Home > History of Wine > A Chinese grape picker in a Californian vineyard, late 19th century.

A Chinese grape picker in a Californian vineyard, late 19th century.


This undated photograph by A.D. Marchand shows Chinese grape pickers, amongst others, in a vineyard owned by James De Barth Shorb.  This particular vineyard was located on his 600 acre ranch named San Marino that was a wedding gift from his father-in-law Benjamin Davis Wilson.  James De Barth Shorb maintained orchards and vineyards of significant size.  For example there were some 102,000 vines in Lake Vineyard and 129,000 in Mound Vineyard.  Through his efforts he expanded his father-in-law’s winery making it the San Gabriel Wine Co.  There are fascinating histories online so be sure to do a quick search for more information.

James De Barth Shorb passed away in 1896 dating this photograph to the late 19th century.  The photograph shows bush farmed vines laden with grape clusters.  There are numerous horse-drawn carriages scattered throughout the vineyard as well as empty and full boxes of grape.  The carriage in the foreground looks like one a manager would use for the carts in the background are larger and drawn by teams.  I do not see any secateurs but do like the conical hat of the man in the right mid-ground.

"J. de Barth Shorb Vineyards, San Marino". [1]

“J. de Barth Shorb Vineyards, San Marino”. [1]


[1] “J. de Barth Shorb Vineyards, San Marino”. GS-Agri: grapes: 23451. California Historical Society URL:  http://sunsite.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/flipomatic/cic/images@ViewImage?img=chs00000583_116a

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