A Separate Place - by Charles Jones Did you know there is a book about La Honda with old photos from the 1970's and published by the Sierra Club? You may recognize some of the characters mentioned in it or others artfully photographed by Susan Friedman. A great photo, for example, of Limey Kaye is on page 82 (also see Bill Underwood's "putting you in the Limey Light" page for more photos of Limey - http://www.geocities.com/SunsetStrip/4495/limeylight.html )
The jacket cover of the book says, "It is a place people feel in their bones, La Honda - a place made special by the precarious balance existing between the land and the people…Jones offers a portrait of a town as a living community. He gives us old Gus, who embodies the spirit of La Honda, living easily, for whom the distant past and the new day are equally exciting. He gives us Mac and Grace, founders of the Boots and Saddle tavern, made famous by the Merry Pranksters. And he gives us the soul of the town, all as if he were revealing, like a lover, the secrets of his self.
Jone's La Honda is a place joining the old traditions to new values without destroying either. But while La Honda is a separate place by virtue of this fact, the town is only 50 miles from the heart of San Francisco…Only a hard and frenzied fight by La Hondians prevented construction of a dam which would have undoubtedly fulfilled the conditions: given a projected population of 160,000 in the year 2080…And perhaps the most ominous of the signs is the violence, trouble imported into town on La Honda carnival days, which attracted people who understood nothing of La Honda's life, and who destroyed a life. Jones is saddened by this tragedy and by all it portends. Therefore, he takes a chance of opening La Honda to the world, of inviting outsiders to know the town, for in this knowledge lies La Honda's only chance for all places like it. For Jones feels, if more people can be made to understand its separateness, then perhaps it can survive."
Unfortunately this book was published in 1974 and is no longer in print. Jones was a longtime resident of La Honda when he wrote this book, and he was able to poetically capture the soul of the town. It presents La Honda as a very special place - which, of course, it still is.
The following is from a website I came across while searching for the history of La Honda. Evidently every US town has a "history" on this website. I think the funniest part is not the obviously absurd histories of La Honda and other towns, but the people who responded trying to correct the "facts" in these "histories." Here is an excerpt from La Honda's "history": La Honda Founding Founder "Born in 1821, Constance Noring displayed early signs of greatness and addiction. Even as a young man, his test scores were above average for his size. At the age of 34, he migrated to La Honda and staked his claim on the plot of land now occupied by Beavers Harry's auto body shop…He did not attend any normal schools of learning and only spoke to the merchants and landowners of his time. This caused a great rift to develop between him and the town's common folk, who had him killed in 1872. It was not until 1877 that he had regained the strength to re-write the town's constitution... Early Years La Honda…was a barren place attracting only the few who came over from the mainland on small yaks… Notable Events Dr. Larry Gubna, a La Honda native, created quite a stir in 1989 when he found the cure for Shingles. The media frenzy was short lived however, when just days later he lost the cure in a New York City cab on the way to appearance on the Today Show… " If you have way too much free time on your hands, go to http://lahonda.historycity.com/ to see the rest of this "history."