The Fontana Rock House

Yesterday while hiking through the hills between Rancho Cucamonga and Fontana I stopped to check out the "Rock House" aka The Thomas Hawker home aka the Bullocks cattle ranch complex. I've walked by this old structure many times but finally took the time to detour off the trail and have a closer look.

There isn't much left of the old house built from rocks as it apparently burned down 45 years ago. From Google Maps you can see one structure remains:

Google Map picture of the Rock House in Fontana

The old house is just west of Hunter's Ridge in Fontana and there is even a plaque that the City of Fontana put up explaining the history of the old ranch.

The plaque near Hunter's Ridge in Fontana

The plaque reads:

Historically, this property was a grazing land in the 1800's. First recorded use of the property was by Thomas Hawker, who filed a homestead claim between 1865 and 1874. In 1874 a Frenchman named Michal Sainsevain acquired the property. The Sainsevain house was burned by a brush fire in 1893. John Bullock, of the famous retail family in Los Angeles, acquired the property in 1910-1911. The Bullocks built a cattle ranch complex in 1918 which at one time also operated as a private hunting club. The caretakers/managers of the property were William Hutton (1920's & 1930's); and the McGoverns (1940's thru 1989). Most of the structures were made of cobblestone, which is natural to the area. During a fire in September 1970, mnay of the original buildings were lost except for the 1918 Rock House (Judge Hutton & McGovern residence) which was later destroyed by another fire. Remains of the original ranch complex are located approximatly 1,000 feet from this location. The property later incorporated into the City of Fonana in 1985 and the 570-acre Hunters Ridge master planned community was approved in 1998.

Today the house is barely more than a few walls and a foundation.

Remains of the Rock House near Hunters Ridge, Fontana, CA

Picture of the old building near Hunter's Ridge in Fontana

Comments

Thanks for posting this. My father Richard Hutton, son of Judge William Bryan Hutton, was born in 1922 and grew up in this house. At that time my grandfather managed the Bullock ranch. They later moved to Alta Loma.
I saw it once before it burned. That fire was suspicious since no one was living there at the time, and it was being considered for historical status while the property was also being eyed for development.

Great post! There are also remains of 2 rock structures near the 210fwy in Fontana. Both are on the south side of the freeway and visible from the street. One looks to have been a small home just south of the 210 east bound on-ramp at Citrus Ave (I believe). The other looks to be a bigger structure on South Highland Ave just west of Sierra Ave (before the car dealerships on the right side). Everytime I drive past them I've always wondered about their history and story. I've searched online and was not unable to find any information. Does anyone know any history of either structure?

im currently in the process of looking up information on these structures. im a local that's been in the area for over 27 years plus not including my parents time here in the area as well. ive seen this area change so much, that its sad.
im an amature metal detector enthusiest, and i love history including local history. i myself have wondered about these ruins rock structure type of buildings. these areas have alot of history, but yet in my current research efforts i havent been able to find anything relating to these structures.. supposedly there's petroglyphs in the area, in an undisclosed address.. ill keep you all posted, till then heres some pics of the rock structure south of the 210 frwy and sierra..

i recently bought a metal detector, ima sweep the area and see if i find anything cool :)

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