Jack London's Beauty Ranch is the legacy of London's passion for the land. The Cottage, the Winery Ruin, the Silos, Barns and Pig Palace are remnants of Jack and Charmian London's life on the ranch. Combined with great scenic beauty and many miles of hiking and riding trails, the park attracts fans of the writer and nature lovers year round.
In 1905 London bought the first of several ranches on Sonoma Mountain in Glen Ellen, California. Using proceeds from his prolific writing career London acquired adjoining parcels over several years and expanded his ranch, also known as the Ranch of Good Intentions.
By 1913 London owned 1400 acres on the slopes of the mountain and by 1916 employed nearly fifty workers building, farming, and tending prize livestock. Self-taught and inventive, London sought to improve farming methods using common sense, research, and concepts gleaned from travel. Visitors to the ranch today will see examples of his ingenuity and foreshadowing of organic and biodynamic methods popular today.
'I am rebuilding worn-out hillside lands that were worked out and destroyed by our wasteful California pioneer farmers. I believe the soil is our one indestructible asset, and by green manures, nitrogen-gathering cover crops, animal manure, rotation of crops, proper tillage and draining, I am getting results which the Chinese have demonstrated for forty centuries.' ~Jack London 1915