Dr. David Burbank Statue and Dedication
12 January 2010
From the programme:
David Burbank was born in Effingham, New Hampshire on December 17, 1821 and spent his early childhood in Cumberland County Maine. He practiced dentistry at Waterville, Maine until 1853 when he moved west to San Francisco and set up a successful dental practice. In 1866 Dr. Burbank left San Francisco to practice dentistry in the Pueblo de Los Angeles.
He bought 4,600 acres of the Rancho San Rafael from Jonathan Scott and 4,600 acres of Rancho La Providencia from David Alexander and Alexander Bell for one dollar an acre and combined the two ranchos as one large ranch. David and his wife Clara were owners of one of the largest and most successful sheep ranches in Southern California. They built their ranch house on what was later to be a backlot of the Warner Bros. studio and the house stood until the early 1950's. The ranch was so successful that in 1872 Dr. Burbank stopped practicing dentistry and invested heavily in Los Angeles real estate.
In 1879 the first Burbank school building was built on an acre of land that Dr. Burbank donated. He sold his Burbank Ranch to the Providencia Land, Water and Development Company for $250,000 in 1886, but stayed on as director. The land was surveyed and a business district was laid out, surrounded by residential lots. Dr. Burbank and his son built the Burbank Villa for the land company.
In 1893 at a cost of $150,000 Dr. Burbank opened the Burbank Theatre on South Main Street in Los Angeles. The theater seated 2,000 and soon became the leading theater and opera house in Los Angeles. Dr. Burbank also built the Tally-Ho Stables. Dr. David Burbank died at age 73 on January 21, 1895.
by Mike McDaniel