Beauty Ranch Professional Review and Guide
"Jack London’s Beauty Ranch is tucked into the foothills of Sonoma Mountain above the town of Glen Ellen. When London moved to this property, he fully embraced farming and living off the land. His experimental ranch is now part of the state historic park, which still contains the original structures. The wood-framed cottage is where London lived and wrote many of his books from 1905 until his death in 1916. Over the course of 16 prolific years, Jack London wrote 51 books and nearly 200 short stories, including Call of the Wild and The Sea Wolf . Sonoma Valley became known as Valley of the Moon from London’s 1913 novel by the same name. There are several unusual structures amongst the ranch buildings. The innovative Pig Palace is a circular piggery with a central feeding and round storage tower designed by London. Two 40- foot silos were built in 1914, the first cement silos in California. A rock sherry barn, part of the old Kohler-Frohling winery, was built by Chinese laborers in 1884, then converted into a stable for London’s English shire horses. London hired Italian masons to build an additional stallion barn and a rock manure pit. A distillery building from the old winery still exists, as well as other ruins from the 1880s winery damaged by the 1906 earthquake. This interpretive hike loops through the grounds of the historic former ranch."