|About the Book|
Few regions of California have been written about as often as the Napa Valley. With its colorful history and mild climate, Napa Valley has tempted many tourists to visit this beautiful place. So it was in the early years. Settlers came to build aMoreFew regions of California have been written about as often as the Napa Valley. With its colorful history and mild climate, Napa Valley has tempted many tourists to visit this beautiful place. So it was in the early years. Settlers came to build a future for themselves and in doing so, developed a farming community and tried their hands at growing grapes.This is an account of one settler who, in 1870, bought land above the valley where public land was still available. James Reed Harris developed his 160 acres into a well-organized ranch, where he too, grew grapes along with his other crops, and was involved in the first documented wine making on Atlas Peak. Instrumental in the formation of the Atlas Peak School District, and the building of its first school-house, he was elected as a school trustee many times. As the districts roadmaster, he was responsible for all road repairs in the district. On daily trips to Napa, Harris would transact business with many well-known Napa individuals, as well as some not as well known. An Irish immigrant, James Reed Harris and his wife, Jennie, raised six children on their rugged Atlas Peak ranch.Although this is only one settlers story, through Harris diary accounts, the reader is able to get a glimpse of the endless hard work that was vital in the development of Napa County.Cecelia Elkington Setty, a descendant of early Napa County pioneers, is a life member and volunteer of the Napa County Historical society. She and her family live on part of the old Harris ranch.