At a watering hole on the east side of Pacheco Pass, Juan Pacheco built this adobe for his rancho in the early 1840's. The gun ports in the walls are visible reminders of the dangers from Yokuts Indians, marauding bands of ex-Mission Indians, and bandits emerging from the San Joaquin Valley. This was the frontier of Mexican California.
Paula FatjoPaula Fatjo (fah-tcho),descendent of the Pachecos and the Malarins and heir to Rancho San Luis Gonzaga, restored the adobe as her home and ranching headquarters in 1948. A San Francisco society belle, she decided to return to the family rancho and live the life of her ranchero ancestors.
In the 1960s the Central Valley Water Project took about half the rancho, including the site of the ranch headquarters and the adobe. Paula built a new ranch headquarters here on the western portion of the rancho. But she wouldn't leave the old family adobe to be melted away by the flooding waters of the San Luis Reservoir. It was the oldest adobe in the San Joaquin Valley. She built new foundations at this location, and lifted the adobe structure onto a truck to be transported to this spot. Up the hill it came, but at the last moment the truck shuttered, and the side walls of the precarious adobe came tumbling down.