AKA: Redman-Hirahara House, Watsonville, CA; Hirahara House, Watsonville, CA

Structure Type: built works - dwellings - houses

Designers: Lamborn and Uren, Building Contractors (firm); Porter, William, Building Contractor (firm); Weeks, William H., Architect (firm); Lamborn (building contractor); William Porter (building contractor); Uren (building contractor); William Henry Weeks (architect)

Dates: constructed 1897

3 stories

Lee Road and Beach Road
Watsonville, CA 95076

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The Missouri-born farmer James Redman (1856-1921) came to the Pajaro Valley in 1865 along with his parents Kendrick Francis Redman and Matilda Farrell Redman. The journey West had taken a toll on the family; of the ten children born to Kendrick and Matilda, three died between MO and CA. James prospered raising potatoes and sugar beets in the agriculturally-rich Pajaro Valley. The size of his acreage increased with his prosperity, increasing from 70 acres in 1883 to 120 by 1903. His prosperity was magnified by his alliance with Claus Spreckels, the sugar beet king, who built a sugar refinery in Watsonville in 1888, and much larger facility in Spreckels, CA, in 1897-1898. With his wealth, Redman decided to provide a large, Queen Anne Style house for his wife and him, paying local contractors, Lambron and Uren, a substantial $3,843 to build the dwelling. The Redman Family sold the dwelling to the Hirahara Family in the 1930s, working as farmers, until they were interned in AR during the World War II. The Redman-Hirahara Foundation web site has provided much of the information included here. (See:Accessed 10/28/2008)

A group calling itself the Redman-Hirahara Foundation sought to raise $5 million to renovate the Redman House into a local history museum for the Pajaro Valley, c. 2008. The Hirahara Family sold the property to an investment group, Green Farm, that hoped to develop residences there. This development effort was blocked.

PCAD id: 13112