La Playa, Santa Cruz Island

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La Playa, Santa Cruz Island [Laplaya, Sp. the beach] was the name of the official postal station established at Prisoners' Harbor on February 25, 1895 by Arthur J. Caire, elder son of Justinian Caire. According to the Post Office Department Bulletin No. 4596, Arthur Caire was commissioned as postmaster of La Playa on March 28, 1895. Mail continued to be received and dispatched via boats to La Playa until the system was discontinued on June 30, 1903. » Salley, H. E. History of California Post Offices 1849-1976 (1976); Richard W. Helbock Western Post Offices (1993).

In the News~

July 14, 1887 [SBDI]: “Captain Larco left this morning in an open boat to carry the mail to Santa Cruz Island. If the wind is favorable, he will return day after tomorrow.”

October 25, 1888 [SBMP]: “Having a standing invitation from Captain Larco to accompany him to the islands in his staunch little craft, the Genova, and after months of restless longing to avail myself of his kindness, the writer a few days since cast aside all business cases, donned his sea apparel, and stepped on board the gallant little craft, determined to have a good time with his genial old friend… We reached Santa Cruz Island about 11 A.M., and anchored in Prisoners’ Harbor, and after delivering the mail to the proper authorities left…”

April 22, 1891 [SBMP]: “Sloop Young America has arrived from Santa Cruz Island with mail and dispatches.”

October 18, 1892 [SBMP]: “The Santa Cruz Island mail boat, Young America, arrived in the harbor Sunday afternoon.”

November 13, 1892 [SBMP]: “The sloop Young America, the Santa Cruz Island mail boat, is in from the island.”

April 7, 1895 [SBMP]: “Santa Cruz Island has now been recognized as a part of the United States by the establishment there of a post office, a mail service also being provided for. La Playa is the name of the new office.” [also April 14, 1895 LAT]

August 10, 1899 [SBMP]: “The schooner Santa Cruz arrived from Santa Cruz Island yesterday afternoon bringing over the mail. She will return tomorrow.”

June 6, 1901 [SBDI]: “The gasoline schooner Santa Cruz returned to the island this morning with the mail to La Playa post office.”

June 18, 1907 [SBMP]: “The power schooner Santa Cruz returned to Santa Cruz Island Sunday with mail for La Playa post office.”

June 25, 1901 [SBDI]: “The schooner Santa Cruz arrived this morning with mail from La Playa post office.”