Members of the Victor Valley Chamber of Commerce attended a mixer at the Kemper Campbell Ranch in September. Family member Laura Campbell made everyone feel welcome at the historic ranch.
The annual event is one of the most popular of the year, giving attendees a chance to view the main ranch house, built in the 1930s. Great views and a chance to walk around some of the ranch grounds were other perks for the lucky attendees.
They also enjoyed a catered buffet featuring BBQ sliders, appetizers, and Reflection Catering’s famous bacon goodies.
The first recorded survey of the ranch is dated 1858. The ranch, then called The Verde, was owned by the Brown brothers. One house on the property was built by John Brown more than 130 years ago. He built the first toll road over the Cajon Pass and the house was used as a hotel along the Mormon Trail. Many of the buildings on the ranch date back to the turn of the century or before.
The Campbells bought the ranch in 1924, when it was a cattle ranch. Cattle from all over the desert were brought there to brand, or to ship out on the railroad. In 1943, the name was changed to Kemper Campbell Ranch in memory of the oldest brother, a B-24 pilot in World War II who was killed in an air crash that year.
The main house was built in 1929 out of adobe bricks made on the ranch and dried in the sun, the same method used for Monterey-style houses in early California.