More things that aren’t here anymore

Reader Al Lopez of Victorian Mortgage on E Street, Ontario, compiled a list of businesses and sights that have vanished from the local landscape and faxed them over. “These are a few that I can remember. I’ve lived here since about 1949. My dad was born in Ontario in 1924 and has lived here his whole life,” Lopez wrote.

Unsure immediately what to do with it, I set the list aside, as I’m wont to do. The other day, tidying up my cubicle, I came across the list and made time to type it all up, essentially as Lopez wrote it. Enjoy.

On Holt Boulevard in Ontario: Bamboo Hut (bar, at Campus); Judy’s Past Time (bar and pool hall, between Lemon and Euclid), Tahiti Club (lounge, between Lemon and Euclid), Ford Lunch (restaurant, at Euclid), 1st Trust Bank (at Euclid), Orange Hotel (between Euclid and Sultana), Torley’s Market (at Sultana), Laddies (burgers, across from Torley’s), Sherman Williams (paint, at Sultana), Hoyt Lumber (at Plum), Dairy Queen (by Campus), Taco Lita (at San Antonio), Shady Grove Dairy (at San Antonio), Burger Lane (between San Antonio and Mountain), Citrus Motors (between San Antonio and Mountain), Mark Christopher (between Palm and Fern?), Valley Drive-In (movies, at Central).

On Euclid Avenue in Ontario: Bank of America (at B), California Theater (movies, at B), Fallis (clothing, at B), The Forum Theater (movies, ?), 1st National Bank (at E), Carnegie Library (at D), Walter’s Cafe (between F and G), Bank of Ontario (below overpass), JC Penney (below E), Bocanegra Bakery (at Francis), Donahoo’s Chicken (at G), Jasper the Ant picnic sign (for July 4th celebration).

On Mountain Avenue in Ontario: Market Basket, White Front, House of Pies.

Elsewhere in Ontario: Municipal dump on Mission — highest elevation in Ontario?, Hooker Headers, Drew Carriage, Chaffey College at 5th and Euclid, Daily Report building, Firestone Tires (Lemon and B), Grove School (near Sunkist), Greyhound Bus Station (on Transit Avenue), Ontario Police Station (behind old City Hall), GE Hotpoint plant, Delahoyt (sp?) Auto, radio stations KWOW and KASK, Lockheed Aircraft, National Guard unit with fighter jets.

On Holt Avenue in Pomona: Van de Kamp’s, International House of Pancakes, Standard Brands Paint, Angel’s Lumber, Pomona Valley Datsun, Bekins Storage, Thom McAn’s Shoes, Lloyds Lumber, Tate Cadillac, Catron’s Volkswagen, St. Charles Bar and Grill, Crocker National Bank.

Elsewhere in Pomona: Espiau’s, Orlando’s, Henry’s, Love’s Wood Pit, Xochimilco’s, Boys Market, Zody’s, Sears.

“Just to name a few,” Lopez notes. The understatement of the year.

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  • http://empoprise-ie.blogspot.com/ John E. Bredehoft

    I used to have my car serviced at Citrus Motors when it was on Holt. After they moved out to Interstate 15, I rarely went out there. Perhaps a day will come when major auto dealers move out of the auto malls and back into areas where people actually live…or perhaps that day won’t come.

    Of all of the places that could be added on Mountain Avenue in Ontario, I’ll mention just one — the Alpha Beta on Mountain between D and Flora. In that case, not only did the store disappear, but the entire Alpha Beta chain disappeared. The store used to sit where the 99 Cents Only Store is today.

  • Bob Terry

    DA, there isn’t enough time in the day or newsprint that could do this subject justice. I applaud Al for his insights and wisdom, i would love to see a group of us “locals” sit down one day and really talk about the old days. But one question I have to ask is about the radio station KWOW. Their tower was in Pomona off East End/Reservoir Ave. and I believe they always said they came to you from Pomona. Can I get a little help my fellow natives?

    [You might search for my blog post headlined "Radio, radio" a year or more ago. A lot of stuff about local radio was there and in the comments. -- DA]

  • shirley wofford

    Add “King Cole Market” at Holt and San Antonio — across the street from Taco Lita. Delicious rotisserie chicken for $1.19 and German Chocolate Cake that hasn’t existed anywhere since. A little further west from there was “Angona’s Chickenteria” which was our first introduction to Colonel Sanders.

