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A page from our history

 

This 1893 photo shows the grand house on Los Trancos Road known as The Hawthorns, home at the time to the Judge James Allen family, according to the Portola Valley history book "Life on the San Andreas Fault" by Nancy Lund and Pamela Gullard.

Pictured, from left, are Clara, James and Ruth Allen; their nurse, Bridget Cox; and Harriet and Francis Allen.

In 1885, the Allens bought the mansion and the 82 acres between Alpine and Los Trancos roads, and owned it until selling it in 1912 to the Woods family, according to the historians.

Frederick N. Woods III, who died in April 2008, bequeathed the $11 million Hawthorns estate to the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, which took possession in 2011. That agency has yet to decide what it will do with the property.

(Photo by G.T. White/Courtesy of Portola Valley Archives.)

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