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Early 20th Century

The years 1906 through 1914 were especially stormy along the South Coast of Santa Barbara County, with five notable floods. 

The first noted event occurred in March 1906 when heavy rains triggered a series of slides and washouts severe enough to shut down railways and damage most of the wagon roads throughout upper Montecito.

In 1907, another significant storm brought upward of five inches of rain to the foothills. Railways were once again blocked, and the swollen Montecito Creek jumped its banks and carved two ditches down the center of Olive Mill Road. As it approached the sea, the rushing water took another alternate path, flowing east towards the Miramar, flooding the hotel’s sunken gardens and forcing the relocation of many guests. 

In January of 1909, another severe storm crashed into the Santa Barbara front country. Cabrillo Boulevard was completely flooded, and major landslides caused severe damage along Eucalyptus Hill. In 1911, storms caused more flooding and slides. 

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