“Crown of the Citrus Belt”

The 1900’s through the 1920’s was the peak of the citrus industry in San Dimas. The city produced massive amounts of citrus and supposedly housed the largest lemon packing house in the world. San Dimas was nicknamed the “Crown of the Citrus Belt” and was considered the world’s citrus capital. In this episode, I share some of my research and an enlightening conversation with lifelong San Dimas resident Dave Harbin. Dave recalls some childhood memories of the packing houses and family stories of the hard work of smudging, and we talk about the early citrus industry that put San Dimas on the map.

Resources for this episode:
San Dimas: Preserving the Western Spirit by Nicholas C. Polos, 1990
Profile of San Dimas by J. Howard Hoover, 1961
Folk History: The Citrus Years in San Dimas, California 1871-1953 by Paul McClure, Edited by Benjamin Jenkins, 2017
Historic Packing Houses and Other Industrial Structures in Southern California by William Messecar and James Lancaster, 2005

Links for this episode:
San Dimas Historical Society
City Council + Planning Commission Joint Study Session re: SP No. 23: March 10, 2020 | 5pm | City Hall
Isabel in San Dimas Episode: “What is the Specific Plan No. 23 Moratorium?”
Gold Line Community Open House: CANCELLED March 12, 2020 | 5:30-7:30pm | Stanley Plummer Building

PHOTO: The Lemon Packing House c. 1911, provided by San Dimas Historical Society