A Bit of Napa Valley History, the Eagle Cycling Club

Real Estate Agent with Better Homes & Gardens Wine Country Group DRE # 00770113

Many years ago, I used to own two gift shops here in Yountville, Caboose Noir and Train of Thought. Opening Caboose Noir in 1977 is what brought me to living here in the Napa Valley. Caboose Noir was a gift shop carrying primarily Noir Enamels which was owned by my late cousin Loreon Vigne', a well known San Francisco artist and finally the owner and founder Isis Oasis. Train of Thought was a paper store featuring gift cards, posters and many other paper products.

About 1980 during Christmas while working at Caboose Noir, a young man came in to buy gifts for his mother. Unfortunately, he did not have enough money to buy the ones he picked. He did have an old photo album containing many historic photos from the early 1900s which we agreed to use as barter for his purchase.

I am in the process of moving so I have been going through everything to see what moves, what to sell and what goes into the trash. This gave me reason to revisit the photo album which by this time contained a large number of very faded photos. One photo to survive in fairly good condition was that of the Eagle Cycling Club which happens to be a long time cycling club here in the Napa Valley.

I reached out to them and was contacted by a Ken Rands. He was kind enough to send me their history by El Jefe which I have included here. It makes for interesting reading. I hope you enjoy and sorry about the formatting but it was the best way to include it here. I was grateful I could give them the photograph from their past.




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If I can help you find the perfect Napa Valley property, please contact me

Your Napa Valley Broker Extraordinaire, selling Real Estate here from its heart, Yountville

My website & blog: www.NapaValleyAddress.com


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Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Curtis,   Great history lesson of the area and so glad you got this one.  Did not know you own to shops

Nov 26, 2019 08:29 AM #1
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Curtis - this is fascinating on many  levels.  First, I love both names of your previous Yountville business ventures.  Plus the concepts for each.   Second, your remembrance of the photo album flowed with lots of information that hopefully inspire some follow-up posts telling us more.  

Nov 26, 2019 09:25 AM #2
Curtis Van Carter
Better Homes & Gardens Wine Country Group - Yountville, CA
Your Napa Valley Broker Extraordinaire


I did and keep Caboose Noir for 7 years before entering real estate full time. I did a year off in between, cheers cvc

Nov 26, 2019 09:45 AM #3
Curtis Van Carter
Better Homes & Gardens Wine Country Group - Yountville, CA
Your Napa Valley Broker Extraordinaire


Thank you for these kind words. I know I don't write enough of such posts and this and one of my New Year's resolutions will be to do so. cheers cvc

Nov 26, 2019 09:47 AM #4
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives

Hi Curtis,

What a fascinating blog post! I loved reading about your business ventures and the story about the research you did on the Eagle Cycling Club. The fact that you were able to reach out and was contacted by Ken Rands to get additional historical information is amazing! I hope you write more on topics like this. Isn't it something what pops out of an old photo album and the stories that trail 

Good luck with your move. I know, it can't be easy. I wish you the best of good health, happiness, and good times with people you enjoy being around. Take care! You're an important person here on ActiveRain. Don't ever forget that.

Nov 26, 2019 10:41 AM #5
Curtis Van Carter
Better Homes & Gardens Wine Country Group - Yountville, CA
Your Napa Valley Broker Extraordinaire


I truly thank you for your kind words and support. After 33 years in the same place, it is a bit nerve racking to say nothing about being able to sleep. Hope your holidays are super, cheers cvc

Nov 27, 2019 07:33 AM #6
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 - Devon, PA
Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line

What an interesting post and all prompted by a young man with not enough money to pay for his purchases. What struck me is the dance they held, as my father when he was young growing up in england organized and MC'd dances and orchestras for his school just before WWII. But the whole history and the determination as they laid out the cinder path is all admirable. Your businesses also sound very interesting, even the names for them.

Nov 27, 2019 07:41 AM #7
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