“He traveled the World, but loved here best”
-Says the inscription on Mr. Price’s tombstone
The Price Ranch was once part of the Rancho La Laguna Spanish land-grant. Mr. Shaw bought the Ranch and surrounding acreage in 1846, living in the small the adobe until building the Victorian in 1890. Just after the turn of the century, he sold it to Mr. Price, an inventor of automotive rubber parts. Using his not inconsiderable wealth, Mr. Price quickly set about turning the ranch into a model dairy and cattle ranch, using only the best materials, and ‘modern technology’. Together with his French wife Odette, they developed the cottages on The Ranch to house their many friends, Ranch Foreman and workers. When they weren’t in Paris, they threw lavish parties here on The Ranch.
Mr Price died in 1946 and is buried in the Graveyard on the highest point of the Ranch. Odette continued to live and operate The Ranch until her death in Paris in 1974. Odette was quite the character. A strong independent woman before her time, she always wore purple, her Cadillacs were always purple or green and being French, she seemed to always have just a hint of lace showing. At any rate, when she died in 1974, she left The Ranch to “her favorite” campanion Rudy, as a Life Estate. This meant that Rudy could live on The Ranch, collect all income from it, but it wasn’t his to sell or encumber. After 30 years of this, The Ranch looked worn down; unloved I call it.
In 1995, according to Mr. Price’s will it finally went to his Alma-mater, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. They sold it and in 2002 and I became the 4th landowner since the Spanish Land-grant days. I consider myself the Steward of The Price Ranch. Its my pleasure to dust if off, restore as needed, keep the history alive, and mostly give it love.