HYDER, Denton O. “Buster”

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4 Generations of “Buster” Hyder's family


HYDER, Denton Ozias “Buster” (1906-1994), Missouri-born, Buster Hyder grew up tough and poor. His father was hard on him, and Buster worked every day of his life.


In his own words: “I was born in San Pedro, California on May 20, 1906. The doctor says I’m goin’ to live to be over a hundred.
When I was 10 years old I went to Santa Barbara Island to live. My dad leased the island for about $50 a year. That ain’t the first island I had been to. I had been to all the islands when I was a little kid. See, I was working with my dad when I was five years old. I was boxing the compass—I was working.”

Buster Hyder died on February 28, 1994. He is buried in Green Hills Memorial Park, Rancho Palos Verdes.


» Daily, Marla, ed. Santa Barbara Island. Santa Cruz Island Foundation Occasional Paper #6, 1993.


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» Portal: Oral History Interviews


» LISTEN TO BUSTER HYDER: Participants on the trip included:

Buster Hyder Interview, Santa Barbara Island 1986
Tape 1:

OCTOBER 23, 1986

LANDING COVE:
Chinese fishing shack, footbridge, wharf, Hyder Lease 1914-1919; pumping water; track & sled; Hyder house; winds; eye-bolt; boom; unloading sheep; horses and mules; trail; Paul Wills; landings; 'woolies'—poultry blown out to sea.
MIDWAY LANDING:
Uncle Cleve's house; lobster receivers; Margaret Hyder, his wife; Marguerite Blue & her 3 goats; Russian Joe; Phil & Ethel; other work—hauling sheep; fishing; Bob Brooks; Herb Lester; George Hammond; Ed Vail; hogs and calves; sheep from SCRI; sheep from SNI; Lowell Sumner; Smugglers Cove, SCrI; Indian graves; Graveyard Canyon, SBI; Albacore season—12 boat co-op; Smugglers Cove, SCrI well & orange tree; iceplant & 'cabin stalks' (Coreopsis).
ARCH POINT:
Collecting gravel, Orcas beached to eat sea lions; rock wall; rabbits and cats; trail to the top; discusses San Miguel Island.
HIKE TO ISLAND TOP & QUONSET HUT:
Discusses San Nicolas Island—drowning of his father, Al Hyder (56); Roy Agee; Coast Guard (Itasca); sinking of Nora II at SNI.
[end of tape 1]

Tape 2:

HIKING THE ISLAND:
Rabbits; Environmental Assessment (Bill Ehorn); walking up hillside; Coreopsis (cabin stalks); Arch Point; Dams, Webster Point, guano, cactus, sheep didn't eat Coreopsis; walking to Elephant Seal Cove trail; planting of Eucalyptus trees in "A. H." in 1920; wagon road; hay bailer and rake; growing hay; (hiking to saddle); wooden troughs; cistern at house; airplane landed on SBI; bare spots "bad lands."
OVERLOOKING WEBSTER POINT:
location of dam; sheep corrals; waiving lantern to draw boats in at night; Hyders bummed groceries and traded mutton; hay bailer dropped down sled hill into water; south end cave; never found fresh water; no elephant seals on SBI; elephant seal from Guadalupe Island, MX, 1918; Cleve's lobster cabin made from old fish market lumber from San Pedro; burned a patch a block square in size on Webster Point for potato field—too much guano and salt; loss of hay crop when buyer didn't pay; no sand beaches on SBI; one wing fence to run sheep; hog-tied sheep on sled; boiling and eating sea gull eggs; description of Hyder house tied to deadman by cables to keep it from blowing down.
HIKE TO SIGNAL PEAK:
Foxtails; Brown Pelicans on north side of island; Ravens; reservoirs and cement settling tank; 1986 weather station; water-collecting system of ditches.
[end of tape 2]

Tape 3.

Buster Hyder Interview, continued. location of dam; sheep corrals; waiving lantern to draw boats in at night; Hyders bummed groceries and traded mutton; hay bailer dropped down sled hill into water; south end cave;

Tape 4.

Buster Hyder Interview, continued. location of dam; sheep corrals; waiving lantern to draw boats in at night; Hyders bummed groceries and traded mutton; hay bailer dropped down sled hill into water; south end cave;

Tape 5.

Buster Hyder Interview, continued. location of dam; sheep corrals; waiving lantern to draw boats in at night; Hyders bummed groceries and traded mutton; hay bailer dropped down sled hill into water; south end cave;

Tape 6.

Friday, October 24, Santa Barbara Island location of dam; sheep corrals; waiving lantern to draw boats in at night; Hyders bummed groceries and traded mutton; hay bailer dropped down sled hill into water; south end cave;


In the News~

March 26, 1938 [LAT]: “Boat Tragedy Survivors Land. Pair Returned to Port by Coast Guard. Survivors of a boating tragedy at San Nicolas Island, George Garvin, 40 years of age, and Denton Heider [Hyder], 31, last night were returned to San Pedro by Coast Guard Cutter No. 254. They escaped from the fishing boat Nora II when it capsized in the heavy swells off San Nicolas Island Thursday, as they sought to take off Mr. and Mrs. Roy Agee to return them to Los Angeles. Alvin Heider, of 623 Twenty-third street, San Pedro, owner of the vessel, is believed to have drowned. Coast Guard planes searched the area for his body.”