Saturday, May 04, 2013
From 1949 until 1965, fans of the Old West could drive to Simi Valley, California to visit the Corriganville Movie Ranch. Named after owner Ray "Crash" Corrigan (B-movie actor and stuntman), the property included caves, lakes, mountainous terrain, and lots and lots of boulders to jump off, fall off, or hide behind. I regularly drive on the 118 Freeway right where Corriganville used to be, and those rocky hills look much the same today.
This first photo is a great shot looking down the main drag of the western town. It was only a small part of the approximately 2000-acre property. There was also area called "Fort Apache", a "Corsican Village", a "Mexican Village", and "Robin Hood Lake", to name but a few of the features found there.
Looks like they had a pretty good crowd, considering the fact that Simi Valley was a bit off the beaten path. Notice the sign for 5¢ "salamy" sandwiches. Can't you just picture the Lone Ranger riding into this town?
You've got to have daily gunfights at a Western town, and here is the terrible aftermath. I see at least three corpses, so the public definitely go their money's worth! In 1965, Crash Corrigan sold his movie ranch to Bob Hope (reportedly for millions); Bob changed the name to "Hopetown" in 1966.