AKA: Casa de Estudillo, Old Town, San Diego, CA; Ramona's Wedding Place, Old Town, San Diego, CA

Structure Type: built works - dwellings - houses

Designers: Waterman, Hazel Wood, Architect (firm); Hazel Wood Waterman (architect)

Dates: constructed 1827-1829

4000 Mason Street
Old Town, San Diego, CA 92110

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Building History

Soldier and politician Prefect Don José Antonio Estudillo (1805-1852), whose father was the Comandante of the San Diego Presidio, erected this adobe hacienda with his wife, Maria Victoria Dominguez (1800-1873). It grew from an L-plan plan over the years to form a U-shape, arranged around a central patio. The Estudillo Family occupied the 12-room house until 1887, after which it fell into disrepair until it was renovated in 1909-1910.

Building Notes

The Casa Estudillo is a National Historic Landmark.


Beginning in 1909, architectural designer Hazel Wood Waterman (1864-1948) rebuilt the historic adobe, also known (erroneously) as "Ramona's Wedding Place," that was in dilapidated condition; (the Casa Estudillo had long been a tourist attraction, as contemporaries believed it to have appeared in Helen Hunt Jackson's popular novel, Ramona [1884]); John D. Spreckels (1853-1926) bought the dwelling in a dilipated state in 1909; active in San Diego philanthropy, the Spreckels family, made rich by beet sugar farming, shipping and real estate, financed the restoration, that was completed in 1910; Waterman sought to reproduce original building materials and techniques faithfully, and has been viewed as a fine renovation; the house was expanded further after Waterman's work. The State of California purchased the house in 1968.

California Historical Landmark: 53

PCAD id: 5771