Tuesday, November 18, 2014


We left home early Saturday trying to make it down to the fair when it first opened.
  There was fog in the early morning hours and it still lingered as we made our way down Highway 80.

We arrived around 11:00 and 
the show was already in full swing.

There were two huge buildings chocked full of vendors and their wares
 with some booths set up outside.

There was a large variety of items for sale and
 by the looks of the amount of bags being carried and
the sold signs on large pieces of furniture, everyone was doing well...

...except me.

It was posted that the Rodgers House was going to be open for touring from 10:00 to 3:00. 
 At the time of our arrival it appeared to be closed up, 
with the gates locked and all the shades drawn.

Our history with the house goes back quite a few years. 
 When we were living in Santa Cruz, we would visit at least once a month.  
The house was situated on it's original site in Watsonville and each of the downstairs rooms were occupied with wonderful little shops. 
 I was always able to find some little trinket and that was fun, but
 the big draw for us was the house itself.

  At the time we lived in a house built in the 1960's, but we always had dreams of living in an old house. 
 Once, after we moved to Grass Valley and had our old house,
 we went back but the house was no longer standing and a shopping center had taken its place. 
 We assumed the house had been demolished.

The Rodgers House as it sat in it's original place (far right hand corner) sometime after it was built in the 1870's.
Large house (front right side) was built by the Rodger's son and was eventually torn down.

What we didn't know, until just a few months ago,
 was that the house had been moved, refurbished, and
 now sits at the entrance to the Santa Cruz County fairgrounds.

The original water tower reconstructed on the present site.

It all looked as we remembered it only in much better shape but
 for right now it seemed that we would not be able to go inside. 
 So how does a girl drown her sorrows?..
by shopping of course!

I found this adorable little scale that I am so happy with.
 I had to laugh to myself as the tag on it stated "as is".
 There is nothing wrong with it except for some chipping. 
Isn't that how it is supposed to be?!!

I also found this little chippy and rusty, red caddy 
that will be perfect for Christmas and beyond!


It was time to leave the fair and stop by the kids for dinner before heading back home. 
 As we were taking our treasures to the car,
 we happened to see a lady coming out of the house and she invited us inside!  
It seems it was open the whole time 
even though it didn't appear to be.

She took us in the back door so that we entered into the kitchen first. 
 We both remember the huge wall of windows that were over the sink,
 from the ceiling down with little panes of glass.
 It was quite a disappointment to see they had been replaced with these smaller versions.
 Kind of like remembering something through your young child eyes and
 thinking it was so big, then seeing it as an adult and 
it seemed so much smaller. 
However, knowing that the house had been cut into four pieces and
 moved about eight miles
 and the price it would be to duplicate today those exact windows, 
it was, disappointing, but understandable.

Mr. James Rodgers astride his horse

Malvina Rodgers' (his first wife) wedding gown

Mr. Rodgers and his first wife, Malvina, came from the San Francisco bay area. 
 They had eight children and when they outgrew their present home, 
they bought 80 acres in the fertile valley of Watsonville and 
built this large house to hold his growing family, 
sometime in the 1870's.

After his wife died, he married his second wife, Esther Steinbeck Rodgers. 
 She was the sister of John Steinbeck.

This is the original stove Mr. Rodgers bought for his wife, Esther.
 She is pictured with it in the above photograph.

Formal dining room

Built-in china cupboard and fireplace in formal dining room

Formal parlor fireplace mantle

You might think the subject of this painting is the homestead but, 
in reality, 
it is the ewe in the foreground. 
 One of the Rodgers' sons raised it and 
she was a prize winning specimen...

...which he received this trophy cup for.

When the Rodgers family heard that the house was being restored,
 they graciously donated family heirlooms,
 such as furniture, art and various items and family photographs 
which are on display throughout the house.

John Steinbeck, as a guest, for Thanksgiving dinner

This is Mr. Rodgers beaver top hat.
 He had it embellished with embroidery and pearls, 
so that when he went to a formal function and they took his hat,
 it could be seen that he was someone of importance and wealth.

The upstairs was off limits but when I commented on how much I liked this single bed in a downstairs bedroom...

...she said there was an even smaller one upstairs and would I like to see it??..are you kidding me??...

So perfect!


I apologize for my pictures.  It was a little dark because of the drawn shades and I couldn't get just the right angles, but I hope you got a feel for the house. 
 There was no literature about the family, all that I know was what the docent told us and so don't know if I remember it all correctly. 
 I don't think the house shows to its best advantage 
but I can visualize how it could look
 with the right colors of paint or maybe a bit of wallpaper
and the presence of a family.

The house will be open again at Christmas, 
decorated, and the docents will be in costumes befitting the era. 
 There also happens to be another large craft fair at the same time 
so I'm hoping that we will be able to return.


It was a great Goat Hill Fair and more.

