Dear Mr. Liboff,
I just read with interest and not a little bit of nostalgia your article about William Boyd.
I recently spent the afternoon with family wondering up and down Abbot Kinney Blvd. I was amazed at the changes 60 years have wrought. You see I lived at 1306 Washington Blvd. from about 1952 to 1956.
The cute one-bedroom house of course is long gone, replaced with a boring 2-story structure built up against the south wall of the Peacock Bar. The bar was there when I was a child and that south wall served as a fence of sorts for our front yard, the house being set on the back of the lot. I lived there with my younger sister, older brother and both parents. We were renting the home from my mother’s aunt. My sister was in love with horses from a very young age and had quite a collection of horse statuettes by the time she was three. Hoppyland of course was a necessary excursion for my horse-loving sister and my parents accommodated her and I got to tag along. One of my earliest memories is riding the ponies and later the “big” horses on the trails. The workers in the big corral even accommodated Chris by letting her ride standing up on one of the big horses. What a sight!
I have a cute story relating to the pony rides. My husband grew up on Green Avenue near Alla Road about two miles East of Hoppyland. He is eight years older than me so he was about 14 when he got a job working at Hoppyland, lifting the small children up onto the ponies. Of course the space in between was essentially farmland or vacant. He sometimes was allowed to ride a pony home and back again the next day to work. Of course we like to believe that I was one of the little girls he assisted on the ponies. He likes to joke that he gave me a dime and told me to call him when I grew up!
I remember seeing the rides in the park, but no memory of actually riding on any of them. The horses, for us, were the best part. I really enjoyed reading your well-researched article. I read the entire story to my husband. So thank you for sharing your memories and providing us a walk down memory lane.