Saturday, November 23, 2013

For the times they are a-changin'

     Yesterday, when I was using Google Maps, I noticed some changes around where my childhood home had been located.  After my father returned from World War II, he was hired by Standard Oil of California.  He worked for a while in Santa Fe Springs.  His work was a difficult drive from our home in Altadena so we moved to Long Beach in 1948.  In 1951 my father was transferred to the oil town of Taft, California.  We lived in a company house over two miles from town in a place called 1-C Camp.
     In 1951, our house in 1-C Camp was about 250 feet from a 'gasoline plant'.  The plant did mysterious things like separating gasoline and different gases from the oil that had been pumped from the ground.  We lived 250 feet from the plant for thirteen years.  It operated day and night - 24/7.  And was it loud.     (I think those years of living next to constant noise is at least partially to blame for my current hearing loss.)  
     When we moved into 1-C Camp there were somewhere around 18 houses.  As men retired or got transferred the houses were sold and move.  We were the last to go.  Our house was used for storage of cores from the oil wells.  It eventually burned to the ground.  And now if you examine the aerial view from Google Maps, you will see that in 2013 'the Plant' is going.  
     The two palm trees that were in our front yard are still standing.  You can see them in the aerial view.  (Don't ask me how they are still surviving with no apparent water source.  They may be the last to go.
A 2008 view of 'The Plant" from where our house had been located.

An aerial view of 1-C Camp from Google Maps
We had oil wells all around our house.  Not ours, unfortunately.

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