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Way Back When in Santa Barbara & Mesa Memories

"MESA MEMORIES" MONDAY

Weldon of Weldon Road (part 1)

Did you know that Weldon Road is named for a Mesa astronomer?

The Reverend Salmon Riego Weldon was a minister who moved to Santa Barbara from the Midwest in 1872. Within two years, he had built a home near today's Weldon Road, installed his telescope in a special room, and was hosting star-gazing parties for the local intelligentsia.

The Santa Barbara Weekly Press noted, "The entertainments given at this suburban "salon" are becoming deservedly popular. Last evening was an especial occasion of interest on the Mesa, and the attendance at Mr. Weldon's observation parlor was unusually large … Judges and lawyers, and editors and ladies were represented among the eager gazers … Santa Barbara is beginning to appreciate the value of having the best telescope in Southern California, so conveniently accessible on the brow of the beautiful Mesa."

Who was Weldon and why did he come here? Watch for part 2 of this post next week.

(Image: courtesy of NASA)

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