Sharing today with: 


  1. Oh Judy, I love it. All the pictures. The stories, the furniture. I love it all. How lucky was that you got a personal tour. I am thrilled you got to see your dream house again. Blessings, xoxo,Susie

  2. Hi Judy,
    At first, my heart sank, for I was disappointed for you that the house seemed to be closed.
    Yippee!! I am so glad the it was indeed open, and that you were able to tour it.
    I think it is such a sweet house, and it is wonderful that it has been preserved. It's important to save these treasures!!

    Love the 'treasures' that you found at the fair, also.

    Smiles from one old house lover, to another :)


  3. I'm so glad you got to the fair and to tour the old house that you wanted to see. It's a shame it was a bit of disappointment. I can imagine it will look beautiful decorated for Christmas. You definitely have to go and take photos that day. :)

  4. What a lovely excursion. Your little scale is darling. And the house - how wonderful that you got to visit. It has been restored wonderfully. I just love it when an old house is preserved. Your photos are fabulous - it is indeed hard to get indoor photos - especially in houses with lots of small rooms. I can't wait to see it at christmas time if you are able to go back. The upstairs bed is precious.

  5. What a wonderful little trip you took! I'm so happy for you, that you were able to go on a private tour of that beautiful old home, how very special!! I love your new scale and really love that sweet red tool caddy, as Red Is My Color :) Blessings, Cindy

  6. First of all, oh my goodness, that baby goat is so very cute!
    The show looked like it would have been a good one, that's so nice that you got to go. I like how you kept us hanging with the story of the house and then, YAY, we got to go in. I'm with you, it could be decorated and furnished better to represent that era, and definitely have more wallpaper and color. The beds are wonderful! I really like that high back single bed, very cute! And the bedspread on that smaller bed is precious! Thanks so much for sharing your day in photos with us.
    Have a great rest of your week,

  7. Dear Judy,
    What an interesting post. I so enjoyed going through the Rogers house with you..a very fine home indeed. Incredible how they moved it and restored it. The hand sewn beadspread caught my eye.. most lovely. I am glad you went there.
    I should imagine, that those walls, can tell many a story.
    A fine fair too.
    love your scales.. i am dying to see what you do with them.. some decoration for christmas i am sure.
    Your photos came out fine.
    A super post Judy.. thanks for sharing it ..
    val xxxx

  8. Oh my, it's all so beautiful! I would love to attend a fair like that....we don't have anything like that here in the mountains :)

    Everything was just gorgeous, Judy! Hugs to you!

  9. what an amazing home. too bad it was dark and "underdecorated". I'm sure Christmas will be prettier. Looks like good shopping, too! Love that photo of the baby goat. Baby farm animals get me every time!

  10. Thanks so much, Judy, for this great tour of not only the fair but the Roger's home also...two great places to see in one blog post! I don't get to go to many of those type of events so it is really great for me to see your photos.

  11. What a gorgeous house! I love looking into historical homes. Such beauty.

    Amy Jo

  12. Hi Judy, what a lovely tour. I know you thoroughly enjoyed seeing these special places. So much history. What a pleasure to check out the historical homes. Happy weekend.

  13. Hi Judy, what a wonderful tour of a special place. I love seeing the decor and the history of such a place. The fair looked like it was great. Sounds like you had a special time. Thanks for sharing and also for stopping by and your sweet comment. I just emailed you!!
    Wishing you a great weekend and Happy Thanksgiving.

  14. Such a nice informative tour of the home. I certainly enjoyed reading every bit about it. So good the docent let you view the upstairs and show us that neat bed with those trunks.
    The table in the dining room looks to have taken up the rooms space, a large piece for sure.
    The baby goat , I could scoop up and hug, so sweet looking and tiny.


  15. Oh, Judy, what a grand old house. I want the house AND the little baby goat...:)

  16. Wow, what a great tour! and I saw quite a lot of goodies in the Fair that I'd have to go home with....

  17. What a fabulous old house with so much history. I'm so glad you were able to tour it after all. How fun that you will be able to go to the fair again and get to see the house all decorated for Christmas too. That baby goat is so precious :o)
    Happy Thanksgiving!!!

  18. What a fun fair Judy; I love the ornate bird cages in one of the booths. The main attraction, though, is the house. Wow!! This is an amazing house and I love all the interesting family possessions. It's a beautiful house on the outside, and I agree with you that it could benefit from some more work on the inside. But wow, what a fascinating history with the connection to John Steinbeck. Thanks so much for sharing all these pics with us; I love looking through old houses like this. :-D By the way, the goats in the last picture are adorable! Happy Thanksgiving to you, Judy!


    Denise at Forest Manor

  19. Hi Judy, so fun to revisit this post again and be inspired. Thanks for stopping by and your sweet comment. Wishing you a very special and Happy Thanksgiving to you and your dear family.
    Hugs and Blessings


Your comments are so special to me...Judy