Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Who was living at Myers Ranch in 1969?

 Who was living at Myers Ranch in 1969?

Now if you ask the average TLB researcher that question, they'll say "The Family was mostly living at Barker, but they hung out at Myers too." 

Paul Watkins, in his book My Life With Charles Manson, does support this view:

 Chapter 11
"... Charlie and I took Brenda and Squeaky up to the Meyers ranch to make love before dinner."

Chapter 12
"It got colder. Thanksgiving came, and we had a huge meal around the fire at the Meyers ranch.  ...It was New Year’s Eve, 1968....That night we all hiked up to the Meyers place and built a roaring fire. Everyone was back."

Chapter 19  (in the beginning of Sept. '69)
"Moments later, Bruce Davis come in to announce that everything seemed copacetic at the Meyers ranch… ready to move in.  ...
As we approached the Meyers ranch, Charlie described his plans to move in immediately.   ....
By the time it was dark, Charlie and the Family had moved, lock, stock, and barrel, into the Meyers ranch, leaving Brooks, Crockett, and me alone at the Barker ranch, just a quarter of a mile away."

Chapter 20
"On our way out, we stopped at the Meyers ranch so Stanley(Berry) could pick up his tools; Clem and Bruce were sitting outside with Brenda and Sandy. The dune buggies were pulled right up to the house; boxes of supplies lay strewn along the narrow porch. Charlie appeared on the porch with Squeaky..  ... Juan spent two days at the Meyers place with Charlie and the Family, then moved into the Barker ranch with us..."

Chapter 21 "Near the end of September(1969), Manson was making numerous forays into Death Valley... Traveling in caravans of three to five dune buggies, he led these expeditions for days at a time, leaving Clem and Bruce and a few girls behind to watch the Meyers ranch in his absence.  ...Early one morning sometime around the first of October ...  He told me he was taking an expedition over to the Saline Valley and asked if I’d take the younger girls—Snake, Kitty, Ouisch, Sherry, Barbara, and Patty—up to the Lotus Mine to “hide out” for a few days while he was gone. Charlie frequently moved his “young loves” to different locations, calling it “survival training.” Yet part of it, I knew, was his paranoia that if left alone at the Meyers ranch they would be vulnerable to outside influences.

(What 'outside influences' is he talking about?)


Bugliosi in Helter Skelter also tends to support this view:

Other members of the (Barker) raiding party surrounded nearby Myers Ranch, where the group had also been staying, arresting: Sandy, Ouisch, Diane Von Ahn, and Nancy Pitman.

(Though they were arrested in the canyons behind Myers, not in the actual house.)

...Cathy Gillies.. was the granddaughter of the woman who owned Myers Ranch. The Family had apparently camped there first, then moved to nearby Barker.

(Thus it sounds like they abandoned Myers for Barker--but why?)

While at Myers Ranch, in early September 1969, Barbara(Hoyt) had overheard Manson tell someone... 

One afternoon in early 1969, Barbara had been napping in the bedroom at Myers Ranch when she awoke to hear Sadie and Ouisch talking in the kitchen. ...
(Thus Charlie, Hoyt, Atkins, and Moorehouse are the only Mansonoids that Bugs actually places inside the Myers house.  All on the word of one witness--Barbara Hoyt.)


Other authors support the view that they stayed at Myers (owned by Cathy Gilles' grandmother Barbara Weddle Myers, 64 in 1969) for a very short time in October of 1968, but they avoided the place after that. 


From the "National Park Service Cultural Landscapes Inventory 2005 Thomason/Barker Ranch, Death Valley National Park":

"Manson eventually selected Thomason/Barker Ranch rather than the Myers Ranch as the Family's base of operations."

"Charles "Tex" Watson... described his initial perception of ... Myers Ranch when the family first arrived in 1968:

"... The ranches themselves were about a quarter of a mile apart. Myers Ranch was in very bad condition, rundown and vandalized..."

(So presumably Myers was too trashy for even the Mansonoids to live in.)


