Riverside, California: Mother of the California Citrus Industry

10 ft. tall bronze of Eliza Tibbets, who grew the original navel orange trees in 1873, starting California's citrus industry. Sculpture by Guy Wilson.
Address:
Main St., Riverside, CA
Directions:
Downtown, only a couple of blocks west of Riverside Fwy exit 64. On Main St. (pedestrian only) midway between 6th St. and Mission Inn Ave., in front of Simple Simon's Bistro and across from the Mission Inn.
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Citrus Mom.

Statue of the Mother of the California Citrus Industry

In 1873, Eliza Tibbets of Riverside asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture to mail her two of its experimental navel orange trees. When they arrived from Washington, DC, she watered them with her dishwater, and within a few years was growing oranges so terrific that she launched the citrus industry in California. The ten-foot-tall bronze statue of Eliza was unveiled on what would've been her 186th birthday. It depicts her as a slim, art nouveau young woman (she was actually in her matronly fifties when she grew her oranges) frozen in mid-twirl with outstretched arms, her dress billowing, an image familiar to anyone who's seen a happy princess in a Disney cartoon.

As for her trees: one of them is still alive, and it's an attraction in its own right about three miles south of the statue .

[RoadsideAmerica.com Team, 08/14/2011]

Nearby Offbeat Places

President Taft's Chair, Nixon's VowsPresident Taft's Chair, Nixon's Vows, Riverside, CA - < 1 mi.
Sanchez's Beer Bottle Chapel, Folk ArtSanchez's Beer Bottle Chapel, Folk Art, Riverside, CA - < 1 mi.
Southern California Medical MuseumSouthern California Medical Museum, Riverside, CA - 2 mi.
In the region:
Hand-Made Dinosaurs, Riverside, CA - 5 mi.

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