Self-Guided Tour

ROUTE 66 - CLAREMONT CA (AKA Foothill Blvd.)

Route 66 sign photo

We sincerely hope you'll enjoy your tour - an historic overview of the area ... Visit for business directory.

Foothill Blvd. was opened through Claremont as a state highway in January 1931 and became part of the famous Route 66 which runs from Chicago, IL to Santa Monica, CA. Claremont’s Route 66 has several buildings that reflect the academic, citrus, and business history of the town.

School of Theology at Claremont (1952)
1325 North College Avenue, north side of Foothill Blvd.

Claremont School of Theology photo

This institution gives advanced degrees in religion and divinity. The school moved here from the University of Southern California in 1952. Its buildings were designed by Edward Durell Stone.

Methodist Church – Neutra Chapel (1960)
211 West Foothill Blvd.

The sanctuary of the Claremont United Methodist Church was designed by the internationally known Modernist architect, Richard Neutra. In 1967, the building was gutted by fire and Dion Neutra, son of the original architect, was hired to rebuild the church.

Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden (1952)
1500 North College Avenue (North of Foothill Blvd.)

The purpose of this 86-acre garden is to study and preserve California native plants. The institution moved here from Santa Ana in the early 1950s to be close to The Claremont Colleges. The garden is open to the public and offers educational programs for adults and children as well as summer concerts and plant sales.

Wolfe’s Marketplace (1917)
160 West Foothill Blvd. (at Harvard Avenue)

Wolfe's Market photo

A fourth generation Claremont business, Wolfe’s Market was established in 1917. Look inside over the produce section at the wonderful mural of Claremont landmarks by Jeff Faust.

Griswold’s Stone Cellar
222 West Foothill Blvd.

This building was once the center of an extensive dried fruit and marmalade business run by a retired professor, George Griswold. It was a regular stop for travelers of Route 66. The business was moved across Foothill Blvd., and expanded to include Griswold’s Inn and Smorgasbord.

Old School House (1911)
415 West Foothill Blvd. (at Indian Hill Blvd.)

Old School House Claremont CA photo

This building, originally Claremont High School, opened its doors to a student body of 120 on September 2, 1911. It was rebuilt in the 1930's and, because it still did not meet earthquake standards for public schools, was sold in 1971. It is now the site of The Old School House shops, restaurant, & offices. Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theater operates in the former gymnasium of the high school. Located to the west, adjacent to the site is Trader Joe's, several food establishments and DoubleTree by Hilton.

Sherwood Florist (c. 1923)
404 West Foothill Blvd. (at Indian Hill Blvd.)

This stone building with red tile roof was built to house the Sterling Oil Spray Company, which serviced the citrus industry. It later became a garage and now houses a florist shop. A unique anchor at a key corner in Claremont, it is a reminder of the rocky soil faced and conquered by the early citrus ranchers.

Millard Sheets Studio (1958)
655 East Foothill Blvd.

Once the design studio for the late artist Millard Sheets, who taught at Scripps College, this building is now an office for eye doctors. Sheets became a nationally known artist and designer whose murals are found all over Southern California.

We hope you've enjoyed your brief historic tour along Route 66 in Claremont CA.