While Glen Ellen appears to be a teensy village, the area called Glen Ellen spreads for miles. Once a booming and slightly raucous lumber village and home of Jack London, Glen Ellen is now a quiet, slow- moving village whose residents like it that way. . .
Jack London State Historic Park [just west of the village center]. Walk around Jack London's Beauty Ranch including a forest of oak, madrone, Douglas fir and redwoods, open land and streams. The main focus of the ranch is the House of Happy Walls, a home and museum built by Jack London's second wife Charmian, after his death at age 40 in 1916. Here you will see a lot of his personal stuff, such as the roll-top desk where he wrote, his piano, and trunks and clothes.
About a half mile down a gently sloping hill you will find the remains of Wolf House, the dream house that Jack and Charmian built. It burned to the ground the night before they were supposed to move in. Part way back toward Happy Walls, take a cutoff to find London's ashes, but follow the trails.
Be sure to get the State Parks guide to follow so you don't get lost and follow the trails that are appropriate for your abilities. . . .
Sonoma Developmental Center [south of the village center on Arnold Drive]. . . The Developmental Center is a state-owned facility which cares for Californians whose mental and physical impairments prevent them from living life on their own. It is the largest employer in Sonoma Valley. The original brick building at the west end of the circular driveway to the west first housed people whose families committed them as crazy in the early part of this century.
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