THE THOMAS AND DOROTHY LEAVEY CENTER FOR THE STUDY OF LOS ANGELES RESEARCH COLLECTION
DOCUMENTS FOR THE HISTORY OF THE DANIEL FREEMAN FAMILY AND THE RANCHO CENTINELA (CSLA-33)
COLLECTION TITLE AND NUMBER: Documents for the History of the Daniel Freeman Family and the Rancho Centinela. CSLA-33ACCESSION NUMBER: 2006.27COLLECTION SIZE: 8 archival document boxes; 1 oversize box; 7 flat files
Betty Forsyth (d. 2006), of Manhattan Beach, was an active member of the Centinela Valley Historical Society, an organization concerned with the local history of Westchester, California, El Segundo, California, and Inglewood California. During the over twenty year association with this organization Ms. Forsyth collected primary sources, mostly copies, related to these area’s early history, especially the Ranchos Centinela and la Ballona, and the families most intimately acquainted with them, the Machados and the Freemans. On her death, her family donated these materials to Loyola Marymount University, with Mike Engh, S. J., serving as the intermediary. The materials were divided into two collections based on subject matter, one of which is this collection on the Daniel Freeman family and their Rancho Centinela, CSLA-33: Documents for the History of the Daniel Freeman Family and the Rancho Centinela. (To access the other collection select this link: CSLA-32.)
CSLA-33 consists of materials related to the family history of the Daniel Freeman family; the family’s ranch, the Rancho Centinela; Freeman business enterprises; and the local towns which grew around and on the rancho. The Canadian businessman and lawyer Daniel Freeman (1918) came with his family to Los Angeles area in 1873, where the Rancho Centinela became the center of the family’s fortune. His wife Catherine leased the Ranchos Aguaje de la Centinela and Sausal Redondo from Sir Robert Burnett of Scotland in 1873—the name Rancho Centinela was that given to the combination of the two ranchos under their joint ownership by Sir Robert. (During Mexican rule in California the ranches had been owned by members of the Avila and Machado families.) After his wife’s death in 1874, Daniel Freeman assumed the lease, eventually buying the ranchos. The Centinela Adobe was the well-known ranch house of Freeman’s rancho. From his rancho holdings came the foundation of Daniel Freeman’s business interests, and from them the town of Inglewood would also be birthed, with his indirect involvement.
Genealogies, newspaper and journal articles, photographs, personal reminiscences, research notes, and business records make up the collection. Much material is copies that Betty Forsyth made for her research and for the records of the Centinela Valley Historical Society. This is especially true of photographs and of business records. Thus, in the box and folder list, the date given is that for the original source from which copies were made.
The holdings of the Freeman Family and Rancho Centinela collection have been organized according to subject matter or topic into series, each with a box and folder list providing indices to the series' holdings. To view their descriptions and arrangement, select the appropriate series link:
Use of this collection is on-site and by appointment only. To schedule an appointment, please call the Department of Archives and Special Collections at 310-338-5710 or 310-338-5357. The collection is open for research with no restrictions under the conditions of the access policy of the Department of Archives and Special Collection, Loyola Marymount University, 1 LMU Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90045. The Research Collection is a program of the Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Center for the Study of Los Angeles. To return to the list with links to series, click here. back to top
© 2012 Loyola Marymount University