Throwback Thursday | Keepsakes from Cawston Ostrich Farm

From pocket mirrors to pocket knives, the world-famous Cawston Ostrich Farm in South Pasadena had a plethora of unique souvenirs to take home

PHOTO: Thomas Collection | SouthPasadenan.com | Souvenir pocket mirror – Cawston Ostrich Farm, South Pasadena

Don’t Leave South Pas without One!

The salesroom and gift shop of the Cawston Ostrich Farm (1896-1935) was ideally located mid-way between Los Angeles and San Gabriel Valley; easily accessible by established steam and electric railway or automobile on freshly-oiled dirt roads. The world-famous South Pasadena ostrich farm even had its own train stop. From downtown, visitors could take South Pasadena Cars on Main Street marked “Cawston Ostrich Farm.”

And of course, after a visit to “one of the strangest places on Earth” tourists left with a souvenir as proof of their extraordinary experience!

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PHOTO: Thomas Collection | SouthPasadenan.com | Souvenirs of the Cawston Ostrich Farm, South Pasadena

Souvenir sales were brisk at the gift shop. Every trinket imaginable had the Cawston mark on it: pocket mirrors, pocket knives, watch fobs, letter openers, paperweights, toothpick holders, match safes, hand-painted plates, tape measures, buttons, spoons, trays, and more.

PHOTO: Thomas Collection | SouthPasadenan.com | Souvenirs of the Cawston Ostrich Farm, South Pasadena
PHOTO: Thomas Collection | SouthPasadenan.com | Souvenirs of the Cawston Ostrich Farm, South Pasadena
PHOTO: Thomas Collection | SouthPasadenan.com | Souvenirs of the Cawston Ostrich Farm, South Pasadena
PHOTO: Thomas Collection | SouthPasadenan.com | Souvenirs of the Cawston Ostrich Farm, South Pasadena

Throwback Thursday is written and produced by Rick Thomas

 

Author Rick Thomas is the former museum curator and vice-chair of education for the South Pasadena Preservation Foundation. He served on the South Pasadena Natural Resources Commission, helping to maintain a strict policy protecting the city’s great old-growth trees. Using touchstone photographs from his own collection—one of the San Gabriel Valley’s largest accumulations of historical images and artifacts—as well as national, state, and local historical archives, Thomas provides a window to his city’s past and an understanding of why its preservation is so important.