Honoring Bear Valley Springs History

Published on
December 21, 2022

ave you ever imagined what Bear Valley Springs was like before it was developed? Can you identify the Fickert ranch house as you drive down Bear Valley Road? Did you know that the door handles at the Country Club are the Fickert's "88" cattle brand? Do you know who is buried in the Fickert Ranch cemetery off of Deertrail?

This paradise we call home was originally a 160-acre homestead settled by the Fickert family in 1869. By the 1960s the Fickert's had developed that small landholding into a 23,000-acre working cattle ranch. When the last generation was unable to operate the ranch, it was sold and then re-sold to Dart Industries, who then developed it into Bear Valley Springs.

A photo of all fickert family members buried in the ranch cemetery, with dates of birth and death
Many of the Fickert family are buried here in Bear Valley Springs

The Bear Valley CSD and the Tehachapi Heritage League are working together to commemorate the Fickerts and their family home that is now known as Bear Valley Springs. We will be remembering and honoring their legacy with the dedication of a plaque for the cemetery.

This cemetery is accessible from Deertrail Drive, just west of Rand Court. Buried there are Fred and Mary Fickert, ten of their eleven children, one son-in-law, and four others (ranch hands and/or Native Americans). The cemetery is situated on a lot owned by the BVCSD and designated as "common area".

The dedication will take place on Saturday, October 5th at the Oak Tree Country Club from 2pm - 4pm. We are hopeful that at least one of the two remaining Fickerts, who lived on the working ranch in the 1960s, will be able to attend and share stories of local ranch life. Mark your calendars now! More information about the event will be published as the dedication date nears.

The Tehachapi Heritage League is coordinating fundraising for the plaque and other expenses associated with this event and with the Fickert exhibits at the Tehachapi Museum. A Fickert Legacy Fund has been established to cover these costs. All donations are welcome. Make checks payable to the Tehachapi Heritage League (a 501(c)(3) organization) and send to P.O. Box 54, Tehachapi CA 93561
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