Historic Posts, Camps, Stations, and Airfields
Davis Communications Annex

The 323.2 acre Site, identified as Tract A-100 and Tract A-103, along with additional acreage (Tract A-101 and Tract A-102), was originally acquired in 1951 through a fee purchase by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), acting for and on behalf of the United States of America, for use by the McClellan Air Force Base (McClellan AFB) as a 639.20 acre radio transmitter installation.

Fee title to Tract A-100, containing 161.6 acres, was vested in the United States of America by Grant Deed dated 14 September 1951 by John T. Condon, Janet F. Condon, Irene Condon and Leland T. Condon, as recorded on 19 September 1951 in Book 353, Page 118, Official Records of Yolo County, California.

Fee title to Tract A-103, containing 161.6 acres, was vested in the United States of America by Grant Deed dated 5 December 1951 by Manuel Pereira, Alice Pereira, Antone Pereira, Mary Pereira, Frank Pereira and Mary Pereira, recorded 19 December 1951 in Book 357, Page 365, Official Records of Yolo County, California.

Construction of the buildings was limited to the eastern half of the property, but antenna arrays were located throughout the entire site. A lease (Lease No. DACA05-1-69-2), dated 28 October 1968, was executed by and between the USACE, for and on behalf of the Secretary of the U.S. Air Force, and Linford L. Anderson and E. Walter Anderson, partners, comprising the firm of Anderson Brothers, for the purpose of growing forage crops and sheep grazing. The terms of the lease ran from 1 November 1968 to 31 October 1973. On 24 April 1970, Supplemental Agreement No. 1, was entered into by the afore mentioned parties for the purpose of removing 26,000 lineal feet of old fencing and 3 gates and constructing new fencing and gates.

On 12 June 1972, the U.S. Air Force submitted a "Report of Excess Property" to the General Services Administration (GSA) reporting 323.2 acres of land excess, identified as Tract A-100 and Tract A-103, being the westerly half of the Davis Communication Annex installation, and being unimproved "farm land" except for the boundary fencing.

In 1972, Yolo County made "Application for Federal Surplus Property" and GSA assigned the property to the Secretary of the Interior for disposal purposes limiting release "for Public Park and recreational use." Yolo County assumed possession of the land on 15 January 1973, pending the conveyance of title. The United States of America, acting by and through the Director, Bureau of Outdoor Recreation, U.S. Department of the Interior, under and pursuant to the power and authority contained in the provisions of the Federal Property and Administrative Act of 1949 (62 Stat. 337), executed a Quitclaim Deed on 13 July 1973, conveying a portion of the Davis Communications Annex to the County of Yolo for public park and public recreation purposes. This Quitclaim Deed was recorded on 24 July 1973 in Book 1070, Page 555, Official Records of Yolo County, California.

Over the years, the property's location made it an attractive gathering point for specialty recreational uses including archery, model aircraft soaring and horseshoe pitching. In addition to active recreation uses at the Site, Grasslands Regional Park has been used by dog owners, wildlife watchers, and research professionals. Improvements to the property have occurred as a result of both formal and informal arrangements by interested groups and clubs, including construction of buildings, tree planting, irrigation system, picnic facilities, parking areas, etc.

The first of these agreements were under a lease dated 18 May 1976, entered into with Mr. Elmer Wilson, acting for and on behalf of the Yolo County Bowmen Archery Club (Bowmen), for recreational use of the former Davis Communications site. Subsequent leases were entered into with Mr. Wilson which led to the subsequent development of a park and recreation facility. In 1991, the Yolo County Board of Supervisors formally approved the planting of Valley Oaks at the Site. That same year, the Sacramento Valley Soaring Society (Soaring Society) began to utilize the facility.

The county currently has formal agreements with three entities for use of the park: Yolo County Bowmen Archery Club, including a sublease to the Yolo County Horseshoe Pitching Club (Agreement No. 05-165), Sacramento Valley Soaring Society (Agreement No. 05-166), and the City of Davis Burrowing Owl Preserve. The Bowmen and Soaring Society have occupied leaseholds at Grasslands Regional Park since 1976 and 1991 respectively. The current lease agreements are for a five-year terms. As with previous lease agreements, the Bowmen and Soaring Society have made several improvements to the property in exchange for use of the property.

Posted 3 January 2009

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