Ed Sanders in The Family:

..(the Family) encountered the Meyers Ranch, which is a well-kept series of buildings, including the ranch house, a trailer and several outbuildings. ....They stayed for a couple of days at the Meyers Ranch but were unable to secure permission from Meyers' grandmother to remain so the family established headquarters at the dilapidated Barker Ranch just a quarter mile west...
(Though there is no solid evidence that the Family ever established contact with granny, or that granny was ever interviewed by investigators.  It is also curious that Charlie's thievin' band of cutthroats would have been intimidated by somebody's grandmother living 200 miles away in Fresno, with Helter Skelter being so imminent.  Yes it's true that Charlie got permission for the Family to live at Spahn, at Dennis Wilson's, and at Barker, but they had previously squatted at the 'Basement House' in Topanga Canyon, at the 'Iron Butterfly House' near Malibu, and then later at the Newman Cabin down in Goler Wash.

Or maybe Cappy DID reach out to grandma:

My Life With Charles Manson by Paul Watkins, Chapter 10

“What exactly did you tell your grandmother?” Charlie wanted to know.

Gilles: “I just said me and some friends were going to come up and stay at the ranch.”

Manson:  “But you didn’t say how many, right?”

Gilles  “I just said some girls and me, mostly.”

Manson: “What if she gets nosy and sends someone up to check?”

Gilles  “She won’t.”


Nuel Emmons in Manson in his Own Words:

"... first look at Myers Ranch. ...a fair-sized dwelling surrounded by unexpected green vegetation.. The house had a large front room with a big fireplace, two bedrooms, a small kitchen and a back porch with an attached bathroom. It was more than just an old miner's shack and a hell of a lot better than some of the places we had called home before.

"The next morning I (Manson) quizzed Cathy as to how receptive her grandmother would be if a bunch of us moved into her desert home. Cathy was a little uneasy about so many being there, and we decided to look at the only neighboring ranch, about a quarter of mile back. The Myer house and surroundings were the best, but I didn't want to get Cathy in a cross with her grandmother, so I decided to speak to the owner of the second choice."
(So Cappy and Charlie eagerly lead the pack up Goler Wash to go live at Granny's vacation cabin, but when they get there, Cappy gets cold feet about the pack living at Granny's vacation cabin.  Hmmm...   And Charlie doesn't even try to use his considerable persuasive powers to counter Cappy's doubts.  Hmmm... )


Superintendent of Death Valley National Monument Bob Murphy in Desert Shadows :

pg101, re the Barker Ranch raid
"The officers checked the nearby Myers Ranch. The location had obviously been cleaned up. The floors were neat and the bed made with the bedspread carefully tucked over the top.  No Family items were found. Charlie told the arresting officers that the Family avoided the Myers Ranch because "the ghost of Bill Myers still lived there."

(Charlie scared of ghosts? Hmmmm....)

None of these explanations sound realistic.  I just don't see Charlie giving up on this valuable asset just because Granny might show up. And you'll notice that Crockett/Posten/Watkins/Flynn never opted to set up camp at Myers when things with Charlie started getting nasty.  I suspect the reason that the Mansonoids did not claim Myers is because someone was already living there.  At least intermittently, meaning someone who came up on weekends or one week per month or something similar.

Further evidence that Myers was occupied: 

https://www.dailybreeze.com/2009/10/11/memories-of-charles-manson-remain-fresh-in-death-valley/ The people who lived on the nearby Myers Ranch and the Barker family did not like the Manson family squatting on the property but were afraid to do much about it, said Jay Snow, an interpretive park ranger at Death Valley National Park. 

But then the question becomes:  What were these people's names?  Why have we never heard them before? Wouldn't the cops have wanted to interview them?  Was this just a trivial oversight, or is there some BIG SECRET that has to be protected?  I suspect the latter.  I suspect that this person or persons was associated with Law Enforcement, and that Myers Ranch was being used to maintain surveillance on the Family.