“Sam Morse could out-imagine anyone,” said Herb Cerwin, Del Monte PR man, drinking buddy and friend. Cerwin was right and he could have added that Morse turned these thoughts into reality.
Morse imagined a place with a pristine coastline, green-belted and free of buildings. He imagined creating a playground for his wealthy sporting pals and gals. He also imagined he could go the distance with Kid McCoy, a professional boxer who took on all comers.
His imagination never stopped sparking and he made things happen through force, charm, determination, teamwork and grit. It wasn’t always smooth sailing, but it usually turned out to his liking, and he did go the distance (three rounds) in the ring with McCoy.
This is the story of my grandfather, S.F.B. Morse, founder of Pebble Beach, California, my personal hero and an icon of the good life in his time. He was a classic big fish in a small pond, but a beautiful pond and he made that pond even more desirable. He dominated the Monterey Peninsula for fifty years and surprisingly, he was extremely well thought of by most everyone. His vision of land conservation was the basis for the creation of one of the most attractive pieces of real estate in the world.
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Table of Contents
Photographs & Illustrations
In the Beginning - Cheaters, Liars and Thieves
Preface- The Imagination of Sam Morse; Monterey Peninsula
Chapter One - The Shaping of the Man; George Washington Morse; The Boits
Chapter Two - Andover and New Haven - Football; Yale; Anne Thompson
Chapter Three - The Wild West; Hammond; Delano; Rabbits
Chapter Four - W.H. Crocker and Big Sam, The Cowboy; Coyote Hunt; Tiburcio Vasquez; Visalia and Merced
Chapter Five - Ranching; The Boxer and the Bandit; McCoy and MacFarlane
Chapter Six - 1915 San Francisco; the World's Fair
Chapter Seven - The Big Four; Pacific Improvement Company; Their Heirs
Chapter Eight - Del Monte; Monterey History; David Jacks; Southern Pacific
Chapter Nine - Enter "The Boss"; Pacific Grove; Carbonado; Carl Stanley; Del Monte 1915; the Early Years; Teddy Roosevelt
Chapter Ten - Pebble Beach; Herbert Fleishhacker; Del Monte Properties; San Clemente Dam; Monterey Water Works; Sand Mining; Del Monte Lodge
Chapter Eleven - Relda, Second Wife and Friends; Tirey Ford
Chapter Twelve - Prohibition; Canary Cottage
Chapter Thirteen - The Roaring Twenties; The Blaze, 1924; The New Hotel; Duke of Alba; Father Mestres; Carmel, Devendorf and Powers; The Abalone Song
Chapter Fourteen - Carmel Valley; River Ranch; Stars; Haida House
Chapter Fifteen - Family Life; 1920s Pebble Beach; Mary, Sam, Jr., Jack and Nancy; My Minute with Walt Disney
Chapter Sixteen - Temptress of the South Seas
Chapter Seventeen - The Pebble Beach Clubs, 1920s; Monterey Peninsula Country Club; Cypress Point Club; Marion Hollins; Friendships; 1929
Chapter Eighteen - The Great Depression; Fleishhacker; Publicity Helps; Movie Stars, etc.; The Navy 1938; Cannery Row; Madam Flora Woods; Tevis; the Dali Party
Chapter Nineteen - The Artist, the Investor, the Brawler; Carmel
Chapter Twenty - Family and Business, Sam Tries the Next Generation; Mary Grows Up; Richard
Chapter Twenty One - The Postwar Years; The Crosby Clambake; The Concours d'Elegance; The Social Olympics; Local Events; Communities; Schools; Sam the Wanderer; Stuyvesant Fish
Chapter Twenty Two - Sam Remarries; Maurine
Chapter Twenty Three - Advice to All
Chapter Twenty Four - The Final Chapter