Santa Clarita Valley History In Pictures
Power House No. 1 During Aqueduct Construction
San Francisquito Canyon

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According to a typed caption by Perkins, this photograph shows Pablo Araujo pulling his string of mules into Power House No. 1 in about 1910, while the Los Angeles Aqueduct system was under construction. (Power House No. 1 was and is part of the L.A. Aqueduct system.)

Historian Ann Stansell identifies the location thusly (2018): "The road cut visible in the background is the north end of 5N27. The road was constructed circa 1910 to provide access the LeBrun and Hogback aqueduct camps located along the eastern ridge line of the canyon above the St. Francis Dam ruins. The road is still used daily by the DWP as a access route to Drinkwater Reservoir. Those are portable aqueduct buildings on the LeBrun Ranch."

According to Reynolds (1992), the Araujo family, which Reynolds spells Arujo, lived up San Francisquito Canyon past the Ruiz family. Reynolds says Pablo, their son, became a renowned mule skinner (muleteer), "delivering supplies for the old Los Angeles aqueduct system."

Perkins adds that in 1919, nearly a decade later, Pablo "is said to have had 54 mules on the string, hitched four abreast, for moving heavy equipment from the Saugus Train Station to the Power House in San Francisquito Canyon."

Perkins obtained this photograph from an Araujo family member, Mrs. Frances Araujo Anderson.

It should be noted that Reynolds (1992), on page 76, shows a photograph with substantially similar wagons and a similarly configured string of mules; he identifies the driver in that photograph as Frank Lebrun, who also lived in this section of San Francisquito Canyon and sold land to the DWP for the St. Francis Dam and reservoir.

AP2320: 19200 dpi jpeg from copy print.

L.A. Aqueduct
Construction ~1910

Employee Time Book 1928

Powerhouse Fire 2013 x100+

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