Fawnskin History: Albert Glenn Kendall and 1161 Brookside

Above: Albert Glenn Kendall built Hoffman Haus located at 1161 Brookside.

Fawnskin is filled with interesting vintage homes but little has been written about them and few owners know the history of their quaint mountain cabins.

Curious, I began researching some of these buildings and was excited to find that many were built by wealthy and famous people such as Lew Ayers and Frances Gearhart.

Above: Hoffman Haus aka 1161 Brookside in Fawnskin, California

One of my favorite cabins (1161 Brookside) was built in 1919 by one of Clinton Miller’s wealthy friends (and father-in-law) Albert “Glenn” Kendall.

Above: Hoffman Haus in Winter

After Albert Glenn’s father died, his mother was not able to handle all eight children and so sent them to live with different relatives on the east coast.

Life was very difficult for Glenn who worked on the farm during the spring and summer and attended school in the winter. At age 14 he left Vermont promising his future wife, Fannie R. Morse, that he would come back and marry her–which he did.

Glenn moved to Nebraska and began working worked in a dry goods store. He joined the owner in cattle ranching, and eventually homesteaded 1000 acres.

In 1873, he was elected county clerk and became a respected politician so that in 1875 he was voted a member to the state’s constitutional convention.

By 1880, he was appointed the commissioner of public lands for the state of Nebraska a position he left in 1885 to became the cashier of the St. Paul National Bank.

The respected and wealthy Glenn left Nebraska and moved to Ontario, California to retire and live on a small orange grove.

However, his retirement was short lived when in 1891 he was elected as the County Tax Collector for San Bernardino and eventually became the County Tax Assessor–serving eight years in each role.

At the time the tariff fight began in congress and the newly formed California Citrus Protective League was formed to protect the interest of California growers.

Glenn was elected as secretary/manager and traveled to Washington D.C. to lobby for the tariff California citrus industry for decades.

By 1918 he was appointed to complete the unexpired term on the Board of Supervisors and then was elected, without opposition, in the fall of 1920 as Count Supervisor of the fifth district of the county.

It was during his time as County Supervisor that Glenn built his cabin in Fawnskin.

Glenn also helped to promote the new town of Fawnskin even though he did not have much leisure time since he had also returned to banking and was busy organizing the San Bernardino County Savings Bank.

Later he was elected the president of the Farmer’s Exchange Bank and then resigned this position to become the chairman of the Board of Directors of the Farmers Exchange National Bank.

Albert Glenn Kendall was the first owner of this quaint cabin at 1161 Brookside, but he was not the only famous and wealthy owner.

Other owners included the man who founded Bellflower, California and Mr. Pardee (1940’s) who helped to develop the freeways for southern California.

All of these past owners had one common thread–they loved spending time in Fawnskin at their cabin on Brookside.

About the Contributor: Eileen Downey bought a home in Fawnskin as a retreat from the fast pace of the big city. Living here she has found inspiration, a renewed spirit, an endless amount of creativity and curiosity. Off the mountain, Eileen is an elementary teacher for children with autism but for the last three years, her passionate hobby has been to collect, read, and sort through the history of Fawnskin and its founding settlers. She hopes you will enjoy her series and be inspired by the first Fawnskin residents who called themselves “Fawnskin Folks.”

Perhaps you too have wondered about the history of a Fawnskin cabin? Comment below with the address and I will write stories about the favorites. If you have any additional information you would like to share, or have questions about the history of Fawnskin, please comment below.



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9 Responses to “Fawnskin History: Albert Glenn Kendall and 1161 Brookside

  • 1
    Paul
    May 27th, 2009 07:35

    We are the new (1 year this week) owners of 39380 NorthShore. At the corner of Garden. We have heard bits and pieces about our place. Do you know the real story?

    Paul and Cindy

  • 2
    Jim Cairns
    May 27th, 2009 15:11

    Eileen,

    I am looking forward to reading some day about my cabin at 39253 Mohawk. You stopped by a week or so to take a picture of it while I was painting the front porch steps.

    Kind regards,

    Jim Cairns

  • 3
    Shadow's Mom
    May 27th, 2009 19:43

    I love learning the history of the homes in Fawnskin. I know my cabin at 39311 Mohawk Dr. is not very old–it was built in the 1970’s. I believe that it is a kit house and was built and then moved to it’s current location.

  • 4
    GG (Gossip Girl)
    May 27th, 2009 20:16

    @Paul, Jim, & Paul: I left Eileen know that you are interested in knowing the history and she may reply to you briefly here before working on the addresses.

  • 5
    Eileen Downey
    May 27th, 2009 21:05

    @Paul and Cindy: Your home was owned and built for Lon H. Mitchell, a real esate broker, and president of an oil company.
    @ Jim: Your cabin was built by Isabel Biddle who was often in the Fawnskin Folks newspaper–her daughter is Marjorie. It was great to meet with you.
    @Shadow’s Mom: Love your story about your home and would like to find out more.

    Eileen
    Forever Home in Fawnskin

  • 6
    Carole LaRochelle
    August 31st, 2009 11:16

    Hi Eileen,

    Your response to Jim mentions Isabel Biddle. Is that Isabel Biddle, DO, the physician? She was highly influential to Rolfing and I happen to be writing a paper about her right now. You mention a daughter Marjorie, still alive?

    Thank you so much!

  • 7
    Janette
    January 22nd, 2010 10:50

    Hi!
    I was looking for information about the weather in Fawnskin and stumbled upon the website of the Fawnskin Flyer. I’ve bookmarked it now so we can have access to all the goings on in our little community. We’re new to the community of Fawnskin (since September). I was very interested in your article about 1161 Brookside and would love to read more of the history of the homes in Fawnskin. We live at 39578 Racoon Drive (part-time) and have been told that our house originally belonged to the supervisor for the developer of our neighborhood….is this correct? The home which sits at the corner of Racoon Drive and Piney Ridge was the developers home? Thanks for the wonderful article and hope to meet you one day….
    Janette

  • 8
    GG (Gossip Girl)
    January 24th, 2010 11:15

    Glad that you found me! I’m sure we can get an answer for you but stay tuned…

  • 9
    John B. Gilpin
    June 15th, 2010 11:21

    Always interested in hearing about the history of Fawnskin and previous owners of the cabins. Do you happen to know the history or who has owned 220 N shore?