Another was J.A. Bernal, who brief biographical sketch noted that he had been a resident of Los Angeles for 35 years (that is, from the middle 1860s) and that he "is a well known surveyor" who was chief deputy for the city surveyors for most of the period between 1881 to 1895 and who was then working for the city engineer. As to why Bernal settled in the neighborhood, the sketch stated that, "his decision . . . [was] on account of its healthfulness and pleasant location."
Bernal's home was one of a quartet of residences shown on a page of the publication, including that of Kiu Sing Chan and it shows a small cottage with a projecting front room, a porch across three-quarters of the front elevation, and a profusion of climbing vines covering the porch and extending over the entrance towards the front room. There even appears to be a hitching post near the street--automobiles were some years away from being in use. Because the publication was downloaded from the Net, the image shown here is sketchy at best, though some cleaning up was attempted to make the image a bit clearer.
In 1880, Bernal married María Constancia Machado, from a prominent family who resided in the area near today's Los Angeles International Airport. The couple went on to have a daughter, Rosa, and three sons, Eduardo, Adolfo and Alfonso, two of whom followed their father in the civil engineering and surveying trade, while the third, Eduardo, was a bookkeeper in the city department.
It is said that Bernal specialized in surveying land grants of rancho made under Spain and Mexican rule and he also had a surveying business with George Fisher, much of the archival material of which is deposited at the Seaver Center for Western History Research at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County. Maps worked on by Bernal can also be found at the Huntington Library, including a beautiful and ornate 1888 rendering of the "Workman Orchard," the property of Boyle Heights founder William H. Workman on the west side of Boyle Avenue on the bluff overlooking the city.
|The short biographical sketch of Bernal from the pamphlet.|
Contribution by Paul R. Spitzzeri, Assistant Director, Workman and Temple Family Homestead Museum, City of Industry, California. Thanks to Rudy Martinez of the Boyle Heights Historical Society for locating a copy of this pamphlet online.