Carrying her two diaper-clad sons, the family's grand matriarch, Louisa Hart, journeyed by boat from New York to the Isthmus of Panama where she then rode a mule across to board another ship destined for San Francisco. Once Louisa reached San Francisco, she wagon-trained up too Little Shasta where she joined her two brothers, the Millers, and began the long history that is the Hart Ranch. Louisa passed away here on her ranch at the age of 87. Alex is the 6th generation Hart.
The ranch is comprised of two separate properties; the valley floor ranch (Little Shasta) and a high mountain property (Butte Creek).
Historically, the Little Shasta Ranch was first utilized as an overnight rest stop for cattle drovers taking herds between the Mexican and Canadian borders. Eventually, the family acquired their own herd of cattle and started operating the properties as full-time ranching units. The Little Shasta Ranch remained the base of operations, providing vital resources needed to support the family and community living within the basin. The ranch included cropland farming, hogs, cattle, sheep, and even a herd of horses raised for both national and international cavalries. The Butte Creek ranch was utilized for summer feed and meadow grass haying operations. Eventually, as time passed and technologies improved, the ranch became solely a cow-calf operation.