In celebration of Juneteenth, volunteers from the Lowelifes Respectable Citizens Club will unveil a new Robert Owens historical sign in El Prieto Canyon on Monday, June 19.
By News Desk
This educational sign will shed light on the largely unknown story of Robert Owens, a former enslaved person who became Los Angeles County’s wealthiest African American during the 19th century. Robert won government contacts with the local U.S. Military post to supply cut wood, mules, and cattle, then opened a livery stable and cattle sales venture that employed ten vaqueros (cowboys). He also invested in real estate throughout Southern California.
At 9:00 am on June 19th, participants will be guided to hike about one mile from the JPL Riparian Zone Parking Area to the lower entrance of El Prieto Trail. A 30-minute presentation on Robert Owens’ story and the history of the sign project will begin on site at 9:30 am.
Participants should wear sturdy shoes and carry water bottles. (The El Prieto Canyon area is not easily accessible to those with limited mobility.)
According to Erik Hillard, Lowelifes Respectable Citizens Club:
Unveiling the Robert Owens sign creates a permanent reminder of the hidden history within El Prieto Canyon. A new era acknowledges early African American settlers in our forest.”
According to Veronica Jones, Altadena Historical Society:
Acknowledging the history of El Prieto Canyon helps our community to be stronger and brings us closer. We experience and learn about the history that guides us each day.”
Lowelifes Respectable Citizens Club acknowledges that El Prieto Canyon is the home and traditional land belonging to the Gabrielino Tongva Nation. For more information about the Robert Owens Project by Lowelifes Respectable Citizens Club, visit this link.
Lowelifes Respectable Citizens’ Club is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in the Angeles National Forest in Los Angeles County, California. We are a volunteer trail association dedicated to the education of our volunteers on building, maintaining, and restoring sustainable trails with a commitment to minimizing environmental impacts. Lowelifes promotes multi-use trails, access for bikes, and engaging the community in outdoor opportunities, while promoting responsible trail use.
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