The San Fernando (Newhall) Pass
And the Pioneer Traffic That Went Over It. By VERNETTE SNYDER RIPLEY The Quarterly of the Historical Society of Southern California, 1947-48.
Vernette Snyder Ripley’s 16-part history of the Newhall Pass
once known as the San Fernando Pass (ergo the name, San Fernando Road)
is the authoritative text on this subject and forms the basis for later works
by Santa Clarita Valley historians such as A.B. Perkins and Jerry Reynolds.
Indeed, Perkins’ assistance with a bit of Ripley’s research is footnoted in her text.
Ripley traces the travels of the 18th-century settlers of the little pueblo of
Los Angeles through the development of Beale’s Cut and the 1910 opening of the Newhall
auto tunnel (which would become Sierra Highway). Included are details of other
contemporary goings-on in the area, such as the valley’s early oil discoveries,
the history of which is intertwined with the players involved in the road improvements.
Ripley’s history was published in four editions of The Quarterly of the
Historical Society of Southern California
in March and September-December (Fall) 1947, and March and June, 1948.
Italics and footnotes are those of the author. Thanks to reader Stan Walker for sending .pdf’s of the
first and second parts, which had been missing from our collection.