Emilio Tabacci came to Santa Barbara in 1926 after immigrating to the US with his Swiss-Italian parents. His family owned a bakery on the 100 block of East Canon Perdido Street, near the site of what is now Jimmy' Oriental Gardens. He spent much of his career working on construction projects for Elmer Whittaker, a local developer. Mr. Whittaker purchased the Cañedo Adobe, a portion of the original Presidio, and rehabilitated it in the late 1940s. Mr. Tabacci's interview offers listeners colorful images of the old Presidio neighborhood before the founding of the State Park and Presidio reconstruction efforts, and specifically, a detailed description of Elmer Whittaker's remodel of the Cañedo Adobe.
Above photo: An image of the Cañedo Adobe after Mr. Whittaker's remodel, the project which Mr. Tabacci describes in great detail.
Clip 1: Emilio describes the Cañedo Adobe before Whittaker's remodel.
Clip 2: Emilio recalls that prior to remodel by Mr. Whittaker, a building that once housed a Chinese laundry had been located in the front of the property.
*To hear the entire oral history interview or additional clips, please make an appointment with the Presidio Research Center at (805) 966-5073.