Less than a mile from where I attended grade school, at Murrieta Elementary, looms Kea Mill, a hundred foot tall, hundred year old building. Constructed for farmers to store their grains in bulk until it could be shipped to Los Angeles, it hasn’t changed much since it was built around 1918. Kea Mill was in use until the 70s, and then boarded up in the 90s. The mill is listed by the city as a historical landmark but it does not meet the requirements to be listed as a historical site at the state or federal level. It is listed, however, on several websites as one of the most haunted places in the United States, but I think those stories were fabricated and perpetuated by parents so Murrieta kids would stop playing at the old mill (before the windows were cemented shut). I have to admit, I have been inside a time or two, but I was too scared to climb up after hearing about the girl who died after falling out of one of the windows. (Who knows if this is true.)
The mill, and the quarter-acre property that it sits on, was gifted to the city in 2013. The city has (or had) hopes of restoring the mill and constructing a park called Pioneer Park. Part of the park plans includes a reproduction of the 1885 Murrieta train depot. The train station is what lured pioneer families to Murrieta in the 1800s, that and the fact you could buy an acre of land for as little as five dollars. I can only hope Pioneer Park comes to fruition. I wish the train depot was never destroyed, but then again, the train stopped running in the mid 1930s, and I suppose there isn’t really a need for a defunct train station. Or, at least, I imagine that’s what they thought at the time.