anchor for Plaza de Española is the historic
Bond House, now a museum that highlights the transition
of Española from frontier outpost to commercial
center. Until the coming of the railroad in 1880,
the Hispanic and Native American lifestyles of the
area had been unchanged for more than three centuries.
Coming from Canada, the Frank Bond family established
the Española Mercantile, invested in sheep
and land, and began the construction of an adobe
home. By 1910, the house had grown to its current
size, a testament to the power of the new cash economy.
The Bond House was added to the State Register
of Historic Places in 1978, and on the National
Register of Historic Places in 1980. In 1982, the
San Gabriel Historical Society opened the house
as a museum with its first exhibits.
Visit the Bond House today and you will see beautiful
examples of turn-of-the-century craftsmanship in
the intricate woodwork, parquet floors, and brass
fixtures. The San Gabriel Historical Society maintains
a schedule of changing exhibits that features historical
artifacts and photographs of daily life in the Española
Valley. Other galleries serve up a sampling of art
from local community groups.
From the front porch of the house, look to the
east and enjoy spectacular views of the mountains.
You will then understand why the Bonds chose this
spot on which to build their home. You will also
understand why this area now represents the heart
and soul of the Española Valley.