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By Pat Gracey
contributing writer 

You missed a good one!

The Spirit of Tehachapi


June 11, 2022

Pat Gracey.

"I saw you toss the kites on high and blow the birds about the sky..." That quote from Robert Louis Stevenson's book, "A Child's Garden of Verses," kept me thinking of the aforementioned "wind."

Good old Tehachapi wind was present for the Heritage League Errea Garden Dedication held on Saturday, May 28. Like a naughty child who sometimes shows off for guests when they visit, the wind was only able to blow the tops of the trees. The garden, itself, was sheltered on all sides. "Foiled again!" Old man wind found itself unable to make a dent in the camaraderie of the crowd. In fact, all guests there were impressed that the actual formation of the garden, with its sheltering structure on all four sides, allowed the wind to pass over the crowd but was not allowed, at all, to blow anything out of place.

The refreshments were a gourmet delight. Why not? They were made by members who qualify for the term, gourmet. Oh yes, while still savoring the taste of the food, people were able to see the bird house which was fashioned and made into a smaller version of the Errea House. Lucky birds.

The music kept the spirit of the crowd in a wonderful, appreciative mood and the repertoire was in keeping for the occasion as well as the instruments; a mountain dulcimer, a guitar and lovely soprano vocalist.

The Errea Garden was about two and one half years in completion. I used to attend the Board Meetings and listen to the discussion and plans. The overall theme was to have a garden where people could visit and enjoy themselves. The aim included the importance of retaining the historical era in place, as well. Plans also included a budget, drawings, supplies needed and manpower. The garden plants would be those native to our local gardens of today and yesterday, when the house first "landed" there. I had to use the word "landed" so as to make it a verb to tell a bit of history about the Errea House, itself.

According to Errea history, the house was built in the original town called Tehichipa or Williamsburg. Same town; two different names depending on the residents. Reportedly, the little home was built by a doctor whose name is lost to posterity. In about 1900, the current owner, Louis Vidallet, decided to move the little home to the growing town of Tehachapi; the little town formed by the Southern Pacific railroad having come through in 1876. Seeking the more convenient location near the railroad stop, those early residents of Tehichipa took the name of their town with them adopting the new spelling determined by the Southern Pacific. So it was, then, that the little house was moved on log rollers with mule or horse power and "landed" at 311 South Green Street, where it is today.

Getting back to the Errea garden: there was another, more vintage garden growing on land paralleling Green Street. This Errea garden existed from the 1900 time span until property lines were determined and a new garden has emerged. This change of location was determined by generous, faithful citizens. Thus, after nearly three years of hard work, planning a lovely place of beauty and public visitation has been added to the Tehachapi Heritage League. There would be so many people responsible for this final accomplishment, it's better for me not to mention any names at all in thanks for the beautiful garden. [Editor's note: You can visit the Errea garden at 311 S. Green Street, Tehachapi and learn more about it online at]

Well, I will mention one name: THE WIND. "O wind a- blowing all day long, O wind that sings so loud a song! (You can say that again!)

A Child's Garden of Verses Copyright 1900.


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