Moments in History: Don Jesus Ramos, 1829-1912 and Don Secundino Robles, 1830-1890

DON JESUS RAMOS

Don Jesus Ramos, a native of Mexico who came to California in search of gold, arrived in Mayfield in 1851—a year after California became a state. He worked as foreman for Secundino Robles.

At age 48, he married 16-year-old Julia Gallegos, who had migrated from Spain in 1865 with her family. They raised four children and lived in Mayfield, farming vegetables. In 1883, Ramos built a house on two acres at 727 Page Mill Road. He lived there with his family until his death in 1912. 

DON SECUNDINO ROBLES

Robles was born in 1830 in today’s Santa Cruz and died in 1890. 

In 1847, Don Secundino Robles and his brother Teodoro bought the 8,418-acre Rancho Rincon de San Francisquito (today, south Palo Alto and Barron Park) from a retired Presidio soldier. Robles and his wife Maria Antonia Garcia built a hacienda that became a lively social center for the surrounding area. In the mid-1850s, Robles began to sell his land to pay off debts. Twenty years later, his ranch was half its original size. 

The Robles’ hacienda, 3.5 miles south of Mayfield across the railroad track at the end of San Antonio Road, stood until 1906 when it collapsed in the earthquake. A plaque at Alma Street and Ferne Avenue notes the hacienda’s former site.

Ramos and Robles each have a park named after them. Don Jesus Ramos Park (where you are today) opened in 1958. Robles Park, at 4116 Park Boulevard, was first called Mayfield Park; the name was changed in 1968.

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Photo description: Mrs. Julia Ramos with her son William, his wife and their children.

Photo courtesy of the Palo Alto Historical Association