The Valley of Heart's Delight

Santa Clara County, Calfifornia
Evergreen, Yerba Buena Rancho, was first owned by Antonio Chaboya, who held a Mexican grant title. When the Americans acquiredCalifornia, Chaboya had to secure a United States title. This was granted to him in 1858. The grant, seven miles east of San Jose, was called Evergreen on account of the beautiful oaks that covered the entire acreage.

 J. B. Hart, who was one of the lawyers engaged to obtain the grant and was paid in land, cut up his portion into farms, and C. C. Smith was one of the first purchasers and established the first business, a blacksmith shop.

In 1866 the Evergreen school district was established. The first trustees were John Holloway, Tom Farnsworth and Henry McClay.  I. P. Henning was the first teacher. In 1892 a new and modern building was erected. The original building was moved and became the First Methodist Church. On May 15, 1868, C. C. and F. J. Smith opened the first store the village had.

In 1870 the Legislature resolved that Evergreen should have a postoffice and the same year the resolution was carried into effect, F. J. Smith becoming the first postmaster. For fourteen years the salary was $12 per year. The office was discontinued January 1, 1914, and since then the residents have been served by rural carriers.

In 1886 the Evergreen Hall was built and an entertainment for the W. R. C. Home Fund yielded $300. The home was built a few years later. It is a state institution, though under the management of the Women's Relief Corps. It houses and cares for the widows and orphans of Civil War soldiers and army nurses. There are five acres of ground; inmates, 1920, twenty-three; matron, Mrs. Alice Arthur. On October 10, 1920, the home was destroyed by fire. In 1921 the Corps purchased from Dr. A. E. Osborne the buildings and land of the Feeble-Minded Home, near Winchester, on the Saratoga Road. The Home is now located there and has twenty-five inmates.

 Evergreen is connected with San Jose by five paved roads. Prunes, apricots and peaches are the principal fruit crops. It is a very rich section for early vegetables.

Transcribed by Linda Gretty, from Eugene T. Sawyers' History of Santa Clara County,California,  published by Historic Record Co. , 1922. 

July 21 2005