Santa Clarita Valley History In Pictures
Program: Old West Independence Day Celebration
July 4, 1950 | Newhall, California

Program for the Newhall Old West Association's 1950 Fourth of July Celebration, starting with a parade and finishing up at Ernie Hickson's Placeritos Ranch, which was renamed "Slippery Gulch" for the occasion. Newhall celebrated the 4th at Slippery Gulch from 1949 to 1951; Hickson died in January 1952 and his widow sold the place to Gene Autry, who renamed it Melody Ranch. Not until the Veluzats bought the property in December 1990 would the ranch again open to the general public — not on July 4, but for the City of Santa Clarita's springtime Cowboy Festival, which started in 1994. (There was no City of Santa Clarita back in Ernie Hickson's day.)

Image courtesy of Sharon Marie (2014), daughter of Carolina Cotton — the Yodeling Blonde Bombshell — who was "grand marshalette" of Newhall's 1950 Fourth of July Parade. (Per Sharon Marie, it's 1950.)

Front and back cover missing (we haven't seen them, anyway); inside of program (pages 2 and 3) reads:

Opens Newhall's Old West 4th of July


Welcome Friends!

In this Old West Celebration held every year, we go back to a harder but happier day — the day when the West was first opening up, and living was free, tough and wild. There was a giant hospitality then. We offer you that hospitality now. Join us! Have a good time! Stay as long as you like.

Events of the Day

July Third

Slippery Gulch opens for the evening. Come on out and get together with your friends. A full Old West atmosphere.

July Fourth

Independence Day!

Day starts off with the firing of the cannon in Calamity Wash. If this don't get you out of bed you probably won't ever get out of bed.

9:00 a.m. Grand Peerade assembles on Newhall avenue headin' south. Watch them hosses. Sheriff's Posse will tell you where your place is.


10:30, maybe 11:00 (Parades don't hardly ever start on time).

The shootin' and hollerin' committee shoots up the town. Hold on to your hats and watch them hosses, men.

Grand Peerade rounds the point and starts down the main stem. Marching groups. Drum and Bugle Corps. Lady Riders. Gentlemen Riders.

Just Plain Riders. Watch the hosses. Floats, floats and more floats. More riders. The Queen and her Royal Court. Hats off you pokes. More Riders. More Floats.

Watch them firecrackers — go ahead light it — spend the day in jail.

More Riders.

Line of march north on San Fernando road, thence east to


HB5001: 19200 dpi jpeg from smaller jpeg.

Event Program

Carolina Cotton
"Grand Marshalette"

Frew Blacksmith Shop, 1st Place Commercial

Slippery Gulch Tokens

Slippery Gulch Postcard

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