on the new townsite of Balboa of the railroad company. The entire building will be of concrete, the material for its construction being quarried on holdings of the company. A. H. Lavm has been installed as superintendent of construction and already he has a large force of men at work. The number will be increased as the building progresses toward completion. This power-house will be one of the largest in California. It will have a capacity of 4000 watts. Power for the operation of the entire railroad from San Francisco to Santa Cruz  will be generated in this house. Oil will be the fuel used. The oil will be shipped here by steamer.
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Hi June,
  This is from an article about the OSR winning condemnation of a hundred fifty lots along their planned route in the city limits. It also included this excerpt about their Half Moon Bay area Power-house, planned in the new town of Balboa. This is from the November 16th, 1905 issue of the “Call.” Enjoy. John
 
Continuing, Mr. Corbett said:
    “This morning the site for the power house of
the company, which will furnish electricity to
operate the cars from here to Santa. Cruz, was
agreed upon. This site is just at the northern
end of Half Moon Bay and in a splendid posi-
tion. We have entered into a contract with
the Standard Oil Company for as much oil as
we require at a reasonable faire. The oil
will be delivered at the power-house, to be
used as fuel, on barges that, will be towed to
the company’s pier on Half Moon Bay.
Just north of the power-house site the com
pany owns 1300 acres of land and on the land
Mr Burnham of Chicago, the emminent archi-
tect, will lay out a model city. The directors
of the corporation have agreed to name the
new village Balboa, in honor of the discoverer
of the Pacific, and it is our hope that a splen-
did watering place, as the site warrants, will
soon spring up.”
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The following regarding “Balboa” is a partial message from Elaine M.Teixeira

“... do know the railroad company was trying to develop a city, one reason why so many lots were so small and substandard. Know my mother had to buy up extra lots down by the Lighthouse cafe in order to sell lots my dad bought at tax sales (unpaid taxes) as lots were 25 foot lots. I am pretty sure that our grocery store was always on Etheldore and Balboa… though it was called Sunshine Valley Road (Aunt Lil says her Dad gave the name to the road, so before might have been Balboa). On current computer maps, shows name of what I thought was officially Balboa, as Sunshine Valley Road.”

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About June Morrall

1947 - 2010
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