Charles Fernald: Guiding light of Santa Barbara
Nestled between the Santa Ynez Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, just 90 miles northwest of Los Angeles, Santa Barbara draws visitors from all over the globe with its mix of cultural sophistication, access to the wine country, wide sandy beaches, grand vistas, whale watching and the charm of its Spanish heritage. And right in the middle of this eclectic scene, where billionaires converge with the hoi polloi, is the residence of Charles Fernald, Santa Barbara's first Yankee king. Fernald's 14-room Queen Anne-style Victorian mansion, The Palms, is the perfect metaphor for the city's evolution from a sleepy Spanish pueblo to a city prominent enough to engender its name on a popular TV show. Fernald was no ordinary man; his accomplishments and successes as diverse as Santa Barbara's attractions.