Boundary Determination……#64 (the 50’s)

A surveyors transit

A surveyors transit

Another Saturday and the 41 Chevy pickup once again loaded with building materials destined for the families Sierra cabin site.   On the previous trip to Pioneer, Gary invited his friend Dale Spady who had spent the night, thinking Dale could help at the building site and later the two could find some time to explore the surrounding wooded hillsides for abandoned mines.   Gary and his sister Nancy having discovered tailings from several sites but never had the opportunity to investigate, he especial wanted to return to the remnant ruins of an old cabin and look for artifacts.   The first chore for the two boys after arriving was to unload the numerous 50lb concrete piers for the risers that would support the floor beams and joist, the boys having to lug the heavy piers over 40 yards.  Gary having loaded them in the pickup and knew from experience that the more you moved, the heavier they seemed, noticing that Dale had stopped and was sitting.   It didn’t take long to discover that Dale was sick, his pallor was pale  and said he was chilled.  Gary’s dad not wanting to waste the long drive and accomplish something , telling the boys because of Dale situation they wouldn’t spend the night, but would return home as soon as he had leveled, squared and set the piers in position.   Gary knew the importance of the pier placement as they were the foundation for the structure.  It was late afternoon by the time all the piers were in place, the three returning to Oakland.

Concrete piers – A portable foundation

The raiser and heavy-duty beams,  2 x 6 floor joist, all time consuming task would be accomplished on later weekend trips.  Their biggest concern was waiting  for PG&E to provide electrical service as power pole had yet to be installed in this area of the mountain retreat. The day finally arriving,  no longer handicapped  by the lack of a power saw, father and son now able to give their building some definitive presence,  the electrical service enabling them to hastily install the decking for the sub-floor, the youth now having a wilderness laden platform to stand on, a real foundation for what was to come.

The cabin floor joist

Gary’s sister Kay and Diane Pine


Father and son entertaining the journey to the Sierra Foothills again, only this time in the family car, Gary’s Mother and sister Nancy accompanying them,  his sister Kay remaining in Oakland as was her habit, staying with her best friend Diane Pine.  The Chevy  transpiring down the once bulldozed lane Gary’s mom and sister able to view  the completed sub-floor and the progress that he and his Dad had accomplished.  The family aggregation  approaching the compiled edifice,  suddenly  freezing in their tracks.    Knifing  across the completed flooring, diagonally dissecting the finished subfloor was a fastened line marking the property boundary.   The surveyors employed by the realty company having arrived  leaving their mark,  knowing not of the conjectured  tree markings and the lots property line secured when the property was purchased.   Gary’s Dad’s disposition rapidly changing to one of concern,  recounting the words spoken by the realtor indicating the property lines, marking the trees, stating their labeling would be used in determining the actual area size of the property.  A further inspection found another line down the slope towards what was characterized as Federal Land that was supposed to bordered the Willson property.  It was apparent that the real estate concern had managed to adjust the line up the hill to justify another lot between the Willson’s acreage and the Federal Land.  Gary visualized the situation,  the marketing agent was cajole in his zeal to traffic the property and used the proximity of trees to master his persuasion.   The salesman recognizing  the  families’  momentary intoxication to fulfill an incessant dream overruled any sound judgement concerning property confines.

The Martell Reality Office at the top of the Hill

The Willson’s concern was negated after visiting  the Martell Real Estate Office,  a discussion of  the adjusted boundary  was productive,  a solution was agreed upon.   Any variations made by the surveyors in the property line would be adjusted to  encompass all prior construction,  meaning  the boundary line across the sub floor would be changed to encompass the building project so it would remain within the Willson property jurisdiction.   Gary concluding that if boundaries are determined by trees,  we must live in a forest.

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