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Hilaria Reed and son John
Hilaria Sanchez Reed Garcia (1813-1868)  and John Joseph Reed (1837-1899), wife and son of
John Thomas Reed, owner of the Rancho Corte Madera Del Presidio, which included what is now
Mill Valley. Hilaria ran the rancho for 25 years following the death of her husband,
and married Bernardino Garcia in 1844. There are no known photographs of John Thomas Reed.
Photo c. 1863.
File: Portraits – Reed Family N1389A


Samuel Throckmorton
Samuel Throckmorton, developer of Rancho Saucelito, c. 1865. He built a hunting lodge in 1866
on a site that was later bounded by Linden Lane, Ethel Avenue and Montford Avenue, and named it
The Homestead
(see photo below). This structure later was the source of the name given
to the unincorporated area of Mill Valley known as Homestead Valley.
File: Portraits – S. Throckmorton N1396

The Gardner family at The Homestead
The Homestead, the hunting lodge built in 1866 by Samuel Throckmorton (see photo above). The site is today bounded by Linden Lane and Montford and Ethel Avenues. The superintendent of the grounds, Jacob Gardner, and his family, pictured above on the porch, lived in half the ranch, and Throckmorton or guests were weekend visitors to the other half. Photo c. 1888.
File: Portraits – Gardner Family MVUX

Three Wells Park
Relatives and friends of Mrs. Karen Connally visit Three Wells Park
 in the Cascade area of Mill Valley, c. 1890.
File: Cascade Area CMLPL033

The Old Mill
The Old Mill, built by John Thomas Reed in approximately 1836, is the source of the name Mill Valley. The original mill decayed over the years and was faithfully reconstructed from fallen redwoods
in 1991, in its original spot in Old Mill Park. Photo taken in the 1890s.
File: Old Mill MVN1807 CMLPL025

Reed's adobe house
In approximately 1836, John Thomas Reed hired Native Americans to build an adobe
brick house on what is now Lagoma Avenue and Locke Lane. Wood was cut in his saw mill
and used for the beams in the building. Reed married 19-year-old Hilaria Sanchez, and their four children were born in this adobe. Fire destroyed most of the structure in 1884. Photo c. 1890.
File: Portraits – Reed Family N128

Sulphur Springs
Sulphur Springs was a favorite retreat in the latter part of the nineteenth century.
Visitors would come to drink the water in the hope of curing whatever ailed them.
The area in this photo is now the Old Mill School playground. Photo c. 1892.
File: Sulphur Spring MVU1227

Tamalpais Land & Water Company
Tamalpais Land & Water Co, 128 Throckmorton Avenue. In the center is Chief Engineer
M. M. O'Shaughnessy, who began surveying Mill Valley in 1889 in preparation for the
great land auction of 1890. O'Shaugnhessy declared that he divided the lots in the
best possible way to maximize views for every dwelling. Photo c. 1893.
File: Businesses – Pre 1900 Tam Land & Water Co. N411

Family camping in Mill Valley
A family camping at what is now the corner of Throckmorton Avenue and Eugene Street, c. 1893.
File: Portraits – Lundquist Family MVNX

Miller Avenue
Looking up Miller Avenue toward the Wheeler Martin store on Throckmorton, c. 1893. The narrow sign beyond the horse and carriage reads Bellevue Hotel, with an arrow pointing left. The horse
and carriage are in front of a building with a sign reading J. M. Thran, Plumbing and Gas Fitting.
File: Streets – Miller Avenue MVN1491

Mill Valley railroad station
The first Mill Valley Depot in the downtown area, c. 1894. It was located where Lomita and Ashford Avenues now meet, about eighty yards south of its later (and present) location. The fireman,
H. Westcott, is in white overalls. Jack Brady, the conductor, is third from the left. O. Collister,
the station agent, is the short, bearded man in doorway (3rd from right) and his son is
in front nearest the rails. Mill Valley was also called Eastland in those days.
File: Railroads Stations – Mill Valley – First Railroad Station MVN0167

Summit School class of 1894
The 1894 class photo of Summit School, one of Mill Valley's earliest schools.
File: Schools – Summit School MVU1389

Downtown Mill Valley and beyond
In the lower half of this photo is downtown Mill Valley before the turn of the twentieth century
 (c. 1895). Lovell is the street running left to right in the foreground, with the larger
Throckmorton Avenue running nearly parallel. Left and right streets are Bernard and Madrona.
The large house on the left, at the corner of Bernard and Lovell, is the 1891 McInnis House, still standing. Also still standing is the Daybreak House, up the hill on the right center of the photo.
Photo Temporarily Unavailable

Blithedale Road
Looking up Blithedale Road, now East Blithedale Avenue, from Alto, c. 1896.
File: Streets – East Blithedale MVUX

Mt Tam and Muir Woods Scenic Railway
The first Mt Tamalpais & Muir Woods Railway train to go up Mount Tamalpais, August 26, 1896.
File: Railroads – Mill Valley & Mt. Tamalpais/Muir Woods – Mesa Station MVUX


Mill Valley depot
View of the Mill Valley Depot from Sunnyside Avenue, c. 1896. The old station is at the left, behind
the Mt Tamalpais Railway passenger car. The station at right was used by both the
North Pacific Coast Railroad and Mt Tamalpais & Muir Woods Railway.
File: Railroad Stations – Mill Valley – Second Railroad Station MVUX

May Day celebration
May Day
festivals were the largest school celebrations of the era. This one is at Grethel Hall, c. 1898.
File: Celebrations MVUX

Blithedale Hotel
Blithedale Hotel, the first hotel in Mill Valley, was built by Dr. John S. Cushing in 1873 and opened
 initially as a sanitarium. When Cushing died in 1879 it closed briefly and reopened as a hotel.
In 1912 the main hotel building was demolished and the land was subdivided into 70 choice lots.
Some of the original hotel cottages still stand today. Photo c. 1899.
File: Hotels and Taverns – Blithedale Hotel MVN1763

Miller Avenue
Looking up Miller Avenue, c. 1899 Tamalpais High School is now to the left of the lower part of the photo. The Jacob Gardner home, The Maples, is the lower of the two houses in the distance. Because only one track was laid between the main line at Almonte Station and the branch line to the Mill Valley depot (and there was no turntable at the depot), trains would run backwards on their return trip. To the left of the horseback rider on Miller Avenue is approximately where KFC stands today.
Photo Temporarily Unavailable

Last updated: 12/26/2008 5:15:53 PM