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Santa Clarita historical goodies on sale to public

SCV history enthusiasts rush to sale and buy

Posted: October 3, 2008 9:23 p.m.
Updated: December 5, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Maggi Perkins, grandaughter of famous SCV Historian Arthur B. Perkins, holds a picture of what Downtown Newhall looked like in the early 1900s. Although selling and donating a variety of items, the Perkins family are keeping numerous items as well.

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When local historian Leon Worden found out some of A.B. Perkin's memorabilia lingered in the Santa Clarita Valley, he was shocked.

When he found out it was available, Worden and other Historical Society members wasted no time getting to the recent estate sale.

"We thought everything at the Valencia Library and Historical Society was all he had," said Worden, a past president of the society. "Unbeknownst to us, somebody had been living in that house with boxes and boxes of memorabilia."

That somebody is Maggi Perkins who has been residing at the house on Wildwood Canyon Road alone for the last three years after her father, Richard Clarence Perkins, son of A.B. Perkins, died in 2005.
"I've been the ‘Perkins on the ground,'" Maggi said.

"It takes time to come to terms," she said, referring to death of her parents and why she just recently decided to have the sale.

Much of what Santa Clarita is today, down to its very name, began with A.B. Perkins, a New Englander came to town as manager of the local water company in 1919, according to an article in the Old Town Newhall Gazette from 1997. After serving time at the water company and then as a justice courts judge in his 20s, he went into real estate, Worden said.

"He started buying property all around town and became everyone's landlord, including The Signal Newspaper's," Worden said.

But A.B. Perkins is most known as the town's first historian. He collected thousands of photographs and a multitude of historical information about Santa Clarita Valley's past before his death in 1977, Worden said.

Her father, Richard Clarence, did not throw out or give away heirlooms, Maggi said.

"We still had stuff in our childhood bedrooms and I've been pulling stuff out of boxes," she said.
Maggi also sold many of her great-grandfather's mining collectables including mining picks and hand scales.

"Mining collectors went away very happy," she said.

Worden and Maggi confirm that a lot of items were sold to the society, along with friends, neighbors and out-of-town collectors during the Sept. 26-27 estate sale.

We were able to grab Perkins' original typewriter, his ledger books, corporation papers for the Newhall Messianic Lodge, and many more photos all for a very reasonable price, said Worden.

Although the Historical Society may now own a plethora of Perkins' memorabilia, Maggi boasts that she held on to a majority of the Perkin's archives including the estate.

"I'm looking at renting the house," Maggi said.

Maggi's brother, Kirk Emmons, might come back to the house when he retires, she said.

"We moved here before I could walk," she said. "I will never give up the house."


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