Up in the Crescenta Valley, residents often see signs referring to Dunsmore, as in canyon, avenue, park, elementary school and even as in sediment debris basin. But who was the person behind all those signs?
Jo Anne Sadler, the valley’s resident historian, decided to find out. The first thing she found was that his name has many spellings. She’s seen it as Dunsmoor, Dunsmore and Dunsmuir. She says the correct spelling was Dunsmoor.
“While the Dunsmoor family only lived in the valley for a few years, they left their mark,’’ she wrote in the Crescenta Valley Historical Society’s newsletter, the Ledger, published in March 2011. “Frank and his wife Hattie’s lives are a rich history of 19th Century America and represent the character of the people who settled here.”
James Franklin Dunsmoor was one of many who came west after the Civil War. He grew up on his father’s farm in Minnesota and volunteered for three months of service as soon as the war began. The enrolling clerk misspelled his name as Dunsmore. Sadler noted that this wouldn’t be the last time.