CL pioneers celebrate 65 years of marriage


Donald and Elinor Martin celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary on August 27 at their home on Loch Lomond Dr. Their sons Steve and Wayne Martin, and family hosted the event and 30 other friends and family were on hand to help them celebrate this momentous occasion.

Don and Elinor were married on August 26, 1951 at the Methodist church in downtown Lake Elsinore. After returning from their honeymoon at Big Bear Lake, the couple settled down in Rubidoux where Don was employed at Brower’s Hatchery. A year later Don was drafted into the U.S. Army and spent the next two years in Korea, while Elinor returned home to work at Railroad Canyon Lake with her parents.

After Don’s military service was finished, the couple settled into running the Fishing and Hunting resort at Railroad Canyon Lake. They built a new home in 1960 where they raised their two sons. They changed the name to Railroad Canyon Lake Resort, added a trailer park along with other amenities, and continued operating the resort until 1968.

Elinor’s family, the Evans, leased the concession from the Temescsal Water Company from 1937 until 1968 when the lake and land was turned into a private community.

In 1968, when Canyon Lake opened, they ran the Village Store, Martin’s Landing and the storage facility on the hill. Four years later they only operated the Martin’s Landing Storage Facility, which they sold in 1999 and then retired.

Elinor, daughter of George and Leta Evans, was a native of this area, as was her father who was born at the east end of what is now Canyon Lake. Her grandfather, Henry Evans, bought property here in 1890, which he later sold to Temescal Water Company in 1927. Elinor’s maternal grandfather was the first recorded land owner of the now Audie Murphy Ranch, having arrived there in 1887.

Don, son of Henry and Mildred Martin, was born and raised in Perris, as was his mother. His grandparents had arrived in Perris in 1890 also.

The couple met in their freshman year at Perris Union High School and were truly high school sweethearts. They married soon after their graduation in 1951 and continue to live happily in Canyon Lake.