This beautiful, rolling hills area of the Central Coast that we know as the City of El Paso de Robles or Paso Robles and “Paso” to locals, has always been renowned for thermal springs. The Salinan Indians-the most historical inhabitants of the area-were here thousands of years even before the mission era. They knew this area as the “Springs” or the “Hot Springs.” The Indians, and later the Mission Fathers and their congregations, found relief from various ailments in the therapeutic waters and soothing mud baths.
First Drug Store: The Eagle Pharmacy, owned by A.R. Booth.
First Newspaper: The Paso Robles Leader (H.G. Wright, Editor of the Santa Clara Journal), the first issue appearing in November 1886.
First Blacksmith Shop: WC. Henderson’s, who bought out the old stage station where in former days the stage horses had been shod, and built his shop on the corner of Pine and 13th Streets. Erected on the same site is the Pioneer Garage, which still stands.
First House: Mr. Testermann’s on Pine Street (on the first lot bought after the town site was surveyed).
First School (private): Built by Mr. James in back of Pelton’s feed store. The teacher was Miss Green. Later, James donated the land for a public school, the site of the present Junior High School.
Business Building: Adams’ block, built by George R. Adams on the corner of 12th and Spring Streets.
Hotel (other than the Hot Springs Resort): Alexander Hotel on the corner of 12th and Pine Streets, completed in 1889.