  • Jeff Gaul

    Those are great lists, and allowed me to finally remember the name of Standard Brand Paints on Holt in Pomona. One to add to the list is King Cole Market on San Antonio and Holt in Ontario.

    [Shirley beat you to King Cole, although her comment wasn't "live" when you wrote. -- DA]

  • Bob House

    Mr. Lopez’ list inspired me to try to remember the businesses on Yale Ave. in Claremont when I was growing up in the 50s and 60s. Here’s my list — I’m hoping those with better memories can help fill in the gaps or make corrections:

    West side of Yale, from Bonita south:

    Bentleys Market (now Rhino Records)
    Department Store (Brickmans, then Arthurs)
    .
    .
    Claremont Feed and Fuel (everything for the farmer)
    Bank of America

    2nd Street

    Drug Store/Book Store
    .
    .
    Barber Shop
    Bakery (current Some Crust location)
    Powells Department store
    Mr. Smiths Market (current Espiaus location)
    Service Station (now Espiau’s patio)

    First Street

    East side of Yale, from Bonita south:

    Yale Caf (current Yiannis location)
    Casa Flores flower shop
    Jay Dotys Music store (record listening booths!)
    Hardware Store
    Raku
    Folk Music Center
    .
    .
    Drug Store (Claremont Pharmacy)

    2nd Street

    The Village Grill (forever!)
    .
    .
    Five and Dime Store
    .
    .
    Everetts Shoe Repair
    Car Dealer (?) (current California Bank location)

    [Nice job, Bob (unless you're all wrong, of course). I had no idea Raku was so old. -- DA]

  • Bob House

    for Mr. Terry — KWOW history here: http://www.socalradiohistory.com/kwow.html

  • nancy

    Also on Euclid was Watson’s jewelry store. Mr. Watson died earlier this year. His wife Betty was always my favorite.

    Also, Thor Fiat at Vine and Holt. Think it was also Crown Toyota for awhile.

  • Carlos

    Hey, my father-in-law used to cook at Xochimilco in Pomona. I just read your “Pomona A to Z,” and went down to X and read about it.

  • Bob Terry

    My ex mother-in-law Carolyn, God rest her soul, probably has the record for working in the most restaurants/bars around that aren’t here anymore. Here is the list that I can remember…Espiau’s, Fire House Inn, Beef & Barrel, Elks Lodge 789, Xochimilco, Jolly Roger, Pom Lanes and I think that is it. Wonder how many people remember the Beef & Barrel at Indian Hill and the 10 Fwy., or the Fire House on N. Garey by Stater Bros.

  • Fred Henderson

    Hi David: A couple of long-ago places come to mind after reading of others. Lenniger and Short’s tire store on the south side of Holt near Mountain Ave. I once bought some Casler cheater slicks to go racing. They were a block south of Holt, east of Mountain. How about Downtown Bowl? Eight lanes. They were on the north side of Holt, between Euclid and Vine. Bobby Thompson’s bowling shop at Holt and Mountain. Stockwell and Binney. Eaders Bakery, close to Mr. Watson’s jewelry store. Drew Carriage.

    If memory serves correctly, wasn’t Crown Toyota originally in Upland on the north side of Foothill, just east of Mountain? Remember Dragnet in TV? Ben Alexander’s Ford was on 9th, across from the Grove theater (east). His used car lot was up on Foothill, just east of Campus.

    Thanks to you, Dave, and your readers!

    Fred Henderson
    Everett, WA

  • Derek Christensen

    Actually, “Lenniger and Short Tires” is still there off Holt in Ontario, and “Drew Carriage” still exists, but now it is in Montclair, south of Holt and they sell automotive paints.

  • Bob McCarthy

    How about Molly’s Cafe on Euclid, Lloyds Furniture on Holt, the Gas Co. on B street?

  • Don

    Hi all.

    I grew up in Ontario. My parents owned the Snow Cap Motel and trailer park just east of Bon View.

    My neighbors owned the Green Lantern motel and bar. I grew up with their kids Johnny and Lila Wathen.

