I always enjoy Marilyn Anderson’s monthly Hometown Spirit newsletter published out of downtown Upland’s Cooper Museum and available for free around town (I get mine at the museum or at my periodontist’s).
I’ve meant to share a long chunk of a couple of essays published there last year and written by former Uplander Shelby Garrett. He wrote about his family’s arrival in Upland in 1943 from Alabama and about the businesses along Foothill Boulevard back then. They deserve a wider audience. Marilyn said it was fine with her. Take it away, Shelby:
“Dad was able to get us a 3-bedroom, pre-fab home in Parkside, the huge 550-unit project on the SE corner of Campus and Foothill. Big parking lots separated the groups of houses and there were nice grassy areas between the houses. They had basketball courts and every day when Dad came home from work we’d all go play.
“In the ’40s, most people still had ice boxes for refrigeration. The Union Ice Company truck delivered daily to the project. The blocks of 25 to 50 lbs. would be loaded onto a two-wheel pushcart rolling up and down the sidewalks going from house to house delivering various quantities. Tom, the ice man, would let me split the blocks with an ice pick and give me 50 cents for helping him. Boy, was I rich!
“There was a large open field from Eleventh Street down to the San Antonio Hospital on San Bernardino Road, where I used to go rabbit hunting. And quite often Mom would have rabbit to cook for our supper.
“On the NE corner of Foothill and Campus was a little white stuccoed service station with Pegasus, the Flying Red Horse, as its symbol, later to become a Mobil station. Right next door to the east was a little cafe called Pow’s Chow. Mr. Pow was in business there for many years.
“On the NW corner was Gilliland Gardens Nursery, the greenhouses and the small Upland Motel. In 1945 they moved their business to the north side of Foothill at Third Avenue. My parents bought the old nursery and motel, making the nursery house our home and moving the greenhouses over to Third Avenue. Mom later had her office (Garrett/Tyberg Real Estate) in that house.
“On the SW corner of Foothill and Campus was Martinez’ Grocery Store and next to it was Martinez’ Long Bar Restaurant, where you could get an excellent Mexican dinner for about $1.75.”
That wraps up the four corners of Foothill and Campus: Gilliland Gardens, gas station, Parkside and Martinez’. Shelby’s piece concludes here tomorrow with more ’40s-era Foothill businesses.