Skip to main content

Locans, California ghost town site

This February I stopped at the site of the abandoned railroad siding known as Locans in eastern Fresno County.


Locans was a railroad sidings of the Southern Pacific Railroad spur line known as the Stockton & Tulare Railroad.  Locans was located on what is now Temperance Avenue just south of Bulter Avenue.  The Stockton & Tulare Railroad was completed in 1887 but it doesn't appear that Locans was one of the original sidings.  Locans doesn't appear on the 1889 George F. Cram Railroad map of California but nearby Butler does.


The first reference to Locans I can find is on the 1891 Thompson Atlas of Fresno County.  A large parcel of land next to the Stockton & Tulare Railroad can be seen east of of Butler owned by F. Locan.  Locan's land holdings surround a small siding known as Minneola which was about a half mile east of where the site of Locans would eventually be plotted.


Locan's property appears again on the Stockton & Tulare Railroad between Butler and Minneola as "Locan Colony" on the 1914 Weber & Company Map of Fresno County.


The first true sighting of Locans I can find is on a 1923 USGS Topographical Map hosted on historicaerials.com where it is referred to in error as "Logans."  Of note; Minneola is not shown on the 1923 USGS Map which suggests that it was razed and consolidated into Locans.  Locans included two switches from the Stockton & Tulare Railroad with at least 19 buildings at the siding facility.  The Locan School (shown as Logan School) can be seen a half mile to the north on Ventura Avenue.  Ventura Avenue would later become Kings Canyon Road which in turn became part of Legislative Route 41 during the 1919 Third State Highway Bond Act.  In 1934 Kings Canyon Road was Signed as part of California State Route 180 which put the Locans School on a major highway.


Locans appears on the Stockton & Tulare Railroad between Butler and Ivesta on the 1935 California Division of Highways Map of Fresno County.


Locans has never disappeared on USGS maps but the siding seems to have been replaced by a modernized distribution facility sometime between 1954 and 1965.  The 1965 USGS Map seems to suggest that the Locans School had closed at some point after 1954.  The 1954 USGS Topographical Map and 1965 USGS Topographical Map can be seen hosted on historicaerials.com.


Interestingly the distribution center first seen on the 1965 USGS Map replacing Locans is still present.  Said distribution center is presently occupied by Lidestri Foods who seemingly used the dual switch to Locans until fairly recently.  From Temperance Avenue and Union Pacific mainline overpass the Locans Switch approaching Lidestri Foods can be seen looking northbound.


This view is from the Union Pacific mainline looking at the terminus of the western Locans switch.  The City of Fresno hasn't annexed the former siding of Locans but new neighborhoods within in the City Limit can be seen.


The photos below look eastbound from the Union Pacific mainline at the Locans Switch.





This view is of Temperance Avenue southbound looking at the convergence of the Locans Switch.


The spur line to Locans can be seen following Temperance Avenue northbound towards the Lidestri Foods facility.  Some of the spur line to Locans is partially buried which seems to have been placed to allow heavy trucks to park.






Heading north to the intersection of Temperance Avenue and former CA 180 on Kings Canyon Road an old service station can be found.


The Locan School is still present on former CA 180 on Kings Canyon Road.  CA 180 east of Clovis Avenue to Locan Avenue was moved to a new freeway grade in 2007 which led to Kings Canyon Road at the Locan School being relinquished.




The Locan School is presently occupied by the South Gate Church.  Amusingly the South Gate Church website states that it is located at the Locan School but doesn't say anything insight about the building itself.



The Locan School still displays the name it carried during it's days servicing the rail siding of Locans.  The Locan School much like the Locans Switch is located just east of the City Limit of Fresno.


Comments

Jen said…
The “service station” shown at the intersection was also once a grocery store with its own butcher, then a bar, and then in the late 20th century it became infamous for the largest mass shooting in the area (at that time).

Popular posts from this blog

Ghost Town Tuesday; Vineland, Florida; the town killed by Disney

Vineland is a small ghost town located in southwest Orange County, Florida near the junction of Florida State Road 535 and Interstate 4.  Vineland is somewhat unique due to it largely being squeezed out of existence by Lake Buena Vista which is the company town where Disney World is located. Vineland was founded in the late 1800s as Englewood.  The town name of Englewood changed to Orange Center in 1911 before finally assuming the name Vineland in 1924.  Much like the rest of Orange County the community of Vineland was centered around Citrus Grove.  In the case of Vineland said orange groves were centered around Ruby Lake. The end of Vineland came as the Disney Corporation began purchasing parcels of citrus grove land to build Lake Buena Vista.  Vineland fell into a sharp decline in the 1960s but the community managed to continue to exist to modern times.  Much of the street grid of Vineland still exists east of FL 535 but most of the original structures are either gone or falle

Old NY 10 and Goodman Mountain in the Adirondacks

  Old highway alignments come in all shapes and sizes, as well as taking some different forms after their lifespan of serving cars and trucks has ended. In the case of an old alignment of what was NY 10 south of Tupper Lake, New York, part of the old road was turned into part of a hiking trail to go up Goodman Mountain. At one time, the road passed by Goodman Mountain to the east, or Litchfield Mountain as it was known at the time. As the years passed, sometime around 1960, the part of NY 10 north of Speculator became part of NY 30, and remains that way today from Speculator, past Indian Lake and Tupper Lake and up to the Canadian Border. At one time, the highway was realigned to pass the Goodman Mountain to the west, leaving this stretch of road to be mostly forgotten and to be reclaimed by nature. During the summer of 2014, a 1.6 mile long hiking trail was approved the Adirondack Park Agency to be constructed to the summit of the 2,176 foot high Goodman Mountain. For the first 0.9 mi

Oregon State Highway 58

  Also known as the Willamette Highway No. 18, the route of Oregon State Highway 58 (OR 58) stretches some 86 miles between US 97 north of Chemult and I-5 just outside of Eugene, Oregon. A main route between the Willamette Valley region of Oregon with Central Oregon and Crater Lake National Park, the highway follows the Middle Fork Willamette River and Salt Creek for much of its route as it makes its way to and across the Cascades, cresting at 5,138 feet above sea level at Willamette Pass. That is a gain of over 4,500 in elevation from where the highway begins at I-5. The upper reaches of OR 58 are dominated by the principal pinnacle that can sometimes be seen from the highway, Diamond Peak, and three nearby lakes, Crescent, Odell and Waldo (Oregon's second largest lake). OR 58 is chock full of rivers, creeks, mountain views, hot springs and waterfalls within a short distance from the highway. OR 58 was numbered as such by the Oregon State Highway Department in 1940. OR 58 is a del