    Many years ago Ontario motorcycle officer George Kallas was shot in the belt buckle answering a complaint call. He was fine however the Daily Report paper said that he had a heck of a bellyache.

    I worked at Litchfield’s service station and across the street was Los Monitos the best Mexican food that you could find and their tostitos chips were the best ever and soda pop out of the cooler where you could pick your soda.

    My mother shopped at Owl Lucky Star market on Holt blvd and Allen ave.

    Don

  • Jeree Jones

    Espiau’s is not on Holt anymore in Pomona but a wonderful family that I have known for 30 years opened it back up I think in Ontario. It is the same as it was on Holt with the same great food. I believe it’s in Ontario but could be right on the border of another city. The Molles family lived in Pomona across from Market spot (Gills Meats) on Towne and Philladelphia. They had the little Mini Golf course their dad built in the yard. In case anyone is interested.

    [And we are. But FYI, Espiau's is in downtown Claremont. -- DA]

  • barbara f

    Green’s delicatessen on Holt in Pomona still is sorely missed by me at least. That place was the bomb! I was lucky to live within walking distance for a few months. The counter was manned by the auburn-haired sons of the man who owned and ran the place, they looked enough alike to may have been twins. All three gentlemen were always polite and friendly to every customer. I would get a special priced down order for lunch when I asked the cream cheese be spread thin like butter on my bagel. Lovely sandwiches piled high with deli meats for those with a thicker wallet. I believe the place closed in the late 60s shortly after the death of the owner, and his sons realized they didn’t want to continue the working life of restaurateurs.

  • barbara f

    Raku’s ancient. They started c/ 1962 out back of a small house up on Foothill. Then moved into a house/store on Foothill and started including clothes with pottery and jewelry. When they got the funds, they moved into the storefront on Yale, and there you are.

    On the west side of Yale, same general era, sat the Bank of America. Just across 2nd street on the corner on the same side of the street was the pharmacy run by spinster sisters who each wore dark round glasses due to a sensitivity to light and had their hair wound tightly in buns … The Barrett Sisters (no, not the gospel singers, sorry!) ran Barrett pharmacy on their own. The older sister was a pharmacist and compounded prescriptions while the other sister ran the other part of the store full of sundries and handled the register. When you opened the door and stepped in to the dim cool store, the place was always very quiet. The whole place had a rich chemical smell, that was somehow reassuring, like opening a fresh bottle of aspirin. The Barrett sisters were but a few years apart in age and wore long dresses, almost like prairie homesteader women. They had special window covering installed on the huge plate glass windows on the Bank of America side (to avoid the view? more likely to ease the glare and heat — this was long ago when air conditioning was not common).

    Then next door or nearly next door, a nice little book store that carried Evergreen, New Directions and European imprint books, a few popular beatnik titles, Ionesco, Beckett, lots of poetry and plays.

    Down the block towards 1st, the Hodges family ran their family bakery and packaged the cakes in deeply hued pink boxes or the brownies in deeply hued pink bags for customers to tote away.

    Claremont in that era could be especially sweet in the memory of some.

    [So it would seem. Thanks, Barbara, for sharing the aroma with us. -- DA]

  • barbara f

    In those old days, c. 1957 onward a partial decade or so, there were two (that’s right! two) smallish food markets in the village on Yale. Bentley’s was nearer Third street, and another whose name finally came to me on Yale between Second and First was the Village Market. The Village Market. However could I have misplaced that memory? And, yes, I believe I am recollecting correctly that the names of the numbered streets were spelled out on signage for awhile.

    [There's still a business named Village Market; it's on Second between Yale and Indian Hill and is a convenience store. -- DA]

  • barbara f

    You’d think the geography and landmarks would have imprinted themselves more in my memory banks, as this was such a small geography to amble with the same old sights day after day. In the really old days, Casa de Flores was a smaller store on Harvard (? the street one block east of Yale), almost next door to an Italian style restaurant (or was the flower store a block up next to the men’s store?). At any rate, the florists were located on the same side of the street as the Christian Science Reading Room. Well, like most towns, businesses sometimes played musical chairs.

