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GOAT RANCH CALIFORNIA
Never saw one goat, baaap…

Occupied Historic Ranch
Mono County
Circa 1880 to Present

Somewhere about 1900, ownership became that of the Scanavino Family. The Scanavino Family was originally from Italy and resided in Genoa Nevada prior to settling on the Mono Basin. The Scanavino Family were well known Horse experts. Some say Goat Ranch derived its name from the Scanavino children who resided on the ranch, although goats were never raised nor a part of the family ranch. Others contend that Goat Ranch got its name because goats were raised on the ranch prior to Joe Scanavino's purchase and the children would not let rest of that fact. A school house was built on the property to educate the 14 children that comprised the Scanavino Family. Although in severe decay, the school house is still standing. The ranch played a key role in providing fresh produce for the nearby boom towns of Bodie and Aurora. The produce business was a success for the Scanavino family who planted a truck garden with a state of the art warm air ventilation system that allowed them to send their produce to market before season. Joe Scanavino Sr. passed on in 1955 and was buried in the Bodie cemetery with his brothers and sisters and is survived by a son, Joe Jr. Who resides back east.

This site is unique because it was here in 1881 where a famous Bodie murder suspect was captured. Apparently a French bachelor, Joseph DeRoche had been spending a lot of time with the wife of a miner by the name of John Treloar. Treloar, feeling uncomfortable with the relationship, forbid his wife from dancing with DeRoche. That evening, while coming off of the late shift at one of the mines, Treloar entered the Miners Union Hall where he saw his wife being smothered by DeRoche. As he confronted his wife, DeRoche intervened and requested they talk it over outside. It was here where witnesses say DeRoche, who was walking behind Treloar, pulled a gun from his pocket and placed it to the back of John Treloar’s head and pulled the trigger. Once arrested, DeRoche called on the famous Pat Reddy to defend him. Meanwhile rumors of an illegal lynching were spreading across town. Reddy requested that his client be relocated from jail to a Lodging house under the watch of the Deputy Sheriff for safety. That night DeRoche escaped. When the residents heard of this, they formed the "601 Vigilante Committee" and sent out a posse to locate the whereabouts of DeRoche. It was not long before DeRoche was apprehended at the Goat Ranch and returned to town where he met his fate with the 601 and was hung at midnight. As the story goes, was Louis De Chambeau (who sometime later founded the Dechambeau Ranch) that cut DeRoche down the following morning.

Today, Goat Ranch is still occupied by a caretaker hired by the Scanavino family. And the property is clearly marked as being private.


Ghost Town Explorer
Photo of Joe Scanavino courtesy of Mono Basin Historic Society  

Ghost Town Explorer
Goat Ranch slowly slipping in to the prairie

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