A special event featuring the original 1929 Rancho Santa Fe Master Plan map will be held on Thursday, Feb. 28, at the RSF Golf Club from 5:30-7:30 p.m.
At an auction in New York City last year, local antique map dealer Barry Ruderman acquired a massive map, in near pristine condition, showing the original Master Plan for Rancho Santa Fe and Solana Beach (labeled “La Costa” back in the day). The map was acquired from the estate of nationally recognized city planner and author of the RSF Protective Covenant, Charles H. Cheney.
Ruderman knew instantly this was a remarkable treasure. “The map is a visual birth certificate for Rancho Santa Fe,” said Ruderman. The massive 8.5’ by 4’ full-color map was completed in August 1929, only months after Rancho Santa Fe residents approved Cheney’s 54-page Protective Covenant, the governing documents that define Rancho Santa Fe to this day. This map is the earliest surviving large format map showcasing Cheney’s vision for Rancho Santa Fe, and the land down to the Solana Beach coastline.
“The map is a fantastic find,” continues Ruderman. The map shows a planned jetty (over what is now Cardiff Reef), a proposed “Hotel of Casa-de-Manana Type,” a Beach Club as well as a Beach Hotel. “Cheney was apparently an avid map collector,” adds Ruderman, noting “on the lower corner of this map Cheney drew an intricate, colorful image of Triton, seated atop a coat of arms, holding a sailing ship in his hand — an exact replica seen on a 1630 William Blaeu map of Bermuda, published in Amsterdam.”
For those local residents who have a budding cartographer or Old California history buff, there will be a special youth viewing and lecture from 3:30-4:30 p.m. before the adult crowd arrives for their private viewing and lecture at 5:30 p.m. Several local school teachers have offered extra credit for their students who attend and then fill out a Q&A sheet (provided).
Rancho Santa Fe natives Erin Weidner and Jason Mubarak, of the Rancho Santa Fe Group at Morgan Stanley, brought the idea to RSF Golf Club General Manager Al Castro, along with Golf Club members Janet Christ and Leslie Barone. Castro was enthusiastic and supportive of holding the map evening at the club. The storied RSF Golf Club hosted its first foursome in the year 1929, as well.
Ruderman will be on hand, and will speak about the history, and the acquisition, of the map at 6 p.m. He will bring some additional Old California maps from his Rare Maps shop and from the La Jolla Map Museum. “The discovery of this map brings to light an important artifact in the history of Rancho Santa Fe,” notes Ruderman. “While I have already received an offer from an (Ivy League) East Coast institution for the map, I’m hopeful that it will find a home in the Ranch.”
There is no charge for the evening, but an RSVP is requested. Residents and guests may RSVP to Erin Weidner at 858-613-8147 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.