    What was interesting about this time is the shoe store on the main street as the owner took a sandal maker in under his wing, a man who did not speak much in the way of English but who fashioned good custom made leather sandals for something like $5 or $10 …

  • barbara f

    The word Village came into play often in the naming of things in Claremont, perhaps in some way to remind us that we were residents of The Village. For a brief while, a trinket and treasure shoppe existed and was called The Village Idiot. David, did I tell you I thought I was free and clear of the village until a large white balloon rolled past a bus I was on as we sped along the highway towards Palo Alto.

  • barbara f

    In 1957, the Village Grill had huge pull-down transparent window shades, amber in color, all to keep the heat out and beat back the sun in summer. A waitress would have to pull the shades down once the sun began its relentless move to bake the town. As I recall, they had a screen door as there was no airconditioning in there just yet.

    Behind the counter, above the soda fountain was not the collectorabilia 1950s kitsch you might find in such a place now, but the real deal. I remember a football pennant from Princeton on the wall. They modernized the entrance the following year, unless I am completely mistaken. They had very good french fries served in plastic baskets with wax paper at the bottom, the fries were long and far superior to anything you find in this modern world.

    You see, David, stick around another 35 or so years and you, too, may write in a fractured way but somewhat wistfully of the food and places that used to be upon your arrival in the Pomona Valley.

    ["Don't you remember Ontario Mills? That's where that big crater is now." I hope my memory is as sharp as yours and some other commenters if I try to reminisce a few decades from now. -- DA]

  • barbara f

    I mean Love’s Bar-B-Que was built on Foothill years after I’d left, although I dined there a few times in the early ’70s and it was brand spanking new. Now it’s gone! That’s transcience for you.

  • Minorkle

    Don’t forget Butler Brothers Department Store. It was the largest store on Euclid Avenue. It was the “king” until the Montclair Plaza was built.

  • Michael Staub

    Barbara F said, ‘… For a brief while, a trinket and treasure shoppe existed and was called The Village Idiot.’

    Sorry, I don’t THINK this is correct. There was a shop on 2nd St between the Claremont Pharmacy (Runsvelt’s) and the Fire Station called Trinkets & Treasures. There was a sandal maker later (in the 60′s) who had a shop on 1st called The Village Idiot.

    Barbara F also wrote about Green’s Deli on Holt at Park… YES!!! I worked across the street and lived in the old stone apartments on Park about a block away. Green’s was SO good. B-B-Q Beef Sandwich on a French Roll. Open Faced Hot Roast Beef Sandwich. Those 5 Bean salads!!

    Bob House shared that GREAT list. Thanks Bob. You are the same Bob (big as a) House, right? Brother of Wendy?

    Thanks for that list. I THINK that bank was Security Pacific of Security National and NOT B of A. Below The Village Grill was a dress store? And some offices. George Gibbs CPA had an office about there I THINK. You had the 5 & Dime and then the Shoe Repair Shop. Then something next to that burned down around ’56 or ’57.

    Across the street, the Bakery was Hodges.

    Do you remember Auggie’s 76 Station on the corner of 1st & Indian Hill? Later it became Tony Sanchezs.

    Here’s one for you: There was a great little hamburger joint on the south side of Foothill just east of Mills (which didn’t go through back then). You remember that?

    Other places; Hilltop, Stinky’s.

    [Search on this blog for Stinky's; you'll find a couple of posts and several dozen comments. And I believe you're right about the Village Idiot, based on a story in the most recent Claremont Courier on that little shack. -- DA]

  • Bob House

    The sandal-making Village Idiot was Greg Sheldon, a fellow member of the 1965 Claremont High class. Michael Staub: Wendy House was from the “other” House family in Claremont in the 60s. Lots of people thought we were related. The bank on the northwest corner of 2nd and Yale (now a Wells Fargo/Starbucks in a new building) was originally a Bank of America. I had my Oakmont Elementary school account there in the 50s.

  • Endgame

    You forgot the famous “Molly”s Cafe” on Euclid Ave, Ontario Music on G Street, Alpha Beta on Mountain Ave x D Street, Klaps Market on Euclid (aka-Southland Market, Texaco Gas Station on Euclid Ave x Mission Blvd, The Beverly Hotel on Euclid x Holt, Thunderbird Lanes at Mountain A ex I-10, Toys R Us on Mountain x 5th, and a few more I can’t think of at the moment.