Here is your weekly dose of some Pasadena history thanks to The Pasadena Peninsula by Isabel Shipley Cunningham:
The Stony Creek drawbridge was built in 1914 and, for a period, was raised 20 times a day by a 16-year-old girl.
“In 1914 the county built the first bridge over Stony Creek, a wooden drawbridge with wooden side walls,” wrote Cunningham. “Richard Phelps tended the drawbridge until his health failed. Then his sixteen-year-old daughter, Mildred Phelps (later Mildred Phelps Hahn) took over his duties from six a.m. until six p.m.
“Sitting in a small building beside the bridge, she raised and lowered the draw about twenty times a day; on Sundays during the summer, she opened the draw as many as fifty times a day. An excursion boat that came into the creek twice a day and many market boats, sailboats, and yachts prevented boredom.
“Though fewer boats passed and her friends did not spend as much time with her in the winter, she was not lonely because she used her free time to read newspapers and magazines and write and crochet.
“Her mother visited her often and always stayed with her after dark. Despite long, sometimes lonely, hours in the hot sun or bitter cold, young Mildred Phelps insisted she liked her work.”
Be sure to check back next Wednesday for more Pasadena history.