Santa Clarita Valley History In Pictures

Solemint Store

(Future) Canyon Country, California

Click image to enlarge | Download archival scan

The Solemint Store at 21322 N. Sierra Highway in the section of Saugus that would come to be known as Canyon Country.

Real photo postcard, undated, but early 1950s. Reader Patrick Newcomb indentifies the car at left as a 1950 Buick fastback. The car at right is probably a 1952 Chevy, judging from the tail lights. As Newcomb notes, prior to 1951, California license plates had black lettering on a yellow background. From 1951 to 1955, they were yellow on black, as seen here. In 1956, California plates switched to a 6x12-inch format with 3 letters and 3 numerals. Therefore, our photo is 1952-1955. Upon close inspection, our best guess for the tag on the Buick is 1953. See the "detail" image below and click on "supersize."

As for the 5-digit street address, while it's true Newhall changed to 5-digit addresses in 1955, Sierra Highway in this area had 5-digit addresses since the mid-1930s when the county officially changed the name from Mint Canyon Highway. Read more about the address renumbering here.

The windows of the store are plastered with handwritten advertisements and cut-out photos of partially clad women, which were a hallmark of the store in the 1950s-early 1960s when it was owned and operated by Lawrence L. "Ollie" Olsen and "Percie" Hansen. The two were active in the Mint Canyon Lions Club. Olsen, who arrived in Mint Canyon about 1945, had served as the club's second-ever president in 1949. Olsen and Hansen must have acquired the store around that time. Alfred Clark was still the owner in 1945 (see link below); Olsen was identified as co-owner in news articles beginning in 1949.

Further reading:

Solemint Junction: A Happening Place to Be

Alfred L. Clark's Solemint Store

Detail. Click image to enlarge | Supersize

Click image to enlarge | Download archival scan

LW3744: 9600 dpi jpeg from original RPPC purchased 2020 by Leon Worden.
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