Santa Clarita Valley History In Pictures

Mitchell Cemetery
Lost Canyon | Canyon Country

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The Mitchell Cemetery (aka Mitchell-Dyer family cemetery) in present-day Canyon Country, seen here about 1961, possibly earlier. Headstones mark the final resting places of (from left) a Dyer family member; Iva A(ngeline) Mitchell, b. Sept. 19, 1878, d. June 14, 1941; and John W(esley) Mitchell, b. Sept. 6, 1875, d. Feb. 16, 1947.

John and Iva were two of the six children born to Thomas F. and Martha (Taylor) Mitchell, who married in 1865 — five years after Thomas F. established a homestead at the near the present-day junction of Lost and Sand Canyon Roads. The family plot was located on a bluff overlooking the opposite bank of the Santa Clara River.

Thomas F. Mitchell (b. Dec. 24, 1827, d. 1907) and Martha (b. Dec. 24, 1847, d. Aug. 10, 1905) are buried there, as are some 20 descendants and other followers including certain Helveys and Hiettes, which families labored in the borax works.

The original gravestones are long gone, having been replaced with smaller cement blocks bearing a metal plaque. In the modern period, visitors continue to leave pennies and small trinkets on the grave markers, ostensibly to pay Charon's fee.

The cemetery property is owned by the company that is preparing, as of 2012, to build the Vista Canyon Ranch mixed-use development project. Plans call for the graveyard to be preserved in perpetuity as open space.

A census follows:

Dyer, C. Perry
b. 1848 d. 1925

Dyer, Infant
b. unknown d. unknown

Dyer, James Thomas
b. unknown d. unknown

Dyer, Mary Ritter
b. unknown d. 1945

Helvey, Infant
b. unknown d. unknown

Hiette, Infant
b. unknown d. unknown

Hiette, Luther Edward
b. Aug. 7, 1903 d. Oct. 21, 1959

Infant, Unknown
b. unknown d. unknown

Insley, Leroy
b. 1925 d. 1941

Mitchell, Frank Ambrose
b. Nov. 14, 1870 d. Feb. 13, 1950

Mitchell, Iva Angeline Dyer
b. Sept. 19, 1878 d. June 14, 1941

Mitchell, John Wesley
b. Aug. 7, 1903 d. 1984

Mitchell, John Wesley
b. Sept. 6, 1875 d. Feb. 16, 1947

Mitchell, Martha Catherine Taylor
b. Dec. 24, 1847 d. Aug. 10, 1905

Mitchell, Mary Elizabeth
b. Dec. 22, 1865 d. July 3, 1881

Mitchell, Oscar Clifford
b. Jan. 7, 1905 d. Oct. 29, 1954

Mitchell, Thomas
b. June 27, 1868 d. Sept. 29, 1875

Mitchell, Thomas Finley
b. Dec. 24, 1827 d. 1907

Steere, Van G.
b. 1897 d. 1941

Walters, George
b. 1874 d. 1940

Youngblood, Joseph E., Sr.
b. 1860 d. 1948

Note: Perkins' census included Gus LeBrun (1884-1924), but that's wrong. Gus LeBrun is buried in the Ruiz Cemetery as seen here.

Further reading:

Tales of Lang and Soledad: The Story of an Adobe by A.B. Perkins, 1961.

George Walters and the Dyer Family by Jo Ellen Rismanchi, 1998.

Solemint's Early Neighbors: Memories of Mary Warmuth Sathre and Friends by Jo Ellen Rismanchi, 2001.

AP1819: 9600 dpi jpeg from copy print

(Vista Canyon Ranch)


Book by Richard F. Mitchell 2002

• Perkins Story


Cemetery ~1961


Adobe Home: Early Photos


1888 Mitchell House


R.F. Mitchell 1919-2002


Dyer Family, SCVTV 2009


Geo. Walters, 1874-1940


Archive Video 2008


Lost Cyn Bridge Widening 2012


• Specific Plan

• Appendix

• Revisions to EIR

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