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Saturday, August 25, 2012

Flanagan Ranch 2012 - Carneros, Napa, CA - Part 1

Now, I know exactly where Pat and Kate Flanagan's Ranch house is in Napa, CA.  After all, they are my great great grandparents plus my mom spent many a day there as a child along with my ancestors living there over the years.   As best as I can tell, the house was built and/or completed in 1897.   The land and premises surrounding the house had been in the family as early as 1873 and had some sort of living quarters on it predating the ranch house.  From 1870 to 1873, Patrick Flanagan owned and farmed an adjacent plot of land and "traded up" for this location to where the Flanagan Ranch House still stands today.  Both deals were made with the neighbor, Judge Stanly, as the land was his before the Flanagan's purchased it.

In my quest to really iron out the details of my family tree and, in particular, the Flanagan's of Napa, it finally occurred to me to get the postal address of the ranch.   Yes, they have mailboxes along the highway and receive mail at the location.   I am always challenged in telling people exactly where this property is located since it is out in the middle of farmland in Napa.

Most people envision something up valley when I say that but this is in Carneros on the road to Sonoma.  It's not very far off Highway 29 and you can litterly blink and miss it if you are not paying attention.  You could easily blow past the property and end up at Domaine Carneros where they make sparkling wines or at the Carneros Inn which is probably 1000 ft from the northwest corner of the Flanagan property.  The only catch there is that you'd probably take your life in your hands to try and walk across the highway to the Inn.

Above the Napa Carneros Area 2012 - Photo of Domaine Carneros
Anyway....I need to get back to the address.  It is 3315 Sonoma Highway, Napa, CA 94559.  I finally nailed that down at  Now, the property is owned by a winery and the house is most certainly private property as is the entire premises.  In the years that come, I do think that the property will become less open and accessible off the highway.   Right now, if you know where the driveway is, you can drive down to the house off the highway quite easily.

Sometime in the mid 1970s, the property was sold to another family and the Flanagan's were no longer in the picture.  Times can be tough and it can be hard to sustain a ranch or farm.  Over the years since then, a family owned the house.  They may have been the ones to put the addition on the back of the house along with a garage.   That owner was actually a chef from San Francisco.  He put in a gourmet kitchen.  I think that he was too busy to spend a lot of time at this house though.  My grandfather did known them.

By the mid-1990s, the house was in pretty rundown shape.  ZD Winery bought it.  For years now, they have maintained and harvested the beautiful vineyards.  I am certain those grapes produce some awesome wine.  I've had a bit of it.

The ranch house has been a rather daunting project but now that has changed.

To Be Continued...................   

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