The Coburn Mystery: Chapter 46

[This is mostly unedited material from the original manuscript. Even though it’s repetitive at times, I feel there are worthwhile historical details.]

By June Morrall

“L. Coburn locked the gate leading to Pebble Beach and positively forbids anyone from trespassing upon his grounds,” according to the San Mateo newspaper on September 12, 1891. “He claims Pebble Beach and all its pebbles. The people are a unit in expressing their indignation at this move on the part of Mr. Coburn; even the schoolchildren are in open rebellion at the usurpation of what their considr their lawful…playground…”

Pescadero is “disgusted, indignant and angry, for one of its greatest attractions…Pebble Beach…has been formally closed against all,” wrote another newspaper. “L. Coburn, who owns the land lying between the county road and the ocean, has locked the gate on the road leading to the beach which has been open to the public for 30 years, and emphatically forbids trespassing on his property. As there is no other access to the beach, the action appears a piece of spiteful officiousness. What Mr. Coburn’s motive is we cannot conceive, as the road through his land does not injure it in any way, and as he is one of the largest land owners in this section it seems that he would be vitally interested in the progress and popularity of Pescadero, instead of depriving it of its chief attraction…”

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