"Our Weekend Homestead" Top 5 Page for this destination Twentynine Palms by Echo_29

Twentynine Palms Travel Guide: 58 reviews and 124 photos

Five Acres of Heaven

After 10 years of sitting on 5 acres of property in Joshua Tree we bought our Echo Park neighbors homestead cabin in 29 Palms, just down the road from fellow "Weekender" and offbeat LA Celebrity Huel Howser.

From the early 1950s through the late 1960s the US Government patented out land in the High Desert of California, for 5 acre weekend homesteads. Since the 1930s locals had petitioned the US Government to allow the 5 Acre Homesteads. Prior to this the Government only allowed homesteading on 140 acre tracts that required the petitioner to live off the land and to produce a crop.

Once the Government changed the rules the floodgates were open and tens of thousands of people petitioned the Government for their 5 acres and builders popped up everywhere to meet the governments requirements that in order to receive 5 acres free a dwelling of 400 square feet and of adequate construction be built.

Today as you drive across the high desert you’ll see hundreds of decaying homestead houses or “Claim Shacks” strewn across the desert.

Fortunately for us our Echo Park neighbors spent an extra $330 and had theirs built of masonry. Today due to their excellent care our little desert house stands strong.

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  • In a nutshell:Life is Fine in 29
  • Last visit to Twentynine Palms: May 2005
  • Intro Updated May 3, 2005
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Reviews (4)

Comments (6)

  • Mar 14, 2007 at 2:24 PM

    How lucky you are! I miss the desert!

  • KristaB's Profile Photo
    Feb 10, 2004 at 5:49 AM

    Can't resist reasons nr. 1.,2.,3., 6., 8 ...16...20 .... gosh no wonder you love that place!

  • mtncorg's Profile Photo
    Oct 23, 2003 at 1:49 PM

    AAAhh, what is a 29 Palms page without the Marines?! That is another cheap way to see the High Desert at its most basic :-)

  • nepalgoods's Profile Photo
    Sep 6, 2003 at 1:47 AM

    Strange place!

  • vesna04's Profile Photo
    Sep 6, 2003 at 1:34 AM

    well done!

  • Aug 4, 2003 at 9:37 AM

    Looks like a nice place. From "Fine churches" to "Fine 8 lane bowling alley" and (guaranteed?) "Extended life for adults" - what more can you expect? :-)) Would like to see more today's pictures....

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